May 13th, 2014.
That’s the date my mom and I purchased the domain: smalldollsinabigworld.com. That was a fun time for me. It was just the beginning of summer, and I had so many post ideas.
I was inspired to start a blog. My friends and I were doing a writing curriculum, called Cover Story. The goal of the curriculum was pick a theme that you enjoyed writing about and create your own magazine. It probably won’t surprise you that I chose American Girl Dolls. This is when I created the essay of Kaya (you can read it here), and a few other pieces that I hope to share soon. Well, one of the lessons was to write a pretend blog post. I can’t find my work book (Seriously, I just went looking for it) so I can’t tell you what I wrote. I do know that I enjoyed it, and I wanted to do more.
I asked my mom if I could have a blog. She said yes. I brainstormed in my notebook and wrote some ideas of blog names and posts. We both agreed that “Small Dolls in a Big World” was a good name, so we decided on that.
My mom already had a blog, so she kind of already knew about starting one. She helped me set one up on May 13th, 2014. We purchased the premium set, so my blog wouldn’t have to have the “.wordpress.com” at the end. We customized the theme, and Voila! Small Dolls in a Big World was born.
I created my blog right before we went on a trip, so I didn’t get to post until 6 days later, on May 19th. My first post was titled, “Meet the Dolls.” Since I was just starting out, I didn’t know much about the media, and deleted the doll profile photos from my media storage because I didn’t want to run out of media space. Whoops! :)
I got my first few followers that month. I didn’t get many comments, just a few from my friends.
In September, my mom suggested that I take my blog to the next level. Boy, did we ever. We bought another blog theme. We had to install it ourselves. Thankfully, my older brother loves technology and was happy to help. If it wasn’t for him, I’d still be stuck with my old blog theme. It was a very tedious process involving unlocking our domain, switching it to Bluehost, and making my blog WordPress friendly. Yeah…..
The blog needed something called the Genesis Framework, kind of like the foundation for my blog. I don’t know anything else about it. ;) That was $59. The costs were starting to add up. My brother installed the Genesis Framework and downloaded all of my previous blog posts and pages onto my new blog. It was finished – almost.
My mom signed up Small Dolls in a Big World for Adsense. It puts ads on my blog and I earn a few cents off them, nothing huge. Once we were qualified for ads, we started putting them up right away. The first day I earned 19 cents. The next day I earned nothing. On most days, I earn from 2 cents to 10 cents. When someone clicks on my ads, I can get from 20 cents to $1.50. Over time, though, I’ve earned almost $70. That is going to my mom, for the Genesis Framework, premium blog set, etc.
Since I’ve started my blog, I’ve added 2 new dolls to the family: Isabelle, and Grace. When Grace came out, I questioned my love for Isabelle. Now, I’m sure I like her, and I’m glad she’s in my doll family.
I’ve gotten better and better at photography in 1 year, and I continue to learn. I just looked back at the Mysterious Illness Part 1, and I couldn’t believe my bad photos. Yet when I posted them, I thought they were pretty good. I am learning about ISO, shutter speed, and aperture. While my blog is fun, I’ve also been learning a lot from it.
I think I took this at night or something. It’s a perfect example of an underexposed photo!
My artwork as also gotten better. I’ve enjoyed doing the coloring pages, and sharing my artwork with others.
My highest number of views in a day is 898, thanks to Doll Diaries. Multiple times, my posts were featured in the Doll Diaries Picks of the Week. In a year, I’ve managed to obtain 63 followers, and 4 new ones I got in just this past week. Thank you!
I thankful for my family who helped my with this blog, for my followers, for the people who comment 2 minutes after I post ( all commenters, actually) , and for my dolls.
– American Girl Doll Artist