Blog · Random Observations

Changes: it’s not always what you think

The past month has been hectic, crazy, stressful, and ultimately, the start of bringing my dream to life. You see, I have a hard time sitting still and hoping fate has some good news for me. I firmly believe that we are all in control of our own destinies or luck, if you prefer that term. In fact, I believe it so strongly; I had a very small shamrock tattooed on my back as a reminder that we all make/hold our own luck when I was twenty. It was time to give a helping hand to making my dreams come true, to take control of my destiny again. Hey, if I don’t make an effort… who will?

If you have read the “About” page, you might know that my dream occupation or job is to be a writer. I’ll qualify that. I want to be BOTH a published author – and I’m working on my first novel at the moment – and a Korean culture writer. Okay, now technically, I was already working towards both. But I was only blogging about Korean culture; I wasn’t making a living doing it. Remember, I said it was my dream “job” which means I want to make a living doing it… or rather, doing both. And it was time to bring that dream one step closer to reality.

How? I turned my other blog, my primary one – Life’s an Adventure 2 – into an online magazine – ATK Magazine – about Korean culture and recruited other writers so that it was both more professional and better-rounded. It’s been a lot of work but most of the initial changeover is now complete. There’s just a little fine tuning to do. And I’m ecstatic about it, I really am.

But, and this was a huge surprise to me, I’ve found out I have more of an ego about the website (or rather the former blog) than I expected (and am weirdly enough, listing to Ego by Big Bang while writing this). I’m having a harder time changing my thinking about the site from “mine/me” to “my magazine/a separate entity from me” than I expected. Remember, this was my choice and something I want very, very badly. It’s also something I’ve been slowly working towards for about 6 months or more. But nevertheless, it’s been hard.

I realized just how much of a problem I was having the other day while tweeting. You see, I have both a personal and a magazine Twitter account and regularly tweet from both. Prior to February 1st – when I made the switch  from blog to magazine – both were really me so I tweeted in the first person and with my personal bias on both. But now, the magazine isn’t me. It’s more than me. I’ve spent the past two years building up both my and my blog-turned-magazine’s reputation and I now need to take it to the next step. I need to let go while continuing to build it up.

But back to the tweeting issue, I need to develop more of a distance without loosing the personal touch that our (note I didn’t say my) readers love. First step, less Big Bang references and retweeting of DramaFever’s blog posts about hot Korean K-pop artists or actors. Finding a balance between tweeting as the editor while keeping a personal connection but not making it about me is hard. In fact, it makes me wish I studied journalism in university. I studied Political Science in university, Sporting Goods Business in college, and then Fundraising & Volunteer Management as a graduate program – none of which taught me how to be an editor/publisher. Teaching English – specifically, teaching essay-writing – certainly helped me be a better technical editor but not how to act like one. 😛 That’s my next challenge!

The funny thing was I expected tons of problems on the technical side of changing to an online magazine. Don’t ask me why but I expected the self-hosted version of WordPress (the .org version) to be a lot harder to use. It’s not really, especially if you’ve been using Worpress (the .com version) as long as I have. It does take some more work (read: more time) but that’s mostly because you can customize it more. I was seriously stressed at the start of the changeover but have been enjoying customizing the theme and finding the necessary plugins to keep the functionality I like. Now if only had some free time so I could learn a little CSS. 

Who knew that switching from a blog to an online magazine would lead to self-discovery about my ego! 😛 But don’t worry, I’m almost over myself.


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