I've noticed in scrolling through the group today that there were a few questions about blogs...how to start one, what sites to use, etc.
I've been blogging off and on since 2004, and started blogging professionally in 2007. I've been a writer and journalist for years, so it was my writing skills they hired, not my blog ones, but it's still an awfully nice way to earn some money. Since about 2008, it seems like other ways of sharing such as Facebook and Twitter have taken some of blogging's personal aspect (they're both sort of micro-blogs) and big, professional sites like The Stir here at Cafe Mom have become the hot content creators. That said, blogging is still a great way to express yourself, hone your writing skills, keep track of your kids' milestones and funny comments, and develop a great network of friends inside the computer.
Several sites offer free blogging templates. Blogger (www.blogspot.com) is probably the easiest to use; I have my personal blog on Wordpress (www.wordpress.com) because they share a lot of valuable information for the newbie blogger....tutorials on content, topic ideas, etc. With Wordpress, you can also choose to pay to have your blog hosted as its own website for a very small fee, something like $20 a year; however, most of the features you'll want as a beginner are free.
Blogging will not make you rich. All but a very few of the most successful bloggers don't make a full-time living at it. Most do it for the love of writing. It's super-fun, though, and since it's free you don't have much to lose.
Do you blog? Which ones do you read?