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.
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.