Saturday, March 26, 2011

Send your guest posts for the babymoon!


Speaking of guest posts

I will have a brand new newborn in two short months and, if memory serves, will find it very challenging to keep up my blog posting during the babymoon phase — those alternately dreamy and harrowing weeks of bonding, breastfeeding topless, and catching sleep wherever it can be found.

I'm looking for guest posters who'd like to be featured on Hobo Mama in June or July.

See, this is the two of us, sharing blog posts, in a kitchen that is much cleaner than mine at the moment.

FAQs (that haven't actually been frequently asked yet):

How fabulous will Hobo Mama be at promoting my guest posts during the babymoon?

Very, very unfabulous. It will be up to you, the guest poster, to do what you can to drive traffic to your post — by putting a blurb on your blog, Tweeting the post, or putting the link on Facebook. I will do what I can, but let's not rely on me during the newborn fog, 'k?

Does my post have to be original?

Normally, I'd prefer that. But, due to the limitations of the above lack of promotion, I'm fine with reprints of wonderful articles from your blog, as long as it's been at least 90 days since it was published.

Of course, original posts are marvelous at any time!

What topic can I write about?

Anything relevant to Hobo Mama readers. Broadly speaking, this means attachment parenting and a natural lifestyle. If you need particular topics, take a gander at the categories list in the sidebar.

And just because I haven't written about a particular topic doesn't mean I wouldn't love to host it. I have my own limited parenting experience to write from — if you have a unique perspective to lend, I would appreciate adding it to this blog. For instance, I'm not a SAHM or a WOHM; I'm a white, middle-class, 30-something woman who lives in the U.S.; I haven't had a C-section; I haven't exclusively pumped or formula fed for any length of time; I don't have experience with adoption or special needs or single parenting; I'm not particularly concerned or well-versed in matters of specialty eating habits; I have just the one child of preschool age so far; I've never crocheted; I have yet to launder my own cloth diapers; etc. How are you different, and is there anything you can add that Hobo Mama's missing?

Do I have to write like Hobo Mama?

No, no, not at all. You should write well.

All kidding aside, the point of a guest post is to highlight who you are and draw new readers to your own blog. Which leads us to…

Do I have to have my own blog?

Not necessarily. I'd prefer it, because then I can get a sense of what you've written about in the past and whether our philosophies mesh. Plus, one of the benefits of guest posting is attracting traffic to your own blog. If I know you from another venue, though, feel free to contact me and ask.

Also, I'd prefer your blog to be a parenting blog or otherwise relevant to my readers.

Does my blog have to be super-popular?

I have no expectations or guidelines for how well-trafficked your blog is or how long you've been blogging, beyond that I'd like to get a sense of what sorts of posts you write. A guest post is a great way to attract new readership and link love for your blog, whether it's big or small, so any size blog is welcome.

What are the guidelines for a guest post?

  • Be positive. Even if you feel strongly about a topic, please be sensitive to readers who might not yet agree with you — think of what would persuade them to change their minds. I will not host articles that are disrespectful to other people based on parenting choices, age, size, class, working status, color, race, creed, sexuality, physical abilities, or really anything. Keep it positive and honor other people's experiences and diversity.
  • Please do not repost the article for at least 90 days after its appearance on Hobo Mama. Along the same lines, please do not submit reprints that will be less than 90 days old on June 1. You will retain copyright to your work, but this will be a courtesy to our readers.
  • Consider subheadings and lists to break up long posts, or even dividing very long posts into separate parts to publish in succession.
  • All posts must include at least one image for illustration and prettiness purposes. This does not have to be a picture you've taken, but you must have the right to use it and submit the copyright name and link if you are not the photographer.
         Three sources to search for available and free stock photography:
    • Stock.xchng (check individual photos to see if you need written permission before publishing an image)
    • Flickr (scroll down and select "Only search within Creative Commons-licensed content" before entering a search term)
         It's best if images are at least 250 pixels wide (and up to 520 pixels wide, though I can edit the size down as necessary).
  • Proofread and run a spelling/grammar check.
  • Write your own bio for the end of the post. Be sure to link to your blog and give 2-3 sentences of information about yourself or your blog. Include a bio picture — it can be a photo of you, or if you prefer to remain more anonymous, it can be an avatar or the logo of your blog. For ideas of what to write, you can scan through past guest posts, or get creative.
  • Once the post is published, you are responsible and encouraged to promote it. Ideas: Post a blurb on your own site; share it in Google Reader; link it up on your Facebook page; Stumble it; send out a Tweet or ten. Please also return to the post to respond to comments so you can engage the readers in conversation. As with the writing, please keep your comments positive and sensitive to readers who disagree. (This is very rare, but if you need help moderating a comment controversy, let me know and I will step in.)
  • If you would like a guest post on your blog in return, let me know! I'm willing to do an exchange (just not in June or July!).

What's the submission procedure?

See further details above, but here's the summary:
  1. Pitch me an idea or a full post. If I don't know who you are, please include a link to your blog and some information about yourself so I can make a decision on whether we're a good fit for each other.
  2. Write or edit the post.
  3. Find an image or images to illustrate the post. Make sure you obtain permission to use images if necessary, and collect the copyright info.
  4. Write your bio and choose a bio picture.
  5. Submit the final draft plus bio in html format. Images can be hosted by you or attached in the email for me to upload. The html text can be copied and pasted into the body of the email or emailed as an attachment.
  6. I will edit the post and discuss any substantive changes with you. I will also schedule a posting date so you will know when to expect it to go live. Posting dates are subject to change, according to the whims of this little one inside. Let me know if a particular weekday or date will work best for you (or, conversely, what days and dates will not work due to your own scheduling conflicts).

Where do I send the post?

You can write me through my contact page or email directly to mail {at} HoboMama {dot} com

When's the deadline?

I'd like to get all the posts edited and scheduled before getting frantic, so I'm making the deadline to receive final drafts April 30.

Photo courtesy usedcarspecialist on flickr (cc)


Momma Jorje said...

I just submitted an article for NPN and I'd love to write one for you as well! I have a list of related topics that I've had percolating in the back of my mind for a couple of months. Surely I can spit another OUT within the next month!

Likewise, I think it would be awesome to host a guest post from YOU sometime! No rush, of course.

Great planning ahead, btw!

Adrienne said...

Kudos to you for planning ahead. You will be missed while on your babymoon (though I totally respect you for taking time off to bond and rest)!

I'd be interested in submitting a guest post and also having you guest post on my blog. I will start brainstorming ideas...


melissa said...

Lauren, I'd love the opportunity to guest post, and you help you out during the baby moon! I'm thinking perhaps reflections on being a Montessori teacher parent (if that makes any sense! It would if I wrote the post!) or something on feeding a vegan toddler. I'll put a rough draft together in the next week and send you an email :)

J Gross said...

Hi Lauren, i have always enjoyed the posts at your blog and will be sending you a post very soon. actually it will be an honor to write something for your blog. My Best Wishes for the newborn. you take good care yourself, we will be waiting for you to come back and post more

I Thought I Knew Mama said...

Lauren, do you still need guest posters? I would love to write one, and to have you guest post on my blog at whatever point you feel up for it.

Lauren Wayne said...

@I Thought I Knew Mama: I do! I feel bad to keep asking because I haven't gotten back to everyone who's sent something so far (gulp!). But, yes, I'd love to exchange posts with you. Just let me know what topic sounds interesting to you (or what you want me to write on!).

Lauren Wayne said...

@melissa joanne: Both of those sound awesome!

I Thought I Knew Mama said...

Ok, great! I'll get back to you with a topic asap. You are welcome to write about anything you want on my blog. I am slightly obsessed with my fear of having a second child b/c I don't know how I could possibly parent Jac and another baby in the way that I choose to parent Jac now (i.e., will I have enough kindness, patience, breastmilk, attention, etc.) for both... so if you feel like sharing any insights into that topic in your post, I would be especially interested. :-)

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