Hello Everyone! Thank you for your interest in submitting a guest blog post to www.chasinglabellavita.com.
As you know, this site is dedicated to helping people everywhere in the world make their lives better with simple, actionable or simply entertaining articles. my primary concern is my readers. I have spent a lot of time and energy building a trusting relationships with them and for this reason am very picky about what I will put on my blog.
Anything I actually endorse here must be true and something I would feel good about endorsing. Since I do offer you an opportunity to promote your product or site, I may indicate in the article that I personally have not used it and therefore it is not a personal recommendation from me.
Please understand that I receive many requests for guest blogs and I will not publish anything that I feel jeopardizes the trust of my readers. The articles I am looking for are “how-to” articles like the ones I write for Lifehack.org: (Check them out here: http://www.lifehack.org/articles/author/christina-ellis)
and travel articles like those you find in Fathomaway.com: http://fathomaway.com/postcards/quirk/best-travel-blogs-and-websites/ but with more of a bent toward the idea that the more we travel, communicate with and learn about each other, the more likely we are to get along.
The point I would like each reader to come away with is that the world is overall a friendly place, that there are simple solutions to everyday problems and that through communication, we can calm this planet down and ultimately bring everyone together while retaining the individual beauty and nature of the separate cultures.
Here are some simple guidelines for submissions:
1) Craft a killer headline Substitute power words and known buttons for weak words to spike interest.
For example, instead of saying “Here are 7 recipes for your Leftover Turkey” you could say “7 KILLER recipes to SALVAGE your Thanksgiving Leftovers!” Or, from my blogging mentor, Jon Morrow’s viral headline “On DYING, MOTHERS, and FIGHTING for your Ideas.” His whole article is brilliantly written and propelled him to the top of the heap in terms of bloggers. It is very worthwhile to read. He took the time and care to craft it beautifully and it communicates exactly what he wants it to. (Click here for the article: http://www.copyblogger.com/fight-for-your-ideas/)
2) Include lots of space.
The internet reader is a completely different type of reader than a book reader. Internet readers tend to scan and are generally put off by reading large blocks of text that are not broken up. I tend to break my posts into three or four lines whenever possible. (Some sites have lumped some of mine back into large blocks but those articles don’t do as well.)
3) Make sure your Ideas that are clearly laid out and that have no extraneous fillers.
Review your work after your first draft and ruthlessly get rid of any extra words or phrases that are not needed.
4) Avoid repeating yourself.
If you feel that one explanation does not fully flesh out your idea, use examples to get the point across. This also adds interest to your article, especially if the examples, themselves are funny or entertaining.
5) Use Great Subheads.
Subheads (like numbers or bullet points) should follow the same rules as headlines. i.e. make them irresistible, use power words.
6) Don’t use words or vernacular that most people do not understand.
If you use a word that is not used a lot on common conversations, put a definition in parentheses right after it or your reader will not read any further. Once he or she hits a misunderstood word, you have lost them.
7) Craft each sentence so that it has a “Hook” in it.
In songwriting, we talk about “The Hook” The hook is that thing in the song that makes it interesting and hooks our attention. My all time favorite author, P.G. Wodehouse, had a standard for his novels. He said that he reads over EVERY LINE of each novel and each line MUST have some sort of entertainment value. If you read his novels, you can see that he has accomplished this task.
It is not difficult to do but it does take time and effort. Use imagery, narratives, personal stories, whatever it takes to hook your reader. The line that is filler is the point in his reading where your reader clicks on something else.
8) Edit your post I don’t mind doing some minor edits but I don’t do major revisions.
Make sure each paragraph leads into the next one, and that your article has a beginning, a body and an ending.Make sure that the sequence make sense. For any numbered posts, make sure the numbers are in the correct order. I know this sounds simple but it is an easy mistake to make. Make sure that if you say in your headline “17 Killer Tips for Tipping Cows!” that you actually have 17.
If you want to put in a bonus tip, do but make sure your reader understands that it is a bonus tip and you are wonderful for including it.
9) Load up your post with Golden Nuggets.
I am currently working my way through the AWAII copywriting program and they talk about “Golden Nuggets” these are interesting bits of information that your reader does not know and will find interesting. For example, Michelangelo had a technique for carving a grand sculpture from a small clay model where he put the model in a tub of water with a hole in it, and in stages let some water out. He then carved on his large sculpture the part of the smaller clay model that was visible above the water.
10) Promote your live article to your social media connections and I will promote it on mine.
Together we can generate lots of traffic for your ideas and you can use it to build your website. I have found that promoting the same article several times per day is necessary as most people miss it if you only do it once. Any article you submit will remain yours but you must give me authorization to keep it on my site as long as I want. You will, of course, retain credit as author and you can post it on your own site or any other site that does not then insist that they own the rights to it. Most other sites do so please be aware. I do not want to take your rights to your articles but I do need to protect myself from unintended copyright infringements that may come as a result of sending your article to someone who then considers it theirs.
Thanks for reading these guidelines, I look forward to hearing from you! Please be advised that if your submission does not align with the guidelines, it will not be published. XO Chris