Author Bio

I have this “About Me” page HERE that I wrote when I first started this blog. I am positive most people don’t read that page since a lot of people have said some pretty humorous things from seeing my photos or when I share a personal fact. I don’t feel a need to spill about myself in a profile when I write myself daily here (I am not important)… but I can see the need to clarify sometimes to ensure people understand the person behind the words. It isn’t a need for accolades or fame, but rather for clarity as to why you think or say a certain thing.

My name is Jason Chandler Cushman and I live close to Denver, Colorado. That means I am American, obviously. I was born Ahn Soo Jin from Pusan South Korea, at least that is what the paper says. The photo too, but photos and papers lie don’t they? As far as I know that is my name, but I have come to learn that Soo Jin is a woman’s name so either there was a mistake (because there is no mistake bodily… trust me…) or it may be an old form of the name in Chinese. The Korean woman who told me that last part said it almost sympathetically and with little optimism.

By day I work IT and by night I write. I am a father and have two kids with my wife that keep us busy… we love it! Life is pretty routine for me and my main mental escape is through my fingers and from my words. I am a real time blogger that is lazy with the edits, quick with the publish button, and a pretty horrible photographer. Pictures are a must though so I set my featured photos from my cell phone and move on.

I began blogging in 2013 because I was beginning a nightshift and needed something to occupy my time. I didn’t know what I was doing having only owned a blog on Blogger once. My mother and 3 bots were my only followers. My mom is a writer, you can find her blog HERE, and she is also an author.

I write under the pen name Opinionated Man and kept my real name off the books for around a year. One day I said… well I didn’t say anything, I just started giving my name. I even added a photo at some point so people could see I was indeed Asian. There was some speculation I wasn’t apparently. I go by Opinionated Man because it amuses me and because it is true. People call me OM for short and it makes me smile that some bloggers now refer to me as Jason. My friends in real life rarely called me that. I use the logo

which I made all fancy like in Microsoft paint. I like it… but my wife thinks I should change it. I tried to explain to her that this is MY logo at this point. I might even put it on a shirt one day.

They say “you need a platform” before you write a book. But what if you have never written a book and you build that platform first. What if you do all that work and the book sucks? Would that make all the doing worth it? The funny part is had there been WordPress ads in 2013 or had I owned a self hosted site at the time… I could have made thousands off the views I gained from my main site and never needed to write a book. It was a lot of networking and I thought it was a pretty sure thing… unfortunately not all things work out. You move on, you rework, or you give up. I’ve given up on tons of things in my life. I didn’t feel like giving up on this blog.

This website was never meant to be anything more than a sounding board for my thoughts. A place where I could scream. People have judged it and what I do. What I say and what my opinions are. I am sure if I could read over a layout of their morals, ethics, and opinions I’d find a few I hated as well and that is life. That is the beauty of humanity really… we are all different. Blogging is a place where we get to show how different we are in whatever form we want to. Some share photography, amazing photos of places I will never visit. Others are baking up treats and making food I want to bite off the screen. It is WordPress and it is blogging. It is why I have a site and why I share the sites of others.

I am 36 years old and I feel I have seen a lot. I know everyone says that and I know that many have a right to say it. I work a daily job, but I love to write. I don’t care what I am writing and my goal is normally to make people smile. I am human and this hasn’t always been the case. Like my growth in blogging, I’ve grown as a person over the past four years. When I started on this platform I saw lots of posts and lots of separate groups, no community, and everyone wanted to be this “Freshly Pressed” thing. Now when I look out across the world of WordPress I see a lot more connection. I see friends of friends of friends sharing their work and it makes me smile. I don’t claim any hand in those connections being made, but I can’t help but appreciate the shared value in what I have always worked to create. It will be something I miss if I ever move on to another hobby.

Jason Chandler Cushman

-Opinionated Man

44.1

@smokendust

Blogging Depreciation 

This seems to be a hard concept for people and it really isn’t! We all know what depreciation is and how the brand new car we just bought drops about $5,000 dollars in value as soon as half the tire exits the lot.

Ok, that’s depreciation. So what does that have to do with blogging, stats, and numbers? I’ll explain in my usual simple way.

You start a blog and your first follower is Gary. Woohoo! Gary is here! 🙌

But you don’t only want Gary as a follower do you? You want more readers then one so you keep posting and eventually Gary’s brother, Cindy, joins your site! Two followers! Boom! 🍾

Now you are excited! But it isn’t over yet! Cindy has a twin brother Mindy who also joins your website! Three followers?!? The sky just broke open.

Here is where social media kicks you in the balls.

In your happiness you rush off and write a post on aluminum foil. Big mistake. Huge mistake! What the fuck were you thinking Charles? Guess what you just did? You pissed off Mindy, who by the way is currently marching in front of your home with a homemade sign. Now you are back down to two followers! How the fuck did that happen?

Blogging depreciation. Want to grow your readership? Keep finding readers because you’ll lose some daily.

Or you could try to not piss off anyone! I guess that’s possible… somehow?

-OM

44.1

@smokendust

My Views on Posting and Over Posting

There is no such thing as over posting. What exists instead is your own personal routine and the routine your readers are used to. Believe it or not… we all don’t share the same methods of blogging and our frequency at posting sometimes shows this difference in outlook. Some bloggers are perfectly happy writing one post a week and having every single subscriber read, like, and comment on each post. That is their goal and standard for blogging. These individuals also put a lot of value into the subscription button because that is who they are catering to with their writing.

I have never blogged that way. I understand why some people do, but that method and form of blogging is not for me and never has been. Although I re-share old posts sometimes, I consider myself a realtime blogger. I call myself that because I constantly write posts, edit once, and then publish them. I enjoy the freedom to express myself in that fashion and my blogging attitude directly reflects my view of this media platform. It is all about quick connections, quick reflections, and realtime posting for me.

Many bloggers have the same standard goal. They want to create a blog or website, establish a readership, and then spend the rest of their days writing for those subscribers who ultimately become their online friends. What this process normally entails is adjusting your method of posting according to where you are in the build process. I’ve always hated that concept, that the number of readers directly affects how I blog. I strive to break that relationship and have always worked to make my blogging uniquely mine. I don’t allow people to affect what I post or how I post it.

Everyone forms their own schedule and method of blogging. I post so much because I am not worried about burying posts or overwhelming my readers. The point here is that my readers, the real readers of this website, understand what this blog is. They know me as the writer and they also probably have a strong grasp of how I operate by now. That, to me, is the goal of blogging. It isn’t so much what we post… but how we post it and if we connect through our sites.

I work for those connections daily.

-Opinionated Man

@smokendust

44.1

img_2167-12

Tagging

I look at the tags many of you use when I visit your sites. I am always astonished at how many bloggers don’t use a few of the staple tags EVERYONE should use on EVERY post…

Tagging isn’t hard. People make it hard. You can have up to 15 tags and categories count as a tag! What does that mean? It means that if you check boxes next to categories (see image below) you must then subtract the same number from the amount of tags you use. This isn’t hard math people… we can all count to 15 right? Gary?

captureUse categories. Why? Simple, they make it easy to find your posts AND WordPress automation works in such a way that the “suggested posts” will auto align to the category you use normally. Normally. This just means that if you categorize properly WP will do some of the work for you.

People will try to tell you to use unique tags to get your articles and posts noticed. I’ll explain why they say this, why someone told them this to spread around, and why I disagree with this approach.

Unique tags WILL get your articles noticed if someone guesses the unique tag you used. So if your tag is “Gary Sucks,” and someone types that tag in… they’ll find your post! And it will probably be the second one under that tag in the Reader, mine is the first one obviously…

The issue here should stand out. You have to guess the tag to find it! And if you don’t guess the tag? No one finds your posts! Woohoooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! …

Yes, unique tags will hold your post at a higher spot, but under that tag only. And people will only find it if they happen on that tag somehow. Unique tags will also hold better SEO value, but that is only if your site is anchored off platform and google ranked. Most of us aren’t.

What people never want to tell you is that tagging on WordPress is all internal. Tags matter, internally, and thus the type of tags you use matters… internally. Why do I keep saying internally? Because the SEO of WordPress is the WordPress engine that drives the reader. That is the all you need to get your stuff found. You don’t need google or analytics or some SEO expert, you simply need to understand how the reader works and what tags trend.

OK, so why did I make the first statement of this post? I ALWAYS use these two tags. They are BLOG & BLOGGING. Honestly… is there a tag you can think of that isn’t more obvious? So why not use this tag? Yes it is a trendy one and the reader for these tags moves quickly. Very quickly! That means you have to be present and you have to post more than once to get noticed. But we already knew that right? If you are posting once a month it doesn’t matter what tags you use. Good luck getting noticed.

I know it can be confusing people, but it really isn’t that hard. It is really damn simple. If you have further questions about tagging I have more articles in my blogging section. You can also ask me.

Reference: https://aopinionatedman.com/category/blogging-articles/

-OM

@smokendust

img_2167-10

Sharing is Caring

I like to share posts from random bloggers. Yes I promote some authors on the side, but I also take the time to browse and find new interests. It is possibly the thing about blogging I enjoy the most.

I don’t always “Like” posts I read. I do often share those posts through a reblog. I see it as a small gesture of kindness that shows the writer I read their work and I appreciated it. At least that is how I view it.

I close all comments on reblogs and I probably annoy my readers when I over share. Tough. Anyone that is upset over the amount of email from my WordPress site at this point really needs to buy a vowel and gain a clue. I post a ton and I won’t change or stop. It is how I blog.

Sharing is caring and people love to be shared. In a world of easily clicked buttons via Facebook and other platforms, the “reblog” has lost much of its glamour. It has lost a ton of value which I think is a sad thing because a “reblog” is very valuable. Any extra push of your post down the stream of posts that is WordPress IS an act of kindness. Just ask the bloggers that grind it out each day with no comments and zero interaction. And yet they still return to share their hearts.

Letting people know that you saw their words is a great thing. It is a powerful thing. We all get busy and we often don’t have time to comment. Just know that if you do take that time it is never wasted. Your ability to alter someone’s current state is no trivial thing. It is the power of social media.

It is the power to care.

Jason Chandler Cushman

-Opinionated Man

@smokendust

44.1

img_2167-3

Blogging Tip – Static Page Vs. Latest Post Display

Before I began promoting Authors and Books I always said that I encourage bloggers to display their latest posts instead of using a static page. The two methods serve two different purposes to me, but both are effective if used properly. I’ll give you my opinion on them and also on how I use featured posts.

I would use a static page if I were promoting something, selling something, or if I was just super hot and used my hotness as a welcoming photo portal for new visitors. Other than that I always encourage people to simply display their latest post. Here is the thing. Some themes are incredibly “simple” and are so simple they overlooked giving easy to find links to your latest posts in favor of a clean, Japanese garden type of feel. That is cool and all… but if a blogger has to literally search your site for the newest post they will give up pretty quickly. This isn’t Easter. We aren’t hunting for eggs here… unless there is candy. Is there candy?

Give us links that are easy to find or on a sidebar in ordered row. If you want pages then work on your menu and make that more “interactive.” Here is a tip for you people wanting to self -host. I have already shared my opinion on moving over and why I think people approach it with the wrong attitude. My goal for the two sites is not to transition my subscribers from the WordPress site to my new personal one. Instead I use both sites to bounce traffic back and forth. My links on my WordPress blog are actually all sub links to my self-hosted site. But they are displayed as the menu for this WordPress one. It may seem confusing, but to boil it down I basically made a “portal” by any secondary click.

Which reminds me of another thing we need to speak on. If you take a business or marketing course you will hear about the “law of clicks.” Either that or I was really stoned in college and the voices I heard told me some crazy shit…

Anyways, the law of clicks when I “read” it (browsed it) stated that a viewer will only normally click one more time once landing on your webpage. If you can’t get that visitor on your website to where they want to go in that one click you lose. The attention span of a human is incredibly small and an online human is like an infant real-life human. That made no sense, but it was fun to type. This is why I harped on authors with “author sites” that people can’t find their books on! WHY?!? It may of been mean but seriously… if we can’t find your book IMMEDIATELY upon visiting your website then it sucks as an author website. Change it.

This of course leads us back to why I think a static page is sometimes a good idea. If I were an author or someone promoting almost anything, I would place a static page on my blog with a big ass image of that “thing” right square in the middle of the screen. Have your book punch us in the face.

I almost forgot about featured posts. We all have posts we thought were amazing, but people just didn’t get a chance to see them. If they had they would have gone viral… obviously. Featured posts on a blog are a great way of displaying your work you are most proud of. Don’t allow your featured posts, the number that you set as “featured,” overwhelm your current posts and push them down too far on the screen. No one is going to scroll two miles down your blog to find your latest blog fart. Maybe do three to five featured posts and allow people to dig from there. Here is a tip, change those featured posts up occasionally or even on a schedule. It is a great way of “double posting” without actually posting a second time. Remember that a reader who visits from the “reader” will come to that post only at first, but a new visitor that types your website into the address bar will see whatever you display for them to see as YOUR WELCOME! Control that first “display” of your website and make sure it shows everything clearly you want to be seen. If a click or a scroll is necessary to see “something important” you should probably move it where we can see it to begin with. Think as a visitor or a viewer, not as the creator.

-Opinionated Man

@smokendust

hr