Share Your World — Copy and Paste

Share Your WorldIt’s Monday. And that means it time for Melanie’s Share Your World prompt. This week she asks about plagiarism, pets, and dancing. So let’s get to it, shall we?

Is copying and pasting images or information off the Internet plagiarism? Do you credit those whose work you ‘borrow freely’ or do you think the idea is repugnant?

Uh oh. I copied and pasted Melanie’s questions right from her post into mine. I’m so sorry, Melanie. I promise it won’t happen again — until next week.

As far as images are concerned, I’m going to copy and paste from my own post in response to Dr. Tanya’s question about images. I wrote, “When I write a post I will generally search Google, Pixabay, Unsplash, Pexels, DeviantArt, and/or my own photo library for an image that perfectly illustrates or complements my written words. … It’s important to credit the artists or photographers whose images you use in your posts.”

Do you let sleeping dogs lie?

If you’re talking literally, then of course I do. Give that damn dog a rest.4B1C3964-757E-4F56-BCDF-B088EB6BD08DIf you’re talking metaphorically, then no, I can be like an attack dog and I always stir up that sleeping dog

What’s the strangest pet name (for adults) that you’ve ever heard someone called?

When my wife and I first started dating, her “pet name” for me was “Poopie.” I told her that was a dealbreaker and she had to stop referring to me as a bag you pick up dog shit with. I guess she liked me enough to stop calling me “Poopie.”

Do you like to dance? If yes, what’s your favorite and if no, why not?

I used to like to dance the night away when I was younger. Now, on those relatively rare occasions when I find myself on a dance floor, I usually just shift my weight from one foot to the other in time to the beat of the music. It’s something to behold.

Share some traditions you observe around Thanksgiving or if you don’t celebrate Thanksgiving, what are some traditions you have?

We invite our adult kids and their significant others over to our house every Thanksgiving. We usually alternate between a large turkey and individual Cornish hens. And Thanksgiving dinner staples include stuffing, sweet potato soufflé, green bean casserole, salad, pumpkin pie, pecan pie, and apple pie!

Blogging Insights — Images

Blogging insightsDr. Tanya at Salted Caramel, is continuing her series on Blogging Insights, and in this one, she wants to know how we feel about images. She asks:

1. How important are images to a blog post?

In my opinion, they are very important. When I write a post I will generally search Google, Pixabay, Unsplash, Pexels, DeviantArt, and/or my own photo library for an image that perfectly illustrates or complements my written words. Sometimes it takes me longer to find just the right image than it does to compose the post. And, it’s important to credit the artist or photographers whose images you use in your posts.

And then there are picture/image prompts that are used to stimulate a blogger’s imagination and creativity by prompting stories or poems crafted about the presented image.

So, bottom line, whether an image is used to complement the words in a post or is used to stimulate a story around the image, I think they add value to a post, which is why I never publish a post that doesn’t have some visual image as part of it.

2. What is the role of images in blog traffic and reader engagement?

I don’t have any scientific data about the role of images in either blog traffic or reader engagement, but I would venture a guess that it has a positive impact on both.

3. How many images on average do you use in a blog post?

For most of my posts I use just one and it’s usually at the top of the post. For some Q&A-type posts, I might illustrate more than one of my answers with images.

Holy Barnabas!

656DCFC8-F002-4A5E-B7BD-6FAE62D8DB73Sadje, over at Keep It Alive, was kind enough to gift me with the Barnabas Award, an award that is given to those bloggers who encourage and inspire their readers.

As a recipient of this award, I’m supposed to:

  • Thank the person who nominated you, and share their blog.
  • Think of five bloggers that encourage and inspire you and nominate them.
  • List five things about yourself.
  • Ask your nominees five questions.

I will thank Sadje — thank you, Sadje. I will also reveal five things about myself. I will also answer Sadje’s five questions. But I will not nominate five bloggers. Instead, I will nominate any and all bloggers and encourage them to participate, which I hope will inspire them to do so.

Okay, ready, set, go:

Five things about me:

  1. I blog anonymously
  2. I am male
  3. I am a baby boomer
  4. I am retired
  5. I am amazing

And now for my answers to Sadje’s questions:

How important it is to reinforce self belief in oneself and others?

I am of the opinion that we each should believe in ourselves, and that must come from within, not from anyone else. It’s not my role to reinforce self-belief in others.

What inspires you on a daily basis?

Right now, I’m inspired by the potential impeachment of Donald Trump, which is becoming more and more likely on a daily basis.

How can we inspire our young generation to do the right thing for our planet?

Simple. Stop telling them that climate change is a hoax, is not real, and that the future of our planet — and their futures — is not at stake. Tell them to listen to what 97% of climate scientists say about climate change instead of listening to know-nothing climate change deniers (i.e., conservative Republicans).

What do you think about teaching moral and ethical values to our children in schools?

I think it’s fine to make kids in school aware of what it means to behave ethically and responsibly. As to teaching morals, though, that’s a different story. The teaching of morals generally has a religious aspect to it, and I think it’s a parent’s role, not a school’s role  — at least not a public school’s role — to teach their children moral values.

What is more important in life, intelligence or hard work?

I would say that this shouldn’t be an “or” question, as both are important. Some people are very intelligent and work very hard. Others can be very intelligent and lazy as shit. And some people might not be that intelligent, but work very hard. And then there are those, like Donald Trump, who are dumb as shit and don’t work very hard.

So has this post inspired and encouraged you, or what?

Blogging Insights

B846FBDC-8CF7-4134-B9F9-BE4C0F9D32F6Dr. Tanya, aka Salted Caramel, has a new series of posts she calls “Blogging Insights.” Tanya writes, “My writing inspiration often comes from other bloggers so I thought it would be a good idea to do a Blogging Insights post about this.” Her two most recent Blogging Insight posts, here and here, pose four questions for which she’d like to get answers from other bloggers. As one such “other bloggers,” I’m happy to oblige.

What do you think is the best way of dealing with writer’s block?

I rarely get writer’s block and, at the risk of potentially pissing off some other “other bloggers,” I don’t understand how any blogger can get writer’s block. Yeah, I know. Sometimes you’re tired or you’re not feeling well, you’re busy, or you’re just not in the mood to write. Fine, step away from your computer, your tablet, or your smartphone for a few hours or even a few days. Give it a rest.

Listen up people, we’re not talking about novels, here. Or long-form books of any genre. They’re blog posts. They range in size from six words to a few hundred words, or maybe even a thousand or so words. Come on. With all that is going on around us — from politics to religion to society to entertainment to your friends, family, pets, the stuff that you do with your life, or just whatever pops into your head — how can you not find something to write a blog post about? And with all of the word prompts, the photo prompts, the music prompts, prompts that are sentence starters, or topic prompts to consider, there is simply no excuse for coming up empty when it comes to things to write posts about.

So if you feel “blocked,” take a short break, jot down things that occur to you, that you see and hear and observe. Even the little, seemingly inconsequential things. And when you’re ready, take what you jotted down and use it as fodder for upcoming posts. Hey, if I can write a 300 word post about the size of a friggin’ breakfast cereal box, surely you can come up with something to post on your blog.

Do you follow a blogging schedule or do you post “freestyle”?

I schedule some of my posts in advance (e.g., my FOWC with Fandango prompts are usually scheduled for 7-10 days in advance), but other than that, I’m more “freestyle,” reacting to daily prompts or to things I see, hear, or read about.

Where do you do most of your writing/blogging?

Because I use my iPhone for blogging, I can do my writing/blogging from almost anywhere. I’m actually composing this post while in bed.

Have you dedicated a particular time for blogging?

It depends upon what else I’ve got going on a particular day. So whenever I can find the time to write, I do it. I usually spend an hour or so each morning reading any comments that came in overnight and I spend about an hour or two at night catching up with the posts that showed up in my reader during the day.

I’m a Loser

I case you missed it, my contender for the new Stream of Consciousness Saturday (SoCS) badge did not win. My badge came in 4th, tied with Paula Light’s submission. I had a family of ducks (or some say geese, who knows for sure?) and Paula had a dog and a cat. As Linda said in her post announcing the winner, “Seems the animals stuck together this time around.”

Anyway, the badge that got the most votes belonged to Shelley at Quaint Revival. And a fine badge it is.In any event, congratulations Shelley and thanks to all of you who voted for my badge. Even though my badge didn’t win, at least Paula didn’t beat me!