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How to Build Your Instagram Account from Scratch

Let’s admit it, Instagram is a phenomenon among social media platforms. It’s very visual, easy to use and works best on mobile devices. Nowadays, almost everyone has an Instagram account, so what better place to try stepping into the spotlights?

However, if you need to build an account from scratch you might definitely find the task a bit daunting. But don’t worry! This social media paper is here to make things easier for you, so read on.

 

Signing Up to Instagram

The most difficult step of the initial Instagram setup is probably choosing your username. If you’re opening an account on behalf of your business, then it would be best to keep your usernames uniform on all social media platforms. Same goes for your e-mail address. This way, you’ll work towards brand consistency and people will be able to recognize you across all the different marketing channels.

 

Choosing the Right Profile Picture

When it comes to profile pictures, make sure your photo of choice is clear and clutter free. This is very important because Instagram is a platform used mostly on mobile devices. If your profile pic is kind of messy, it will be hard to recognize when it’s small.

Businesses usually use their company logo to promote their brand on Instagram. Other variants include the shortened logo, an acronym or a mascot, although neither of them is mandatory. Any photo works as long as it’s representative and high-quality.

 

Writing Your Bio

Creating a great profile description shouldn’t be taken lightly. Although keeping it brief is a golden rule of Instagram – as people are, most of the time, in a constant scrolling spree, it should also be used to tell your story. While the concepts of ‘storytelling’ and ‘keeping it brief’ might seem contrary and difficult to tackle, just keep in mind that you only have to give your audience an idea of who you are and why you are worth following.

 

Interlinking Profiles

Instagram allows you to add one hyperlink to your profile. This means that you are given one chance to redirect your audience to a website where people can learn more about you. Make sure not to overlook this option.

It’s best to add an URL to a landing page which is specially designed to engage with your Instagram followers. This way you will make them want to subscribe to your personal or business website as well.

The platform also offers you the possibility to connect your other social media accounts as well. Having a solid social media foundation will allow you to sketch your presence even better, especially when it comes to the Instagram – Facebook – Twitter trio.

 

Creating Great Content

Instagram is a very visual platform. That’s actually one of the aspects that makes it so agreeable to users.

There are several types of photos that will work best on Instagram. You can start by uploading selfies – especially if you thrive to be an influencer, square shots – awesome for scenery, design, architecture, and food or even perspective shots – which usually engage the audience best.

Also remember to add hashtags, as they’re an easy way to get your content to be noticed. They work by connecting your presence to the right niche, as they are increasingly popular and easy to follow.

 

Final Thoughts

 Whether you’re thinking about setting up a profile for yourself or your business, Instagram is definitely not a social media platform to overlook.

It’s colored, it’s fascinating, and we could even say that it’s where all the fun takes place nowadays, so make sure not to miss out on any of it.


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Apps That Every Blogger Should Use

We all know that blogging means time, effort, and dedication. As a matter of fact, owning a blog might become even more time consuming than a usual nine-to-five job.

 

Whether you’re busy with your content calendar, deadlines or just writing your ideas down as they come, there are several apps that can help you focus better and stay on track. Check all those that are worth trying below.

 

  • WordPress

 

If WordPress is your blogging platform of choice, and there are high chances it is, then this app is definitely a must-have. Happy news: this tool is compatible both with self-hosted blogs, as well as with those which are hosted on WordPress.com.

 

The app allows you to create, edit and publish blog posts directly from your smartphone. Being able to do this on the go is definitely a great feature, especially since you can also receive push notifications, manage comments or track all the analytics.

 

  • Blogger

 

As Blogger is yet another popular blogging platform, it’s no surprise that Google prepared a mobile version of it. Although it’s rather limited compared to the WordPress app, it’s still great for when you can’t be in front of your computer.

 

  • Google Analytics

 

It’s a universal truth that behind the content of every blog is a blogger who’s constantly tracking all the analytics. But even the backstage tasks need a helping hand from time to time.

 

This is where Google Analytics shows up with all your conversions and real-time analytics, as well as all the other insights you need. After all, the behavior of your audience is needed to shape your blog.

 

  • Evernote

 

If most of your ideas come to you on the go, don’t worry. Evernote’s definitely got your back with this one.

 

You can either write text or take pictures, create lists or even record tracks. You can add attachments to your notes or use different templates for planning, tracking or just getting inspired.

 

The best part of this tool is the fact that it synchronizes all of your notes across your devices. This way, even if you’ll lose your phone, your notes will still be safe.

 

  • Ulysees

 

Ulysees is a smartphone app only available for iOS. If you own an iPhone, then you’ll definitely want to try this app out.

 

It offers you a great writing experience and also adds a boost of productivity to it. You can also share files across various platforms like Google Drive, Dropbox, Notes and more.

 

  • Trello

 

If you’re looking to stay organized at all times, then Trello is a highly recommended tool. It’s available both as a desktop and mobile app so you can use it both ways.

 

Trello is great both for organizing simple tasks, such as to do lists, and more complex projects, which come with multiple subtasks and deadlines. You can use color codes and multiple task boards. You can even share your plans with teammates if needed.

 

  • Dragon Dictation

 

If you don’t have the time to write down your ideas as they come, there’s no more need to postpone them.

 

Dragon Dictation is an accurate speech to text converter which will fast type your audio notes in a format that’s easier to keep and work on. Isn’t that just amazing?

 

Final Thoughts

 

As a blogger, there’s a constant need to stay on track with your plans and be organized at all times. Writing and productivity apps can definitely help you overcome some of the challenges you might be facing on a daily basis, so make sure to check them out and see which ones work best for you.


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The Facebook Sonnet

Over many years there has been a heated world debate on the effects of Facebook. Most people probably will agree that Facebook is one of the best ways family, friends and relatives unite irrespective of the distance. Facebook has also played a significant role in the marketing advertising of goods and services.  Together with that, People with common interests have even had the chance to share ideas and help each other to develop through Facebook. Unfortunately, Facebook has turned out to have a negative influence on its users. Sherman Alexie approves that Facebook has affected the world in different ways. It is only through the traditional analysis of the poem ‘The Facebook Sonnet’ that we can be able to understand the objective of the poem, the structure of the poem and the poet.

First, the poem intends to let people reflect on how social media especially Facebook has swayed people. According to Sherman Facebook has some shortcomings including; making people feel lonely, esteem issues, the decline of moral and religious values (Mays and Kelly 89). To start with Facebook unites people as indicated in the first stanza ‘welcome to the endless high-school reunion’. Masses have found themselves glued to online and they forget to appreciate the face to face relationships and experiences (Rainwater and Catherine 315). The same platform makes people feel some emptiness as indicated in the last line ‘here at the altar of loneliness.’ when people desire to have a lifestyle which they cannot attain they become lonely. It also unconsciously creates the feeling of comparing others unfavorably with one-self bringing about low self-esteem.

To add on lowering esteem and bringing loneliness facebook impacts on the moral and religious values of individuals. Sherman in the second stanza the first line says ‘the present. Why can’t we pretend’? There is a lot of pretenses that goes around Facebook; some persons lie about their lives, education, places they stay and even their names (Brien and Geoffrey 166).Alexie does not consider Facebook friends as real friends in the first stanza he writes ‘welcome friends and lovers, however kind or cruel’ most of the people on Facebook are not friends in reality. Sherman despises the digital the kind of religion. He has emphasized on this issue by repeating the word church ‘For God to become public domain/Let church.com become our church.’ He thinks people have opted to avoid going physically to church they just get the Godly messages through the internet.

Through the traditional study of the poem, we can understand the structure of the song. The poem is an Elizabethan sonnet. It has fourteen lines with three quatrains and a rhyming couplet (Kusch and Celena 49). This structure of the song enables the reader to understand the meaning of the verse. This poetry has different techniques and stylistic devices. Rhyme has been used to add to the fluidity of the composition. The external rhyme scheme in words such as ‘pretend’  and ‘extend’ in the second stanza while words like ‘confess’ and ‘loneliness’ form a rhyme scheme. Rhyme scheme also makes the poem more interesting to read and also memorable (Rainwater and Catherine 314). Through the use of the slant rhyme in words like ‘fame’ and ‘domain’ ‘pretend’ and ‘extend’ ‘same and games’ also he shows his disrespect for Facebook enough to make the words jingle. Repetition has also been used in the structure of the poem in the last paragraph the first line ‘sign up, sign in’ sign has been repeated to emphasize the message that people are joining and using Facebook. The word ‘church’ has also been emphasized to show that the bard recognizes the presence of religion. The use of sarcasm is also evident in the poem to show his hate. Alexie uses a figurative language by comparing the use of social networks to playing children’s games he talks about people exhuming, resuming and extending their memories. Children are assumed to doing things out of ignorance; it implies that through using the social networks childish behavior exhibited. He has used rhetorical questions also to demean further the social media; he asks why we should we not pretend every stage of life is the same. This issue implies that people wish that every step of life is the same. He talks about how using internet affects our thinking making us want to be young for the rest of our lives. All these devices demonstrate the attitude of the writer to social media.

The tone used in the poem is sarcastic and sad. It sarcastically talks about the people on Facebook intertwining fame and shame in the seventh sentence ‘let fame/ and shame intertwine.’in Normal circumstances fame and shame cannot be placed together (Mays and Kelly 102). Also in the sixth sentence, the writer says ‘Let us play the games / that occupy the young.’ He thinks that social media takes a lot of time and the things that happen there are childish. In the end, he finishes on a sarcastic tone by saying Facebook is an altar of loneliness. It’s considered an altar because people visit it religiously to check how many people liked their profile pictures, the number of friends they have, the number of comments they have on their posts and their friends too. However much Alexie thinks Facebook brings people together he criticizes it furiously.

Sherman Alexie is a poet who uses humor and sarcasm to express the struggles of contemporary Indian on reservations. He has been able to write many books a, poems, made films and short stories. In most of the poems, movies and stories Alexie irradiates despair, alcoholism, and despair.(Hernández and Zachary). He is writing the poem “Facebook” in this era of the internet to agonize with the effects of social media on people.

It is only through the traditional analysis of the poem ‘The Facebook Sonnet’ that we can be able to understand the objective of the poem, the structure of the poem and the poet. Nearly five hundred thousand people have a Facebook account in the whole world, think of the amount of time they waste as they try to keep themselves busy with Facebook. Probably there is a need for the administrators of Facebook to control and put measures for the use of Facebook. It is not only Facebook that we should reconsider; social networks, in general, should not take away our minds and energy.


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Symbolism in Banana Yoshimoto’s Kitchen

In the Banana Yoshimoto’s novel, “The Kitchen”, families are considered as essential elements in people’s lives, and Yoshimoto achieves this through the use of several literal devices such as symbolism. Yoshimoto has successfully used symbolism to illustrate the responsibilities and significance of a family towards human beings.  Family obligations include; accepting, comforting, loving and being supportive towards the people who surround us. Regardless of Yoshimoto’s liberal up bring, through the use of symbols, she has her strong view about family life.

The author has used plants to symbolize life and puts more emphasis on the theme of the kitchen being the source of hope for Mikage. The use of plants symbolizes goodness and beauty. Plants also symbolize a link to someone’s memories and past. Mikage recalls her grandmother’s love for flowers since the ones in the kitchen were not allowed to wilt Banana (Yashimoto 29). The use of flowers symbolizes how the kitchens provide life as they connect with nature and personal appreciation of the natural beauty of life. Moreover, it puts emphasis on the way Mikage views the kitchen as a source of hope.  Also, the plants hanging in the ‘Tanabaes’ flats create the impression that Mikage is not lonely. Eriko heals Mikage after the loss of her loved ones through watering and nurturing the plants.  Eriko’s watering of the plants symbolizes her caring nature towards Mikage.

In “Kitchen”, pineapple acts as a symbol of something more than just a mere good luck. The pineapple also represents the memories Mikage shared with Eriko, which she refers to as the saddest one of all because she remembers the pineapple plant first. The summer, Mikage spends with Eriko and Yukichi symbolizes the comfort Mikage finds in times of her reflection on the quality time she spends together with her new family. Therefore, Mikage’s remembrance of the time spent with the family brings her strength in case of loss or disaster. Also, the author uses the moon and light to symbolize emotions and magic. Like in the incident soon after the death of Mikage’s grandmother, her eye rested on the still new moon penetrating across the sky (Yashimoto 15). Afterward, she describes the incident as a pale moonbeam and bursts into tears.

In the novel, “Kitchen”, the sharing of food is used to symbolize the bond established by the family in the place where the food is being prepared, which is the kitchen. The statement, “The hum of the refrigerator kept me from thinking of my loneliness”, suggests that the kitchen is seen as a place where Mikage seeks comfort after she is left lonely in the world (Yashimoto 6). The kitchen makes the loneliness feeling less absolute. Food creates incidences in which characters spend time as a family in the novel the “The Kitchen”. This symbolizes the bond which is ever growing among the people living under the one roof as a family. Mikage says her grandmother and herself would spend some time before bed, sometimes eating, sometimes drinking coffee, watching television and drinking tea together.

In Japanese tradition, symbolism is used to show the significance of kitchen to a family. Traditionally, the kitchen is termed as ‘kimado’ meaning stove. ‘Kimado’ is seen to represent a family or the house. The literal meaning can be a divide between a stove and a family, but the symbolic significance of ‘kimado’ is to separate a family. Therefore, more emphasis is put on the use of the kitchen as a theme to imply a family or house. The author uses the symbolism, kitchen all through the novel. For example, Mikage’s love for kitchen shows the author’s view when it comes to people’s love for their families. Also, the happiness obtained from the kitchen by Mikage shows how happy families make people.

The use of the kitchen as a place of understanding and comfort symbolizes the family’s significance to humankind and role as a supportive element. Hence, this connects to the application of the ‘kimado’, which is a symbol of family or home. Mikage uses ‘kimado’ as a way to deal with the crisis she undergoes with the deaths of Eriko and her grandmother. According to (Yashimoto 4), the use of gleaming symbolizes shelter and the hope the kitchen offers Mikage, which is also what a family can offer. This is seen after Mikage steps into the kitchen. The kitchen changes Mikage’s feelings from the dark despair to pleasant feelings (Yashimoto 35). The scenario above describes the kitchen as a place that is soothing and uplifting.

Conclusion

Yashimoto, in his novel, “The Kitchen” has used symbolism in several incidents throughout to show the importance of a family to people’s lives. Through symbolism, the natural beauty of life is highly appreciated.  Therefore, family relationships should ensure that all aspects of the family such as comfort, support, love and acceptance are put into consideration since they are all essential in human’s life. This is so because they comfort during the times of loss and celebrate the events of achievements.


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Post-Modernism

The American author Amiri Baraka (LeRoi Jones) promotes the principles of post-modernism in his poems. Baraka uses reason and logic to write his poems, and he crafts his poems to enlighten the readers. In his poem the Incident and the Lair, he engages his intellectual prowess and borrows from Marxist theory to present his message (Ruland and Malcolm 215). Besides, he supports the change of the society through the use of technology and language acts as a mirror to the society. The works of the poets such as Sharon Olds, Linda Pastan, and Larry Levis is driven by a prevailing feeling of loss and critical consciousness of the audience. They depict the “confessional mode” by as they incorporate their emotions, personal stories, and intimate sentiments in their poems. However, they distance themselves from the conventional style of poet writing by showing contradictory stands which show their resistance to social norms (Lodge 13). They use illusion to mask their personal feelings and sentiments in the poems. In the poems, they create a sense of anonymity through being selective in the choice of words.

The magazine by John Grisham seems “fictional” to me regarding the style and writing technique used. The plot of the story is not encouraging to the readers, and hence his work is not captivating. Some of his points are not stated making his work look vague or just made up. The voice and style do not lead the readers to form a connection with the themes discussed in the magazines. The style of writing seems to put off readers and depict his work as fictional. The work does not appear natural as the choice of words is not appropriate.