Ten lessons from ten months of writing for 12×75.comMay 22nd, 2012 | Posted by in Taking the stuffiness out the fine wine market
Having realised earlier that our blog is now almost a year old, I was contemplating how we should celebrate, when I remembered a brilliant piece by Simon Woods from his ‘Drinking Outside the Box’ blog where he reflected on the 20 lessons he had learned in 20 years as a wine writer. I won’t try and explain it, just read it here, it’s really good. Anyway, I decided to take a leaf out of Simon’s book and attempt to come up with ten lessons I have learned in ten short months here at 12×75.com.
- In order for your blog to be successful, you have to enjoy writing it. We try not to take ourselves too seriously and generally we get great feedback when we post blogs whose topics are just plain daft.
- Social media is very cool. #7WordWineReview has gone crazy on Twitter and it doesn’t show any signs of slowing down. We made this happen, and the champions of the #7WordWineReview (too many to name here) has ensured its success
- Wine doesn’t have to be a stuffy topic. Drinking wine is fun, relaxed and sociable – why should writing about it be the opposite?
- What makes writing a wine blog much more enjoyable than writing any other kind of blog is that it doesn’t seem inappropriate to have a glass of wine while you are working. And sometimes the more you drink, the more insightful your blogs become.
- Buying two or more bottles of wine at once in preparation for wine writing is a good idea, as it is more difficult for your wine merchant to clock how much wine you are actually drinking. Telling them you are a wine writer does not necessary lead them to the conclusion that you are not an alcoholic, but rather can have the opposite effect of making them think you are definitely an alcoholic.
- If your wine merchant doesn’t judge you (and they probably won’t, more than likely they put away twice as much as you) your neighbours might judge you when you hear your two or more bottles clinking at the front door as you are fumbling with your key in the lock. Saying ‘I’m a wine writer’ doesn’t help matters. As above, it tends to make them think you are definitely an alcoholic.
- The more wine you attempt to drink while animatedly writing on a laptop, the more wine you are likely to spill on the carpet. Especially if you are on the couch simultaneously watching ‘The Sopranos’.
- Anyone who tells you that in order to remove a red wine stain from your carpet, you should throw some white wine on it, is a terrible idiot, and a person who you should no longer invite into your home.
- Adding salt to the aforementioned red wine stain actually works quite well, as long as you act quickly. Nonetheless, running out of salt can make one’s spouse quite angry, and denying that you have sacrificed your home’s entire supply of salt on yet another wine stain is difficult when there is blatantly one more salt-covered stain than there was before you started writing.
- When your hoover starts making an angry noise, and poking around inside it reveals that it is clogged up with moist, slightly purple looking salt, it could be a sign that you are spilling far too much wine. It is also a sign that you might have to think about doing a bit of additional freelance writing in order to contribute towards the price of a new hoover.
So there you have it – even the humble profession of writing a blog has a lot to teach us. We hope that in 20 years time, we will be able to reflect on 12×75.com with passion, wisdom and a wry, smug smile (while sipping Petrus from a golden slipper). But for now, there are stains to be dealt with, and a vacuum cleaner in need of some assistance….
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