In 2013, I finished the 2nd draft of a novel, titled, Poet and Muse: A Contemporary Tale. I asked other writers to review it and received great reviews. All writing is work in progress. Poet and Muse is now in its editing stage. Writing is truly rewriting! Too soon, the idea of starting a blog flew in circles inside my head.
Being a poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction writer, I felt like a fish out of the water trying to start a website/blog. Writers like solid, bound paper books. The ethereal world-wide-web sounded a tad intimidating.
I wanted to share samples of my writing, inspire people to change their habits and live more meaningful lives, and build a writing platform. I work full time at a very demanding day job and write until owls hoot. I needed a course that would allow me to focus and study at my own pace.
I read myriad articles on blog and website development. All wonderful, they swirled inside my head. I had no idea where to begin. And finally, I landed on Corbett’s website. Corbett is the creator of How to Start a Blog that Matters. He has built several award-winning blogs (including Think Traffic and Expert Enough), which have collectively attracted over 4 million unique visitors.
Design primarily for bloggers, his course allowed me to work at my pace. Thank you, Corbett. Your course was worth every penny and more! And it was under 100 bucks!
As part of Corbett’s course, I watched a video. In it, Corbett’s guest, Leo Babauta, shared his blogging techniques. “Follow your passion,” he said. And soon I was introduced to Babauta’s terrific blog, Zen Habits.
I truly believe that all we need to live the life we dream is to change our habits and our attitude. With my two non-fiction books on the topic of healthy habits and my several novels in editing stages collecting dust on a shelve, I found Leo Babauta’s Zen Habits truly inspirational. It inspired me to dust the shelves and question my habits. I highly recommend his blog.
After completing the 10-week study plan (it took me much longer than ten weeks given my workload) and developing my Action Plan, I began to surf the internet pipe in 2014.
I acquired my domain poetandmuse.com and selected Bluehost as my website/blog host. After months of hard work, I launched Poet and Muse on my birthday, October, 2014. As a birthday gift, I asked my creative friends for inspiration. The Story Weaver Project emerged. Bluehost provided a great team and great customer support. Their prices were considerably low.
Three months went by blogging. I outgrew the free template. One Sunday afternoon, while fiddling on my drafting table, I designed my logo. Soon, I decided to design a minimalist layout and site structure that would:
- be appealing and inviting to its users;
- inspire those who read me to live meaningful lives;
- showcase my writing;
- balance a vibrant look with a minimalist Zen appeal;
- organize the writing under different writing categories;
- offer a clutter-free layout;
- help me build a writing platform; and
- offer user-friendly navigation.
Voila! Poet and Muse came to life.
Admittedly, it takes a lot of time, work, and dedication. There were times I thought I would give up. In those moments, I rushed to Niki Mathias’ 5 Flat Tires, read a few tips or an empowering success story, and returned to work. In her website, Niki shares tools, resources, and stories to help you design meaningful adventures.
Through this meaningful adventure, I learned that when you follow your passion, things happen. I hope that Poet and Muse inspires you to see life as a web of possibility. And if you need guidance, or even if you are a seasoned blogger who desires to improve your traffic or content, I truly recommend Corbett’s course.
Thank you Corbett, Leo, and Niki for all your great work!