How Did I Get Started Blogging?

Sharon Hurley Hall wants to know how we all got started blogging. To that end, she has started a neat little round robin over at her blog. It ends on August 17th and she’s calling it “Blogging Start.” Considering, I got started blogging in the same group as Sharon, I am pleased to put in my contribution. But, first, the rules:

She writes:

The theme: getting our blogging start. I don’t know about you, but I’m always fascinated to hear how others got started in blogging, so I’m looking forward to reading all the entries.

The rules are simple: write a post with this theme on your blog, include a link to this post and leave the link to your post in the comments section. Check back regularly and visit everyone’s posts to share some comment love.

So, Sharon, here’s to you…

The WritingUp Social Experiment

As you well know, Sharon, I got started writing on a group called WritingUp.com. What a drama that was! It was like a soap opera complete with surprise blogs, conspiracy, accusations, overnight alliances, and a final, earth-shattering, and emotional finale. It really was like a episode of Survivor: Blogging On WritingUp, don’t you agree? Sharon was one of the better bloggers there, and I often visited her blog there. It was a group of bloggers who were told they could write and earn Adsense money based on a shared profit model. Well, it appeared to work well at the start and some people did profit from it, but what happened was that we became a close-knit group of writers who were getting far more valuable information on how to write online there, then the money from Adsense was worth. So, originally, I was attracted to the money, but stayed because the writers and the networking was phenomenal! I wrote about all kinds of things, but generally with a spiritual bent to them as I like to perceive the deep spiritual meanings in every day things.

When Success Means Failure

The blog was very successful, but unfortunately the site itself became so successful that the owner got in trouble with Google and some other people in the legal arena and one day we all logged in and the site was permanently DOWN. Everybody’s blogs were trashed. It was really a blow to many of us and we did try to regroup, but never quite as well as we had done there. Many of us were smarting from the loss of our readership, our networking, our blogs! All that hard work – down the tubes! Since then, I’ve tried other blogging sites, but WordPress seems stable even though, it’s a good idea to backup all your entries anyways, in case it changes ownership, becomes a paid site, or the Internet crashes. God knows! I would never have suspected such a huge site would ever be disabled permanently and it’s made me a bit paranoid about online sites. But, it did provide me with valuable experience on what works, what doesn’t work, and how important networking AND keeping offline copies of your work and network contacts is, especially when you don’t have direct email contacts not through the third-party site you’re in (the case with WritingUp).

What I Took Away

Before that experience, I would have never thought I was capable of writing a post that had thousands of views on it. It became perfectly obvious that it can be done, even if it isn’t that common for somebody first starting to blog. I learned about Adsense, keywords, blog reviews, popular topics, how to write a blog post, and how to network online. We also learned how to “tag team” there, a tactic that bloggers use to increase their reads. I see it a lot with financial blogs and I will eventually join a blog carnival when I have the time. I also made some great freelance writing contacts there that eventually went on to pay me good money for my work. So, that’s it! Thanks for telling me about your writing project.

If others want to join this writing project, just click on the button above that Sharon has provided, and don’t forget to add a comment here too, so I can visit it also.


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12 responses to “How Did I Get Started Blogging?

  1. Those were good days, weren’t they, Claire? I learned a heck of a lot about blogging and writing online from WritingUp, and made lots of useful stories. Thanks for sharing your story. I’ve added it to the roundup to be published at the end of the week.

  2. Yeah, they were good days… And, it’s funny because my name was Prisms on that site so even though my name is plastered all over the Internet as a freelance writer, nobody at WritingUp after the crash would have known unless I told them. I did see Dana commenting on your blog. She was there with us too, I remember. Used her own name, smart girl! I’m using SpiritWealth here, but I’m not hiding my real name either, it shows up in my links to my “for pay” articles and such.

  3. Sorry to hear about your experience, but I’m glad it didn’t deter you. It’s always seemed to me that working in a blog network was all upside, but I guess that’s not always the case. Looks like you’ve bounced back well!

  4. Hey Claire 🙂

    Yes, WU definitely taught me lessons about backing things up! I lost some valuable (to me) work. Recently I found a shared blogging site that had a similar name, was a drupal site with exactly the same colours. I felt a bit sad and considered joining but I knew the time had passed. Obviously someone had missed our old stomping grounds and tried to recreate it but it could never be again what it used to be. I have kept several friends from those days and took so much away from that experience. It definitely helped shape a writing and blogging career for me!

    Nice to run into you again 🙂

    Dana

  5. That’s a sad story! I must admit 1 day I misused my employers equipment and printed out all the articles I had on one of the sites I don’t own – just in case 🙂 You start to be paranoid after a while – and now I know maybe I’m not paranoid!

  6. Brad, well I have to say I had two blogs, and I had a bunch of reviews I was writing on blogs too for products etc. So, I went to the other blog and it sort of became a spam blog, ha, ha. That was when Blogitive was more active. Anyone heard of that? We all went wild with Blogitive at WU because it was unbelievable EASY money for a while, until they asked us to do three posts for one pay. Now, I think Blogitive is taking a nose-dive too. You go there and the blog looks ancient.

    Dana, remember when a bunch of bloggers at WU stomped off to Blogger Party or some other funny blog community? I remember a whole group of them got mad for some reason over some posts and decided they were going to go elsewhere. I think that community fizzled too.

    Lissie, never too paranoid or too rich…Ha, ha.

  7. Hi Clare,

    yes those were good days. Blogfeast was the other site but that went down after less than a year I think. Good to catch up again though. suejeff

  8. Clare,

    Fascinating story! It always amazes me how even the difficult times we go through end up providing great life lessons.

    I also joined in Sharon’s blogging-start project, and now I’m going to rush off to backup my blog — thanks to your sharing of your lesson about that!

    Joan

  9. Pingback: Blogging Start Writing Project Posts | Get Paid to Write Online

  10. Hi Claire,

    Nice to bump into you again here! Sharon has done a really nice job of keeping up good blogs since the WU days, and it looks like you have too. It’s good to see that, even though we aren’t all together at that site anymore, many are still keeping up with their blogs, and doing better and better work all the time.

    Shelly

  11. I was a part of ‘bloggingup’ and it was a shock for me realizing that my blog was also lost there. But I still admit that my blogging career was started there and my first institution was ‘bloggingup’ due to fine bloggers, who participated regularly at that fanctastic community.

    After that experience I tried to join other blog networks, but was not satisfied and at last I am writing for my own blogs.

  12. Pingback: Blogging Start Writing Project Posts - Get Paid to Write Online

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