I’m excited to be a Community TA for Blogging101. I’m here to offer support, encouragement and feedback; to answer basic questions and help you work out how to approach an assignment. It’s a new idea and a volunteer role – I’m one of two guinea pigs you’ll regularly see in the Commons. (Is that a bag of lettuce I hear rustling? Squeak!)

You’ve arrived at my online home – my personal website and blog, where I get to know other bloggers and have some fun. My blog helps me express my fascination with gardening, nature, photography, blogging and all kinds of creative things. My physical home is in England.

I took Blogging101 myself soon after I started blogging and really enjoyed it. Most likely I’m here on a very similar journey to you: to carry on learning about blogging and become more familiar with all the resources available; to enjoy being part of the wonderful worldwide community of bloggers and readers; and to hold out a hand of companionship along the way.

My blog is less than a year old and I’ve already had visitors from over 100 countries. That’s truly amazing to me. I imagine it’s due to sharing lots of photos – pictures speak every language!

I hope I’ll see you in the Commons asking questions and helping out others where you can. I know I won’t have the answer to every question myself. When I’m stumped, I’ll be calling (just like you) on some kind & knowledgeable people: Editor Michelle, Happiness Engineer Aminul, and TJ, my fellow Teaching Assistant.

I might even be doing the odd task along with you later in the course, if I’m inspired to – perhaps one of the ones I passed on last time around!

If this is your first time

  • Expect fun, new friends and lots of new ideas to explore, with support from peers and professionals to help ease the way.
  • The Commons will be extra busy in the first few days as people introduce themselves, learn how things work and settle in to their new shared space. See it as an open ocean of ideas, tips, questions and feedback.
  • Even if you’re shy, please say hello and let us know what you’re doing – it’s what we’re all here for!
  • It’s well worth reading the Tips and Tools section of Michelle’s sticky Welcome post in the Commons more than once: it’s richer with help than you might realise. I missed several useful tips first time round in my eagerness to get started.
  • In particular, right click on any link in the Commons to open it in a new tab or window. If that’s a new way of working for you, practice on this link.
  • There’s no pressure to complete all the assignments. If it doesn’t feel right for you at this stage, you can still learn a lot – and have some fun – watching how classmates respond in the Commons.
  • If you are a day or a week late on an assignment, guess what? It doesn’t matter at all. You are free to work through the ones that interest you most, completely at your own pace.
  • Be a good neighbour: a well-timed kind word can make all the difference.
  • Make yourself a happiness music playlist and play it any time the going gets tough; if it’s all plain sailing, play it to celebrate.
  • Most importantly of all – if you want help, clarification or just reassurance you’re on the right lines, feel free to ping us, by mentioning our @ names (mine is @susanrnet).

Make the most of this opportunity – good luck – and get really to be (even more) brilliant!

I’ve posted this on a hidden page on my personal blog that you can only access via a link on the Commons or a bookmark. I’ve disabled comments here: please head to the Commons if you have any questions!