One of my blogging heroes: the Big Mama

Melanie is one of those bloggers that I’ll never be – consistent!  She blogs every single day and she has the following to prove it.  If you want to see an active following and what its like to actually get comments on your blog posts – you need to see Melanie’s blog.  Read one post and you’ll know she’s got a special way of stringing together words.   I find myself sucked into her blogs for sheer enjoyment.  Rarely is there anything that will make me cry or even think too hard – just a lot of fun – and really engaging!!

I asked Melanie to answer a few questions at the beginning of the summer (before my unplanned hiatus) and she graciously took the time to answer some of my burning – ‘How do you do that?” questions.    Visit her blog here – the Big Mama.

And then read how she does it here:

Why did you start blogging, and how?

I began blogging as a way to record memories for my daughter, Caroline. She was just about to turn three when I started the blog and she just turned seven a few weeks ago. I love having a record of the last four years and I would have never been one to sit and make some kind of scrapbook.

When I first began blogging, I used Blogger because I wasn’t sure if I’d continue doing it for long or just lose interest. I switched to WordPress once I realized I’d developed a new obsession.

What kind of wizardry did you use to find such loyal readers?

I’m not paying my readers with anything of monetary value. I like to believe their reward for reading is knowing they aren’t the only person in the world who likes too much reality television and can’t stick to any sort of exercise program.

Honestly, I’m not even sure how most of my readers have found me. In the beginning there were a few different bloggers that linked to me, but now I think it’s just word of mouth. I think the biggest key to getting readers and keeping them around is consistency.

How has your blogging changed over the years & where do you get your inspiration?

I don’t really think my blogging has changed much over the last four years. My blog has always been about nothing and it continues to maintain that high standard of nothingness. It really is the Seinfeld of the blog world.

I find inspiration in whatever is going on in my life. It can be a rude checker at the grocery store or a sale at Gap. It can be how I managed to throw away my car keys or the discovery of pretzel M&M’s. You can guarantee that there are frequent mentions of various television programming.

What was your biggest blunder in the blog world? and how can we avoid it!!

Don’t put anything out there that you wouldn’t mind anyone finding. I wrote a couple of posts early on that I later went back and deleted. It’s easy to feel anonymous because the internet is so big, but you never know what someone may find.

So before you bash the PTA president or your mother-in-law, you may want to rethink that decision and choose your words carefully.

Can you talk about the dollars & cents of blogging?

About two years ago, I became part of the Blogher network and have ads on my blog. As blog traffic grew I needed to update my design, hosting service, and blah, blah, blah. I felt like the ads justify the expense because I’m making some money.

I’ve heard rumors of big time bloggers that make bags o’ cash, but I’m not one of them. Either I’m not smart enough or I just don’t have that much traffic. I’m not sure which.

The bottom line is that the blog provides a little extra income for my family and justifies those hours I sit on the couch trying to figure out what I’m going to write about and checking Twitter constantly.

If you figure out how to get rich by blogging, let me know.

I’ll write a book – you can buy it.  🙂

Any advice for a wannabe writer?

This is the most cliché piece of advice ever, but it is so, SO true. If you want to be a writer, you need to write.

I know. It’s genius.

But it’s totally true. When I look back on my early posts, I cringe a little bit at how bad some of them are. Seriously, it’s painful. The more you write, the more you begin to find your voice and figure out how to string words together. It truly is a discipline. The hardest posts I write are the ones I write on Sunday night after taking the weekend off. It’s like my brain has forgotten to use the English language.

Write often to write well. And it also helps to read what other people write. It stirs up all your creativity.

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4 Comments

  1. I think Big Mama’s blog was one of the first blogs I read everyday. I continue to be a loyal reader because she says everything I would say, she’s just a lot funnier when she says it. I love her writing style. She has a gift of making something out of nothingness as she puts it, and I for one, hope she keeps giving us nothing everyday. Enjoyed this post!

  2. I adore Melanie! I think she was one of the first blogs that I started reading as well all those years ago! Her blog is one of my immediate go-to sites when I need a pick-me-up.

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