Okay okay, I know that vacation time is vacation time. And some of you probably feel like there’s no point in working when you’re on vacation. However, if you’re a blogger then it’s not exactly like you have a standard job, right? You can write a post whenever you like, and you can live wherever you want, so what other people call a vacation, you can simply call a relocation.
And if you’ve just relocated to a nice beach resort where there’re perfect waves and great weather then good for you! Enough of this small talk, let’s get down to business. So how to keep blogging while on vacation? And most importantly, how to do it effectively?
Tablets, iPads, smartphones, and stuff
Let me be honest here. If you haven’t blogged from an iPad before, you probably won’t get a grasp of it right away (enough to feel comfortable using such a device for work on vacation). If you want to try it out, you better start before going on vacation, get familiar with the device and set some habits of your own on how to use it for blogging. Most of the time you’re better off with your standard laptop. Remember, the whole point here is not to spend most of your time figuring out hardware.
Set your software in place
The traditional way of blogging via the standard admin panel in WordPress isn’t the quickest one, I’m afraid. I know that WordPress is very easy to use and intuitive, but there are still better ways of submitting a post, especially if you’re on vacation. First of all, chances are that you won’t have internet access all the time, so you need a way to write your posts offline. If you’re going to use a text processor for this anyway, then why not using one that can export directly to your blog…
Introducing Windows Live Writer.
Two things: (1) yes, it is Windows only, (2) no, you don’t have to pay for it, it’s 100% free (don’t even have to opt-in). Live Writer is simply great. It’s been in my blogger’s toolbox for over two years now. Basically, it lets you create WordPress-optimized text, send it to any WordPress blog (and other platforms too), and additionally store the offline copy on your computer. This really is a must for a blogger on vacation, and I mean it!
The second piece of software I want to recommend is one you probably already know – Dropbox.
At this point, the tool is pretty recognizable around the internet. Just to describe it in one sentence: It’s a tool for synchronizing your files across all your computers and other devices. In plain English, this means that you don’t have to take care of copying your posts, and other blog files to your laptop before you leave, you can have everything available through Dropbox. If you manage not to exceed 2GB of disk space, the service is free.
Manage your passwords
There’s a big probability that at some point you might need one of your passwords to get some administrative work done in your blog. Like maybe manually removing a plugin, or uploading a large file. Virtually anything can come up, and if you don’t have all of your passwords with you then you’re in trouble. There are a couple of ways to handle this.
Forgive me, but I need to say this to make the message complete, don’t store your passwords in plain text files. I know that for some of you this advice sounds basic, but a number of people still do it.
Now let’s go through some of the better solutions.
KeePass. This is the tool I use. The user-side of things is really simple. The tool creates an encrypted file where it keeps all your passwords. The only password you have to remember is the master password. The file sits on your local computer, but you can easily synchronize it via Dropbox.
LastPass. Essentially, this is a service we can summarize as an online version of KeePass. The fact that it’s online makes it probably a bit more useful, but the choice is yours. Both of these tools are pretty recognizable and have good reputation. Feel free to go with the one that seems more suitable for you.
Writing and publishing
Time to say a word about your main task as a blogger … writing and publishing content. Contrary to the common belief, the time of vacation can be very creative and is usually full of inspiration. You will stumble upon new post ideas every minute (well, maybe not every minute, but you get the point).
However, at the same time, it’s quite easy to get distracted. So I have two pieces of advice for you here.
1. Set a publishing schedule. You don’t have to set exact posts to be published on exact dates, but you should mark your calendar with the dates when you want to publish new posts. This will help you to keep your finger on the pulse.
2. Take your bank of ideas with you. Want to know what’s the best weapon to kill writer’s block with? It’s your bank of ideas. “Bank of ideas” sounds like a big deal, but it’s actually a file containing the list of headlines and post ideas you want to create.
Some examples, for a blog in the real estate market:
- List of real estate deals for Texas.
- Interview with a recognizable figure in the marketplace.
- Comparison of two similar deals in the area.
- Fort Worth real estate – things to be wary of.
- List of top sites for various real estate news.
The most important thing you have to keep in mind is to write down every idea you get! Or else you will forget about it almost instantly. That’s why the traditional way of pen and paper works really good in most cases. Okay, smartphones work too. Actually, it doesn’t really matter what you’re using as your bank of ideas, what matters is to always have it with you.
Now, let me end this post with a kind of obvious advice, but it’s still the most important one here…
Make sure there’s internet where you’re going…
There are a handful of good ways of “finding” internet wherever you are:
- Check your hotel, hostel, etc. (the place where you’re staying).
- Take your own internet with you (like a mobile USB stick, if you happen to travel within the same country).
- Get a list of the nearest internet cafes. Most cafes these days simply allow Wi-Fi access, so you can use your own computer.
- Find out where to get cheap internet locally (a local mobile USB stick).
- Get a list of free Wi-Fi hotspots.
If you do all of the above, I’m pretty sure you’ll have a good time blogging on vacation. Feel free to let me know what you think and answer this one last question: Have you tried blogging on vacation yet?
26 thoughts on “Bloggers on Beaches … How to Keep Blogging While on Vacation”
Yes, there’s no point of having vacation when you’re still doing your work. However, blog isn’t just a work or job, its also a passion and its been part of lives to many people, and they do it as a hobby or wanted to express their thoughts and to share ideas. I believed thats how blogging works. Anyway, the things you point out from the tips are very useful and practical. I enjoyed reading it. thanks.
Awesome tips here. I use more than a few.
I’ve traveled Southeast Asia for the past 17 months. Bali, Phuket, Chiang Mai, Laos, Cambodia and now, Vietnam.
Set your blog around a schedule: write at a certain time and publish around a certain time. If you are traveling, write and auto-publish ahead of time.
Research any hotel or home. How is the internet? Is it available. Virtually all towns offer you access to the internet, through USB sticks, or cafes, or wherever.
Do strict due diligence though. We had a tough time working off a stick in Ubud, Bali, since we were pretty deep in the jungle…not much reception there 😉
We worked about 1 hour a day…15 minutes if the connection was super poor that day. We got by…but going forward we know to pick the rice fields over the jungle in Ubud, at least if we decide to use a stick.
Thanks for sharing. It’s great to know that blogging is even possible in such extreme conditions! 🙂
Technology has given us some blesses so we can take advantage of them.Smartphones and tablets are good options for blogging on vacations and here is not necessary to make a schedule.
Do you have any advice on blogging from a smartphone? What apps do you use?
These are all great ideas for bloggers planning to go on vacation but don’t want to give up their blogging responsibilities for the entire time! I’ve never used Windows Live Writer; I’ll have to check that out! Thanks for sharing!
WordPress official app for ipad is great , just updated mine and got surprised with all the features it has got now , basically the same dashboard you get on your pc. Gives you complete control of your plugins and themes from ipad.
Makes me want to rethink my approach at “iPads vs blogging.” Thanks for sharing! 🙂
we can blog any time anywhere but still long way to smartphones
I try to blog when im on a vacation but so far i could not do that for several reasons
Great post Karol
Getting thing done even when on vacation can create wonderful posts.As one mind is fresh and he can take good advantage of the environment he is in.
Hey Karol! Good post! I want to add a few things in that list of software of yours.
For mac only, one of the most famous blogging software is MarsEdit. It integrates nicely with wordpress and other platforms and it makes easy managing your blog.
For password storage, the leading software is OnePassword! Every user of this software I know, swears by it and it’s great. Not only it stores all your password in a secure encrypted database and syncronize it through dropbox, but also it can store licences numbers, credit cards, royalty card numbers etc… and it integrates with all the browsers so your password are just a keystroke away.
If you want to use a tabl… I mean an iPad, you can use many different apps for publishing on a blog, but there is one to rule them all: Blogsy
Thanks for listing all these great tools! I will surely keep them somewhere for reference.
Last year when I took a cruise in Italy I took my iPad with me and on spare time just wrote articles on the WordPress iPad app, but had no internet so I would just save them as drafts and publish them/schedule them when I got into ports and had Wi-Fi access again.
You can be quite productive with an iPad if you don’t want to bring a full featured work laptop. Other tablets too for writing, drafting posts. Of course, if you want to go on a “no tech” vacation where you aren’t bringing any gadgets you have to rely on writing stuff down on pen and paper to draft up when you return.
You can leverage guest blogging services to help fill gaps in post schedule too, leverage things like MyBlogGuest to find articles and accept them, schedule them for when you are on vacation (do this only the week before, they don’t like long delays in publication).
Thanks for sharing! I’ve been using MyBlogGuest for quite some time now, but only for submitting guest posts. I never actually published anything myself.
Wonderful ideas here. I always make it a point to have a pen and a notebook with me while I travel. Coz when I’m idle (like waiting at the airport or travelling in a train) I usually get loads of ideas.
In addition I use Evernote which syncs with all my devices and most of my ideas and draft posts reside there. With Evernote with me, I don’t have to worry about having an internet connection. I can still work on my ideas in offline mode and Evernote will sync the files for me when I have internet connection.
Yes – I do agree. The most important for Blogging while on vacation to me are the devices (mobile devices like my iPad), Time management and following the schedule you’ve set up for yourself. Being mobile for blogging while on vacation is one of the most important aspects of enjoying your vacation and keeping your blog authority and readership.
A blogger will find useful information here about blogging during vacation. It might upset some bloggers but to be true blogging is something which comes naturally and you want to share your experience with others. So when you go on a vacation you experience many new things and in order to share these with your readers you blog. Blogging during vacation cannot be categorized as work, it can be called sharing your experiences with your friends. This blog has some handy tips one may need if he wants to blog during a vacation.
When I started working for my former company , I went to Kapri (Itali) for a summer vacation. There I gathered massive experience on working in unfriendly environment. I had my laptop with me and old N95 Nokia “smart” phone. It was a great adventure which thought me how to work while traveling, so I wanted to share my experiences with you. Keep in mind if you are going to the kapri, it’s not internet friendly country.
I really don’t understand why you want a holiday if you still want to work. It is better if you don’t go on vacation and sit in your office and work and save some money in the process. I understand some people are passionate about their work but working even on your holidays actually certifies you as a complete workaholic. Try relaxing for a few days and do your work once you finish your vacations.
Nice post sir
I’ve always wanted to read and write on beach but my mother doesn’t allow to take my Iphone ” because it is dangerous”.
Did any one have same experience then pls comment
As a blogger I normally take vacations when I cannot blog anymore and when I am stuck in a rut. But thinking about work even on vacations is not a really great idea. Just let your mind relax and enjoy the moment. When you are happy and enjoying yourself your creativity is at its peak. But instead of siting and starting to work on your vacation and ruining, what you can do is make a note of the ideas that you got so that you can work on them once you get home.
Vacation is a time when you are suppose to forget all about your work and just enjoy sometime off. You shouldn’t even think about work when you are on vacation, let alone work during that time. When you take some time off it helps you rejuvenate yourself. So when you get back to your work you feel fresh and are bubbling with new ideas for your blog.
If you are really passionate about your work then you can never be away from it for a long time. As a blogger I understand the need to be in constant touch with your readers but then once in a while it is good to take a well deserved break for yourself as it helps your mind to relax.
If you want to work during your vacation then you seriously need help. You need to stop before you turn into a full fledged workaholic and hurt your family with your inattentiveness. It is better that you forget your work for sometime and enjoy some quality time with your family and be stress free for a while. Just relax and have fun, you can work once you come back.
Well if you are planning to work during your vacations then it is better you learn and get used to few things. There are times when carrying your laptop wont be a wise option so during such time it is a good thing that you have a high end mobile on which you can work. It will take time to get used to it but it will be helpful in the long run.
I don’t really think that working during your vacation is a good idea. You took a vacation because you needed to get a change and to relax, but if you are not doing both of them then the whole idea behind taking a vacation gets defeated. But still if you want to work then get a good laptop is all that you need to work effectively.
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