Visiting Dylan's website got me to thinkin'. Say what you will about blogs but, you must admit, they have opened the door to some amazing careers for many a young, creative woman: women like Christy Tomlinson, my first online art instructor, whom you may have spotted this week competing on the debut episode of Craft Wars, a new show on TLC; or maybe Amanda Soule, who now has several books and a magazine under her belt, which have all done very well, thanks to her blog Soule Mama; or even my friend Pamela Price over in San Antonio, who first came to everyone's attention by promoting the return of victory gardens on her blog Red, White & Grew, but who now has a book deal thanks to all the blogging she has done about homeschooling a gifted child. Here's what a few of the successful entrepreneurs I have read about in Artful Blogging have to say on the subject:
"I assumed that my blog was a place to promote my business. I was completely wrong. A blog is a place to build relationships and trust...Over time, your readers will get to know you, and then trust you. The trick is to be yourself -- be open, be honest, and allow yourself to be vulnerable in the eyes of the readers." ~ Heather Anderson, who blogs at postroadvintage.com.
"I started blogging at the same time I decided to become a full-time artist. Putting myself out there at this vulnerable stage in my life was terrifying, but also allowed me to connect with so many other people who were trying to do just the same. I was no longer isolated in my quest to become an artist in my small northern mining town -- I now had people." ~ Danielle Daniel, who blogs at lepetitstudio-woolf.blogspot.com
"It seemed strange at first to mix business and personal life in blogging, but it really makes sense for me. I hand paint all of my illustrations because I prefer them to be quirky and homespun, rather than perfect and slick. And in that same spirit my business has grown -- not by traditional means but in a grassroots way, largely through relationships established in the blogosphere." ~ Rebekka Seale, who blogs at dearfriendrebekkaseale.blogspot.com
This all got me to thinkin' about my friend Teri, who is an amazing quilter and a very gifted teacher. In fact, she's the one who taught all of us expat women, as well as many local women, to quilt when we lived in Indonesia. She pretty much wore out her sewing machine over there, so when she got back to the States she bought one of those fancy computerized machines that you have to attend a special school to learn how to use. By the time she had completed her classes, they had snatched her up and made her a teacher. Next thing we knew, she was training all the other teachers and salespeople in her district. I'm pretty sure that, were it not for the fact that she is a very private person who refuses to utilize facebook and has no desire for a blog, she too would be taking the quilting world by storm by now -- with more deals and speaking engagements than she could handle!
Me, well, I've got the blog and facebook account, but only because someone else set them up for me and fixes all my problems. I'm such a technophobe that I will never get past the beginner stage when it comes to "social networking." Plus, there is no one thing I am passionate about, an authority on, or dying to accomplish. Instead, I'm the type who dabbles in a wee bit of everything, and my blog reflects that by not having one particular target audience. No, I will not be going after any book deals or teaching engagements. Why? Because I've finally got the one thing I never had before, but always lusted after...
time for all that dabbling!
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