After seven years, four months, and twelve days, I have decided to retire ParchmentGirl.com.
Let me start at the beginning.
In January 2016, I started writing a twenty-week blog series called “The Ultimate Guide to Book Blogging,” a resource for all the people who email me asking me how to start a book blog, request review copies, and so on. I was quite nervous about writing that series. Books and book-related entertainment has been the sole focus of this blog since its inception and branching out pushed me outside my comfort zone. I didn’t even know if I could write a compelling series on blogging. Did I have enough to say about it to fill twenty blog posts? It turned out that not only did I have plenty of thoughts to fill twenty blog posts, but writing the series was practically effortless.
I’ve always loved the blogging side of blogging–the technical challenge of learning HTML, CSS, Photoshop, and WordPress. As it turned out, I also have a knack for the business side of blogging–social media marketing, SEO, keeping track of my business expenses like a real adult. (Okay, I may struggle with that last one juuuust a bit.) I’ve picked up a lot of extremely useful skills in the process of pursuing what started out as just a passion project.
My experience writing The Ultimate Guide to Book Blogging planted a seed in my head. Maybe I should put these 5+ years of experience to use and teach others how to build successful blogs! I didn’t give it too much thought beyond that because I didn’t feel ready to take the next step.
Fast forward to two-and-a-half months ago. I woke up one morning and just knew that now was the right time. I spent a week madly researching everything I would need to know to start an online business. I thought it would be daunting or that I would run into some tidbit of information that would make the whole enterprise seem ludicrous or impossible. Instead, I came away feeling…Confident. Prepared. Excited.
At first, I planned to continue writing at ParchmentGirl.com at a reduced frequency (once a week) while I started my new blog and biz. It wasn’t until earlier this month that I admitted that was a bad idea. In early 2016 when I was writing The Ultimate Guide to Book Blogging, I was also getting ready to launch Lymeology.com, a website for chronic Lyme patients. The experience left me completely physically, mentally, and emotionally burned out. For the sake of my own health and sanity, I turned over ownership of the website to a local Lyme nonprofit that now runs it as an educational and support blog for patients. The truth is, I don’t have the energy to write for ParchmentGirl.com, BookRiot.com, and start a new business. So I’m cutting out Parchment Girl.
What exactly does that mean?
I will no longer be posting new content at ParchmentGirl.com. At least, not anytime in the near future. Consider this an indefinite hiatus that may or may not end. I might pop back in next December to talk about the best books I read in 2018. If once my business takes off, I find I have more time on my hands (unlikely, but possible), I might start blogging here again. But for now, I’m just letting it go to focus all my energy and attention on making my new business succeed.
I will NOT be deleting this blog or its archives. My hosting plan is up for renewal soon and I am going to pay in advance for two more years. I didn’t spend 7+ years building this blog just to let it vanish into a dark hole!
I am not abandoning the online book world altogether. I will still be writing for Book Riot just as I always have. At the moment, I need the money (Startup costs are a bitch.) and Book Riot’s average hourly wage is better. I also need an outlet to talk about books and Book Riot provides that.
The New Business
My tentative plan is to launch my new website in late March. I say tentative because I am dealing with some serious complications of my chronic illness that may force me to delay the launch, but hopefully, things will work out the way I want. If you would like to receive email updates (and a couple freebies I have planned), drop your info in the form below, and I will add you to the list!
I will miss participating in the vibrant book blogging community as an individual blogger, but I’ll still be around. You can still holler at me through my website form. (I’ll still be using firstname.lastname@example.org for all Book Riot-related stuff and checking it regularly.) I’ll still be reading and commenting on your blogs periodically. Books and the book blogging community are a huge part of my life and that won’t change.
I’m excited to see where this new chapter in my blogging journey takes me and I hope you’ll join me for the ride!