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Interview with Kevin from Attitude of Gratitude

Attitude of Gratitude interview (1)

Attitude of Gratitude is a blog about gratitude written by Kevin Carroll. Inspired by a gratitude themed retreat, he decided to express his gratitude through blogging. There are many wonders around us and Kevin writes about his gratitude for all. Recently he turned some of his posts into a book titled A Moment’s Pause For Gratitude. Amongst the excitement of his first book, Kevin was kind enough to answer a few questions about his blog and book. For that, we are thankful.

1) Can you tell us about yourself and your blog?

I devoted forty years of my life to teaching, mostly at the high school level. I retired in June 2015. While I was born and raised in San Francisco, I’ve lived in the Santa Clara Valley since 1972. My wife, Kathy, and I have three young adult sons and two grandchildren.

In November 2006, I attended a weekend retreat at the Jesuit Retreat Center in Los Altos, California. The theme of the retreat was “gratitude.” I wanted to find some way to maintain the focus on gratitude I was experiencing at the conclusion of that weekend retreat. I decided to start a blog.

My first blog post was December 23, 2006. Now, almost eleven years later, I have more than 1,500 posts on the blog I named “Attitude of Gratitude.” The purpose of my blog is to express my gratitude for the people, experiences, opportunities, and abilities I have been blessed with throughout my lifetime. I also hope to inspire others to focus on gratitude in their own lives.

2) What is your process for writing a blog post?

In the blog’s first full year (2007), I wrote every day. Since that time, to avoid blogging becoming a chore rather than something I enjoy doing, I write when I have something to say. Topics for my blog can come from anywhere — memories, experiences, quotes, songs, or things I observe as I go about my day.

My process? I sit down and write. That’s pretty much it. I was an English major, with an emphasis in writing, at Santa Clara University, so I am passionate about good writing. Spelling, punctuation, and grammar are important to me. Writing is a gift, and I try to do it to the best of my ability.

4) What is your favorite feature in Typepad?

I have been very impressed with the tech support Typepad provides. I’ve had very few problems in the eleven years I’ve been blogging, but whenever I did encounter a problem, people from tech support were there to guide me through it.

6) What is the most important thing you have learned from blogging?

I think it’s important for bloggers to realize that if you put it “out there” in the blogosphere, anyone can read it. Be smart about what you publish.

Actual Cover7) What made you decide to create a book? Any advice for bloggers that want to make a book from their blog?

For several years, I’ve received feedback from readers of my blog recommending that I consider publishing some of my work. I always thought it would be a good idea, but I was busy with my teaching job, so I didn’t have the time to do so. When I retired, I committed myself to doing nothing for the first year. I needed a break from life. My goal for the second year of my retirement was to publish a book of some of my blog posts.

The book, A Moment’s Pause for Gratitude, contains fifty posts. I preface each one with a quote, and I added a few reflection questions for the reader after each post.

For those who might be considering making a book from their blog, I’d recommend that they read “How to Blog a Book” by Nina Amir and “Demons of the Blank Page” by Roland Merullo.

9) What is one goal for your blog in the next 6 months?

The next six months will be a challenge for me. I will be marketing my book, which will take some time. I also want to begin my next book, with a target publication date of October 2018. Despite these commitments, I will continue blogging on the topic of gratitude, though the frequency of my posts may be less than in the past.

Bio

Kevin CarrollKevin Carroll was born and raised in San Francisco, California. He is a graduate of Saint Ignatius College Preparatory, Santa Clara University (B.A. in English/Writing), and the University of San Francisco (M.A. in Education). After a forty-year career in education, Kevin retired in June 2015 to pursue a second career in writing.

Kevin, and his wife Kathy, currently live in San José, California. They have three sons and two adorable grandchildren, Liam and Emily.

When he is not writing or playing with his grandkids, Kevin enjoys reading and spending time outdoors. He has been inspired by the writings of Paulo Coelho, Coach John Wooden, Roland Merullo, Hal Urban, Janice Kaplan, Harold Ivan Smith, Jack London, Father Jim Martin, S.J., Frank McCourt, and many more accomplished authors.

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Featured Blog: Positively Present

PP

Positively Present is a place for people around the world to find insights and inspiration for living with positivity, awareness, and self-love. Dani DiPirro is an author, blogger, and designer living in a suburb of Washington, DC. In 2009, she launched PositivelyPresent.com as a way to share her personal experiences and insights on positivity, awareness, and self-love — things that didn’t always come easy to her! Positively Present features weekly articles by Dani DiPirro, and the beloved "Positively Present Picks" weekly round-up. The site is designed to bring uplifting empowerment and information to anyone who visits!

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Featured Blog: NewC Blog Favorites

NewC Blog

NewC Blog Favorites is written by artist Don Robbins. He showcases his original artwork for all to see with musings of his day to day life. When he is not designing products he loves to cook. You can purchase shirts and canvases of his art. The sale of his artwork is to help fund a purchase of a car, check it out here.  You can also purchase T-shirts from his Amazon store with his artwork.  

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Featured Blog: What The Junk?!

Featured Blog What the Junk!?

Ann is a Blogilates Popster that is into fitness, Adventure Time, Bullet Journals, snail mail, pen pals, and much more. She is also a Starbucks and a coffee addict! What the Junk?! is her personal blog that explores all her interests. She blogs about her fitness journey and has lost 60lbs with POPilates. She is known around the web as Anndroid Girl because of her love of Android phones and her first name fits! Learn more about Anndroid Girl and her blog What the Junk?!; you may get a pen pal out of it. 

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Featured Blog: Unityspeaks

Featured blog- Unityspeaks

Unity Ivongbe created Unity Speaks | Tranformation Happens Here. He loves to share wisdom on life, leadership, business, and society. His goal is to help people better themselves. His posts are full of thought provoking topics to help determine where your life is and what you can do better. Each post has bite size wisdom to help get you through the day. Start enjoying Unityspeaks today.

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Featured Blog: Time Goes By

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Time Goes By is written by Ronni Bennett, who had a captivating career in media before she took up blogging. Her idea for the blog started when she looked around a room and thought to herself “My god, I am the oldest person in this room and not by a few years, by decades.” That is when she started researching everything about getting older. After years of research she decided to start the blog, Time Goes By. Ronni is passionate about sharing what she has learned with others. She writes not only about getting older, but about blogging, culture, politics and much more! Check out her blog to learn more about getting older. We all will be there soon.

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How To Use Constant Contact To Keep Your Readers Engaged

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Keeping your blog posts in front of your readers is important to help them stay informed and up to date. They may not be on your blog or social media sites to see new posts or promotions. A great way to make sure your readers never miss a blog post is to create a sign up list. A mailing list is a great way to stay connected with your readers.

There are many email marketing companies out there and one we recommend and use is Constant Contact. Constant Contact is an email marketing company that helps you create and send professional looking emails to your readers. A great feature they offer is creating a customizable sign up form for your blog. You can customize the sign up form in Constant Contact and either link or embed the form on your blog. If you look to the right, you will see our email sign up button (sign up today!).

Add An Email Sign-Up Form To Your Blog

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Join our mailing list!

After you create your sign up form in Constant Contact, you are given multiple choices to display your form. You can create a button, embed your form, or link to your form.

If you choose to embed your form or button; in Constant Contact they will give you code to add to your blog. You can use the Embed Your Own HTML module to add it to your blog's side bar. Click on the Blogs tab, then the name of the blog. Click on the Design tab, then Content. Under Categories, select Widget > Embed Your Own HTML. Click on Add This Module to get a window to add your code. Next to Label give your module a title (Like Newsletter sign up or Join Mailing List) then paste in your code in the HTML box. Click on OK and Save Changes. You will now see your sign up button or embed form on your blog!

When you create your sign up form, you can select to get the URL to your sign-up form. This is a great option if you want to use your own sign-up button (learn to create custom buttons). To add a clickable image to the sidebar of your blog, click on the Blogs tab, then the name of the blog. Click on the Design tab, then content. Under Categories, select Widget > Add A Sidebar Image. Click on Add This Module to get a window to upload your own button image. Next to Target URL, you will paste the URL Constant Contact provides you. Click OK, then Save Changes. Your image is now a clickable link to your sign up form.

You can also add the link to your sign up form on your navigation bar. Click on the Blogs tab, then Design. Click on Content, then next to the Navigation module, click on the pencil. Add a title and then paste in the URL Constant Contact provides you. Click Ok, then Save Changes. Now readers can sign up on your navigation bar. 

Don’t leave your readers hanging after they sign up, Constant Contact also has a Weclome email you can customize. Welcome them to your mailing list by telling them what you will send them and why. Provide your readers with links to your social media sites and encourage them to like and follow. Speak about any promotions that are going on that they may be interested in.

Some other features you have access to if you use Constant Contact.

Autoresponder
Facebook Sign Up Form
Text to Join
Create a QR code for your sign up form

Get started today with Constant Contact with their free 30 day trial. 


Featured Blog: Lost & Found Vintage Toys

Lost & Found Vintage Toys

Bren, owner of Lost & Found Vintage Toys, is a collector of vintage toys & children's books. She has hosted a website called Gumbyland for many years. She wanted Lost & Found to reflect her love of vintage toys and books of all kinds, and share with other nostalgia minded people.

Every day, for the last 5 years, Bren has posted a toy, book, or holiday item to her blog Lost & Found Vintage Toys. There you can remember toys and books from your childhood as she showcases old and new items. We hope you will have as much fun in her toy room as she does!

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Open this post... Just Because

Just Because (2)

Today is the day to do something just because you want to. Something you may have been putting off or something you never thought about doing.

Because we love our bloggers and cannot wait to meet new bloggers we are offering a Just Because promotion.

Current Typepad Bloggers

Down arrowWe will add a $10 credit to the first 50 bloggers who comment below what they did 'Just Because' along with their Typepad blog URL (promote your blog and help us find your account!).  The credit will be applied to your account before the end of August 2017. This is only for current Typepad Bloggers.

New Typepad Blogger

Your ‘Just Because’ may be to start a blog today! We are going to give you a 30 day free trial with no credit/debit card required. Get started today… Just Because!

When setting up your account use the promo code JUSTBCTYPEPAD. This promo code is only available for Plus and Unlimited plans. You will be asked to enter a credit/debit card after the trial is over.

Make sure to share this great deal on your social media sites! Use the #JustBecauseTypepad to share with other Typepad bloggers or new bloggers! 


Featured Blog: Don't Mess With Taxes

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You can count on Death and Taxes….

You can also count on Don’t Mess With Taxes to provide great tax advice and news that is fun and humorous. Key Bell runs a personal finance blog that focuses on taxes, with the goal of helping people reduce their federal and state tax bill. Everyone loves more money! Follow her blog for tax stories, legislation, updates and daily/weekly tax tips. She is a veteran of taxes and Typepad, been a member since November 2005.

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