Tag Archives: 30 Day Content Challenge

Picking up the Pieces

The great return to finale

By Emma Palova

Lowell, MI- I am putting back together the pieces of my life like in a shining kaleidoscope. Some call it a comeback.

I am back on the final stretch of the “Greenwich Meridian” (c) memoir. I took a break to establish my Internet blog design company Emma Blogs, LLC. Now that I feel well grounded, I am returning back to the life of a daily writer. I missed it anyway.

The blogging journey took me from a rookie to a lifelong learner. Internet is much like water & wind; it never stands still or like Wall Street; it never sleeps. You can’t abandon it, because it’s like the writing life. It doesn’t let go of you.

Along that three-year long journey, I’ve met some of the best people in the industry by trial and error, as well as by targeted searching. After spending endless hours on learning the ropes of the blogging business, I sought help. I found Learn to Blog. This group of people is golden. Their support is pivotal in my blogging life.

And I’ve made friends. How can you make friends working all day alone in your writing studio staring at the flashing cursor with an occasional glance at my orchids on the window sill?

Well, you join private and public Facebook groups. I have done that. I am a member of the private Learn to Blog (LTB) and WordPress Support facebook groups. I’ve done both LTB and WordPress challenges. I’ve commented and I got comments back. I’ve gained the most followers on the 30 Day Content Writing Challenge . I established my own writing group “Writers Loop” on facebook based on advise from Soulpreneurs founder Leigh Ann Dickey.

“Facebook pages are old school, groups are the way to go,” she said in a Skype interview.

20140712_144005.jpg
Some of the major players in the memoir Greenwich Meridian: the Two Sisters, Mom Ella & Aunt Anna, grandma Anna and grandpa Joseph.

One of the best things that has ever happened to me on a blogging challenge was making a lifelong friend and a business partner.

During the 30 Day Content Challenge, a link to a healing site Beautiful Body, Mind and Spirit caught my eye. We were supposed to like and comment five blogs. I liked it and commented on it.

“I’ve always been interested in alternative healing,” I commented.

I e-mailed the owner Nan Raden asking for an interview to feature her as the blogger of the month on EW Emma’s Writings. During the first Skype call, we immediately clicked.

Nan is a natural healer and I suffer by nature. We compliment each other. She healed my inability to take action. She healed me emotionally and physically to a distance of 1,884.90 miles between Grand Rapids, MI and Tucson, AZ.

Now, we’re getting ready to webcast our show on Google hangouts on air. I will announce the name shortly. Stay tuned for a story and a video.

Other than the blogging challenges, the most productive in gaining followers were posts relevant to the current events. These included: “Alpenhorns at the Octoberfest in Grand Rapids,” ” Thoughts on Fear in the Wake of Paris Attacks” posted during the 30 Day Content Challenge, “Evil Choices” after a SuperTuesday primary ,”Happy Mother’s Day” and most recently “Cannes Film Festival 2016.”

Speaking about timing. My former editor and friend Jeanne Boss used to say, “Timing is everything.” The 30 Day Content Challenge started before Thanksgiving. I scrambled to get through it around the holidays. Sometimes I had to play catch up writing up to five posts one day.

I’ve learned a lot and I’ve diversified in the blogosphere. I’ve joined SheKnows and BlogHer platforms that have merged since. I am still carving out my own path. I am contemplating Blogspot, but I want to stay focused on the memoir.

Posts about relationships like the “Two Sisters” about the animosity between my mother Ella and her sister Anna attracted more followers. The relationship that went raw over immigration is a big part of the memoir.

“They never mended not even now standing at the gate to heaven or hell,” I write in the book.

I would also like to highlight the mini-series “Eyeology with Dr. Verdier” about my cataract ordeal two years ago. The IW Inspiring Women was a joy to write because I met all these interesting women who continue to inspire and motivate me to this day. It is a living ongoing series with new encounters every day.

I found out that the best writing comes from the heart and without a narrow purpose. Big tears rolled down my cheeks penning the most emotional posts like “It took a lifetime to get to this moment,” based on a prompt from the 30 Day Challenge.

It took me a lifetime to get this moment to write this post and to complete the memoir.

Thank you all for your ongoing support.

The featured image is by Nan Raden.

Links to mentioned stories:

Mom Ella & Aunt Anna (Two Sisters)

http://wp.me/p34jQ1-3d4

It took a lifetime to get to this moment (30 Day Challenge #28)

http://wp.me/p34jQ1-B44

Thoughts on Fear in the Wake of Paris Attacks (30 Day Challenge #3)

http://wp.me/p34jQ1-zwK

Evil Choices

http://wp.me/p34jQ1-HC3

Happy Mother’s Day

http://wp.me/p34jQ1-HEk

Cannes Film Festival

http://wp.me/p34jQ1-HFn

Alpenhorns video from Octoberfest in Grand Rapids

http://wp.me/p34jQ1-xLJ

Series

IW Inspiring Women (Hiker Babe walks 4,600 miles in memory of her daughter)

http://wp.me/p34jQ1-tuE

New Eyes with Dr. Verdier

http://wp.me/p34jQ1-5VP

Companies mentioned in the article:

Emma Blogs, LLC

http://emmablogsllc.wordpress.com

Beautiful body, mind and spirit

beautifulmindbodyspirit.com

Learn to Blog

http://www.learntoblog.com

Soulpreneurs

http://soulpreneurs.co

Beautiful body, mind and spirit

Copyright (c) 2016 Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy New Year from Emma Blogs

I would like to wish a happy New Year 2016 to all from Emma Blogs, LLC. May all your wishes come true.

On this last day of the year I always look back at the previous one. Year 2015  was very good and productive on both professional & personal fronts.

Getting social
Happy New Year 2016

With this post and thanks to the 30 Day Content Challenge, I have reached 346 posts.

I sought out new clients, the Fallasburg Historical Society (FHS) and created the Fallasburg Today campaign. I continue to work with CJ Aunt Jarmilka’s Desserts and with new prospects and that is Lynn Mason 2016 campaign, Tri River Historical Museum Network, Americas Voices and more.

The 30 Content Writing challenge by Learn to Blog was inspiring and it transformed me in many ways. The challenge taught me the discipline of everyday writing.

The challenge encouraged me to explore new avenues such as writing for children, writing about fear and persistence. It was a powerful force in a sense that 400 people were writing and posting on that same day.

During the challenge I made many new friends such as Pittsburgh Grammy, Peter Safe, Annie Conboy, Jan Booth, Deanna Burton, Nan Raden and Nicole Varge, Lisette Jenkins, Kathy Thompson just to name a few.

Then I participated in a heated political debate in the  group Czechoslovaks on Facebook. It warrants a separate post. Watch for it soon.

Another surprise came just last week. Bene Hofmann, a German architecture student contacted me via FHS Facebook page. Hofmann will be building a model of the Fallasburg Covered Bridge for a school project. So, I wrote about that as well.

Peggy Topolski contacted me that her husband wen to the one room school in Fallasburg. I will be doing a story on that.

Twenty people came to look at the historical buildings  in the pioneer village during the first annual Fallasburg village bazaar.

So, to wrap it up as the clock keeps ticking, I found out that social media marketing really does work. It has its own bizarre ways, but it works.

Visit pioneer village of Fallasburg on Fallasburg Today on http://fallasburgtoday.org and on http://www.fallasburg.org

Thank you all for reading and reposting. Looking forward to 2016.

Emma Palova

Copyright (c) 2015 Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

 

30 Day Blogging Challenge #30

A tribute to chief challenger Bradley Will of Learn to Blog

By Emma Palova

Lowell, MI- I must say I feel lighter today and that’s not because I didn’t have anything to eat.

I just finished watching the “Best Year Ever Webinar Replay” and completed the 30 Day Content Challenge.

Just like the challenge, it was very inspiring right before the holidays. I would like to officially thank Bradley and the ambassadors for all of this. You made me a different person.

A book for Josephine in Czech.
A book for Josephine in Czech.

I uncovered things about myself that I didn’t know throughout the #30 Day Content Writing Challenge.

The thoughts for each day guided me in a forest of thoughts and ideas. I made new discoveries like the story about a Magnetic Island down South. I made new friends with Nicole Varga. Gary and Pete Safe.

Even though the challenge was marked by constant violence, it was productive and creative. I found out that by making myself write every day, I could be helping someone else accomplish the same goal.

When I missed posts, I caught up thanks to Pittsburgh Grammy and Gandhi quotes. I wrote a simple children’s book in Czech.

I found out that I can efficiently write about fear in the wake of Paris attacks on Day #3 of the challenge.

“I keep feeding my mind, I am not that one-dimensional blogger,” Will said in the webinar.

Well, I feel the same way that everyday writing made me stretch my mind and expand my personality. I am not a one-dimensional blogger either. I am everything I want to be.

“Sometimes it takes other people to point out our blind spots,” Will said.

Yes, it does.

“Turn back to art,” was Will’s advice.

Art has always been my favorite haunt, my favorite hideout. So, I am going to finish the challenge on that note.

Collectively between 500 people, we published 3,200 posts.

“The results left me stunned,” Will said. “Inspiration stems more inspiration.”

The opposite is also true that violence breads more violence. And we all fought it back with creativity.

“Be around great people.”

Thanks to you Bradley, I was around great people. Some of the best in the industry. They motivated me and carried me through the challenge.

I also learned about rather giving than taking and that money doesn’t bring you happiness.

Everyday writing is like keeping a diary. It is very therapeutic and explorative.

The challenge made me a better person.

 

Copyright © 2015 Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

30 Day Blogging Challenge #29

Living creatively

By Emma Palova

Lowell, MI- I love number 29. I was 29 when I came to the USA and got creative. I grabbed the first money I had, and took off to buy a word processor. I still remember that day.

I returned victoriously from the store and started writing for Czechoslovak Biweekly newspaper based in NYC under the editorship of Peter Bisek.

High tea with VanGogh
High tea with VanGogh

Unlike what my parents wanted to continue in my civil engineer career and go work for an asphalt company, I knew that’s not what I wanted.

To be happy, I had to go my own way.

Going my own way means living creatively, not in conformity. Living creatively hasn’t always been easy. Ask Vincent Van Gogh. No, I haven’t cut my ear off and I am not living off of my brother.

You endure hardship and most of the time you have no or little money. You’re criticized by other people to get a real job.

But, you get the satisfaction of expressing yourself at a time when people are silent in this violent world.

You get the satisfaction of maybe helping someone out there to do the same thing.

Once we all regroup, we have won. If we all live creatively, there will be no violence left.

By living creatively, we’re moving forward not backwards.

I took my creativity to the next level in 2013 when I learned to blog on the WordPress platform. I enjoyed it from the get go: the challenge of learning something new and being a part of a group of progressive people.

My brother Vas is also creative. He paints and builds model trains.

I also love entrepreneurship. I take that after my grandpa Joseph. He had his own business in communist Czechoslovakia, which he went to jail for. You were not allowed to have a business in communism.

Grandpa wasn’t afraid, he would not conform. Neither will I.

I will always stand up for what I believe. I always have.

My personal hero is late Czech president Vaclav Havel. He went to jail many times for standing for what he believed in. But, he kept writing against the regime. Havel signed the Charta document that started a movement that eventually brought communism down.

It all starts with one person who is not afraid to speak up.

Set your tone. Speak up. Join in.

 

Copyright © 2015 Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

30 Day Blogging Challenge #28

It takes a lifetime to get to 13 seconds of winning a battle

By Emma Palova

Lowell, MI- This one rings close to home because it is such a strong theme for the challenge. It took me a lifetime to get to where I am now. I am doing what I love and hopefully other people appreciate it.

Throughout the process, I reinvented myself several times. I went from being a civil engineer by default of returning  to Czech Republic to a writer on the WordPress platform.

Dali's clocks
Dali’s clocks

In between, I did many different things. These included English instructor for French executives in Montreal, a factory worker packaging health aid boxes, a clerk in Women’s Department, a journalist for print media, a journalist for digital media, a journalist for Czech media and a social media marketer for Fallasburg Historical Society.

Then, I taught myself WordPress. Last year, I started my online business Emma Blogs, LLC. Now, I am doing the 30 Day Content Challenge.

What’s next? I don’t know. That’s the beauty of life.

I will definitely continue to write and run the business. But, I am thinking about going back into the regular work process. Whatever that means at the time of the Internet.

Any change is a good thing for all of us. I do love change. That’s why I like to watch water outdoors. It keeps constantly changing with light and motion.

I am glad that I took on the challenge. I’ve learned a lot about myself. On some days I did great, on other days not so well.

Some themes were inspiring, other ones not so much. So, on those not inspired theme days, I went on my own. As I always do.

 

Copyright © 2015 Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

30 Day Blogging Challenge #27

Don’t be afraid of a challenge

By Emma Palova

Lowell, MI- Who doesn’t like a good challenge? Writing is not challenging for me. Writing is a way to express myself, my feelings, my thoughts and to deliver a message.

It doesn’t always have to be writing for the sake of information.

Spiral staircase at the Dali in St. Petersburg, FL
Spiral staircase at the Dali in St. Petersburg, FL

I started writing in grade school. Later, in prep school we had to write compositions in Latin. I remember the one about the Cyclops. I got a C on it and rightfully so, I didn’t know what they were talking about. I only know that they had one eye in the middle of the forehead.

But, it taught me a lesson that writing in any language is good for you. You let go of your feelings and take part in life.

Imagine what the world would be without books. I lost focus long time ago, because it all goes into my writing. I can manage to read blogs and short stories, but no books. That’s the price you pay after years of writing. I’ve written in English and in my native Czech language. I’ve written in French as well and in Latin.

I have no regrets. Writing challenges have taught me the discipline of every day writing. The challenges also prove to you that you can write on any topic presented and at any time of the day.

It doesn’t have to be a long piece either to deliver the message. I prefer to the point writing and not beating around the bush.

Who has the time to contemplate a 100-page paper?

My advice to anyone who is afraid of a challenge is to stand up to it and say, “Hello what can I do to help out?”

I feel that by writing every day I am helping someone else achieve the same goal.

 

Copyright © 2015 Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

30 Day Bloggging Challenge #26

The destructive habit of comparing ourselves to others

By Emma Palova

Lowell, MI- I must admit I don’t have this problem. I don’t know who I would compare myself to? And mainly I don’t know why I would want to do that in the ever-changing world of trends. Today on twitter trending could be Justin Bieber, Billy Bush or whoever.

Thai wind 1 by Kacey Cornwell, Art Prize entry
Thai wind 1 by Kacey Cornwell, Art Prize entry

But, I know most people do. They want to so desperately fit into whatever just flies at the moment. So, then they have to refit to a new trend. And they’re never themselves.

They’re so afraid what other people are going to say about them. It’s called insecurity or conformity.

You don’t have to compare yourself to others to feel confident and secure. It’s your own set of values that matters. You stand behind them and defend them, not other people’s values.

Establish a set of values that matters to you and stick behind them. Don’t sway away or wander off on a tangent only to imitate others.

List your values today on a piece of paper and carry it with you no matter where you go.

My set of values:

1-family

2-friends

3-writing

4-entrepreneurship

5-country

6-freedom

Your values will carry you forward in good and bad times, just like in marriage.

 

Copyright © 2015 Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

30 Day Blogging Challenge #25

You are not here merely to make a living

By Emma Palova

Lowell, MI- How appropriate theme. I just had this conversation with my son Jake. It’s time to do something about the violent situation and fear we are all living in. That means to do something peacefully like Mahatma Gandhi, Vaclav Havel, Mother Teresa or Gorbachev.

Violence breads more violence. Going to war or buying weapons is not the answer. Increased consumerism is not the answer.

330 posts
330 posts

The following paragraph is from an interview with Marilyn Manson used by Michael Moore in the film Bowling for Columbine.

“Because then you’re watching television, you’re watching the news, you’re being pumped full of fear, there’s floods, there’s AIDS, there’s murder, cut to commercial buy the Acura, buy the Colgate, if you have bad breath, they’re not going to talk to you if you have pimples, and it’s just this campaign of fear and consumption and that’s what I think it’s all based on, the whole idea of keep everyone afraid, and they will consume.”

Within two minutes apart we’re watching how Xarelto is good for you and then how you should join the lawsuit against Xarelto that can even cause death. Really? A drug approved by the FDA can even cause death.

Since the Paris attacks we see Opdiva advertised on the NYC buildings.

We’re living worse than animals. They wouldn’t put up with this.

A strong leader has to emerge amongst us and do something about all the mess in the world.

I know it probably should be each one of us. And collectively, we should start dialogues to spread the message. Let’s start in coffee shops and by writing about this.

I lived through the Velvet Revolution in 1989 in former Czechoslovakia. i participated in the demonstrations on the plazas and squares. I rang my keys and lit candles into the night. It did make a difference.

It’s our moral responsibility to take action, otherwise we’re a part of the problem.

To hear JB’s response to Trump’s speech against the Muslims is unacceptable to humanity. Trump shouldn’t have said it, and JB should have kept silent because he gave us the answer.

“We cannot offend our Saudi allies,” he said.

So here we go again. Big money and friends.

First of all I did not know that Saudi was our ally. I just know that they have oil that we want, And second, you always offend someone out there by any action you take.

 

Copyright © 2015 Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

30 Day Blogging Challenge #24

The power of art

By Emma Palova

The power of art is having tea with Vincent VanGogh or Jaconda, French for Mona Lisa. See Instagram photo.

wpid-20150604_134108.jpg

Copyright (c) 2015 Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.

30 Day Blogging Challenge #23

How different nationalities use Facebook to express themselves

By Emma Palova

I’ve always wanted to write about this. Now, I can. It took some time to analyze it. And that is how different nationalities use Facebook to express themselves.

I consider myself privileged that I am both on American and Czech public and private groups on Facebook. I am on Michigan Authors on the Grand, Learn to Blog, 30 Day Content Challenge & WordPress support group. I created my own Writers Loop and Fallasburg Today public groups.

Czech dolls
Czech dolls

I am on Czech groups I love Czech Republic and Czechs & Slovaks on Facebook.

I speak and write both languages fluently which is very important because a lot gets lost in translation. It doesn’t matter which translating service you’re using, it is not accurate.

You have to know the culture of that particular country to know what they are talking about on Facebook.

I grew up in former Czechoslovakia and got my university education there.

On the other hand, I went to middle school in Hawkins, Texas and mom Eliska homeschooled my brother Vas and I in Sudan, Africa. I also lived in Saskatoon and Montreal in Canada.

There is a striking difference between the usages by both nations that reflects the difference in cultures.

A Czech person uses Facebook to vent their feelings, anger and to fight. You can easily find 250 comments on one post. If they don’t agree with something they will swear at you and call you names. These threads turn into long pointless discussions.

An American person uses Facebook to show daily experiences followed by at the most 20 comments, if it is a heated subject.

A Czech person is funny and shares jokes on Facebook. We laugh out loud with my husband Ludek, as he reads the jokes to me in the evening from his IPhone.

An American person is inquisitive and functional, so he or she uses riddles or questions to find out how smart you are.

“Where was this photo taken,” posted local photographer Bruce Doll.

The photo looked like a Kiss concert all in blue and smoke, but I know Bruce.

“At the Impact church,” I posted.

“Yes.”

A Czech person turns emotional on Facebook and shares four Advent candles a thousand times.

An American person asks for prayers when needed.

A Czech person sometimes turns to sex to see how you react.

An American person uses Facebook for business to see how you react.

A Czech person doesn’t do selfies.

Americans love selfies.

Neither one in particular partakes in sharing tragedies until the recent Paris attacks.

Both cultures share the same love for photography.

I will continue to explore this interesting theme into the future. Watch for more observations.

 

Copyright © 2015 Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.