For a living I used to slouch behind a computer screen and pencil push 40 hours a week. I'd been doing it for, maaan, eight years and let me tell you children IT WAS THE MOST BORING THING EVER. But it paid fairly well and offered outstanding benefits, two things any young adult needs while venturing into the real world. The real problem was that I had no interest in that job. Like, I didn’t give two shits about the material I dealt with on a daily basis.
When I was 21 or so (back in 2009) I was beginning to tire of “going through the motions” and found myself wondering what I wanted to do with my life. But what could I do? Hell, I didn’t even know what I wanted to do, so how could I even begin to do something? Not only was it frustrating, but it was a vicious cycle. I would bitch bitch bitch about how my job wasn’t right for me, but that’s as far as it went. I knew I needed to find something to do -- something that made me feel like I was doing something for myself.
Months passed, and nothing had changed. But a few days after E3 2009 I was slumped on my couch, watching G4 coverage on TV and found myself yet again lamenting over the direction my life was going in. Did I really want to spend the rest of my life working at a job for which I had no passion?
I don’t know what it was about that day, but something changed. I turned off the television, whipped out my laptop and logged into my IGN account. (I had been visiting IGN during lunch breaks and had became somewhat familiar with their blogging system. That being said, I was a genuine lurker--- I never posted or commented.)
20 minutes later I had written my first blog. I called it Just a Gaming Chick Venting. Reading it now makes me cringe, but hey, we all start at the bottom of the darkest and shittiest well, amirite?
The blog ultimately took off among the community, one thing led to another, and before I knew it I considered myself to have two jobs...I just didn't get paid for one of them. Unfortunately I wasn’t getting paid for the one I enjoyed the most, but that’s how it goes.
Things that came shortly after my IGN blog that defined my "second" job:
- I co-hosted a weekly podcast about video games and the industry
- I hosted a weekly community podcast about We’re Alive called We’re Not Dead
- I coordinated and ran community contests for We’re Alive
- I wrote articles for Zaxy.com
- I continued to blog on IGN.com
- I began attending and covering industry related conventions and gatherings
- A YouTube channel
I founded BlondeNerd.com (y’know, this little website you’re currently on) a few years later in January of 2011. While I was still having a blast on the IGN blogs, I figured it was time to really start building a brand for myself. Y’know, time to start building my meal ticket. (Or something. Did I even use that term correctly?) I didn’t have a lot to go off of, but thanks to my experience with Zaxy.com (RIP ZAXY!) and a few years of blogging on IGN I had the basic tools I needed to get my website off of the ground.
So, on top of all of the podcasts, blogging and video stuff (some of which I no longer do), I was still working at the same ol’ 40-hour-a-week-pencil-pushing-job. And as much as I wished and yearned to leave that craphole, it was a paying craphole that supported my hobbies and travel. Video games and plane tickets to conventions weren't cheap, after all.
For the next year and a half everything stayed basically the same; I continued to e-hustle and work at the same place. But fast forward to July of 2012 -- July 17th, 2012 to be specific -- when something pretty awesome happened. Friends, I can say on this fateful day with the sincerest form of sincerity that it was the day I made the best decision of my life.
I quit that boring, directionless job and, well, jumped head-first into the unknown.
It was a bit scary, but man oh man has it paid off. I now work from home (I started a little social media marketing shindig, something I learned I had a knack for via my experience with BlondeNerd.com) and now I’m finally able to dedicate the love and attention my baby deserves. And, uh, needs. I think this website has become a lot more needy.
SooooYEAH! That pretty much wraps up the past several years of my life in a nutshell. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask. And if you find yourself in a similar position as I was in, just keep moving forward. It will pay off. 🙂