BlogHer Food '12 Pre-Conference: Why Did You Start Food Blogging?

BlogHer Original Post

Suddenly it’s mid-April and I feel like we’re spiraling toward summer at a high rate of speed. Of course, that means that before we know it, BlogHer Food '12 will be upon us! As people begin to wonder what to pack for the Seattle weather and make plans to meet up with fellow bloggers, we thought we would bring you some pre-conference buzz and excitement via some mini-interviews with our speakers. We’re hitting randomly selected speakers with a quick question that we think will be of interest to those attending and those watching from home.

To kick things off, we thought we’d ask two speakers the question everyone wants to know: Why did you start food blogging?

Food Blogging at BlogHer Food '10

Jeanette Chen of Jeanette's Healthy Living will be speaking on Traffic Building: Using the Latest Social Tools on Day 1 at the conference. She chimed in with her answer.

My blog has been a wonderful journey. I started it because I was spending a lot of time making meals for family and friends with special dietary needs due to illness, including friends who have cancer, my father-in-law who had Parkinson's disease and lived with my family for eight years, and my youngest son who was diagnosed with multiple food allergies last year. While each person’s dietary needs and restrictions have been different, they have all shared a common thread: every meal has had to taste great. I’ve always loved cooking, and as a result of these experiences, I developed a passion for cooking that is health-focused while never compromising on the need to be full of flavor. Through my blog, I hope to share some of the foods I’ve prepared for my allergy-ridden son, for friends undergoing cancer treatment, and lots of other delicious, healthy foods that I make day to day for my family of four boys and my loving husband. While some of the recipes on my blog may stem from cooking for someone with a special dietary need, I’ve developed them to make sure that anyone will love what they’re eating.

I love her answer. You can get to know Jeanette before the conference through any of her social media accounts: Facebook, Pinterest, twitter, stumbleupon or google+. Remember, she's speaking about social tools, so go see if you can figure out how she's using them now!

And Tara Weaver of Tea & Cookies will be speaking at Build a Career in Food: Beyond Blog Monetization on Day 1 as well. Her answer made me smile.

I wish I could say starting my blog was savvy strategy, but in my case it was an accident. I'd gotten sick and was home and bored. I'd been reading a lot of food blogs and decided to start one of my own, but only while I was sick. I never thought I'd keep it up. I didn't even put my name on it, because I was already a professional writer and editor and didn't want anyone who knew me to find it.

I had no idea this accidental blog would change my career and my life. It brought me into the world of food writing, it brought my work to the attention of editors, it introduced me to a huge and growing community of new friends and colleagues who share my passions, and amazing readers from around the world. It really has been the best accident ever.

I love a good "stumbled-into-blogging" kind of story, especially when people are honest about it. It shows that you don't have to start out with the perfect plan and follow it to the letter. You can also follow Tara on twitter for some more honesty!

Of course, now I'd like to know why you started food blogging whether you're attending the conference or not. Was it a happy accident? A well-thought-out strategy? A gradual evolution in your blogging? Do share!

Next week we'll ask another few speakers yet another question, so be sure to come back. You can also check out our BlogHer Food Conference Newsletter for this week's speaker spotlight. In the mean time, be sure to register for BlogHer Food '12 in Seattle this June 8-9. We'd love to see you there!


Family & Events Section Editor Jenna Hatfield (@FireMom) blogs at Stop, Drop and Blog and The Chronicles of Munchkin Land. She is an editor, writer and photographer.

Photo Credit: Justin Hackworth.


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