Thoughts on books, family, and life in one impressive package.
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Today we’d love you to share your top tips for getting beyond your blog! Have you done any freelance writing? Are you monetizing your blog and how so? How do you make connections outside the book blog community on the Internet? If none of these apply we’d love for you to share a fun aspect about your blog or life that may be completely separate from books!

As surprising as it may seem, there is an entire world of opportunities beyond blogging. Shocking, I know. Blogging is fun and can be life-changing, but I am hear to tell you it isn’t everything. To me, blogging is a springboard for bigger and better things.

Sure, there is the pipe dream that I will one day be able to leave my current career path in accounting for something in publishing or in media. I have tried freelance writing and do monetize my blog through affiliate programs and Google AdSense. Unfortunately, the freelance writing which my current schedule use to allow was unpaid, and my schedule no longer affords me the time to write beyond the blog. What’s worse, monetizing has gotten me a whopping $2.40. Obviously, I will not be quitting my day job any time soon.

Still, there are rewards to be had either as a direct or indirect result of blogging, if one steps away from it and looks at what else life has to offer. Had you met me IRL before blogging and then again afterwards, the difference would surprise you. Heck, it surprises me! If anything, blogging has provided me with a voice and a greater desire to do things about which I am passionate. Another pipe dream is becoming a professional chef, without having to work the brutal hours or come home smelling like grease. Cooking was something in which I dabbled, but if being comfortable within one’s skin has taught me, it is to embrace our desires and leap at the chance to indulge. This means that I’ve gone beyond the basics of cooking and love to challenge myself in the kitchen. Trying new dishes, attempting new cooking methods, and using new ingredients are as exciting and relaxing to me as reading a good book. I love that I can provide my family with amazing meals, and I never fail to beam with pleasure when my kids tell their friends that I am a “good cook” or friends praise my meals. I may not be a CIA-trained chef, but that is all the accolades I need.

As for connections, if you are willing to step away from the blog, the sky is the limit. From a willingness to meet other bloggers to a desire to renew friendships with childhood friends, blogging makes it so easy to feel comfortable reaching out to others and putting yourself out there in ways that may have previously seemed intimidating. There is nothing quite like making plans for a mini-vacation/ reading getaway with people you have never met IRL for a scary but thrilling and utterly rewarding experience! This involved flying to Florida to meet another blogger for the first time IRL and to stay at her house for an entire weekend. It could have gone very badly, and even my husband was a bit concerned that I was doing it. Blogging has taught me that chances are worth taking because they reap the biggest rewards, and that weekend was more proof of that. Not only did I have a fabulous weekend, one I definitely want to repeat, I solidified lifelong friendships with two people I would never have met prior to blogging. Sometimes, the ends truly do justify the means.

There it is, folks. My two cents on moving beyond the blog. Essentially, it is all about taking chances and not being afraid to seek out other passions. How have you moved beyond your blog?

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