3.01.2012

Oh, Grow Up!


So a bunch of really cool ladies (like this one and this one and this one and this one and this one) have posed a question to the blogosphere: What do you want your blog to be when it grows up?  In other words, what are your (blog) goals?

This is a timely question for me as it's something I've been thinking about a lot lately.  You see, my original goal was merely to start the blog.  (I didn't think much beyond that.  If I had, I probably would have been too overwhelmed to start in the first place.)  Once I'd met that, the next logical goal was to actually maintain the blog.  This is an ongoing thing but given the excitement I feel when a new post is brewing, I think it might be achievable.  After that my goal was to actually tell someone about the blog.  Because, you know, a Hello Kitty diary with a lock would be much easier to work with if I'm just looking to keep a journal.  (Wayy less HTML for one thing.)  You can read about my blog debut here.  (It's not that exciting but if you're brand new to blogging or thinking about starting one, it's worth a peek.)

So now that I've done all that, what next?  Why the heck am I doing all of this and what do I want to get out of it?  Here are the goals I've come up with.  Some are purely about the blog and others are more tangentially related but all of them are relevant in some way:

Goal #1:  Be True to Myself
That might sound simple, even trite, but let me explain:  for the first few posts in this blog I was really writing for myself.  No one else was reading (except my sister-in-law who is my biggest champion) so I didn't worry about offending anyone, or holding a reader's interest, or whether or not the blog was as visually pleasing as other blogs.

Once other people started reading, I noticed a shift.  It was more difficult to construct a post.  I was constantly worrying about the reader instead of focusing on the content.  

Now, I'm not saying that a writer shouldn't think about his or her audience.  Of course that's important.  A writer needs to write clearly and choose content that will capture his or her readers.  But in the end, this is a personal blog, and if I spend all of my time trying to be someone that I'm not then it becomes, well... something else, and I don't think that's what I want.  

Related to this is the fact that my blog does not have a unifying theme.  I've been thinking a lot about that lately too and, although it feels a bit selfish, I've decided to embrace it.  Why is it selfish you ask?  Well, if my blog had a specific topic, then people would know what they were getting.  It would be a destination for people who are looking for something specific.  Most of the blogs I love focus on specific topics, typically home decor, DIY, design, etc.  Truth is, though, if I tried to maintain a blog with that narrow a focus, I'd be in big trouble.  I simply would not have enough material, so to speak.  So I just have to put myself out there and hope that the things that interest me (things ranging from Monkey Hooks to Kristen Bell) interest other people too, so they'll continue to come back.  And that brings us to...

Goal #2: Make Some Dough-Re-Mi
Oh gosh, that just looks so crass all written out on the page like that.  Really, it feels kind of dirty.  But this is about honesty, so I'm not going to lie:  I'd love it if I could make some money off of this bad boy.  Listen, I'm not aiming to make Dooce money.  I'm not even looking to support myself.  I'd just like to be able to contribute something financially to my family.  If I could actually make some money from writing about the things that I love (writing being one of the things that I love), well, then, I'd say I'm pretty much living the dream.  

This picture was taken from the most ridiculously beautiful blog.  It's written in Portugese.  You don't even need to translate it.  The pictures say *that* much!

Goal #3: Start and Promote an Etsy Shop
This is one of those tangentially related goals.  Like I said above, I'm looking to make a financial contribution to my family.  And as much as I'd love to think that I can achieve that via blogging, I'm also kind of a realist. For that reason I'd like to start an etsy shop selling vintage items.  Going to thrift shops and vintage shops is something I adore.  I love the thrill of the hunt.  I love getting something for (next to) nothing.  And I especially love the idea of making some money while doing what I love.  

What does that have to do with the blog?  Well, judging from what I see out there, it seems there is a  natural symbiosis between etsy shops and blogs.  When I find an etsy seller that I like, I often check to see if s/he has a blog.  Similarly, if I notice that a favorite blogger has an etsy shop, I'll try to stop by and check it out.  I also think that it's interesting to hear about one's thrifting (or crafting) adventures and then see the items purchased (or made) go up in a store--particularly if I'm interested in buying said items ;)

I'm pleased to announce that I have been actively working on this goal.  As in, I've put up my first listing.  (I'd be so grateful if you'd check it out.)  

Clearly I'm approaching the shop a lot like I approached the blog, with baby steps, but I'm excited to see where it goes.  :)        

Goal #4:  Become a Better Photographer
This one's a no-brainer.  Some of my favorite blogs are my favorite blogs because of the way they look.  Photographs are a big part of that (see caption above).  Some of the photos in my blog have been hits and others have been misses.  I'd love to rack up more checks in the hits column.

When my stepfather gave me a beautiful SLR camera a couple of years ago, I promised myself that I would sit down with the manual and learn to use it.  Every week I faithfully dust that manual as it sits on my nightstand waiting to be read.  Since that (obviously) isn't working I'm thinking about taking an adult ed class on using your SLR camera.  I'll keep you posted on my progress.

Goal #5:  Make Connections/"Meet" People
I started this blog hoping that I would someday have readers.  As it turns out several of those readers are starting to feel more like friends.  This was an unexpected and lovely surprise.  I find that a lot of my fellow bloggers are like-minded women (at least, they seem to be mostly women) who rejoice in lifting one another up.  What a bonus!  It's little like having co-workers, except I can interact with them while wearing my pajamas.  And the ability to interact with people whilst wearing pajamas?  Well, you can just call that goal #6 ;)



(Turns out there are even more cool ladies hosting this shindig.  Find them here and here and here and here and here.)

SHARE:

9 comments

  1. I've said it before and I'll say it again ... you are such a beautiful writer. When I read you I feel like we're having a one-on-one chat over a glass of wine or cup of tea ...

    You have established some truly wonderful (and well-written) goals. And I'm out here cheering you on! And now I need to check out your Etsy ...

    Thank you so much for sharing your hopes and dreams here (even that dirty money goal) ... and for linking up at our party.

    Your friend,

    Linda

    ReplyDelete
  2. I think if we remain true to what we love - the other stuff will follow. You have a unique voice and I really love coming here and seeing what's new so keep it up!

    I too would love to open an Etsy shop (in my spare time)! My photos need work and I'd love to have some moola in my pocket.

    In the meantime, I'll continue to have fun and make amazing new friends - you're included in that group!

    So glad you linked up to our party!
    Kelly

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi Elena! Fist off, thank you so much for your lovely comments over at my blog! It is such an interesting coincidence that we both included the thought that if you do what you love, the money will follow! Interesting also, is the fact that I too almost wrote something about chatting with friends while in my jammies! Great minds INDEED!
    Love your writing. Linky following you now! Come chat with me again soon!
    xo-Lisa

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hi Elena...just found your blog through the link party and wanted to let you know that I so enjoyed reading your post! I too am a newer blogger and have several of the same goals. One of my favorite aspects of blogging is the incredible community out there...so supportive. Would love for you to visit my blog
    www.elegantnest.blogspot.com
    and look forward to keeping in touch!
    Have a great weekend ~ Laura

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thank you so much for joining the party and for sharing your heart! I love your authenticity and your writing has such a "voice." Add your sense of humor to that and you create a blog I truly want to read!

    Have a blessed and wonderful day.

    blessings,
    karianne


    PS And rock on with your do re mi!

    ReplyDelete
  6. these are great goals- i think you are already on your way to the last goal.... linking to a party does just that! ;)

    ReplyDelete
  7. This really is a wonderfully written post. I can feel the sense of your post. I can totally relate to #1 and need to seriously make #4 happen, too!!

    I have recently taken #5 and it has opened up a whole new level of blogging. :)

    Thanks so much for linking up, sorry it has ten so long for me to stop by!
    Karah @ thespacebetweenblog

    ReplyDelete
  8. Love your goals! Especially the one about creating an Etsy shop! It's so cool that you want to combine your blog with a shop!

    And thanks for stopping by my blog recently! :)

    ReplyDelete
  9. Wonderful goals, my friend! I love that you want to expand beyond even the blog -- I can completely relate to that. Blogging opens all kinds of doors... welcome!!

    ReplyDelete

Comments let me get to know my readers.

They also make me a do a little happy dance every time I open my email.

Don't you want to be a part of that?

© 'A Casarella | All rights reserved.
Blogger Template Created by pipdig