I’ve written extensively about my life as a full-time blogger, including the pros and cons. You can read all about my blogging life by clicking HERE. This post, however, is a direct response to the inquiries I often receive about turning a blog into a business. Folks ask me to mentor them, invite me out for coffee, or simply ask: “how can I turn my blog into a business?” The truth is, I really don’t have those answers.
When I consider how I got here, I mostly look back over my entire life and see how things moved into place to make this actually happen. The adage, “I didn’t choose this life, this life chose me,” comes to mind.
I’ve always been a writer. I started writing poetry and short stories when I was 9 years old. I majored in English and Journalism. Got a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing. And every single time I tried to make it in the corporate world, I couldn’t quite hack it for one reason or another. Getting fired 5 years ago, (read about that HERE) was, for me, the most defining moment of my life. It is, for sure, the event that that led me to pursue blogging as a business. Even though I didn’t know it at the time.
Still, when I decided to become a full-time entrepreneur, I resisted the urge to pour myself into blogging out of fear. I told myself and anyone who would listen that helping other businesses and bloggers was my true passion. I even began a coaching and consulting business, but after almost a year of doing that I found myself more depressed than I’d been in a long time.
I discovered, through some serious soul-searching, that I am at my best when I am creating. I also looked back over the years and saw it plain as day: whenever I pursue activities that fall outside of creating, I either fail or wind up miserable.
It was then, after 4 years of blogging, and worrying myself sick, and trying to do other things, that my blog became a full-time business. It was a mental switch. Money came a bit later.
The point of this long and drawn out story is to say that my journey, the steps I’ve taken, are all very specific to my own life. I’ve had a ton of help from my family, I’ve met people who have helped me and this platform to go further, I worked for other blogs, I’ve committed myself to the process, working 70+ hours a week. And I still work 70+ hours a week. I haven’t made it. This blog, for many, is new, and every day I’m fighting to make sure folks come back to this blog.
I’ll also say that one of the biggest misconceptions about blogging as a career is that you have all this flexibility, but that isn’t so much the case for me. As the bulk of my content is devoted to Pop culture, I have to be “on” all the time. Furthermore, I work with brands who have set guidelines and a set time schedule for content. Also, as blogging is always changing, and there are a million and one bloggers all gunning for the same opportunities, money isn’t a given or even a constant, at least not for me.
Every full-time blogger I’ve ever met has a very different story, and how each blogger manages to keep the lights on from one month to the next depends on so many varying factors. None of us have the same story, and I don’t think any of us planned it. The things we’ve all managed to achieve didn’t come from anything somebody said, or something we googled.
This is not say that that you can’t learn the tools of the trade. Because you can learn how to blog more effectively and efficiently. I certainly recommend attending classes, conferences, and even paying for consulting, if you can afford it. Becoming a full-time blogger is really about your level of commitment. Some bloggers have been lucky. They have the “it” factor, and they take off. Others, like, myself, do not have the “it factor,” and as a consequence, we work tirelessly without any real insight into where this is headed, but we do it anyway, because it’s what we were meant to do. But you have to know that, and the only way you can know that is by doing the work. Not looking or watching other bloggers and wanting what they have. Not fantasizing about what it would be like to do this for real. Doing the work is the only way. All day, every day. Then and only then can you can begin to take the steps to pursuing blogging as a career.
If you like my hairstyle in this post. Watch I how I created it here: