Am I a Mommy Blogger?

The past few days, I’ve been making myself sick over how to ‘monetize’ my blog.

Obviously, blogs on WordPress.com don’t take external advertising, and that’s not what this blog is about anyway. It’s about the joy of writing.

But I spend so much time writing here and reading your blogs that it’s starting to make sense to, well, make cents.

I’m daunted by the idea of moving to WordPress.org, mostly because I think that means I might lose this community. But I’m not sure. Anybody have experience with that?

In the meantime, I’ve set up A Whole Mother Blog on, of all places, Blogspot. I know. Heresy. WTH?

It’s apparently easier to set up advertising programs there, but the interface is disappointing after what I’ve grown to expect from WordPress.

I’ve been staying up way too late at night, trying to get the template to work… trying to find and sign up for advertising affiliate programs that don’t make me feel like I’m selling my soul. For example: I set up an Amazon Affiliate account, and if you have an e-book that you’d like me to feature, I can do that!

I even took a cue from The Bloggess and set up a Zazzle store.

But I don’t know… it doesn’t feel quite right. I’ve never been the type of person to make money off consumerism. This could suck all my energy away from working on my writing.

What the H am I doing? Am I cut out for this Mommy Blogging stuff? Is this the wrong direction?

 

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24 thoughts on “Am I a Mommy Blogger?

  1. glennon over at momastery is my ultimate most favorite blogger in the world and she is making money! Her book sold out before it was even released! And she is awesome! And a total social justice, build up other people and highlight the work others are doing, awesome woman. So, i think it can be done! she is currently taking a 30 day break from facebook to connect back with her real life and to stop the self-esteem by recognition train (i get it.. i look to see how many people comment on a post i write etc. i can be an obsessive checker at night when matt is gone and the baby is in bed and my work is done.) I used to read books. A LOT OF BOOKS. and write in a journal. and sew. and bake. Now I check and recheck facebook.

    1. She’s my favorite too!! I can’t imagine the obsessive energy it would take to reach success that way. I totally hear you on the FB issue.

  2. You really should hit up Dawn at This Woman’s Work – I linked you to her on FB before. She knows all about the difference between wordpress.com and wordpress.org and she has done great as a freelance writer.

    Also, do you follow Rage Against the Minivan? She does all sorts of monetization and promos on her blog.

    Let’s start a writing group. For reals – when school starts again.

    1. This feels good.
      I’ve always worked for government and non-profits… not so much money to be had there, either. Not that blogging would earn any more than pocket change. I think I should figure out how to do freelance writing, and also spend more time on my professional blog, which I completely neglect. Hmmm.

            1. heheh

              I’ve never wanted to be rich. Just to make a living doing good things in the world. It’s been so weird not having a regular day job to go to the past couple years. I like structure :/

              But on the plus side… I can go take a nap. Now.

  3. Blogspot suck so I totally get why you’re torn between being there, and being here. The path to monetization is not the same for everyone, but I think if you keep your readers in mind, you’ll be fine. I hate when blogs start promoting stuff that has little to no value to me simply to get free stuff/get paid. Stay true to your blog and its followers.

    1. I’m committed to WordPress. Blogspot is just a little thing on the side 😉

      I agree with your advice. The ads are so annoying, and the promotional posts are so transparent. That’s part of why I want to take it somewhere else, so I can leave this blog ‘pure.’

  4. I started looking into making money through a blog too. I am still reading up on it but Google is a good place to start. I think there is even a blog on WordPress that talks about it.

    1. Yep–there’s a ton of stuff out there. To do it through WordPress, though, it’s better to migrate to WordPress.org and I’m not sure what all the pros and cons are of that. I’m not too concerned about the self-hosting and DIY aspects of it, but I am concerned about maintaining the community connections with other bloggers here.

    1. I think you’d love Zazzle. it’s a website where you can put your own text/ images on t-shirts and stuff. Sad Pony and Squirrel would be quite at home.

  5. I say go for what feels right. If it feels soul sucking, then stop. I think there are ways to monetize a blog without it being overly consumeristic (is that a word). Don’t ask me what those ways are b/c I don’t have a clue about monetizing :-P. I do know what you mean though. I’ve popped over to some blogs before and it’s like ad-central all over the place…a huge turn off. But well placed, subtle and appropriate advertising can work.

    1. I totally agree it’s a turn-off.
      I was inspired by the vegan bloggers we met. Of course, for them, it’s part of an overall business with cookbooks, videos, recipes, etc. I have no idea what my ‘brand’ is. Sort of funny memoir? Random recipes?
      Blogging like I do here on WordPress feels right, and I’m going to keep at it. I would probably be better off figuring out how to get paid for freelance writing than to try to make money through advertising on YET ANOTHER mommy blog. The unique thing I’ve thought of doing over on the Whole Mother Blog is feature my kids’ lunch boxes: take pictures of their healthy, vegan lunches before and after to give people ideas about what to pack and what the kids actually liked. It will also force me to get more creative, which would be a good thing.

  6. Wow, I’m impressed you can find the time! I say go for it. Plenty of successful bloggers do that. I wish you luck. I don’t think I’m tech savvy enough to ever stray from WordPress.com.

    1. Thanks Carrie!
      I’m between contracts right now (read: no contract lined up) and casting about for what to do in my life. What energizes me? What earns respectable income? What justifies keeping my son in daycare (he’s almost three, so he’d go to preschool anyway, but you know how mommy guilt is, I’m sure).
      I don’t know how YOU find the time to write books and interact with so many bloggers. You’re always so positive and thoughtful… and EVERYWHERE (except when you’re taking blogging breaks). I’ve been looking into resources to learn more about writing fiction, freelance magazines, blogs, etc., and you seem like you have some insights into that. Any old posts of yours you’d recommend I read?

      1. Well, I haven’t been as visible lately. There seems to be an indirect relationship between how much writing I get done and how many blog posts I read. Big surprise there. 😉 But I’m so thrilled to be done my novel’s first draft, so my blogging break has been well worth it.

        Any posts I have related to writing fiction would be under the three categories of Writing, Publishing, and Marketing on my home page. There might be some knowledge to glean from the silliness. Otherwise, I have some great websites listed under my ‘Helpful Writing Resources.’

        Thanks for your kind words. I wish you good luck with finding something that both energizes and pays you! And I remember that mommy guilt well. Now that I see how great my kids turned out (well, so far anyway…) I wish I hadn’t worried so much. I felt guilty when I took time off to be home with them, and I felt guilty when I was working. It’s silly, really. All we need to do is love them, support them, and give them the time we have. We mothers expend a lot of needless energy worrying and feeling guilty.

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