We haven’t really had the SAT experience with the kids yet. I know the tests are different than they were back in the Stone Age when I took them.
When I was in high school, the highest combined score you could get was a 1600.
800 verbal and 800 math.
The first time I took the SAT’s , I got a combined score of 1060.
I got a 500 in verbal, and a 560 in math.
The Latin classes that I had taken for two years did not seem to have the effect on the verbal section that we had hoped when I took that test the first time.
So my mom signed me up for one of those SAT prep courses.
If I was going to get that verbal score up, I’d need some professional help.
I went to all the classes, studied, took the practice tests, and then, a few months later, I retook the SAT’s.
And my new and improved score was…
What the fuck?
It went down.
So I never really thought of myself as possessing any talent in the writing department.
I remember back when I first started writing this blog.
At the time, five of the kids were under the age of seven. It was the only thing I could think of to do where I could possibly make money while taking care of them.
Plus, Number 4 was out of control, so I had plenty of material.
But I had no idea what the hell I was doing.
I didn’t read blogs at all, so I had nothing to work off of.
To be honest, I have no idea how this idea even popped into my head.
I Googled “Mom Blogs” and “How to make money writing a blog” and some other random crap.
The first link that came up was a post by some chick named Penelope Trunk who I guess is a famous blogger or something.
The title of it was “Reality check: You’re not going to mamke money from your blog.”
It really pissed me off.
And I took it as a challenge.
Oh yeah, Penelope Trunk? I’ll show you.
Back in the early days, I would put my posts up on my personal Facebook page. I’d email them to my aunt.
The only people who saw them were close friends and people related to me by blood.
I remember seeing a friend at the gym who had read one of my first posts.
I think she referred to it as cute, which kind of annoyed me.
I remember telling her I was going to support my family with the blog.
She pursed her lips into a fake smile and said Awesome!
But I’m pretty sure she was silently thinking to herself, Yeah, right.
Back in those first few months, I remember thinking that once I had a comment on a post from someone who I never went to school with or who was never at my house on a holiday, that would be the day that I had really succeeded.
Eventually I learned that I should make a whole separate Facebook page for the blog.
And I found this site called Top Mommy Blogs.
It doesn’t really have all the top mommy blogs in existence. The most famous and uber popular bloggers out there are not on that site. They don’t need it.
But when you Google mommy blogs, it’s the first thing that comes up.
So I decided I’d get on that site.
And then I decided that I’d be Number 1 on it. Not just in the humor blog department, but in all of them.
In order to get onto TMB, you had to have three consecutive months of blogging under your belt.
Knowing nothing about blogs, I had no idea what that meant.
I assumed it meant you had to publish a post, every day, for three months.
So that’s what I did. And on the first day of the fourth month, I submitted my blog to the site.
By the time I got on there, I had been writing every day for over 90 days.
I decided I would keep doing that.
Write one post every day.
I’m also an all-or-nothing kind of girl. I was afraid if I stopped or took a day off, I’d never get going again.
A little over a year after I wrote that first post, I wrote a post called Dear Teachers.
It went semi viral. It broke my site. And the number of readers I had pretty much doubled in about a week.
I was starting to get the hang of this blogging thing.
The more I practiced, the better I got.
I still didn’t really have any idea what the hell I was doing as far as capitalizing on my blog was concerned.
I naively thought that any money I made would come from advertising.
And I also thought, if I am more than a blogger, if I am a talented writer, at some point. someone will “discover” me.
It’s kind of a douchey thing to think, but I didn’t want to promote myself.
I just wanted someone to think I was good. If they did, then that would be proof that I should keep going.
That I had potential.
About six months ago, I was contacted by Scary Mommy. She wanted to publish one of my posts.
I had never heard of her. Because, like I said, I’m not really a blog reader.
I checked out her site.
She had like a bazillion readers.
In fact, in the blogging world, she’s like, well, she’s a big fucking deal.
And she thought I was decent.
She published a bunch of my posts.
Like the one about What percentage of parenting sucks.
I had been “discovered.”
I got a couple thousand new readers.
But my blog still wasn’t making all that much money.
A week or so ago, I spoke to an internet marketing expert.
He gave me some pretty interesting information.
I learned that while I can make money advertising, what is really more lucrative for bloggers is to sell their own products or services.
It made sense. The most profitable thing I’ve done on this blog is my e-course.
I felt kind of dumb for not putting two and two together.
I’m sure I could have figured this out. I could have spent some time researching.
But I had been spending all my time focusing on writing posts.
I had convinced myself that I had to write a post every day.
It was my thing. I had to keep doing it.
But in doing that, I also learned that I was failing to focus on something very important.
My email list.
I had no idea that there is a direct correlation between the number of email subscribers you have and how much money you make.
All this time I’d been focused on writing a post a day and keeping the pageviews on my site up.
While the content was important, I should have been spending time growing my base of readers.
And while the consistency of the posts was helpful, it wasn’t really getting the job done.
On Saturday I wrote a post about how we are struggling financially.
I had to start reevaluating.
While writing a post a day may have been my thing, it may not have been getting me where I ultimately wanted to go.
And then on Sunday I got another email.
It was from Scary Mommy again.
She had read the post I had written on Saturday.
And she asked me if I had time to write. That she’d like me to be a regular contributor.
That if I gave her original content, she would pay me.
So I have been given a pretty amazing opportunity.
Exposure. And money. The two things I need most!
Of course, I’m feeling a little pressure.
Now I really have to deliver.
And that also means that if I’m going attempt to contribute content on a regular basis to Scary Mommy, there’s no way I’ll be able to maintain my post a day habit here on the blog.
Of course I’ll still write here as much as I can.
It just won’t be every day.
But I’m doing it.
I’m making it happen.
It has been three and a half years, but I never gave up.
Thank you guys for being so devoted. If it weren’t for you, this wouldn’t be happening.
And fuck you, 490 SAT score.
I’m a writer!