Instructions for Hosting the Headache Blog Carnival

Instructions for hosting the Headache & Migraine Disease Blog Carnival:

(1) Contact me about hosting & select a theme

Please send me an e-mail (somebodyhealme AT gmail DOT com) if you’re interested in hosting a future edition of the carnival, and we can discuss the details. The only set in stone prerequisite for being selected as a host is that you must have participated in the carnival by contributing a submission at least once.

If you are selected to be a host and agree to do so, let me know if you have a particular theme in mind. I’m happy to incorporate your ideas into the carnival. However, if you don’t have a theme in mind I can help you develop one or suggest one myself. I like to decide a few months in advance to make it easier to spread the word about upcoming themes while promoting the carnival.

(2) Post a call for submissions on your blog.

I always post a call for submissions to the carnival on Somebody Heal Me, and when you serve as host I would ask that you do the same. You should feel free to copy what I have written in the past or tweak it in any way you like to suit your own taste and style. You can find a list of links to past carnivals at the bottom of this page: Headache Carnival posts.

I post three announcements about each edition before the carnival: (1) an initial announcement of the theme and deadlines to give everyone time to plan; (2) a reminder about a week before the deadline; and (3) a reminder on the day of the deadline. I encourage you to do the same, though it is not mandatory that you post all three times.

You may also wish to e-mail other headache or migraine bloggers you know and invite them to participate. Please feel free to do this if you like.

(3) Review submissions

I will forward any entries I receive by e-mail directly on to you. I’m encouraging participants to avoid submitting through the website because it has been buggy and I haven’t been receiving their notifications when a post is submitted.

You may find it helpful to create a folder or label in your e-mail account specifically for messages relating to your edition of the carnival. This has been invaluable to me in keeping track of submissions, questions, reminders and other details.

Please take time to read carefully through each submission to determine its value. Some entries may appear to come from spammers or otherwise off putting sources; we try to weed these out and exclude them to the greatest extent possible. It is ultimately within your discretion as a host to determine whether a given entry is included in your issue. I try to include as many as reasonably possible to encourage participation and goodwill among our community of bloggers.

The deadline (midnight / the end of the day on the Friday before the carnival) is set to give the host the weekend to review any last minute entries and finalize preparation of the carnival blog post. It is a good idea to start reviewing submissions as they come in to avoid a last minute rush to review all of them at once.

(3) Write the carnival blog entry

The best way to familiarize yourself with the way blog carnivals are typically structured is to read past editions. You can find past editions of the Headache & Migraine Disease Blog Carnival at this link, at the bottom of the page: Past Editions of the Headache & Migraine Disease Blog Carnival.

Most hosts choose to list the submissions in order based on how compelling they find the entry and how well it fits that month’s theme. Again, your discretion is the only true measure for determining the order.

Don’t forget to add the following pieces of information to the post:

(1) The theme for this edition.
(2) The deadline, theme and host blog for the next edition. You can find this information here: Headache Blog Carnival.

I also strongly encourage you to use the carnival logo in your post. To download it by right clicking on the image and saving it to your desktop, go here: Headache Blog Carnival Logo.

Don’t forget to back up your work. You’ll probably write your post online using the software of your blogging service, but please also protect your hard work by copying the HTML code to a text document (using Text Editor, Word, Open Office, etc.) and/or saving it on Google Docs or in Evernote.

(4) Post the carnival

By agreeing to host, you are promising to post the carnival on your blog by 10 AM (in your time zone) on the appointed day.

If you encounter a technical or personal barrier to posting the carnival on the morning of the appointed date, please contact Diana (somebodyhealme AT gmail DOT com) as soon as you know of the problem. Things happen, but as long as we communicate we can sort it out.

(5) E-mail Diana with the carnival link

As soon as you publish the carnival, please shoot me an e-mail listing the link so I can send out notifications to other carnival participants and supporters and link to it on my blog.

(6) Contact me any time with questions or concerns. I’m always available to help.


If you’re still hungry for advice on successfully hosting a blog carnival, I’d like to direct you to an excellent series of posts written by blogger Sour Duck about her experience hosting the Carnival of Feminists. There is lots of good advice and food for thought there. Sour Duck’s Carnival Host Notes