A few people told me they started a blog because they like mine. In reality they probably think, “Heck, if she can do it … ” (Trust me, you can).
Well, after MUCHO deliberation, I’ve decided to reveal the source of my blog’s inspiration, the rabbit my sad dog fervently chases … I hestitate to share. Because, once you go there, it’s like, “Ba-bye Alaskarella. See you never…”
So, before you go, I want to tell you, thanks for being the bright spot in my dark days. It’s been real.
Now go on, get out of here. Go see how the big girl bloggers do it (if you haven’t already). And, then, come back when you’re done (in about two years or so), and I’ll tell you what Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman, (aka “P.W.” and “P-Dub”), is too humble to tell you:
She’s like the Oprah of the blogosphere with a blog that grosses $800000-$1.3 million each year (and that was before all the books, book tours, and movie optioning began). Her “little ol’ me” attitude and “accidental” success had me thinking, “WOW! Maybe I can do that!”
SO, I read her tips on blogging post. She told me that the key to building a blog is blogging every single day. I did that, for like a month … and … nada dolla. (Nada, none, nunca; no dinero here.)
“Huh, that’s funny,” I thought to myself. So I googled my finger prints off to come up with a ten million step plan re: How to be just like P-Dub:
1. Must hire OMSH to make my blog a pretty place people want to visually visit ten thousand times a day. I whipped up a creative brief and emailed it off to Heather, the genius of OMSH. She’s great, really great. She also charges $4,000 dollars for a “basic” home page design. P-Dub, who I’m trying to emulate here, has like 6 different blog home pages within her one blog, customized headers on each that change monthly, side bars, menus …. We’re talking thousands upon millions of dollars … I went with the totally free wordpress.com pre-made template. Not so breathtaking, in so many ways.
Who wants a Nikon D-90 camera with a few sweet lenses (money, money, money!)? $250.00 Anthropologie Gift Cards? A Le Crusset cooking thing that’s so pretty it almost makes me want to cook (see #3)? A big kitchen aide mixer … She sponsors all the giveaways herself (they’re usually on Tuesday). Huh. I can afford to give away advice on how to enter other people’s giveaways!
It does look fun, doesn’t it? Still, Mac and Cheese is at the top of my skill set. Maybe my sister in law Lauren could carry the culinary part of “Alaskarella?” Except she already has her own booming blog.
Her posts are well written, and they’re also visually driven. Pictures of gorgeous vistas, beautiful clothing, jewelry, dinnerware, her abode, children, horses, cows … She lives on a ranch. I live on a glacier. I can provide stylish fleece and moose photos? What? You don’t like a bloody lynx?
5. Become a photo shop pro (someone, please, show me the ways) and make all the things mentioned in number 4 (above) even more beautiful. Then, blog about photography, and photo editing, and host photo submission contests with prizes like awesome cameras, photography equipment, and editing software.
Write. Write. Write. Write. Write. Write. Write. 7 times a day, 8 days a week. She has 6 different blogs within her blog (confessions; photography; cooking; home and garden; and home schooling; and tasty kitchen, a whole different blog). Fresh content is added DAILY on each entity.
The content is witty, sometimes thoughtful, always entertaining, and peppered with beautifully shot and edited pictures of her pretty life on the ranch and the books, clothes, cameras, kids, horses, cattle, blue skies, and chaps within it.
So far she has three books. The first (above) is #1 New York Times best sellers; “Charlie” is a picture book about the ranch dog; and her love story, “Black Heels to Tractor Wheels,” is coming out February 1, 2011 and will be a best seller for sure … all of them are the result of compiled blog posts.
Doesn’t it look grand! Her newest book, “Black Heels to Tractor Wheels,” is coming out on February 1st. The book tour includes a stop at the Tattered Cover in Denver on Feb 12.
Guest appearances on Good Morning America, dueling chef shows, magazine articles … Would fame suit me?
Pictures of hotel rooms make blog readers (or is it just me?) swoon. And, “Hotel Room Tours” could possibly be fodder for the next big book.
All this writing, photo taking, photo editing, book publishing, movie optioning, TV guest appearances, cooking, homeschooling, mom-ing to four kids, ranching, shopping, redecorating “the lodge,” and entertaining (she hosts some great parties) might mean I need to hire a little help. Even though her “totally exposed” blog never mentions a nanny, babysitter, maid, or even an assistant … I’m pretty sure she isn’t doing all this out there in the country on her own.
Doesn’t it sound great?! And a little bit pricey. So, I might need to marry Ladd Drummond (aka Marlboro Man), who is like a 4th generation cattle rancher and part of one of the biggest ranching dynasties in America. They own like everything(ish) in Oklahoma. And I think he’s already happily married. So am I.
15. Name my kids Alex, Paige, Bryce, and Todd. No, not really, I just wanted to show-off the extent of my googling because “The Pioneer Woman” never, ever, ever, calls her kids by name in her blog.
16. I also found out that someone related to her got like 100 speeding tickets in a year. And, when he was pulled over he said, “You must not know who I am.” OH! I would DIE to someday be able to say that! (Just joking. Kind of.)
Huh, so improving my writing, photography, and general life skills 100 fold; plus a few million dollars, and maybe, just maybe, I could be one millionth of the blogger P.W. has inspired me to become? And maybe, just maybe, I might someday be able to say things like, “You must not know who I am.”
Until then, hardly anyone knows who I am. My blog is my bridge to friends and family who I already knew and who are all so far, far away; something fun for me to think about while I’m taking a shower; and a welcome diversion from putting away the laundry.
P.S. My blog has never looked so good! And that’s because all of today’s photos, (save the last one) are lifted from my lady’s site (the last one can be credited to my favorite fairbanks photographer, Todd Paris).
PPS – thanks for all your positive feedback re: my little wonder-girl book. The birthday girl read it aloud today at school, and I nearly (ok, I did) cried like the baby she used to be.