Blogging in the Pee-Wee League
I feel kind of inept at blogging sometimes. I’m playing in the pee-wee league for one thing, by which I mean I’m not self-hosted. If I were self-hosted, I’d have lots more neat widgets on the blog and zippy graphics and my very own domain name. I don’t even know what all else it means to be self-hosted. But I figure I’d finally have a blog that’s a bit more polished and functional and also by the way wouldn’t look like every other wordpress blog with the “Cutline” theme. And best of all, I’d be able to invite people to e-mail me at email@example.com. How cool is that.
I work with a very patient guy named Jon who is our Director of Digital Strategy. He looks just like a Director of Digital Strategy should. He has a beard, lives in Brooklyn, drives a Mini and is married to a talented artist who’s also French (which makes her an artiste). In other words, he’s cool, as digital people often are. Unfortunately for him, his office is within hollering distance of mine and also, he reports to me. So although he has actual work to do — with clients, for example — he does double-duty as my go-to guy for Stupid Blog Questions. Like when I was setting up PR Mama last year, stuff like:
Hey Jon, so what’s the difference between a category and a tag?
Do I need both?
How come my tag cloud doesn’t look as cool as the one on your (self-hosted) blog?
What do you mean 2000 words is too long for a post?
Where do I get nice pictures for my blog posts?
Is it stealing if I find it on Google images?
What should I call my blogroll?
Do I have to call it a blogroll, is it breaking the rules not to?
How do I get the Twitter widget on my sidebar?
What if I want the little bird icon, how do I do that?
Am I allowed to hyperlink more than one word, or will I get in trouble?
Can you get kicked out off WordPress if no one reads your blog?
And so on.
I’ve wised up a bit over the past year. I hardly ever bother Jon anymore. But today I decided it would be a good idea once and for all to just pack up the whole PR Mama show and schlep it over to WordPress.org. Because really, enough with the pee-wee leagues. I’m ready for some midget football (do they still call it that, by the way? Why am I guessing not?)
I find myself in need of Jon’s help again. I call him into my office and this is what goes down:
Me: I need a domain name, right?
Me: I wanted “PR Mama” but someone took it. It’s something having to do with Puerto Rico.
Jon: You really should consider registering your own name.
Me: Is that important?
Jon: Well, it’s really all about building your personal brand these days so…yeah, you probably should.
Me: But how do I do that?
Jon: [directs me to Yahoo Small Business] Let’s see if stephaniesmirnov.com is available.
[We’re told that it’s not.]
Me: How weird is that? Some d-bag took my name. Now what?
Jon: Go ahead and click on it and let’s find out what bozo is sitting on your name.
[A few clicks reveal that in fact, I am the bozo sitting on my name.]
Me: Oh, right. I forgot I did that. So I own the domain name, even though the Puerto Ricans own PR Mama. That’s okay, right?
Jon (inching towards door): Right. That’s good.
Me: Does this mean I can get better widgets and a cool Twitter bird and an awesome e-mail address?
Jon: Yeah, sure, you’ll be able to do a lot more with the blog now. Did you say you’ve got some WordPress designers teed up? I’m sure they can help you take it from here now that you’ve got the domain registered [translation: my work is done here, can I go back to my office now?]
So stephaniesmirnov.com is primed and ready for action. I am ready to assume my rightful role as a Big Digital Kid, at long last. The moving van hasn’t backed up just yet but stay tuned for news as I make the leap over to WordPress.org. (Question is, will my go-to guy come along for the ride?)