MEN Fair: “Word Farm” with Jenna Wagenrich

Saturday at the MEN Fair I attended “The Word Farm: Blogs, Books, and Freelance as Supplemental Income” with Jenna Waginrich.

Jenna has written several books and maintains a blog about her farm, Cold Antler Farm.

Jenna has been supporting herself via her writing skills (which she calls “word farming”) full time since June. Prior to that she was a corporate web designer.

Jenna maintains that “anything you cultivate is farming,” and she apparently has a fertile garden; her blog receives 100,000 views per month on average.

Jenna shared how she simply Googled “how to write a book” and then did just that. It took her just 3 days to compose and submit her book proposal.

One thing I thought was interesting from a locavorian, farmsteading perspective was a comment Jenna made during her presentation: “Pick a state that is favorable to what you want to do.” States vary widely in what you are and are not “permitted” to do with your land and your skills (sadly) and I thought this was an interesting, and probably oft overlooked, piece of advice.

Jenna also said that she believes people should make a living from what they love, what they are passionate about.

She encouraged her audience to not be afraid – “You can drive from New York to California in the dark if your headlights work” – meaning that you don’t have to see the whole route, you only need to see 200 feet in front of you.

Jenna did mention that at around 50,000 hits per month advertisers would start to be interested in your blog or web page… so we’ve got a ways to go…

By the way, that silhouette on Jenna’s blog site is a wolf with antlers. THAT was an interesting anecdote.

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