It took 4 ½ years (I left my last part-time job on February 9, 2007 and today is August 4, 2011) and 500 posts later for me to reach one of my goals.
Shortly after taking on line writing seriously one of my early dreams was to become self sufficient. In other words I wanted the majority, if not all of my income to come from my own sites. A former co-worker of mine planted the seed many years ago when he told me about a woman who earned $50,000 a year working from home. Her income source was her website.
He told me that story way before AdSense was around and before I really understood what this Internet thing was. The ads back then were from a company called Double Click. He knew because he worked for Double Click. Now Double Click is doubleclick and owned by Google.
That very same co-worker is the one who took me under his wing and taught me that the internet was nothing to be afraid of and explained the basics of HTML. Once he planted the seed and cultivated it a little, I took off running and haven’t looked back.
Love of Learning
I wouldn’t be doing this stuff if I didn’t absolutely love it. Because I enjoy it so much, I was eager to learn as much as I could about writing and creating online. I learned about content sites, blogs, SEO, search engines, RSS feeds, HTML, CSS, jpg, png, java and more. Early on I spent quite a lot of time on a site called Web Monkey. Web Monkey has changed quite a bit from the old days, but back in the day they had a host of free online tutorials. I think I took every single one of them.
I went to the library to read books but realized the books on my favorite subject matter were out of date. I then spent hours in Barnes & Noble with the latest releases only to jot down URLs from the reference pages to later look them up on the internet.
Creating new websites from scratch was just as much fun as dining at my favorite restaurant. When my family slept, I used to create, learn, experiment and confer with my mentor. My mentor finally admitted that the student had surpassed the teacher.
Love, Time and Money
During my time of learning and experimenting, I “discovered” AdSense. I placed it on one of my sites back in April of 2006. You guys know the 63 cent story so I won’t repeat it here. Just think, I earned money doing something that I truly enjoyed. I had to read the terms of service to see if there was a catch. There was no way on God’s green earth that earning money should be so simple.
Over time as I continued to learn and hone my online writing skills I became more and more comfortable online. It was the one place where I could allow my imagination to run wild and continue to earn money.
To this day, I still continue to experiment and create new sites. Why? Well, because I love doing this stuff and I find that over time it pays well. When I write online, I don’t have to worry about hitting the glass ceiling or playing office politics. I can work when I want, where I want and write what I want.
It took 4 ½ years (and 500 posts), but I think I can finally redefine myself. Instead of calling myself an online freelance writer (since I rarely write for anyone else), I think I’ve graduated to full-time blogger and part-time author. 500 posts from now (and who knows maybe another 4 ½ years) I’d love to be known as “Felicia A. Williams, well-known author and part-time blogger.”
The great thing about this online writing stuff is that no one can stop me from making it happen but me.
Where do you see yourself 4 ½ (and 500 posts) from now?
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