The realization that came to me was this: I want to be a blogger who writes books, not just a writer with a blog.
If you don't see the distinction there, let me explain. Many (or all) writers create a blog for platform. They post book news, bios, and whatever else the universe demands. It's a great tool to give readers a place to "find" that writer. It becomes his/her virtual office. They'll draw in some followers, make a few friends, but the main purpose of the blog is to market and be present.
I don't do this to market, I do it because I'm a blogger. Yes, I'm trying to become a published author, but I'll still be a blogger. I'll still want to post Top Ten Tuesdays and Book Chats and check my Bloglovin' obsessively. I'll still be me.
When I embarked on this career, I considered doing away with The Tangerine. I considered throwing it all out and starting new with just an author's website. I thought authors had to be professional, not personal. I thought I couldn't post our family's travels, my own reviews, link-ups or pictures of the boys. But times have changed.
These paths have been paved by blogger/authors before me: Amanda Hocking, Jenni Lawson, Jeff Goins, and many, many more. These days you can follow your favorite authors on Instagram and Vine and get glimpses into their regular, boring lives complete with cat pics and baby giggle videos. The walls that authors used to once hide behind are now coming down.
I like to think that I'll kill two birds with one stone. If blogging helps me to create an online presence and I can just keep doing what I've been doing for three years, then I'm set. If hanging out with you guys is part of the job, I don't know how I could complain. But I won't sell out. I won't turn this space into a campaign. I won't even change the name.
So, if you are a writer who has created a blog for platform alone, I hope you find the love for blogging that I have. There is so much to be gained from having this space, one to call your own, to publish whatever you want and to see your writing evolve and grow. I hope you see yourself in your own published words. I hope you find the blogger in you.