How Did You Get Started Blogging?

I just got this message today from an old high school friend.

"Hey you!! I was just wondering, how did you get started in blogging?"

I didn't answer it right away. I mean, where do you start? I wanted to keep it simple, so I walked out into the yard for a bit and snapped some macro pictures of flowers.

It's a blogger thing.

Spring Daisies.jpg

When I came back inside, I responded to her question thusly:

Well that is a loaded question. LOL!
I actually started blogging about six or seven years ago. I deleted my first two blogs because I thought they were too dramatic. I was going through some crap back then and the stuff I was writing belonged in personal journals, so I deleted them.
I've been through four iterations of my recent blog, Sugar in the Raw. I started on Blogger, which was the simplest platform at the time. Wordpress was still too code-monkey and Square Space was just getting started.
I'm in the process of moving from WP to SS right now. I highly recommend using SS. It's so pretty and easy to use, once you get the hang of it. You can do more without hiring anyone, so that was a big plus for me.
But I suspect you are asking less about the nuts & bolts and more about how I got hooked up with all the brand ambassador stuff. Honestly, a lot of it was timing and just showing up to events.
I started really syndicating myself on Twitter back in '08. I hooked up with a bunch of groups following hashtags. I went to every blogging and tech conference I could (and couldn't) afford. Basically, I immersed myself in blogging. We (as in, all the random bloggers I've met and grown with) didn't really know what we were doing then. It's been a wild ride, but one I'll never regret.
If you are thinking about starting a blog, I have a few suggestions that I share at consultations.
First and foremost is YOU! Be yourself. Write like you talk. Pick three key words for yourself and write in those directions.
At the same time, pick your platforms. You're already on FB. Are you on Twitter? Google+? Those two are just as important. And, of course, your blogging platform. If you go with WP, go self-hosted. SquareSpace will walk you through their hosting process. Either way, it's going to cost you about $10/mo.
Oh shit! I forgot to tell you to get your URL! What do you want your .com or .tv or .whatever to be? Go get it!! NOW! And then come back. 
Okay, now...
Write. And share.
And go find other writers.
And comment.
And then sprinkle some magic pixie dust and hope the right people find you. If they don't, go find them!!!

I know there was more that I could have added, but that's boiling it down to the simplest essence of what I think she was likely asking.

Since I just got back from Nintendo Headquarters in Seattle, I've gotten more than a few notes asking the same question. Getting hooked up with these awesome experiences is more luck than anything, but what I said about showing up is the real "secret", if you want to call it that. It's not necessarily about SEO or how much you spend on a snazzy design, although that never hurts. Show up at events and conferences. Meet people. Genuinely give a shit about them, bloggers AND brands.

And be yourself! Don't be some facade of yourself. I know this is going to sound so trite and worn, but it's only said a million times because apparently, not everyone gets it: BE AUTHENTIC! That's so important! I can't tell you how many people I've met who have said to me, "You're just like you are on-line." Like, who the hell else was I s'posed to be? I didn't realize what a big deal this was until I got hosed by a few friends that turned out to be so phony and such backstabbers. Yes, blogging is filled with backstabbers. But you learn to walk away from the a-holes, just as in real life. Even if they want to reinvent themselves with every new popular niche, you just keep being YOU!

And the pixie dust doesn't hurt.

So IF you still want to start a blog and have any questions, ask in the comments. I'll answer what I can. And if you have anything else to add to my brief pre-blogging check list, please add to the comments, as well.

Peace, Love, and Sugar!