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5 Life Lessons from Vic Styles

Sometimes you meet certain people who are so interesting and so inspiring you just know your life will be different because you met them. This is how I felt about the woman behind the blog and the brand Vic Styles when I first met her last year at a Boss Babes Brunch she hosted in Birmingham. I later had the pleasure of interviewing her for B-Metro magazine.

Though based in L.A., Vic has family in Alabama so she visits the Magic City often. During her most recent trip, she spoke at a Bloggers Night Out event hosted by the organizers of the upcoming Magic City Fashion Week. Vic is a full-time lifestyle blogger who has figured out how to essentially get paid to live her life and be herself. In a recent interview with 21Ninety, Vic described herself as a “freelance life-liver.”

Since Vic is living what is nearly every blogger’s dream, you can be sure the room reserved at Blue Monkey Lounge last Wednesday evening for Bloggers Night Out was packed. Here are five gems dropped by Vic that I really needed to hear.

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Why Writers Should Blog

“So tell me,” she said with crossed arms, a furrowed brow, and the tone of a prosecuting attorney, “exactly why should I start a blog?”

The woman’s question surprised me – sort of.

I was taken aback by the question because the networking event she and I were attending had nothing to do with blogging. But I shouldn’t have been shocked that she would ask me this question because in my hometown of Birmingham, Alabama, I’m considered the go-to girl when it comes to all things blogging.

In 2011 I started See Jane Write, which is not only a blog but also a membership organization for women who write and blog. I host workshops, panel discussions, networking events and conferences under the See Jane Write brand. Many of our events are about blogging, I started this organization in part because I am a blogger, and I grew this organization primarily by blogging. So to many folks, I’m Birmingham’s blog babe (or writeous babe thanks to my old Twitter handle).

I answered her question with another question: “Why do you want to start a blog?”

“Well, I don’t,” she said.

“Then don’t start one,” I replied. She looked stunned.

Obviously, I’m a huge fan of blogging. But if you’re not blogging because you really want to, if you’re only blogging because a chick with curly hair and a hard-to-pronounce name told you that you should, then your blog is most likely going to suck. And the last thing the Internet needs is another craptastic blog.

But if you truly want to start a blog and you haven’t simply because you’re not sure how it could benefit you in the long run, I can discuss that sun up till sun down.

So why am I so in love with blogging?

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Write Like a Boss Series: 7 Ways to Make Money as a Writer

I think I was in the 5th grade when I first declared I was going to be a writer when I grew up. I had been writing really bad poetry since I was about 7 or 8 and in 5th grade I started reading the work of Maya Angelou. And so I decided I would one day be a famous poet like her.

This little girl always knew she’d grow up to be a writer.

As I got older the type of writing I did changed, but my love for writing never did. And as I got older I started asking myself a question that 5th grade Javacia didn’t think much about — How will I make money as a writer? This is probably a question you’ve been asking yourself, too. And this is a question I want to help you answer in part four of the Write Like a Boss series. (Be sure to read part 1, part 2, and part 3, if you haven’t already.)

Let’s discuss seven different ways you can make money with your writing skills.

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“Write Like a Boss” Series: If You Write It, They Won’t Come — Unless You Invite Them

If you want people to reach out for your work, you must reach out to them, first.

If I write it, they will come.

If this has been your motto for marketing your work, you need to stop lying to yourself.

As declared in part one of the “Write Like a Boss” series, to be a writer all you have to do is write. And the more you write the more you’ll get clear on the type of writer you are, as discussed in part two of the series. To be a writer who makes money and makes a difference, you need an audience and to find that audience you’re going to have to do more than just write. You must market your work. People can’t read your writing if they don’t know it exists.

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