How To Make Money Online In 2021

How To Make Money Online In 2021

How To Make Money Online

This is a question I get almost constantly and so I thought I would write a post dedicated to this topic. I have written about this on an earlier post, however, if I remember correctly that post concentrated more on making money blogging rather than online in general because at the time I was taking some time off social media. I wanted to do a little updated version of the post because it’s been a while since that post and I thought I would rather talk about making money online rather than just blogging because some of my readers are not bloggers but do use social media and from the DM’s/emails I have gotten they would be interested in learning to make money from their social media pages too.

Here are some of my favourite tips and tricks on how to make money online, however, I have so many more tips which I plan to write a much longer PDF about. Let me know in the comments if this is something you would be interested in reading because I don’t want to make it if people won’t be interested in downloading it since it does take a while to create and I plan on being super detailed so it will be quite long. So please let me know- any thoughts you have on the PDF would be super helpful for me and it will help me figure out what you guys are looking to read about which will help me write something that you guys actually find benefical. If you have any suggestions on what you would like me to write about on the PDF, any specific topics you would like me to cover let me know about those as well.

Create Content

I know this one sounds obvious but you need to put a lot of thought into what you are providing your audience. You want to create content that people will be able to interact with. As a content creator you probably just want to put out content that you enjoy putting out which is totally okay however if you want to make money online and are planning on making online work your primary source of income you need to put more thought into the content you are providing. Is it content that is going to be beneficial for your audience? Is it content that is going to drive traffic to your blog or your social media pages or whatever you are choosing to use in order do you make your income? I know that as a content creator you may not want to think about things like these however it’s important to think about them if you want to make an income online.

You want to create content that will keep readers, followers or pretty much anyone you are targeting constantly coming back and they need to trust you enough to want to invest in you because at the end of the day when you are trying to sell something either that you created or that you are promoting for someone else you want people to buy it and if sponsors see that your engagement levels are high and they are getting a lot of traffic from your page/pages they will want to keep investigating in you and may even recommend you to others. Furthermore, if you are selling something yourself your audience needs to trust you enough to want to buy it. This is one of the best ways to make a larger income online or at least enough to be a full-time blogger/influencer. Don’t only rely on one way to make money- have multiple streams of income because online work isn’t like traditional work. You aren’t guaranteed a certain amount at the end of each month and multiple streams of income make sure that you will make enough to survive even on slower months.

The last reason why you should take your content seriously is because it’s the first thing everyone will look at. Your potential followers, your potential sponsors and probably your parents if you’re Gujarati like me. This is your chance to make a wonderful first impression especially if your follower count isn’t high. A lot of people ask me if they can still make money online if their follower count isn’t that high and it’s totally possible. If your follower count isn’t that high give your potential followers and clients something else to look at like your engagement rate and your valuable content.

Stan Yourself

Yes, I have officially become one of those annoying Gen-Z kids that say “We Stan…”- kidding of course! But seriously- you need to be your biggest fan. Make sure people can’t escape you even if they want to (not in a Buffalo Bill meets Jason Voorhees kind of way). Post content regularly, cross promote it on all your pages/sites/etc and make sure your audience engages with it as much as possible. This will tell the algorithm that you just put out something valuable and it will push your content too if it sees that your engagement rates are high because it will assume other people will be interested in it.

Once your content is everywhere you have a much better chance of growing as well as meet potential clients/sponsors. Plus, you get on the algorithm’s good pages which is for some weird reason very important- perhaps even more important than humans liking you and your content.

Join Platforms

Joining platforms that help connect influencers with brands/clients are extremely helpful and have been one of my main sources of finding clients that would like to work with me. As an influencer it’s hard to reach out to thousands of brands a day, send them all your data only to have one or two of them accept to work with you eventually. This happens a lot and not everyone has the time or patience to do this. With platforms like these you don’t need to reach out to random brands but rather to specific brands that are already looking for content creators like you. Sometimes they even reach out to you and you don’t even have to do any of the work of finding clients.

If you are interested in the specific platforms that you can join check out this Instagram reel I made with the names of all the platforms I think are great especially for smaller influencers. Click here to view it.

Research

If you only pick up one thing from this entire post, let it be this one. Research RESEARCH RESEARCH. We are living in a time where so much information is constantly available to us so make sure you take advantage of this and do some proper research.

When I say research I mean multiple types of research. First, figure out what your brand is, what it is you want your audience to be paying for, what type of sponsors are you looking for. Once you have this figured out do some research and find out what is popular in your niche, what content gets traffic and sponsors in this niche.

You also want to research your “competition” by which I mean look at other people in the same niche doing what you hope to be doing- making some cheddar. If you are looking to make money on social media, look at what tags they are using, what their images look like, what times they post at and more. Also look at companies/brands/services/etc that have sponsored them and reach out to those companies or brands or etc. Don’t make it sound super obvious that you found the company through them and if possible don’t mention them at all. Instead, in your email mention that you noticed they were working with influencers in your niche and you wanted to reach out and ask if they would be interested in working with you. Give them your follower count, engagement rate etc so they can go through all the information and decide whether they would like to work with you or not. If they choose not to work with you be professional about it and thank them for their time- DO NOT freak out and throw a tantrum because this will get you blacklisted really fast. Also, when I say do your research I DO NOT mean plagiarise other influencers work because that is never okay. Come up with your own content, just draw inspiration from them and if you do end up using their concept or something make sure to give credit where credit is due.

Thoughts

Are you interested in making money online? Would you be interested in learning more about making money online or perhaps even learning how to make blogging/social media your full-time job? Are you currently making income online? If so what are some of your tips and tricks? How is your day going?


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5 Things I Hate About Blogging

5 Things I Hate About Blogging

Things I Hate About Blogging

I love blogging- it’s probably one of my favourite things to do apart from reading stuff about history because for some weird reason my brain thinks reading hundreds of pages about things that happened hundreds of years ago is fun. But I digress, I love blogging but I have to admit- like everything it has it’s advantages and disadvantages. I read this post by Shelly– an awesome blogger you should immediately check out if you haven’t already- and that’s where I got the idea from this post from. Our posts are a bit different but her post is what gave me this idea and I always want to support other bloggers plus credit should be given where it’s due so do check out her post as well- it’s very interesting and super relatable.

Here are five things I hate about blogging:

Spam Comments

You guys know this had to be at the top of my list. I am so freaking tired of getting “please check out my posts” comments EVERY SINGLE DAY!! I can guarantee you that some people will leave comments like that on this post too because people like that clearly don’t read or even care about your post. They just want to advertise their own blog and think that for some weird reason other people’s posts are the best place to do this.

I have had the pleasure of reading a lot of amazing blog posts by a lot of amazing bloggers and I think it’s just insanely disrespectful to ignore their hard work (I guarantee that every blogger puts at least a certain amount of time and effort to create their posts) and use their blog to grow your own. And to be honest it’s also a really stupid thing to do as well as a great way to destroy the chances of your blog actually growing because most bloggers block or delete such comments/commenters. If you just left a genuine comment talking about their post they would be very likely to check out your blog anyway.

I know some bloggers do this without realizing what they are doing is wrong so I would urge anyone reading this not to leave these kind of comments and instead take the time to genuinely connect with other bloggers. This is a way better way to grow and honestly kind of easier in my opinion.

Feeling Used

As you guys probably know if you’ve been following me for a while I have a lot of posts with blogging advice and I guess because of those posts combined with my following people tend to assume I’m great at blogging (I’m really not I’m just very lucky to have such fantastic followers!) and I end up getting A LOT of messages, emails and comments asking me for help. A lot of them are general questions which I really don’t mind. If I can help someone I usually try to depending on how busy I am with school work. This doesn’t bother me at all.

What does bother me is people who are really rude about asking for help. To be honest,  I’m just a blogger and I don’t have to help anyone if I don’t want to but I try to help when I can because I’ve been blogging for like six years now and I know how difficult blogging can be. However, some people sort of try to use me like tech support which is a bit annoying because that’s not my job?? To kind of explain what I mean- sometimes people ask me about really specific technical issues they are experiencing and I usually tell them to talk to the happiness engineers because they are better equipped to help them with such things. Like one time someone’s blog didn’t have a follow button and they kept asking me why and I told them I didn’t know because I honestly didn’t know what the issue was and told them to contact WP since it could be a glitch. However, for some reason they got super offended that I couldn’t help them and became really passive aggressive which kind of threw me off. That’s just one example, but yeah when that happens it annoys me because I’m not like your blogging teacher- I’m just a girl trying to blog and not go crazy writing research papers all day.

Another thing I get often is people asking me for help to grow their site and expecting some kind of magic formula that will instantly get them from 0-1000 followers. That’s not how it works- it took me years to get to where I am. I try to give them advice and tell them how I grow my blog but some people get super passive aggressive as if I’m hiding some secret about growing your blog. I also have had people ask me to go through their entire site and read every post to see if anything can be improved- I mean why would I do that? I don’t mind giving general pointers but I’m not going to redo your entire blog for you especially when I’m so busy with university that I don’t even have time to write anything except six word stories for my own blog. It’s not my job to teach you how to blog- that’s something you should learn on your own through your own research and I think it’s rude to even ask someone to do something like that for you unless they offer some kind of service to do that and you are willing to pay them for their time and effort.

Plagiarism

I know people say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery but to be honest it can be quite annoying. Sometimes I see people stealing my posts- like entire posts or using certain sentences word for word and it really annoys me. I don’t mind if one of my ideas inspires you to write something similar- I don’t even want credit for that. What annoys me is when people steal my work word for word.

From what I have seen in all the years I have been blogging I know that bloggers work really hard on their posts and it’s really difficult to come up with unique ideas all the time so it’s really upsetting when someone decides to steal your posts and not even bother changing the words. And it’s not just me who has experienced this. Most bloggers have experienced this at least once which just makes me so sad.

If you are someone who uses other peoples work without crediting them I really hope you stop because it’s just so awful.

WordPress

I love blogging but to be honest WordPress can be super annoying sometimes. I just feel like they don’t take their content creators seriously because they continue to make certain changes to their platform that I personally find quite unnecessary while ignoring certain things that would actually be quite beneficial for users. It would be pretty easy to find out what we would like to see them improve- literally all they would have to do is ask. They also continuously make changes without giving a proper heads up to people so they can brace themselves for these changes which annoys me a lot. As someone with anxiety I like to know if something is changing in advance so I can prepare myself for it and I know a lot of people feel that way too. It’s quite difficult to deal with the changes when they are so sudden especially if you’re like me and are not too tech savvy.

Feeling Unsatisfied

Sometimes I just feel extremely unsatisfied with my posts because I’ll put out a post that I put so much effort into writing and that I’m very passionate about and it will get a really bad response and the next day I’ll put out a post I wrote about something random in a rush and it will do really well. I mean I’m super grateful but at the same time I kind of feel unsatisfied like I wish I had gotten a better response for some of the other posts that didn’t do as well. I don’t know if you guys have ever experienced this but it has happened to me a couple of times. Let me know in the comments if that’s ever happened to you!

Technical Stuff

The thing I love most about blogging is just being able to express myself as I want to. Blogging has always been a place for me where I can just be myself. And then I learnt about SEO and DA and Alexa scores and a million other things and honestly when I think about them they just annoy me so much. Why does a post have to be SEO friendly and all that other stuff to be successful. I don’t get why technical stuff gets so much say in what readers want to see on your posts.

For example, I’ve been using Google for like forever now like most people who are around my age and as the years pass I can tell the results are getting more inaccurate. First, you get a million ads trying to sell you stuff, then you FINALLY get to the posts but it’s all irrelevant stuff that only shows up because it has high SEO scores. You don’t actually get the information you need which is super annoying and you need to go through a bunch of articles before you get to what you were actually looking for, It annoys me so much because I see so many wonderful blogs that honestly deserve so much better. They deserve so much more traffic than they get and most of it is not because their blogs aren’t wonderful but because of stupid algorithms that are screwing their chances of growing.

I see it with Instagram too- if you can get into the algorithm and do everything right you grow and if not you’re kind of stuck even though your content is great. I think that’s ridiculous because it just means everyone on social media just ends up doing the same stuff again and again and anyone who dares to do something different is basically stuck.

Another example of why the technical stuff is stupid is that they tell you what posts people want to see on your blog but guess what? They’re probably wrong. SEO stuff says your posts need to be long- at least 1500 words but how many of you have genuinely read posts that are that long without just skimming through them and picking up on the sections you want to read? How many of you are have even made it till here on this post? People tend to just ramble on and say things that could be said in like 500 words so that their posts reach 1500-2000 words. It’s like writing research papers all over again and it makes something that was created so people could freely express themselves a lot less fun. My six word stories are literally six words and they bring in just as much traffic as my longer posts.

Sorry, this section turned into a bit of a rant but I had to reach my 1500-2000 word goal… LOL kidding… or am I just going to keep rambling till I get to 2000? Kidding again? Or am I? Okay, I’ll stop now- I am very sleep deprived and just finished a three hour class so I am going to stop typing now before I further ruin this post. But I stand by what I said about technical stuff being stupid- it is stupid.

Your Thoughts

Do you also find any of the things I mentioned about blogging annoying too? Do you find anything about blogging annoying? If so what do you find annoying about blogging? What is the worst experience you have had through blogging? How is was your day? Let me know in the comments below because I love hearing from you guys or simply stop by and say hi!


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It’s Back!!

It’s Back!! Yesterday I made a post about the changes on WP and I noticed that a lot of you have noticed the changes and some of you are not really enjoying them either. I don’t particularly have a lot of issues with the changes but the one things I really hated was that the classic editor was no longer an option for creating your posts. I had been using this editor since day one and it’s not as advanced as the block editor but it’s super easy to use and I am very used to it. I think what annoys me about the situation that A LOT of you also pointed out is that they keep fixing things that don’t need fixing. It’s particularly annoying because as someone who has been on WP for years now I can think of quite a few things that do need fixing. Anyway, I was busy complaining and being all sad about the change but one fellow blogger left a wonderful comment about how I can change some settings and continue using the classic editor and guess what?? It worked!! I am so happy and thankful to be able to continue using this editor and I wanted to share this comment with you guys because a number of people in the comments also said they were sad they could no longer use the classic editor and I though this way you guys can continue using it too if you want to. Thanks again to Barb! This is why I love the WP community- we’re always here for one another and everyone is super kind and helpful. Do go check out her wonderful blog by clicking here.
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Ummmm

Ummmm

So I’m not going crazy right? Like WP really just woke up and decided to change a bunch of stuff? Are you guys able to access your dashboard/admin page like before? I don’t have the classic editor option anymore which is what I used to use all the time. I am not a huge fan of change as it is especially when it comes to WP because I feel like every time they change something it just makes it worse. I really liked the classic editor- it was simple to use and I had been using it for like 6 years. What do you guys think of these changes?

Sorry if this post looks weird I’m using the stupid block editor.

On the plus side I made a reel for Instagram for the first time which was fun- fee; free to check it out below if you haven’t already:

https://www.instagram.com/reel/CNBvG8Dpzbl/?igshid=1huvbdua40n6h


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5 Mistakes That Will Destroy Your Blog

5 Mistakes That Will Destroy Your Blog

Blogging Mistakes

Blogging is such a fun way to express yourself and interact with other like-minded people. A lot of people really enjoy a lot of aspects of blogging but the one thing most people I have interacted with enjoy is the social part of blogging. The WordPress community is a truly unique place on the internet because for the most part people are super friendly, enthusiastic, supportive and helpful. 

After blogging for a while a lot of bloggers (my phone just tried to autocorrect the word bloggers to voyagers?? 🤔) realise that growing your blog is actually pretty difficult but having a larger platform is great because you get to interact with even more people. There are a lot more benefits of having a larger platform too especially if you would like to blog professionally or make money on your blog at any point. 

I have a lot of posts you can check out about how to grow your blog but today I decided to do something a little different and write about things that will instantly slow down the growth of your blog or that may destroy your blog altogether. I’m not trying to tell you what to blog about because blogging is obviously a very personal thing and you should blog about whatever you feel that you want to blog about. However, if you want to grow your blog or increase your growth I would recommend avoiding these things:

Buying Followers, Likes And Comments

There are so many issues that come along with buying followers, likes and comments but since we don’t have forever I will keep it short and highlight some of the main issues that are associated with buying bot likes, follows and comments. 

The first issue is that everyone’s going to know. It’d often extremely obvious when people buy likes, comments and followers. Bot followers usually have no profile picture, no real posts etc. The comments are often really basic or generic like “nice post” or “great post” without any real reference to the post itself. The likes are often disproportionate compared to the comments and followers which is a big tell-tale for fake likes. If you ever want to make a profit from your posts you will likely be interested in sponsored posts however the first thing sponsors do is check how many of your followers are real which is extremely easy to do. Most people have some fake followers because bots just follow sites randomly sometimes (you’ll notice some bot followers in your following too) but if the largest majority of your following is fake obviously sponsors are not going to be interested in working with you because what’s the point? You won’t direct any traffic to them since none of your traffic is real. 

Another issue is again concerning making a profit from your blog because I’m assuming that if you’re buying followers it’s because you want to make money off your site. A lot of times people will sell services or products on their blog which is a great (maybe the best) way to make money online but if all your followers are fake who are you going to sell to? If you build a genuine following it may take longer but it’s worth so much more than a fake following. 

Buying followers, likes and comments can be pretty expensive. Especially buying followers, however, from stuff I’ve read these followers don’t last very long because WP has been cracking down on bot accounts (they’re not doing a good job with it but they’re trying) so your followers are going to decrease as time goes buy and you will have to continue buying followers every few weeks to maintain your following. Instead, spend some money advertising on other blogs or through Google or Bing. You’ll gain genuine followers for a much cheaper amount. 

The last and probably the most important reason is because if you’re buying all these things you’re probably missing the point of blogging. In my opinion at least, blogging is largely about putting your work out there and interacting with other bloggers and honestly it’s the best part of blogging. WordPress is really unique because unlike most platforms on the internet people are super supportive and kind here. People genuinely want to connect with one another and I feel like the majority of people actually use their platform how it was supposed to be used- to express oneself. If you ever want to buy followers just take some time to interact with people here instead. It will help you connect with others and grow your blog. 

Spam Comments

Literally everyone I have talked to on WP hates spam comments and in my opinion these kind of comments are one of the worst parts of WP. I don’t mean spam comments like the obviously spam ones that try to sell you viagra or something (although if you’re the person who keeps leaving spam comments trying to sell me viagra please stop 😂). I mean the comments that say nothing about your post but tells you to visit their blog. Here are some examples:

Why would anyone follow your blog when you can’t take a few minutes to read theirs? Most people would automatically check out your blog if you left a genuine comment on their blog. However, when you leave comments like this people are just going to get irritated and probably block you or at least avoid your blog. 

Not Using Features Correctly

WP offers a lot of really great features but a lot of people don’t do a lot or any research on how to use them to their advantage. Features like tags, categories, featured images etc are there for a reason and can be vital in growing your blog. Using these features incorrectly can actually slow down your blogs growth.

For example, if you use more than 15 tags your posts will be taken off the tags section in the Reader and this will decrease your traffic and consequently your following. Using incorrect hashtags can also do the same. Using really specific tags is great for SEO but not so much for the WP community. I mean when was the last time you searched something on WP that was super specific like “post about how to grow your blog and use the tags feature on WP.” Most people will search something like “how to grow your blog” or even shorter like “grow WordPress.” Using specific tags is fine but don’t forget to add some broader tags too like “food” if you’re writing about food. 

Clickbait

Clickbait is okay to an extent if you do it once in a while and your title does relate to your post to an extent but if you constantly use clickbait-y titles that have nothing to do with your post people are probably going to get irritated and end up not following you or unfollowing you. What you want is loyal readers and followers because that’s what will help you grow long term. 

Spreading Hate

Most people have heard this at least a few times in their life- if you don’t have anything nice to say than don’t say anything at all. I think most people are fine receiving feedback because it helps you improve your writing or your posts and it helps you understand your readers better. However, if you are going to use your platform to leave hateful comments that attack the blogger you are not going to be very popular on WP because like I said we’re like a family here. If you’re going to leave feedback make sure you’re not attacking someone and leave it in a positive manner.

If you’re just going to leave a hateful comment think about the fact that there are thousands of other blogs out there. No one is forcing you to follow a blog you don’t like or read posts you don’t want to. If you hate something that much just read other blogs you agree with or connect with more. Don’t waste your energy ruining someone else’s day. You don’t personally know this person, you don’t know what they are currently going through and frankly it’s their blog and they can do whatever they want on their own blog.  

Thoughts

What are some blogging mistakes you wish you had known about sooner? Have you missed my blogging advice posts? Do you think I should do more blogging advice posts- I feel like I haven’t done any in forever? Did you find this post helpful? What is some blogging advice you wish someone had given you?


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5 Things bloggers wish they could say — Growing With Spawn

With over 500 million blogs on the web to date, it seems as though everyone and their dog has a blog. There are just so many sites to peruse through that very little thought is actually given to what goes… 15 more words

5 Things bloggers wish they could say — Growing With Spawn

This was so funny and relatable I had to share it with you guys!!

Ask Me Something

Ask Me Something

What Is This?

In March, I did my first “ASK ME SOMETHING” post and it was so much fun. I know a lot of you enjoy these kinds of interactive posts and when I first started again back in January, Zainab a fellow blogger suggested I should do another Q&A post to catch up with everyone and answer your questions and I thought that was an amazing idea. I had been meaning to do one of these posts since then but to be honest I just got super busy with university and knew I would not have enough time to reply to everyone’s questions so I decided to wait till I had a bit more free time.

So, How Does This Work?

In case you hadn’t participated in the last Ask Me Something post or have forgotten how it works I thought I would leave the instructions here again. So, I got the idea for this from how people have that “ask me anything” box on Instagram and thought it would be a lot of fun to do on WordPress too because I have a larger following here and people are a lot more interested in connecting with one another rather than just playing the following/unfollowing. And on that note follow me on Instagram by clicking here- I promise I won’t follow/unfollow you! 😂

I thought it would be particularly fun as some of us are stuck at home and don’t have a lot going on (I’m some of us…). I thought this would be a fun way to connect, start some fun conversations, get to know one another better and just have a nice little virtual get together in the comments section!
Okay so back to how it works. All you have to do is leave a question/questions in the comments section.

After about a week I will publish a post tagging you along with your question and will give an answer to the question on the post.

Thank you!

I want to thank everyone in advance for your comment and for being a part of this! Honestly, it’s just so great that we have this awesome platform on which we can connect with each other. I always enjoy talking to you guys and you always come up with some really interesting questions.


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30 Day Blogging Strategy Plan

30 Day Blogging Strategy Plan

I have been meaning to share this with you guys but I got busy with university so I decided to post pre-written stuff instead. Anyway, some time ago I was approached by two lovely blogging friends Olivia and Shelly and they told me about a 30 day blogging plan they were working on to help bloggers improve their sites, following and traffic and I thought this was an incredible idea. 

They were lovely enough to give me more information about the plan and I was really into it by the time I was done going through everything. You could tell they had worked hard on it and both of their blogs are doing so well you could tell they knew what they were talking about. 

This blogging plan basically helps you enhance your blog whether you are just starting your blog or have been blogging for years. It teaches you the a lot of things that you need to know in order to have a successful blog and to be honest I wish I had something like this when I started out because it took me quite a while to pick up on them.

The plan itself includes a number of things. It helps you create a blogging schedule so that you can post regularly, it teaches you more about SEO and it’s importance when it comes to websites, it shows you how to design your blog to make it more attractive and user friendly, it talks about general tips for blog posts and more. You also get a 2 FREE media kit templates and a free stock image library which is so great!

I think this is such a great way to enhance your blog and I think it could be particularly helpful if you’re a newer blogger because a lot of these things take a while to pick up. This can really help you save a lot of time and effort in the future. 

The plan is £5.99 but if you use my code pooja10 you can get 10% off. You can check it out by clicking here. 


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Blogger Interview With Vincent Smarra

Blogger Interview With Vincent Smarra
I have gotten so many interview requests and I wanted to thank everyone for their interest- I will definitely respond to each email just give me some time as I’m pretty busy with university at the moment. Thanks again!

I hope you enjoy this interview with blogger Vincent Santino Smarra! As always feel free to leave your comments below telling us what you thought about the interview or simply stop by and say hi!

1. Thank you so much for being a part of this interview. Please tell us a little about yourself, your blog and what it is about.
I’m Vincent Santino Smarra, better known as ‘Who?’, or Sonny, to my friends. I always enjoyed language, I’m a prose person that considers writing art. Love it all, except grammar, which I accept like a good-intentioned yet annoying family member. My online platform is my way of sharing my work with the world.

2. When did you start your blog and what made you decide to start blogging?

Sometime in my childhood, this idea popped into my head that I’m meant to be a writer, and never left. So I write because I have to, but my blog, portfolio, whatever the proper term, was another step entirely. I started regularly sharing my work online about 7 years ago when I first felt confident enough that a stranger who might stumble across my writing would enjoy it. I was an idiot for thinking that back then, an overconfident 18 year old – unique, right – but I’m glad I made the decision.

3. I noticed that you blog about multiple topics and have different categories on your blog. What is your favourite topic or category to write about and why?

I never considered how categorically scattered my content is, but now that you’ve pointed it out, I can see you’re right. For me, the main focus is the flow of the writing; I share prose I think has merit, simply because of the way it’s written. The writing style I enjoy the most though, maybe spontaneous prose, Kerouac’s stream of consciousness
style. Sometimes I can post the pieces whole, sometimes I chop them up to use piecemeal, and regardless of their practical use, it’s always cathartic to get it onto the page.

4. Do you ever feel overwhelmed by blogging or like you are running out of ideas? If so, how do you deal with it?

I never feel overwhelmed by writing because no one asked me to do this. It is a weight with undeniable presence but it being there makes me, me. If I run out of ideas, I write about what I see. If I don’t like what I see, I write about nothing; it’s never as pointless as it sounds, though. I think.

5. What is your favourite part of being a blogger?

I put a lot of myself into what I write, and the best part about sharing my work online is knowing I have the chance to communicate my innermost thoughts with complete strangers. Whenever I read good writing my brain absorbs the essence, not an intentional remembrance like when studying, more of a ‘Oh, I already knew that, didn’t I?’ I might not remember the words verbatim but their impact is certain, and the chance to provide that for another person means a lot to me.

6. Who and what are some of your inspirations for writing?

So far as literal writers go, my top 3 inspirations in no order (yes I’m afraid of offending dead men) are Jack Kerouac, Herman Hesse, and Fyodor Dostoevsky. I draw a lot of inspiration from other places too though, especially music: Bob Dylan, Mac Miller, King Fantastic, to name a few.

7. Tell us more about “symphonic prose” and what inspired that.

A couple years back I put my pen down and end up with My Mixtape, stories based on songs split into sections by scrapbook poems made of song lyrics. I put it aside, not knowing what to do with it. A couple weeks later I forgot to do an assignment for a class, and turned it in hoping for the professor’s mercy as it didn’t quite satisfy the project parameters. Fast forward again, I have to meet him during office hours to get it back; he wants to talk. Like a good teacher he let me know it was rough and needed work then passed me with a very generous ‘B’ because he’d never seen anything like it. Proffesor Branscum said he saw potential in the form, and encouraged me to keep developing it. Meant a lot to me. Since then I’ve released 3 additional projects of the same ilk: Jam Session, Ringtones From The Radio, and Music From The Microcosm. The stories, named after songs, are meant to be read before, during, or after listening to the namesake music, and song lyric scrapbook poems serve as thematic breaks, all in the name of communicating the usually impossible to verbalize feeling music can provide. Symphonic Prose is my answer to people’s question of, ‘Why do you like that song?’ And since metatextual games like this are present in almost all other mediums today, I figured, why not literature?

8. What is your favourite food?
Raw onions, garlic, and pickled pepperoncini peppers. Taste and smell.

9. What is the weirdest situation you have ever been in?
One time in the bar some dude made eye contact with me, and I was convinced he was coming to fight, so I made the first move; smashed a plastic cup full of long island across dude’s face. It was a crowded night so the splash hit more than just him. Two guys plus the one I hit start pummeling me and I’m against a wall, I don’t fall but I don’t move either, they just hitting, hitting – I get two black eyes and a busted lip before my friends tackle them off of me. Then, the bouncers come, and decide I was the only person that needed to be kicked out. They were probably right.

10. If you had to live in only one country for the rest of your life, which one would you pick?
It’d be America, which is boring because that’s where I’m from, but if I knew I couldn’t leave I’d make it a point to travel and take the whole thing in. This place is big enough to be a few countries; sometimes it seems like it is.

11. What is one of your favourite memories?
Our high-school graduation was outside, and afterwards, me and a friend snuck into the building. We were on the top floor, looking out on the roof, and we’d always talked about wanting to go out onto it; then we realized we could and no one could say anything. So we did. I smile every time I think about that view.

12. Thanks again and please feel free to share anything you would like to add or share with the readers.
Thanks for taking the time to talk to me, Pooja. These were good questions, I had fun
answering them. If Symphonic Prose piqued anyone’s interest, it’s free to read:
https://vincentsantino.com/portfolio/symphonic-literature/ 

If you enjoyed this interview don’t forget to stop by Vincent’s blog by clicking here. 
If you would like to be interviewed please send me your name (optional), the name of your blog and a link to your blog via email to insomniacwithanaccent@gmail.com
I’m a little busy at the moment and have quite a few interviews ready to post so please don’t worry if I don’t respond immediately. I will definitely respond as soon as possible.
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