<

Beginner Blogger Challenge

by Shawanda Greene

This blog post is part of the Beginner Blogger Challenge over at Passive Income to Retire.

I’ve already shared a little bit of my get-out-of-debt story on my about page (some of which is repeated below). But I don’t think we’ve ever talked about the details of why I started blogging.

Here goes.

You Have More Than You Think came to life back in May 2009. I can’t believe it’s almost three years old.

The first few months of blogging were awesome. I absolutely loved commenting on other blogs and interacting with people who were just as excited about the dorky field of personal finance as me.

Then, there’s the stuff that’s not so fun.

Everyone tells you how easy it is to install WordPress. It’s not. At least not the way I did it. I remember reading the 5-minute installation instructions on WordPress.org. Five minutes my ass. It took me an entire hair pulling, nose sweating hour to get the job done. Then I realized my host provided a one-click install option that took like a second. Oops.

I started blogging for two reasons: 1) My mom and a good friend encouraged me to do it and 2) After paying off $25K and saving an additional $7.5K in one year, I felt I knew enough to teach others a few things about money. Plus, I heard you could supplement your income with a blog, so I figured why not write about something I love and make a few extra bucks on the side.

It only took about three months for me to earn my first $100

You see, I live in the personal finance blogging capital of the world, Washington, D.C. Us PF bloggers would get together for happy hour to chat about – what else – blogging. J. Money over at Budgets Are Sexy was the organizer.

While attending my first happy hour, Brian Scheur from My Next Buck told me about a guy at an Australian credit card comparison site he’d done business with. Brian gave the guy my contact information, and the rest is history.

There are a few things I wish I’d done differently before I began blogging.

Although I love the name of my blog, knowing what I know now, I’d have chosen another one.

First, the name is just too damn long. It’s a real pain to type in the address bar of your web browser.

Second, I didn’t realize the importance of Twitter. My current Twitter handle is TheyCallMeCheap. Now, how does that name indicate I run a blog called You Have More Than You Think? But what could I do? I couldn’t use my blog’s name either. Because, again, it’s too damn long!

Third, I would’ve gone with a name that didn’t start with the next to the last letter of the alphabet.

When people link to my site on their blogroll, I normally come up towards the end. And that’s the case for almost any list my blog appears in.

Since I can remember, alphabetical order has almost always made the most sense in unranked lists. So, if you’re browsing a list of super sweet female bloggers, you’ll have to scroll aaaaall the way to the bottom to find me. By then, you’ve probably lost yourself in the magical prose of some other chick’s blog.

Oh! And one last thing, within three months of starting my blog, it was hacked.

That was an experience so frustrating it brought me to tears, literally. I was up all night figuring out how to unhack my blog and remove the “DANGER!! Do Not Enter!” warning from my site. I’m not totally sure where my site’s vulnerability was, but I suspect it was the password. That taught me a lesson in Password Creation 101.

Like what you read?
If so, enter your name and email in the form below to receive exclusive, weekly wealth building tips, and get a FREE COPY of my eBook, Curb Your Consumerism: 75 Secret Strategies to Waste Less, Live Well, and Save More Money.
Subscribe
Free copy of Curb Your Consumerism: 75 Secret Strategies to Waste Less, Live Well, and Save More Money
Exclusive wealth building tips delivered directly to your inbox
We will NEVER send you spam
Enter your name and email below to get INSTANT ACCESS to my free eBook and weekly newsletter!

{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

addvodka March 21, 2012 at 8:55 AM

I struggled with installing wordpress too, when I first did it. I can't believe your blog was hacked!! That's intense!

When I first started blogging, I wasn't serious about it so I just thought of a name. I lucked out, because it starts with an A and I get lots of compliments on it, but for someone who didn't think about it… stroke of luck.

Reply

Corey @ Passive Income to Retire March 21, 2012 at 9:12 AM

Great point about alphabetical listing. I hadn’t even thought of that yet – but I wouldn’t because my main site starts with a number – which is before the A’s. ;) Thanks for joining the challenge!
Corey @ Passive Income to Retire recently posted..Why I Keep Creating More BlogsMy Profile

Reply

Marina K. Villatoro March 21, 2012 at 11:27 AM

My blog's been hacked a few times. It's the way it works on the internet.

Great back story, I wish I was around more bloggers, being in Guatemala, makes it very difficult to connect off line.

Reply

Happy_Homeowner March 21, 2012 at 2:04 PM

I, too, had major issues with WP on one of my other blogs–it makes me feel better to know I'm not the only one. Craziness about being hacked, though!!

Reply

Jen @ SheBloggs March 21, 2012 at 9:52 PM

Oh how I wish I read this before I stated blogging!

The alphabetical naming was not even something that crossed my mind… I now too come near the end of the list. One of the issues is that most new bloggers don't stat blogging knowing the possibilities and the smart things they should be doing in the beginning… it makes the journey all that much interesting.

Awesome tips… and I can't believe you got hacked!!

Reply

Doug March 24, 2012 at 1:03 AM

It’s not too late to change the name. Just get a new domain name and point both domain names to the same site. At some point, if you decide you want to, you can re-brand the site with the new name. Or maybe you could even incorporate the two names on the site, depending. Just a thought…

Reply

YPFinances March 28, 2012 at 1:16 PM

I didn't think about the alphabetical order or the long URL when I started mine – I have an abbreviation for my twitter handle (ypfinances) but it's still not the best. It's ok though because I think it represents who I am and what I write about.

Reply

Lorillia March 29, 2012 at 7:08 PM

I'm new to your site, saw you bloggers challenge. I have to agree with the other comments about alphabetize name. hmm. Also how cool you PF bloggers in DC have a happy hour. Great way of connecting.

Reply

Jessica April 5, 2012 at 3:45 PM

Thanks for sharing your experience. I'm new to blogging, so it's nice to hear stories and words of advise from more seasoned bloggers.

Reply

JW Ginn May 7, 2012 at 4:22 PM

Excellent post – I just started my blog a few days ago but my challenges were more of a psychological nature. What if I build it and nobody reads? Is there room for me in the personal finance conversation?

I finally had decided it was time to put those questions behind me and just get started.

I'm glad that I'm not alone.

Reply

money loan websites September 5, 2013 at 1:21 PM

What’s up mates, its great post on the topic of educationand
completely explained, keep it up all the time.
money loan websites recently posted..money loan websitesMy Profile

Reply

digital photo frame May 7, 2014 at 9:39 PM

Wonderful site. Lots of useful information here.
I’m sending it to several pals ans also sharing in delicious.
And obviously, thanks to your sweat!
digital photo frame recently posted..digital photo frameMy Profile

Reply

Gisele May 28, 2014 at 9:39 AM

I think this is among the most important info for me.
And i’m glad reading your article. But wanna remark on few general things,
The website style is ideal, the articles is really nice :
D. Good job, cheers
Gisele recently posted..GiseleMy Profile

Reply

Wolfgang June 5, 2014 at 5:46 PM

Everything is very open with a really clear description of the challenges.
It was definitely informative. Your site is useful.
Thank you for sharing!
Wolfgang recently posted..WolfgangMy Profile

Reply

Sylvia July 14, 2014 at 5:51 AM

When I originally commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox
and now each time a comment is added I get several emails with the same comment.
Is there any way you can remove people from that service?
Thanks!
Sylvia recently posted..SylviaMy Profile

Reply

2015 bonnaroo tickets March 1, 2015 at 4:08 AM

This is the perfect site for anybody who hopes to find out about this topic.
You know so much its almost hard to argue
with you (not that I really will need to…HaHa).
You definitely put a new spin on a topic that’s been written about for a long time.
Great stuff, just wonderful!
2015 bonnaroo tickets recently posted..2015 bonnaroo ticketsMy Profile

Reply

bing March 14, 2016 at 8:38 PM

If some one wants expert view about running a blog then i advise him/her to pay a quick
visit this webpage, Keep up the nice work.
bing recently posted..bingMy Profile

Reply

Leave a Comment

CommentLuv badge

{ 1 trackback }

Previous post:

Next post:

Page 1 of 11