Monday, December 30, 2013

Greetings from Texas

Are you getting excited yet? Just one more day until 2014 is here! With both December and 2013 coming to an end, it's the perfect time to present my favorite blogger of the month: Megan Silianoff, writer of Greetings from Texas! Based on my previous choices of favorite bloggers, y'all know how much I enjoy local blogs. After following Triple Max Tons for a while, I heard about the Houston Blogger Symposium - a blogger conference started by Megan herself! I decided to check out her blog and before I knew it, I'd become a daily reader.
Megan's blog includes everything from her family adventures to her eternal love for Jay Z. Aside from being a creative writer, she has a witty sense of humor that makes for entertaining posts like this and this(featuring her adorable daughter)!  Did I mention she wrote a book about cancer and adoption? It's both honest and funny, just like her blog. If I haven't convinced you yet, I'm sure her interview will do just the trick!

When and why did you decide to start blogging?

My “coming-of-age” blogging story is sorta weird. I was diagnosed with cancer a few years ago so I started a Caringbridge blog to inform all my friends and family of what was going on with my diagnosis and prognosis. The short story is that I eventually went into remission and therefore the context of my blog became obsolete. The fact that I was cured was great – but I missed the writing and the blogging aspect so I started a new blog and that’s how Greetings from Texas was conceptualized. If you want the long story of all this, you can buy my book…..Shit. I just plugged my book in your first question. That’s embarrassing.

Describe your personal style.

Let’s see. There’s a lot of high-waisted stuff, a lot of skinny jeans, a lot of vintage pieces (I get an employee discount at Cheeky!) There’s a lot of heels, headbands, and head scarfs. If I had to narrow it down I’d say its “bohemian inspired and vintage clad.”

Where do you find inspiration for new blog posts?

Everywhere. Obviously my “lifestyle” content comes directly from what I have going on in my life.

If I do an outfit post, it’s usually to highlight a piece that I’ve gotten from a brand or company, with the pretense that I’ll incorporate into a post. Not always – but usually. It somehow feels less vain that way. And gives me more confidence - like I’m not just taking pictures of my outfit because I think it’s the shit – but because I’ve been enlisted and compensated in some way to do so.

If I do something “editorial” – that inspiration can come from anywhere; tv, music, magazines, etc. I’ve done a lot of Kardashian inspired posts because I love them. Other blogs are an inspiration as well. Maybe I’ll see something someone another blogger did and take it in a different direction to make it my own. I also make sure I’m reading a lot of blogs. You have to know what’s going on in your craft to be able to contribute effectively. I always read The Man Repeller – not because her content is my absolute favorite (though I do really like it) but because Leandra seems to be on the cusp of blogging’s evolution and direction.

How would you describe your blog in 5 words?

Not to be taken seriously.

What’s your favorite part about blogging?

My favorite part of blogging is the experiences it’s brought my way; sitting front row at Lucky Fabb listening to LC and Rachel Zoe speak. Or meeting Johnathan Adler. Next month I’m speaking at Alt Summit which I know is going to be amazing. I’ve also met all my friends through blogging. When I moved to Houston, I knew no one. When I count all my closest friends now, three years later, I met almost every single one through blogging.

Lastly, blogging has allowed me to reinvent myself career wise. My background was in recruiting. That’s all I had done upon moving to Texas. But blogging enabled me to build a portfolio and resume and skill set that enabled me to get hired at Rebecca Lankford, Cheeky Vintage, Langford Market, etc.  

What’s your least favorite part about blogging?
It’s a lot of work. The time investment you put in and the financial investment you get out isn’t necessarily balanced. So sometimes it’s like “wtf am I spending so much time on this? No one cares.” But then you get the sweetest, nicest emails from strangers. Or you’ll get an email from a cool brand that wants to work with you. Or recently a lady walked into The Loft, where my mom works in Milwaukee, Wisconsin (of all places) was like “are you megan’s mom? I read her blog.” And that was crazy but also helps me justify all the time I spend obsessing over this nonsense. Like, at the end of the day, I know that lady that shops at the Loft reads my blog.

My very least favorite aspect though is probably the envy aspect. I’m sure that’s the same for every blogger, big or small, whether they’re willing to admit it or not. You’ll see other bloggers get these big collabs or partnerships and you’re all “wtf. Their blog sucks.”  But really you just suck for thinking that. As a blogging community – I don’t think we’re catty like that on the outside, I’ve found blogging to be very supportive and welcoming community. But individually I think we all get jealous. Kendi’s big line at Texas Style Council a few years ago was “comparison is the thief of joy”  and that pretty much sums up that theme.

What’s your favorite thing about living in Texas?

There are a lot of things. The absence of Chicago winters is first and foremost. I also enjoy the prolific presence of Chick Fil A. I also love our house and neighborhood which we were able to afford because of the cost of housing/living is cheaper in Houston than it is in Chicago. I love that I’m so close to my oncologist at MD Anderson. I’ve been in remission for a while now but I still make quarterly visits. When I was living in the Medical Center I could literally walk to my appointments. (Not that I did. I drove and valeted.) But just knowing I could was comforting. I wrote about more Houston vs. Chicago comparisons in this post a while back.

What’s one piece of advice for bloggers looking to write a book?

Read this post on Becky Murphy’s blog. Becky and I did a presentation at Texas Style Council called“From Blog to Book” and Becky recapped our presentation, so the post has lots of links, resources, and whatnot that would be super helpful to someone that shares that same ambition.

Hope you all enjoyed the interview! I was lucky enough to meet Megan at TxSC and can say she's just as stylish and genuine in person. I also attended the presentation "From Blog to Book" and found their stories inspiring, especially since you don't usually hear about the process it takes. Make sure to enter HERE for a chance to win a signed copy of Megan's book "99 Problems but a Baby Ain't One"! Thanks for stopping by and Happy Monday!

1 comment :

  1. Great interview! Definitely inspired me to start writing my own blog soon :)


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