Recently I read this article about things girls do after graduation. This particular article was about starting a fashion blog and honestly, I was a little salty after reading it. However, the guy who wrote it will probably get a kick because many of the things in this article does correlate to how my life happened. What is perhaps different between the girl he describes and myself is that I am so incredibly serious about this blog and I really enjoy what I do.
It’s no secret to anyone that I’ve always had a knack for writing. In fact, a few months ago, my mom found some short stories I wrote in Kindergarten or 1st grade (my spelling was horrible, but at least I tried). So, I’ve always had my own opinions and my writing abilities have continued to improve. What really annoyed me about this article was the assertion that the girls who start fashion blogs don’t deserve to voice their opinion. Perhaps I am projecting my own insecurities, but this is what I truly felt while reading this article. So, as I know I’ve been absent for longer than I should have, I want to clarify and essentially respond to this 2-year-old post I recently found.
Why Did I Start This Blog?
When I graduated college, I spent months applying for jobs and going on interviews, but nothing was quite right. I actually used to write for a blog when it was in its infancy, but the process was not enjoyable for me. Ultimately, my ideas didn’t match with the founders. August reminded me of this, where I thought, “I have my own ideas and my own opinions. Also, event planning, and brunch, and listicles interest me. Why not create something of my own that uses my voice and my talents? Yes, I think that is what I’ll do”. It took me a few months to come up with a name after much research and indecision.
At the time, I had an Italian pen pal, and one day I told her about my struggles as a post-grad. She responded with, “Sei una ragazza in gamba“. It was the first time I heard this phrase, even though I studied in Italy. Naturally, I went to Google looking for a translation.
The phrase literally means, “You are a clever girl” or a girl that’s going places. And poof! The name of my blog was formed. In Italian, ragazza translates to girl and in gamba essentially translates to clever. I substituted ragazza for its English translation and it was just perfect. However, the problem with having a blog name that is not meant to be pronounced in American English is that some people don’t understand that it is pronounced like gahm-ba. I even have a friend that likes to say Gambia, which is slightly frustrating. At the end of the day, I loved this name and I still do because it is so unique to me.
The phrase literally means, “You are a clever girl“. And poof! The name of my blog was formed.
I also know a little bit of a coding, meaning I took web design in 7th or 8th grade and I know basic html. However, I know how to use inspect on web pages to try to see what kinds of codes are other websites using. I started off with a basic free WordPress theme, Olsen I believe. I used that for a few months while I was trying to get the hang of it. I’m pretty technologically savvy, so figuring out how things work isn’t that much of a challenge for me. My mom thinks I should’ve majored in an IT field instead of Communications. Yes, essentially I was a marketing major with a business minor.
After this, I upgraded to a different theme that I loved, but it still didn’t give me what I was looking for. It took me one more try to find this current theme that I use, but I’ve changed some things around on the homepage because I’m always looking to make things better. However, after February, things took a turn and I was no longer able to give my blog proper attention.
Why Have I Been Absent?
I write at least 10,000 words a week, I gained almost 20 pounds since graduating, and I’m tired. What happened to me in the past year is something I could never have imagined. I went from being active every day to being essentially sedentary. Then I started my first semester of graduate school this past January. These were some of my biggest changes! By the end of February, I couldn’t keep up with writing as much as I did because I am working to receive another communications degree. Basically, graduate school kicked my butt and I write incredible lengths every week. When you’re writing that much every week, it is so hard to find the strength to write more, especially when you’re giving all your creative brain power to school.
I write at least 10,000 words a week, I gained almost 20 pounds since graduating, and I’m tired.
I lost my motivation and my drive to keep this blog up, but I never for a second stopped believing that I would close up shop. Basically, I am way too passionate about Girl In Gamba. On top of this, I didn’t get the emotional and social media support from my friends that I was hoping to receive. This is fine. I understand that everyone has their own lives now. However, this really does mess with you psychologically.
Additionally, there was another blog that started around the same time as me and they are currently at 11k followers on Instagram where I have a little over 100 (the highest I reached so far was around 130). Keep in mind that I was a part of a sorority for all 4 years, among studying abroad multiple times. It was a bit disheartening to not see people who I’ve supported, not support me, but I get it. On the other hand, it was so incredibly heart-warming to see people support me. However, sometimes there are barriers that get in the way of your success. In short, there are many factors as to why I have been absent, but graduate school (I’m taking summer classes too) is perhaps the #1 reason at the moment.
What’s Next for Girl In Gamba?
Going forward, I want to uphold the promises that I’ve made to those who know who they are. Additionally, I want to continue to write. I love it so much! How could I give it up? I also could use content contributors to be a part of this journey with me. One of the most rewarding experiences was learning how to curate content. Although I can’t pay anybody yet (I’m actually losing money from keeping up this passion), I would love to help others get their writing, their voices, their talents out there too.
Starting a blog isn’t hard, writing for a blog isn’t hard, but keeping it going is hard. I think the author of that article was trying to nod at this idea. It is incredibly true, but when you have a passion and a desire like me, you cannot stop. I won’t stop. I will keep writing for this blog and who is to say that I won’t be the next Glamour or Vogue? Although fashion is not my thing, I can only work towards putting out high quality, fun, and sometimes serious content. It’s only up from here.
Why Did You Start Blogging?
If you’re a blogger like me, share your story down in the comments! Was there anything in particular that sparked your interest?
If you like posts like these and/or posts that make you think, check out the lifestyle archives for more!
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