14 Posts That’ll Make You Excited to Be a Writer in 2016

14 Posts That’ll Make You Excited to Be a Writer in 2016

Let me guess…

At least one of your New Year’s resolutions relates to your writing.

Am I right?

Maybe you’ve decided to commit to a daily writing practice.

Or set your sights on a specific writing goal, to be achieved no matter what.

Or committed to launching a blog to showcase your writing to a waiting world.

Even if making resolutions isn’t your style, making some kind of plan for your writing in 2016 is a smart idea.

But there’s a problem. And it comes down to human nature.

Most resolutions slide before January ends. And most plans crumble at the first sign of trouble.

That’s because even our best intentions soon stall without the right fuel…


The “Serious Bloggers Only” Winter Contest 2015

During 2015 we’ve run four contests for members of our Serious Bloggers Only membership program.

And while the winning posts have been as diverse as the blogosphere itself, they’ve all had one thing in common.

The ability to inspire other writers.

How they do it varies, of course.

Some remind us of the power of effective writing.

Some lend us models of successful writing to emulate.

And some reassure us that taking action brings rewards.

Without inspiration, we struggle to produce any work, let alone our best.

So as 2015 draws to a close, I’m proud to announce the winners of our latest contest.

As you review these remarkable posts, consider what you can draw from them to fuel your own writing in 2016.

And The Winners Are . . .

Most Inspiring – Quinn Eurich – Aha!NOW (Guest Post)

Quinn EurichHow to Live a Meaningful Life Without Knowing Your Life’s Purpose

Countless personal development posts have been written about discovering your true purpose. Despite this, many people feel they’ve yet to find their right track in life. What’s refreshing about this post (and also so inspiring) is the central message that meaning can be found even in the absence of a clear purpose.

Visit Quinn’s blog here: Outsmarting Panic and Anxiety

Most Epic – Si Quan Ong – BreakDance Decoded

Si Quan OngThe Long-Ass Bboy Guide To Breaking For Your First Three Years

This post is organized into chapters and that’s a good thing, because it feels more like a short book than a blog post. At over 15,000 words, this post is staggeringly comprehensive.

I loved the author’s commitment to exploring his topic – breakdancing – to the fullest, and I thought the basic format – a detailed guide to the first three years of building a particular skill – was original and should inspire other bloggers to give their own topics the same treatment.

Most Practical – Meredith Blevins – Pro Writers Toolbox

Meredith BlevinsAvoid an Outhouse Called the Slushpile

This post oozes authority borne out of the author’s hard-won experience. Meredith is a writer with a career spanning more than forty years. In her post, she tackles a common mistake of beginning writers head on – blindly sending manuscripts to publishers in the vain hope of being spotted.

Meredith cuts through the crap and tells her readers the tough truth – getting published is just as much about building relationships as it is about being a good writer.

Best Use of Details and Examples – Bryan Del Monte – Jeff Bullas (Guest Post)

Bryan Del MonteWhy Certain Pictures Make You Click On Awful Content

Bryan’s excellent guest post for Jeff Bullas explores how we can be manipulated by visual content. It’s packed with thought-provoking examples and a central analogy (that two forces are battling for control of our attention, personified as Felix and Oscar from the T.V. show The Odd Couple), which carries us entertainingly through the post.

Visit Bryan’s blog here: Blogs That Sell

Best Big Idea – Leon Altman – Freedom Business Cafe

Leon AltmanHow Having Your Own Online Business Can Save Your Life and Help You Live Longer

Most writing about entrepreneurship tends to focus on the “how to,” perhaps because the “why” seems obvious. But here Leon comes at the topic from a fresh and interesting angle – the health benefits of running an online business.

Many would-be entrepreneurs long for the flexibility a “freedom business” can offer without deeply considering what that freedom could mean.

Most Valuable – Rob Kornblum – Mirasee (Guest Post)

Rob KornblumWhy You Need a Blog Positioning Strategy

Starting a blog is tough. The sad truth is that many blogs are doomed from the get-go because their owners don’t have enough of an idea of the blog’s audience or what sets it apart from the blogs already serving that audience.

Rob borrows a positioning model from the business world and applies it so clearly to the blogging realm that any new blogger will improve the life expectancy of their blog by reading his post. Truly valuable to anyone launching a blog (or attempting to revive a failing one).

Visit Rob’s blog here: Start Launch Grow

Most Fearless – Tracy Gillett – Raised Good

Tracy GillettNursing Your Toddler? How to Ignore Judgmental Stares

This post courageously tackles a topic that will likely provoke some strong opinions, with many on the opposite side of the argument as Tracy. But she’s unafraid to challenge societal norms and presents a persuasive case, backed by evidence, for nursing your children into toddlerhood – even if that earns you the disapproval of many of those around you.

Best Storytelling – Vicky Cox – The Good Men Project (Guest Post)

Vicky CoxHow a Culture of Violence is Damaging Our Country Today

Vicky’s post opens with a powerful personal story that sets the scene for an exploration of a complex and divisive topic – gun violence. What’s remarkable is that the post maintains its cool despite her connection to a gun-related tragedy. By looking at the reasons why people – and young men in particular – might be driven to pick up a weapon, it makes us view a well-trodden topic from an unfamiliar angle.

Visit Vicky’s blog here: Vicky L Cox

Most Personality – Lynn Hauka – A Daring Adventure (Guest Post)

Lynn HaukaWhy You Still Want To Kick Someone’s Butt Even Though You Meditate (And Why It’s Okay)

You’re unlikely to land a guest post on Tim Brownson’s blog “A Daring Adventure” unless you can write with a healthy dose of attitude, and Lynn brings plenty to this post.

There’s a fun clash of ideas at the heart of the post – that someone practiced in the art of meditation can still be filled with rage, and that that’s normal. Notice how Lynn uses power words to fill each paragraph with emotion.

Visit Claire’s blog here: Still Standing!

Best Execution – Sonia Thompson – TRY Business School

Sonia ThompsonOvercome Entrepreneur Mindset Barriers: 16 Successful Business Owners Share How They Did It

At one level, this is a familiar type of post – an expert roundup – but the execution lifts this example above most others. Sonia uses attractive graphics to highlight each expert’s main quote but also includes the full text of the extended response.

She also adds value by linking to three examples of each expert’s work for those readers who want to find out more. And her empathetic opening sets the scene perfectly.

Most Creative – Corey Willis – Hey There, Home

Corey WillisA Glass Hurricane Turned Awesome Geometric Pendant Light!

This wonderful craft project has just the right balance between written instruction and supporting images. This post could easily inspire a reader to embark upon their first home DIY project, and if the pictures are anything to go by the results are stunning. Creative and practical, this post shows “how to” blogging at its best.

Best Visuals – Tony Messer – Pickaweb

Tony MesserWhich Web Hosting Should I Choose? Quick Guide

Choosing the right web host is difficult – particularly if you’re not very technical. Most people are confused by the options and overwhelmed by having to make the choice. But Tony’s comprehensive infographic-style flowchart breaks a complicated process down into a set of much simpler decisions. And you’ve got to love any flowchart that includes “I don’t understand the question” as an option. 🙂

My Favorite Contest Posts of 2015

In addition to selecting the winners above, I also wanted to round off 2015 by choosing a few of my favorite posts from each of the quarterly contests this year.

So here they are, my personal favorites:

July 2015 – Doug Hay – Rock Creek Runner

Doug HayUltrarunning as a Microcosm of Life: My Black Mountain Monster Report

Doug Hay’s gripping account of the physical and psychological challenges of participating in a 24-hour ultramarathon is hugely inspiring and easily one of my favorite contest entries of 2015.

October 2015 – Ashley Trexler – A Fine Parent (Guest Post)

Ashley TrexlerHow to Make Sure Your Kids Don’t Grow Up to Be Judgemental People

Ashley Trexler’s guest post for “A Fine Parent” has a big goal – that the next generation will grow up a little less close-minded than the last.

Visit Ashley’s blog here: Lies About Parenting

Resolve to Make 2016 Your Best Writing Year Yet

As most of us know from bitter experience, resolutions are far easier to make than to keep.

But if your scribbled list of good intentions has an entry or two about writing, do yourself a favor and bookmark your favorite posts from this list.

Return to them to fuel your writing efforts during the coming year.

And before you say goodbye to 2015, ask yourself the following question:

When your future self looks back on 2016, what achievements will you see?

Once you have an answer (and remember to think big), start sowing the seeds for those successes.

And in the meantime, have a very Happy New Year!

About the Author: Glen Long is the Managing Editor of Smart Blogger (a.k.a. Chief Content Monkey). He lives in London and is dangerously addicted to Nordic Noir. Feeling social? Come and say Happy New Year on Facebook or Twitter.


  1. Mandy ONeill
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 11:00:09

    Hallelujah! My reading list has arrived!

  2. Sonia Thompson
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 11:16:05

    Congrats to all the winners! So honored to be selected as one of them :). Looking forward to diving in and learning from all these great writers!

    • Candis
      Dec 31, 2015 @ 12:59:52

      Congratulations Sonia! Yours is on my reading list – sounds inspiring ?

      • Sonia Thompson
        Dec 31, 2015 @ 16:25:10

        Thanks Candis! I hope you enjoy 🙂 Happy New Year to you!

  3. Zarayna
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 11:21:18

    Congratulations and thank you to all concerned – winners, contestants and judging staff.

    Please accept my appreciation for such inspiring work.

    As it’s New Year’s Eve, and as Auld Lang Sine says, “I raise a cup of kindness” to everyone.

    Here’s to lots more fun in 2016.

  4. Quinn Eurich
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 11:30:49

    Wow! What a great way to end 2015! Thank you!

    Congratulations to all the winners and everyone who puts themself out there with their writing!

    Many thanks to These Schwenkler for all her help in making the final product shine!

    This was originally written for another blog that didn’t pick it up, so thanks also go to Harleena Singh for publishing it on Aha!Now

    And what a great way to start the New Year reading all these wonderful posts!

  5. Kevin J. Duncan
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 11:33:49

    A big CONGRATULATIONS to all the winners!

    A lot of previously-unknown-to-me names on this list. I look forward to remedying this when I read your great posts over the next few days. 🙂

    Thanks for sharing, Glen. Happy New Year to you, Jon, Marsha, Shane, Brenda, Heather, and the rest of the BBT gang!

    – @kevinjduncan

    • Heather Sanders
      Jan 01, 2016 @ 08:52:05

      Happy New Year to you as well, Kevin! May it be blessed beyond measure!

  6. Doug H
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 11:36:45

    What an incredible list of posts and authors, and whoa! I’m honored to be included. Thanks for a great year, BBT. Here’s to the next!

  7. Ed
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 12:15:23

    Must resist the urge to go through all of these today (so much to do before today’s party ), but will bookmark many of these!

  8. Blaine Wilkerson
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 12:18:00

    Congrats to all the winners!
    I hope this is the first of many wins for the upcoming new year.

    Happy New Year Everbody!

  9. Leib
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 12:20:53

    Hi Glen,

    As always it’s a great post and congratulations to the winners.

    Now I have my post list to read at the beginning of this new year.

    You sow the seeds in my mind to be a writer in 2016.

    Happy new year to BBT team and thanks a lot for the quality of the posts on boostblogtraffic.com


  10. Candis
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 12:56:25

    The titles alone on these are inspiring! I can definitely see why these were chosen and am looking forward to reading many of them (especially the ones on parenting and entrepreneurship – right up my alley)!

    Congratulations to all the winners ?

  11. Prathap umesh
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 13:46:55

    Awesome! Congratulations Sonia!

    • Sonia Thompson
      Dec 31, 2015 @ 16:25:51

      Thanks so much Prathap! 🙂

  12. Lynn Hauka
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 14:00:09

    What a lovely end to 2015. Thank you Jon, Marsha, Glen and the rest of the GB/BLF/SBO people. And I can’t wait to read all of the posts!

    Happy New Year 🙂

    • Cylon George
      Dec 31, 2015 @ 21:00:48

      Lynn, a truly epic post – loved it from beginning to end. Congrats to you and all the winners.

      • Lynn Hauka
        Jan 02, 2016 @ 09:34:31

        Thanks Cylon, I’m so glad you enjoyed it! And I appreciate you making time to comment 🙂 Happy 2016.

  13. Ashley Trexler
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 15:55:13

    Fab roundup! And thanks for mentioning my post on raising kids not to be judgmental people. A Fine Parent’s excellent editor (and former student) Sumitha Bhandarkar gets the credit for getting me to the finish line on that one! Happy New Year to you and yours.

  14. John Yeoman
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 16:22:03

    Thanks so much for mentioning How To Find Your Perfect Writing Haven among your favorite posts of 2015! I greatly appreciate the honor, especially considering the fantastic talent I was up against. Just let me add that every word in that post – even the least probable – was true! I shall now retreat to my cork-lined garden cabin, in gratitude…

    • Zarayna
      Dec 31, 2015 @ 16:34:20

      Lovely to see you here again, John. A well deserved and perennial winner.

      Is your cork-lined cabin courtesy of the remnants of wine bottle corks, that you secretly imbibe and which fuels your inspiration and output?

      Just asking!

      But Happy New Year.

  15. Trisha Fulton - Founder & Entrepreneur
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 19:01:51

    Thanks so much for sending me the email with a link to your blog and sharing these writers and their pieces.

    Firstly, I want to highlight your e-mail and blog was the first thing I read on New Years Day 1 January 2016.

    It has made a huge impression on me and it’s what I asked for before I went to sleep last night. I’m new to blogging and I was lacking direction. I realise that I was tackling it the wrong way.

    There is so much great content out there and thinking of ways to be original and interesting and keeping your audience engaged does take time and work.

    Keep up the good work and I wish you success for 2016.

    Keep an eye out on my blogs, I hope to learn from you the Master! http://www.comfortshortstay.com I teach people how to make a business using Airbnb and make serious money doing it.

  16. Cathy Goodwin
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 19:59:26

    What’s cool is the way so many of these posts introduce a new idea…especially something that turns our current thinking upside down. I especially resonate with
    Why You Still Want To Kick Someone’s Butt Even Though You Meditate (And Why It’s Okay) by Lynn Hauka;
    How Having Your Own Online Business Can Save Your Life and Help You Live Longer by Leon Altman; and
    How to Have A Meaningful Life Without Knowing Your Life’s Purpose by Quinn Eurich

    I’m also a long-time TM meditator (who slacked off in the last several years but never stopped entirely). I’m not exactly a poster child for meditation. I have New York energy and I worry about everything. Someone told me, “The more you meditate, the more you become the real you.”

    I hated corporate life and was always an outspoken maverick. Fortunately I had jobs that gave me flexibility and eventually, as a professor, lots of control over my time. I never understood people who’d get up at dawn for a 7 AM flight to a meeting that didn’t accomplish anything, or those who hung around late for “face time.” Leon nailed it.

    Finally, I thank Quinn for saving us thousands of hours spent rooting around to find our purpose. Years ago a lot of life coaches came up with formulas for finding your purpose, mostly simplistic. I agree with Quinn: you start with what’s satisfying and rewarding and then one day you wake up and there it is, sitting on the table in front of you: your purpose!

    Thanks to Glen for bringing these people together. I’ll be returning to this page and spending more time with these posts.

    • Lynn Hauka
      Jan 02, 2016 @ 09:39:33

      Hi Cathy,

      I love the phrase New York energy! It’s so descriptive 🙂

      Yes, it’s true in some ways that you become more the real you; then again, the real you is dynamic not static! So there’s a riddle buried there. Hmm!

      Thanks so much for making time to read and comment. I’m glad the post resonated with you.

    • Quinn Eurich
      Jan 02, 2016 @ 15:22:44

      Thanks Cathy!

      Happy New Year!

    • Leon Altman
      Jan 04, 2016 @ 12:44:57

      Thanks for mentioning my article as one of the ones you resonate with.

  17. Cylon George
    Dec 31, 2015 @ 20:59:40

    Congrats to all the winners. Some really great posts to inspire us into 2016 – thank you all. Happy New Year 🙂

  18. Don Vinson
    Jan 01, 2016 @ 01:43:51

    I love reading the inspirations of blogging like this, I have a blog but no posts yet
    and you have convinced me to take my first step, now where did I put my notebook.

  19. Minuca
    Jan 01, 2016 @ 03:56:21

    Hi Glen,
    This is a wonderful list. Congratulations to all the winners.
    I now know what to read to be inspired.
    Thank you,

  20. Claire Wholam
    Jan 01, 2016 @ 14:47:37

    I am so honored to be among the winners. Many, many thanks to Guest Blogging staff for getting me to this point, and to SBO for this contest.
    And today I get to read the other posts! What a great way to start the new year!

  21. Peter Banerjea
    Jan 01, 2016 @ 20:53:18

    There’s some seriously good writing here. I have bookmarked a few posts.
    Now we know what standards we have to reach in 2016! Thanks for sharing Glen!

  22. Hope
    Jan 02, 2016 @ 01:18:21

    Nice compilation, I am inspired to writing somrthing important

  23. rxduo
    Jan 02, 2016 @ 10:07:59

    This is exactly my New Year’s resolution, writing better blog posts! Thanks for the motivation and congratulations to all of the winners.

    Happy New Year!

  24. Guido Maggi
    Jan 02, 2016 @ 10:41:32

    Thank you for the always amazing article!

  25. Ong Si Quan
    Jan 03, 2016 @ 06:22:23

    Thank you for including my blog in such an amazing article! I am honoured to be part of these group of people who are selected – who are all amazing in their own right.

    Thanks everyone for writing awesome articles, and I look forward to reading even better, higher quality posts from everyone in 2016! 🙂

  26. Jason
    Jan 03, 2016 @ 14:35:37

    Leon Altman’s post was definitely a source of inspiration for me during a rough time in 2015, so it’s nice to see it in this list. 🙂

    • Leon Altman
      Jan 04, 2016 @ 12:46:19


      Thank you so much.
      Would love to connect with you.

  27. James Gregory
    Jan 04, 2016 @ 12:45:35

    Good collection of awesomely crafted posts. Thanks for the share and exciting my winter.

  28. Christina Lynn
    Jan 05, 2016 @ 05:55:43

    Great post indeed and nice list, getting of bunches of information for writing skills and how to inspired quietly, thanks for shared and I really enjoyed or bookmarked this article.

  29. Roshan
    Jan 06, 2016 @ 07:16:01

    This list inspire me to do better in my career. Thanks for sharing……

  30. Jon Harbour
    Jan 06, 2016 @ 13:50:51

    All the posts on this site are written for YA readers. Why is that? Don’t believe your readers are capable of reading an actual paragraph in the English language? Every paragraph must be less than 140 characters long so it’s “quotable”? What a lot of rubbish.

    Here’s how your writers on this site would phrase my opinion:

    The posts here seem to target YA readers.


    Why is that?

    Aren’t your readers capable of reading a whole paragraph of English?

    And less than 140 characters long?

    And “quotable”?

    It’s rubbish…like, a lot.

    Does that seem superior to you? Is that even readable? Oh, what is happening to my native language… it’s being usurped by people who seem to need glasses, since they can’t read anything if it’s not one-sentence-per-paragraph. Or maybe this site’s writers assume their audience is too stupid to “get the point” unless its broken down into tiny bits. Like feeding a toddler.

    That’s kind of insulting. It’s even more insulting when the people you’re insulting “don’t get it”. That they’re being Talked. Down. To! By YA writers. Young. Adult. Writers.

    To say I’m fed up with this stupid version of English writing is a gigantic understatement. I just spent 10 minutes of my life complaining about it. But I challenge you to WRITE ENGLISH, not MILLENGRISH.

    • Zarayna
      Jan 06, 2016 @ 14:10:53

      Hi Jon,

      Had to interrupt reading my “Where’s Waldo (Wally)” book to respond to your comments.

      I really do enjoy witnessing those who can find something to get into a froth about. I was warmed by your passion – thank you – and it also cheered me up – good for you.

      However, I’m sure you are wishing well, and are heartened to know, that so many enjoyed the above posts and found them useful and meaningful.

      Horses for courses, as they say. Isn’t variety wonderful?

      Please accept my wishes for a very happy New Year.

  31. Transport George | Onehalf AU
    Jan 06, 2016 @ 18:49:43

    I hope this blog post help many writers realize their purpose or objective as a writer/blogger.

  32. Peter Beckenham
    Jan 07, 2016 @ 05:50:57

    Hello Glen and thank you for this wonderfully inspiring list of blog posts that has really excited me to follow up.

    There are so many that really excite me and I know I will learn, enjoy and try to emulate

    Best wishes from a remote Thai village blogger


  33. Michale Ross
    Jan 10, 2016 @ 13:49:06

    In given article, knew about the writing skill that how to improved and these all blogs is highly valuable of any Newbie, and learned from it. Thanks for shared these kinds of post and they all are help to make a good writer. Thumb’s up.. 🙂

  34. Pankajsehoriya
    Jan 13, 2016 @ 03:57:11

    Must resist the urge to go through all of these today (so much to do before today’s party ), but will bookmark many of these!