In the months leading up to my decision to self-publish Leaf, I found myself drawn to the the craft section whenever I entered a bookstore. I was itching to create something and instead of listening to those inner promptings – “self-publish Leaf . . . self-publish Leaf” – I flipped through books on knitting and felting and bookbinding and the like.
Then one day, the shelves offered up a book that paid attention to those promptings while still satisfying my itch to create.
I LOVE THIS BOOK!
I had been told that, as an author, I had to build a platform and that a blog was a necessary part of that platform. Aside from the fact that blogging did not seem like an authentic choice for me (read here and here for more on authenticity angst), whenever I thought about writing a blog I went instantly into overwhelm paralysis.
Tara‘s step-by-step coaching calmly got the blood moving to my extremities again. She explained the pros and cons of each of the most popular blog hosting sites, showed what the screen would look like, depending on which host I chose, and then walked me through the process of setting up an account. Then, once we were up and running, she provided information on things like taking fabulous photos, commercial vs. personal blogs and blogging etiquette. Tara always included examples of blogs that exemplified each topic and interviewed the bloggers who created them.
This is the dangerous part of the book. Whenever I check out a new blog, I tumble down the rabbit hole and lose hours hopping from one site to another. The blogs are all so different, as unique as the people who created them. I’m fascinated by the creative process and by all the different ways there are to create beauty so, technically, I guess, the hours are never “lost” because I always come back refreshed and inspired.
My blog will never be as beautiful as many out there in blogging-for-bliss land. And now that I’ve got my header in place, I’ll stop fiddling with the look of the blog and focus more of my time and energy on the content. (Although, having said that, I do want to learn how to take better pictures. And it might be fun to dress up the sidebars a bit. And . . . ) I guess Turtle Dreams will always be a work in progress. Kind of like my life.
But the most important thing that Tara helped me to see is this: if I’m blogging my bliss then I am being authentic. Right now, my bliss is the whole self-publishing journey – from planting the creative seed to scattering the fully bloomed book throughout the world – and sharing what I’m learning about self-publishing with other writers who might want to travel that same road. Bissful? Yes. Authentic? You bet!
So thank you, Tara! Without you and Blogging for Bliss I’d still be hiding out in the craft section of the bookstore and my Turtle Dream might never have been given the chance to surface.