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Fabulous Blogging With Julie DeNeen

Today I’m so glad to have Julie DeNeen over here answering some questions I posed to her. I connected with Julie a couple of years back on a blogging group and respect her for her brilliance and honesty.

Julie blogs at Julie DeNeen – Purveyor of Fine (and Intelligent) Opinions where she dishes it out straight from the hip! She’s not afraid to take on difficult issues and it’s not for nothing that she’s been Anderson Cooper’s Blogger of The Day, 3 times and regularly featured on BlogHer.  Julie also wrote a memoir on the controversial topic of GSA.

Her website, Fabulous Blogging is packed with resources and is a regular go-to site for me.

julie deneen

Julie, I  admire your honest and forthright manner. You are not afraid to take on any subject and to be open about your life on your blog. Do you think such honesty comes with a price? 

Absolutely. I have ( on more than one occasion ) lost friendships and an entire community because of what I’ve written. Once upon a time (or two), I even shut down my blog thinking that it would make my life easier. But at the end of the day, I’ve come to accept that I am always going to be one of those people that push the envelope. It’s been happening since I was little. I don’t publish super honest and raw stuff just for traffic and stats, it’s just the way I am– in real life and online. It works for me, and I know who my real friends are!

That said, if you don’t have REALLY thick skin, I would say don’t follow in my footsteps.

Of late, I’ve begun to repeat this mantra to myself : Life Before Blogging. What do you think about that. And how do you manage to balance your roles as wife, mother, blogger, writer, mentor…….

I am the wrong person to talk to about this! My entire life is blogging. I design websites for a living, I teach businesses and people how to blog, and I consult on social media. Honestly though, even without my online career, I am not very good at balance. In fact, I just wrote a post the other day called 31 Confessions of a Social Media Addict. I am one for sure. Again, with a little self-awareness I’ve come to discover that I have to have challenge and stimulation in order to feel happy. Social media is an outlet for me (and has been) while home with my children. I thrive on the interaction and the thrill of understanding what makes people tick. I have a degree in Psychology so I’m not surprised I’ve fallen victim to the social media vortex.

What would you say are the top three elements of a fabulous blog?

Oh boy. This is a hard one. I’d say there are three things that keep me coming back to a blog.

  1. Authenticity. I can tell immediately if someone is blowing smoke up my a**. I want to see your face on the sidebar, I want to hear your voice, even if you are talking about toilet plungers. I want to feel the “human” in you. After all, that’s why I’m going to a blog and not an encyclopedia.
  2. Simplicity. I want to be able to find things quickly. I want your language and words to flow so easily that I don’t realize I’m reading a 1000 word article. I don’t want fancy schmancy flash or cluttered sidebars. Give me your content, your images, and yourself. And if your blog isn’t optimized for mobile viewing, you are not on my “READ” list.
  3. The Element of Surprise. At the end of an article or post, I want to be compelled to pin it for reference, tweet it to get retweets, or share it on Facebook to evoke discussion. It can be a topic I’ve read about already, but if you surprise me, I’ll be back.

Thanks, Julie!

Do connect with Julie:
on her websites and
on Twitter  @jdeneen4 and
G+ is either +Fabulousblogging or +JulieDeNeen4

This post is written for the letter ‘F’ for the Blogging From A to Z April Challenge 2014. José and I doing the Challenge on From 7Eight too.


  1. Winnie Winnie April 8, 2014

    Great interview! I was not familiar with her, so I checked out her blog which is awesome. I know many social media addicts! She doesn’t accept comments on her blog, but I just wanted to say it was a great blog. Thanks for sharing!

  2. LuAnn Braley LuAnn Braley April 8, 2014

    Honesty is an incredible gift. And I totally sympathize with the social media addiction…because I’ve got it too. I met my husband online in a role-playing game almost 20 years ago. I really enjoyed the interview.
    LuAnn Braley recently posted..#AtoZChallenge – Gratefulness and Proverbs 31My Profile

  3. Proactive Indian Proactive Indian April 8, 2014

    That was a superb interview: short and power-packed! Good job by both interviewer and interviewee.
    Proactive Indian recently posted..Golden RuleMy Profile

  4. Ananya Kiran Ananya Kiran April 8, 2014

    Thanks Corinne, Past few days I was thinking should I really write about all my personal experiences on the blog. This post was a great read for me 🙂 Thank you !
    Ananya Kiran recently posted..Gullible !My Profile

  5. Damaria Senne Damaria Senne April 8, 2014

    Great interview, Corrine. I am at that stage where I focus on “life before blogging” and the thing is, because I am DOING so much, I have a lot to talk about. So I think for me the living feeds the blogging.

    Great take-aways from the interview. Mentally reviewed my blogs as I read about what would make her go back to a blog.. thinking, I hope mine hits all the right spots for people to want to read it and to come back.
    Damaria Senne recently posted..F Is For Fruit Trees & FlowersMy Profile

  6. Gauri Gauri April 8, 2014

    I am not as thick-skinned and so definitely not going to follow in this lovely lady’s footsteps. But yes, I like her three reasons for reading a blog, and I am going to try and make sure that I answer each criteria before I hit ‘publish’ 🙂 Thanks Corinne for this wonderful post 🙂
    Gauri recently posted..F – DIY Frame with Old Magazine PagesMy Profile

  7. Pixie Pixie April 8, 2014

    Completely agree with the 3 points .. Loved the post!
    Thank you Corinne for introducing Julie here! 🙂

  8. My Inner Chick My Inner Chick April 7, 2014

    *** I want to hear your voice, even if you are talking about toilet plungers. I want to feel the “human” in you**


    I loved this post. On my way over to Fabulous Blogging. x
    My Inner Chick recently posted..The Sun Shines Differently Without YouMy Profile

  9. Kathy Kathy April 7, 2014

    Very interesting and lots of great tips! I enjoyed reading your answers and learned a lot from them! ♥
    Kathy recently posted..F is for FireMy Profile

  10. Sulekha Sulekha April 7, 2014

    Lovely interview. Julie thanks for the three fabulous tips on blogging, will visit your site soon 🙂

  11. Cristina Cristina April 7, 2014

    As you know, I am a part of her community, Fabulous Blogging too. She is truly brave, truly honest and truly raw. It is who she is and you either love it or hate it. I think most people hate to love it!

    I am SO glad you spotlighted her, especially today!!!

    But this is why you are awesome too, Corinne!
    Cristina recently posted..F is for Faustina (St. Faustina)My Profile

  12. Swathi Shenoy Swathi Shenoy April 7, 2014

    Hi corinne 🙂 I love your blog and I have nominated you for the Sunshine Award. Hope you will accept it 🙂 It mght be small, but it does show my love for you and your blog 🙂
    Swathi Shenoy recently posted..Sunshine Blog Award(s)My Profile

  13. Richa Singh Richa Singh April 7, 2014

    This coming from someone who has been there for a while makes me feel so happy. Makes me feel that there are certain things I may have gotten right. Though a lot of scope to improve I could see.
    Richa Singh recently posted..Living the future you plannedMy Profile

  14. Amrit Rukhaiyaar Amrit Rukhaiyaar April 7, 2014

    Great post, thanks for introducing Julie to us.. loved her blog and love your blog 🙂
    Amrit Rukhaiyaar recently posted..Some “Forrest Gump” TriviaMy Profile

  15. Vidya Sury Vidya Sury April 7, 2014

    Lovely to see you here, Julie! I found your book stunning!
    Thank you Corinne!

    Love, Vidya
    Vidya Sury recently posted..FamilyMy Profile

  16. Shailaja V Shailaja V April 7, 2014

    Such an honest interview with some great tips there, Corinne! Thank you for sharing this. It was a pleasure to read her opinions on social media connections and what to look for in a blog.
    Shailaja V recently posted..Faith for its own sakeMy Profile

  17. Suzy Suzy April 7, 2014

    I like blogs too that are written straight from the heart. That’s why I enjoy personal stories a lot more than just fiction. Nice to “meet” you Julie.
    Suzy recently posted..Life’s Jigsaw – ForgivenessMy Profile

  18. Shiva Shiva April 7, 2014

    Nice questions and nicer answers .. I loved the 3 point simple and implementable . Reading this inspired me!!!

  19. Meena Menon Meena Menon April 7, 2014

    Her response to the first question tells me why she tops ur list 😀
    Meena Menon recently posted..Faith…My Profile

  20. Obsessivemom Obsessivemom April 7, 2014

    That was wonderful. I loved her honesty and straightforward advice. Those three ingredients for a great blog are pretty valuable.

  21. Beloo Mehra Beloo Mehra April 7, 2014

    Thanks Corinne for this helpful interview! Some very good points there from Julie…I like her reference to the “human” touch in the blog-writing. And at the same time, I have also come across some other kinds of blogs on this mighty WWW that are more about ideas and less about writer’s personality or day-to-day life-experience. Maybe it was my exposure to those blogs that made me want to do mine! Need to think some more along this line….thank you both for giving me some food for thought 🙂 As if I didn’t have plenty already 😉
    Beloo Mehra recently posted..F is for First…as in First Principle of True TeachingMy Profile

  22. Cathy Graham Cathy Graham April 7, 2014

    Loved the interview, Corinne. I will definitely be checking out Julie’s blog, especially the article about being a social media addict. I can relate!


  23. Eli Eli April 7, 2014

    That was an inspirational lady Corinne:-) Very brave – and interesting to read! Will pop over to her site. Thanks for introducing:-)
    Eli recently posted..F for Faroe IslandsMy Profile

  24. Aditi Aditi April 7, 2014

    That was a great interview! Thanks Julie for sharing your top 3 tips for fabulous blogging! Authenticity counts really big for me too! Thanks Corinne for a fab post! 🙂
    Aditi recently posted..Fuchsia FetishMy Profile

  25. Danny Simon Danny Simon April 7, 2014

    Wow that’s quite a lot of takeaways for me right there… that’s a struggle that I go through with every blog post… always try to think of something new about a topic that can be common to write on… Great interview!

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