Cover image with a "Do Not Enter" sign and text that reads "Breaking My Own Rules"

Breaking My Own Rules

(Although, is it really considered “breaking” them if you’re the one who created them in the first place?)

There’s this saying that I was taught when I was younger: “Rules are for the obedience of fools and the guidance of wise men.” I’m still not entirely sure what it means, but it’s usually stated before someone goes and does something potentially rule-breaking, as if saying it absolves them of their crimes.

But anyway.

We all have rules for ourselves, right? Even if they’re not written down anywhere, we all have certain rules we set for ourselves. For example:

  • “I can’t use [insert social media] until after I finish my work for the day.”
  • “Every time I get paid, I will save this much of it.”
  • “I will only buy gas from XYZ Gas Station.”

Most of the time, these rules can be good for keeping ourselves accountable, especially when there’s no one else around to do so. I limit the times I can use social media so that I don’t waste my morning away reading the same three tweets over and over. I save money from every paycheck so I don’t randomly wind up broke someday. Rules help me keep my life together.

I also break my own rules, though.

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Real Talk About Blogging

If you walked up to me (or sent me a message, since it’s unlikely we live in close proximity to each other) and asked me if I enjoyed blogging, I’d tell you of course I did! I mean, I wouldn’t do it if I didn’t get some satisfaction from it. And if you followed that up by asking if you should start a blog, I’d say “Absolutely!” Blogging is great for sharing your ideas with the world, it’s a fun project, and it gives you a sense of accomplishment.

No matter where you go on the internet, there’s an idea that bloggers have great lives: they have hundreds of followers, their pictures are beautiful, and their posts are always well-written. Bloggers are perfect, aren’t they? They’re so well put-together.

But you want to know the truth?

Sometimes, blogging sucks.

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A Rather Messy Monday

Get my reference?

As I mentioned a few posts ago, I’m back in school now, which means I’m back to juggling my classes and blogging and other things again. Don’t worry, this isn’t one of those “my blog is going on hiatus” posts, but if you’re wondering why my posts have been late recently, that’s why. I’m still getting back into my routine of blogging and planning posts, and it’s take longer to readjust than I expected.

This past weekend in particular, I had a lot of reading homework for my classes, and along with some other things that happened (nothing major, just some unexpected messiness), I didn’t have much time or energy to write a blog post for this Monday. Hopefully, as the weeks continue and I get back into my routine, my posts will appear more regularly and on time. I’m busy a lot this month, but I should be able to plan my time better as the weeks go on.

Since I don’t have a “real” blog post this week though, I thought I’d share another little surprise I’ve been working on recently. You may have already noticed, but if not, click below to read all about it!

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A Few of My Favorite Writing Blogs

When I was a kid, I had a blog just for my own amusement that went through various phases of activity and inactivity. Eventually, I put that website to rest for good and moved on. But I’m back in the blogosphere, which begs the question: What inspired me to blog again?

My blogging revival, so to speak, has a lot to do with myself personally becoming more involved in the blogging community as I entered my final year of high school. As a writer hoping to improve my craft, I looked to writing blogs for tips and advice to help me in my journey. Reading posts from these different sites is what inspired me to start up a new blog, and to this day, I’m still learning a lot from them with each post.

Today, I want to share a few of my favorite writing blogs with you. Not all of them are the ones that initially inspired me to blog again, but they all provide assistance and encouragement for me as I continue to grow as a writer.

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Blogging How-To: Title Images Part 2

Remember that blog post I wrote last month about creating title images for blog posts? Well, I’m back again with more title image tips, including ways to find fonts, troubleshooting to make sure your image shows up on Facebook, and creating abstract backgrounds!

If you haven’t already, be sure to read my original blog post, since that tutorial lays the foundation for this one. Also, I use the free image editing program GIMP in both of these tutorials, so if you don’t have that program, you can download it here. If you’re not familiar with GIMP, don’t worry – it’s a pretty easy program to learn!

So, are you ready to learn some more tips and tricks? Keep on reading!

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Blogging How-To: Title Images

The other day, a friend of mine approached me about how I make the title images for my blog posts. It’s actually a part of blogging I find very enjoyable, so I figured why not share my methods with the world? After all, it was quite the process to teach this so myself and I thought I’d save you the trouble.

The program I use to create my images is GIMP, and so that’s what I’ll be using in this tutorial. You can download the program for free here. If you don’t like GIMP, I’m sure you could use something like Pixlr, which I’ve heard is a very good online program, though I can’t say from experience.

Why create title images? For one, they look good on your page. But the larger reason is that it makes your posts look more appealing when you share them. Using title images makes your posts easy to share on Pinterest, which is great especially if you’re a blog that talks about writing, crafting, or other Pinterest-worthy things. Adding images also makes your links look more appealing when you share them on Facebook, Twitter, or whatever social media you like to use.

How do I make one? Well, buckle your seatbelts friends, because I’m about to teach you almost everything I know about making title images in (hopefully) fifteen minutes or less.

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1st Blogiversary Celebration!

With cupcakes! (Virtual cupcakes, that is).

A year ago today, I started up Maggie’s Musings as a place for me to write. I didn’t really have much of a plan in mind at the time, and to be honest, I still don’t. But over the past year, this blog has been a wonderful creative outlet for me, week in and week out.

I began this project mostly for myself, but since then, I’ve gained a sizeable following, so from the bottom of my heart, thank you for sticking around and keeping up with Maggie’s Musings! Whether you’ve been following for a few days or a few months, I’m glad you’re here.

Special shoutouts to my family for supporting me with every post (even when it was about totally random stuff, like bad book blurbs),  my friends (both “in real life” and on the internet) for their encouragement, and to my fellow bloggers for inspiring me (even if you didn’t realize it).

Now, on to the celebration!

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What I’ve Learned About Blogging

Well, so far at least.

Today marks one year since I started up Maggie’s Musings, and in addition to the other celebrations going on around the site, I’ve compiled a list of things I’ve learned over the past year of blogging (almost) consistently. It’s been a journey for sure, and there have definitely been days when I dreaded having to write a blog post for the week. But no matter what, I love creating, and Maggie’s Musings has given me an outlet for that.

I’m certainly not an expert yet, but based on the ups and downs of blogging for a year now, here are a few things I’ve learned!

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Purposeful Pages – September 2016

Happy Friday everyone! As you read this, I’m probably either in class or getting ready to head to Uprise Festival this weekend, which is pretty exciting! The lineup is fantastic as always, but I’m super excited to see Wolves At The Gate, For Today (on their final tour), Disciple, Lacey Sturm, and basically everyone.

Also, speaking of Disciple, their Kickstarter campaign for Long Live The Rebels wrapped up this weekend, which means that as a supporter, I got to hear some of my music! It isn’t available for people who weren’t a part of the campaign, but I can tell you that it’s awesome. There’s some stuff reminiscent of their older music, and also some that’s reflective of their growth over the years. It’s amazing!

Anyway, I decided to participate in a new linkup this month called Purposeful Pages. I first heard about it on Quill Pen Writer (shout out to Melissa for introducing me to it!), another writing blog I follow, and I was really intrigued so I wanted to give it a shot! The linkup is hosted by Hannah @ Furious Ever Afters and Amanda @ Scattered Journal Pages, and it’s designed to unite bloggers on answering questions about life, blogging, the Bible, writing, and books.

As you can tell, it’s a bit different from the Beautiful People linkup I’ve been participating in monthly, but I’m excited to try something new! And now for the moment you’ve all been waiting for… the questions!

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The Sunshine Blogger Award

First, I’d like to thank…

Okay, no, it’s not that kind of award. But still, this is pretty exciting! The Sunshine Blogger Award is something that I’ve seen passed around on many blogs I follow, and I’m so happy to say I was nominate!

A big thank you to my friend Paige Turner @ Between Reality for nominating me! If you love reading honest book reviews, go visit her blog! She’s one of the best book reviewers I know, and she’s been doing a lot of other cool stuff on her blog lately, so be sure to check it out!

Anyway, the Sunshine Blogger Award is pretty simple. There are three steps:

  • Thank the people/person who nominated you.
  • Answer the questions from your nominator(s).
  • Nominate eleven other bloggers and give them eleven questions.

Paige asked some pretty cool questions, so without further ado, let’s get started!

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