Build A Success Blog In 2 Hours

This post was guest blogged by Alex Shalman, who put together the Happiness Project with 34 A-list bloggers, and writes about practical personal development, communication, and relationships.

Some people wonder how my small blog has been able to break the 1000 RSS mark and get thousands of people visiting, commenting, and taking part in the community in the month of February. Some realize that quality counts, but taking 20 posts per month, to 50 per month, and now keeping up with a 1 a day posting schedule has something to do with it.

The Secret to Writing Prolifically

So what’s my secret to writing so much? Using the principles I outlined in Life Design Experiment, I was effectively able to create an environment and morning routine which allowed me to write from 6am-8am every morning. Everyday for a month I would wake up at 6am, hop onto my computer, and write without any interruptions until 8am.

It would take me anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours to write a post. That’s 1-4 posts each and every day in the month of February. In this way I was able to write more posts that day than most people, and before most people got to work. The rest of my day could effectively be distraction free, as I was able to concentrate on work, school, or the relationships in my life, without the guilt of thinking “I should be writing!”

Do Not Let ANYTHING Stop You

Just to show you how much of a stickler I was to this rule, I even kept this system up in the beginning of the month during my trip to Panama. Sure I could have said I’ll start after the trip, but that wouldn’t have forged my ability to do everything I say I am going to do. The first morning of the trip the plane was lifting off at 6am, but I still wrote. Another morning we were coming back very late from the huge Carnival, and had to pull over on the side of the road to sleep – we were way too far away from our apartment. I woke up in the back of the car at 6am, in a strange country I’ve never been in before, got out, sat on a rock, and wrote articles in my moleskin.

The point is, my 6am-8am writing habit was a rule that was set in stone and nothing short of a natural disaster was going to stop me. There is of course a bonus to using this system, and since I have your attention already, I’ll use this opportunity to let you in on the bonus.

The Bonus

I told myself I would only do this for the month of February, just to see how I feel about it, and re-evaluate at the end of the month. Well the month is over, the re-evaluation is complete, and I’m definitely happy with the progress. Now I know that I can take on any new habit, try it out, and keep it if I like.

On top of the writing habit, I added an exercise habit that I do right afterwards. Any idea how great doing cardio every single day is for your body, your focus, creativity, longevity, vitality and happiness? It’s the full package. We are a series of habits, so it’s time to replace the bad ones with good ones!


70 thoughts on “Build A Success Blog In 2 Hours”

  1. Graham Lutz says:

    Replacing Old, bad habits with good ones is the greatest thing in the world.

    Ever try to stop biting your nails?? it’s impossible until I decided that every time i catch myself biting my nails, I have to do 5 pushups. It sucked to begin with because I had to do about a bazillion pushups the first week. But then, I stopped biting my nails and now I’m in the habit of doing lots of pushups.

    Now I have a manly chest

    1. HeHe totally true, I did that once in the past 😛 Didn’t work for so long though 😛

      1. DeboHobo says:

        I like this idea, I am going to give it a shot.

        I have been excercising 6 days a week since the new year and that is a really great habit I am glad I picked up. Thanks for the tips Alex. 😈

  2. Alex Shalman says:

    Awesome, thanks for getting this up John 😈

    1. Gadgets says:

      It is not written by John. LOL

      1. Matthew says:

        Alex (the guy you replied to) is the person who wrote this. He was thanking John for publishing his guest post.

        1. Syed Balkhi says:

          it is funny how people just comment lol … thanks matthew for clearing it up for him

  3. Robert says:

    I think a writing schedule is crucial. Getting up early in the morning is the best time to write. It puts you on a routine, and it puts your mind and your thought process on that same routine. I love getting up in the morning and writing. That way, the rest of the day I can focus on other things (like family, work, etc.). The only way to succeed at blogging is to put yourself on such a schedule and never deviate from it. From that comes the consistency and quality in posting that attracts loyal readers.

    1. This routine is what separates the real bloggers from the wannabes!

  4. Zac Johnson says:

    This was one of the first guest posts I actually enjoyed. Writing everyday can really be a pain… not to mention when you have writers block and just can’t think of anything useful. The last thing I want it to post just for the sake of posting. I try and always have useful content for my readers.

    1. Alex Shalman says:

      Thanks Zac, I’m glad you enjoyed it.

      I really can’t remember the last time I’ve had writers block… Maybe I’ll write about that here. 😈

    2. Mayank Rocks says:

      Its not the first I enjoyed a lot. But yeah, very nice article. Great Work.

  5. Robert says:

    The thing that I do is keep a list. My head is always brimming with ideas for posts. Whenever I think of something, I just write it down and add it to my list. Thus, when I sit down to write, I have my list in front of me. I pick something, and I write about it. I think that’s a good system to have.

  6. Prasanga says:

    thanks for sharing, great post. I think it is writing without been disturbed can create great posts.

  7. Creadiv says:

    I am a creature of routine and I do the same thing every morning wake up same time, eat same breakfast, take the same route to work. But yet when it comes to writing I cannot designate a time to do it. I have to write when it comes to me not when I have scheduled it. I wish I could perform a task like this, but I don’t feel creativity can be scheduled.

  8. Klaudio says:

    Hehe! Nice post. I like it. I think it’s a good idea to change the bad habits with some new better one. But my problem is, that I’m a guy who hasn’t any vitality at the morning. My highend time is in the afternoon 🙂

  9. Robert says:

    Creadiv, that’s why I think that, whenever something comes to mind, jot it down on paper. Write down some notes that remind you of what you thought of. That’s what I do at work. Then, when you have the time to write, whether it’s later on or in the morning or at night, you pull those notes out, and you write your post by expanding on the notes.

  10. Josh says:

    I like that, I just might try this myself. Although I am able to post everyday. Some days I have posts lined up already. When this happens I dont write as much as I should.

    1. my blog is general, so its hard to me to get writer block 🙄

  11. These are words to live by. Make it routine, its gets easier every day.

    1. Mayank Rocks says:

      Following that routine is still difficult buddy. Atleast for me. I am a super lazy git. :mrgreen:

  12. Robert says:

    It’s like exercise. It might seem hard to do in the beginning. But if you get yourself on a routine whereby every day you get up in the morning and go running or lift weights, it just gets easier and easier each time. Then you get to the point where you don’t feel right if you don’t exercise. It’s the same thing with writing posts.

    1. Terry Tay says:

      Exactly, it’s the same with excercising if they don’t plan to do it at a certain time everyday, they probably won’t do it and ultimately quit the program.

      Putting the two together, “excercising” your blog writing and then excercising yourself, would make for a healthy blog and healthy you. Get it all over with early in the morning.
      ~Terry

  13. Jake Cohen says:

    This is true! I’ve read over and over again that posting daily is the secret to blog success… It is also very good to post early in the morning because that way people who go on the internet all day can have a chance you read your post.

    http://www.TalkPrice.net

  14. Rob says:

    I was a huge victim of doing the complete opposite awhile back. I would basically say I’d do something BUT never got around to doing it. The only true way to actually getting around to doing something is to force yourself too. Nice post

  15. I like the routine method you have, I just wish I could get into something like that!

  16. Robert says:

    It really is easy. It’s all about developing a habit. I think research shows that if you do something 21 times in a row, you will have developed a habit. Then, from that point on, if you don’t undertake that habit, you will feel weird. So I think the best method here is to put yourself on a schedule of writing blog posts whereby you get up every morning at a certain time or take a break every day at the same time and do it. Do that for three weeks without deviating, and you will see how much easier it is after those three weeks.

  17. JB says:

    Does anyone know how JC’s “secret” blog project is going? the one that he was launching without leveraging name (brand) recognition etc, to show anyone can build a successful blog from nothing?

  18. doug m says:

    it’s good to see that we are all human and all suffer from the same pitfalls. this shows that anyone can set their mind to something and achieve it.

    Great post alex, thanks to john for sharing this

  19. MyBlogLove says:

    oh…….
    my bad habits…..
    i really often stop writing because empty stock of cigarettes…
    my fool….. 🙁

  20. Terry Tay says:

    It’s great that you were able to plan your writing schedule and stick to it. I think that’s what causes many people to slack off with their blogs. They don’t set a time to write everyday and they’ll be distracted by other things.

    Some start many blogs and can’t keep up with the amount of time several blogs require. Try and focus on one blog and set daily, weekly, monthly and yearly goals. Then make your plan to reach those goals.
    ~Terry

  21. Ty Brown says:

    If most people cut out tv they could have the same 2 hour block every day that you found between 6-8. Or you could do what I do and write while I watch tv. Talk about multi-tasking

  22. Awesome article Alex! It really helps to get into a daily routine like you’ve got. I try to commit to writing one new post each day, but don’t have a specific time period set like you do because my schedule varies from day to day. I like your strategy of setting a specific time period 6 – 8 am and then having the rest of the day to do whatever you want. Setting a chunk of time before work / breakfast / school gives you time to do whatever you want throughout the rest of the day and makes things much easier especially if you’ve had a tough day at work. Committing to a good habit each day is what helps people reach success in any area of life. Thanks again for sharing this article and keep up the great work Alex 😉

  23. deejay says:

    this is a very nice article, a good habit of being a successful bloggers! 😎

  24. MisseditOnTV says:

    this is one of the most stupidest posts ever. I am surprised John Chow let you guest post such ridiculous life-story. 🙁

    1. Alex Shalman says:

      Thank you for your feedback. For a moment there I was getting worried, because all the feedback was positive, and people were relating. The reason I was getting worried is that John always taught me that you aren’t really successful unless you’re pissing SOMEONE off. Thanks for being the one my friend. 😈

      1. MisseditOnTV says:

        You are welcome. Glad I could be of service. 😉
        Remember – great men are never praised in their own time.

      2. Mayank Rocks says:

        I have subscribed to your blog Shalman 🙂

  25. Lovely Article keep it up 🙂 May we see many of these in the coming days and not just ads 🙂

  26. Mayank Rocks says:

    Good Idea. I always feel lazy to write. I think I will need to schedule myself to write only at a certain time of the day and everyday. THanks for the article.

  27. Excellent article and great schedule to keep up with. Yes, we are definitely a series of habits and blogging every day is a great habit.

  28. Ronald Lee says:

    It takes lots of discipline to achieve success in anything that you want to do. I guess that many bloggers are not successful mainly because they put too much focus on the making money part and neglect about the frequency of posting and the quality of their blog.

  29. Hans says:

    still need more to learn…

    1. Jorge says:

      Take your time.

  30. Mike Huang says:

    This is possibly the best post I’ve read today. Keep up the good work and don’t let us down 😛

    -Mike

  31. Syed Balkhi says:

    very well written post Alex

  32. Excellent idea, morning time is the best time.

  33. Robert says:

    Alex, I don’t think you have to always piss someone off. This post isn’t one that should do that. Other posts on other topics (like reviews, observations about ad networks, tax stuff, etc.) are the ones that should tick people off.

    1. Alex Shalman says:

      I’ll keep that in mind Robert :mrgreen:

  34. Posting every day on your blog is key to success. Most of the time people visiting a blog because they want to read new stuff, information. If your blog has a gap of a few days, then most likely people will visit your blog less often. People like active blogs! Though on the other hand posting every day without doing any promotion will help you also not a lot…

  35. How to Blog says:

    6am thats an early start. do you find it easier to write in the morning or in the evening?

    1. With two children I find that the mornngs are definitely out. With getting ready for school and work, etc., After 9 PM is the only time I really have to peacefully write.. I guess I’m fortunate though, my brain doesn’t really work well early in the AM anyway. 😀

  36. I’ve been trying my hardest to write articles and lots of them so I can have at least 1 or 2 posts that will be published that day. The problem I am finding is allocating a certain time to do it, I will do it when I can and at random times and this sometimes disrupts the flow of things. I can sometimes be up very very late completing posts that I want to submit. I need to do what you do and set aside two hours a day and make sure my posts are completed in that time. 🙂

    Great article!
    Carl – Thatblogsite.com

  37. TheCheapSOB says:

    Great post. One thing that I really have problems with is actually sitting down and writing a post. I really like the idea of setting aside time everyday just to write post. It’s something I’m going to try. 😀

  38. Oh man, I’m generally going *to sleep* at 6am and you’re getting up to start blogging? Hehe. But then again, no 9-5 for me 😉

  39. This is a misleading post title.

    1. Caleb says:

      This isn’t misleading at all…in order to build and maintain a successful blog,you have to develop a routine writing schedule and keep yourself healthy.

  40. Robert says:

    I don’t think the post title is misleading at all. It’s misleading for people who want a quick answer on how to build a successful blog. It’s not misleading if you understand how much work goes into building a successful blog.

  41. Caleb says:

    I couldn’t agree more…everything we do was learned at some point in time…it was an established habit whether we wanted it established or not.

  42. Steve says:

    That is great!

  43. Minal says:

    Is this valid only for money making sites or all sites?

    I have been so punctual in blogging at http://foodatarian.com
    however the turnout rate continues to be low as ever..even though the content is good.

    Any tips? How do I make money out of recipe sites?

  44. kashif says:

    Exactly the motivation that a new blogger like me needed.I often though that schedule is not important but then I was not able to write posts regularly.If only I had one I would have more posts and hopefully more readers .

  45. izman says:

    I’m actually new in blogging thru my blog http://interestinghobby.blogspot.com which consentrate on promoting and sharing hobbies.

    Sometimes, I find its quite dificult to write a good story to attract visitor. What I do is, I surf around and learn from good web or blog. I wish to be a good blogger in 2 years.

  46. Clear Ice says:

    Damn it. Habits are hard to break! I usually end up taking the same amount of time to write just 1-2 posts. And by then, I’m flat- But I’m going to test our your tips here and create my own enviroment perfect for blogging.

    And since it takes 1 month, now I know that I really have to put in a sustained effort.

    Love your post!
    -clearice

  47. Chip says:

    I did this with 2 blogs of mine. Except the successful part. I don’t have time to cope with 5 blogs and 10 more web sites. I’ll just have to take it slowly. It’s not gonna be 2 hours, 2 days, 2 months, but in the long-term, there WILL BE SUCCESS!

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