1WineDude Gets Serious. Sort Of. (New Publication Features & Schedule)

Vinted on October 14, 2010 binned in about 1winedude blog, wine blogging

In 2011, 1WineDude.com officially turns Pro.

Which begs the question, What the hell does “Pro” mean, anyway?

When I figure that out, I will be letting you know!

The short answer, for now, is that it means I will no longer be working for The Man, and instead will be figuring out how to make a living and feed the collective Roberts household mouths using 1WineDude.com as the primary vehicle.

You’ll notice that I did not state that I will be making a living totally from blogging on 1WineDude.com (I suppose that’s best left for the gadget sites of the “Interwebs” who get more traffic per minute than I see in a week), but I will be using 1WD as the launching pad for making a living within the constructs of the wine world.

Despite the rugged-loner namesake of this blog, I will not be doing this alone.  I have a ton of help coming my way – the Vintank think-tank team is on board (although I’m pretty sure they  have no idea how much of their time I am going to be taking up! :-), and I’m in the final negotiation stages with some other resources who are experts in on-line and brand-focused business-building (one of whom has done work for someone that you probably recognize).  Oh – and then there’s YOU, the amazing, intelligent, and acute readers of this blog, who have been amazingly supportive.

The ironic thing about this becoming the topic of a full post (and even more ironically working its way into a regular feature – as you will soon see below), is that initially I wasn’t even going to talk about any of this on the blog.


Every time the topic of me “going pro” came up in conversation with anyone else, each and every person (literally, all of them – and yes that list includes more people than my mom) told me that I should write about it, because while others have done similar things in other spaces, no one has really applied it successfully to the wine world in the same way that I’m envisioning.

So… here’s what I’ve got planned…

Starting November 1st, I’m gonna (finally get my act together and) offer a predictable publication schedule of Features on 1WineDude.com:

1. Mondays (and sometimes Tuesdays, and occasionally Thursdays) – Same old, same old

Starting off each week you will see the good ‘ol 1WD style ‘o wine world coverage (a.k.a. dime-store-philosophizing) that has been the staple of 1WD for the last 3 years.  Stories about wines, wineries, industry banter, wine travel, wine products/reviews, my own drunken bouts of Zen wine wisdom, and of course interviews, interviews, interviews – basically no change.  If it ain’t broke… you get the idea.

I probably will be taking Tuesdays and Thursdays “off” but reserve the right to post my normal inane banter opportunistic, timely content on those days as events warrant; and because, well, it’s my f—king blog so I’ll do what I want! ;-)

2.  Wednesdays – Going Pro

Each Wednesday, I will apply my bizarre and twisted mental lens on my journey from IT Exec / Desk Jockey to Wine World Writer Making Fists Full of Dollars.  Or something like that. That journey (as I warned you previously) will be very, very, very public, and I expect quite a roller-coaster-ride of ups & downs  – and you will get a chance to live those ups & downs with me each week.  I promise to try to make the depressing parts at least somewhat entertaining… if you just promise to call me when it rains and hold me closely when I cry…

3. Fridays – Wine(s) of the Week / Badges

For a guy who started out not doing wine reviews, I sure have done a boatload of wine reviews.  I don’t see this changing anytime soon, if only because I need to review more wines samples than ever if I ever want to free up the storage area of my basement.  So I thought it would be fun to highlight the best wines of the week from those that I sample, and “award” those wines some badges for those that really stand out.

This wouldn’t substitute for any in-depth wine or winery story coverage (those would still get focus earlier in the week), but given that this blog has been fortunate enough to garner some recognition and eyeballs, I’m hoping that by having a scheduled post each week specifically focused on wine reviews that it will actually up the level of competition for the quality of wine samples being sent my way and therefore expose you to even better wines in the long run.  I know, I’m totally f—king delusional but I gotta try, right?!??

4. Saturdays – Twitter “mini” wine review round-ups

The mini-reviews are sticking around – mostly because I love doing them; not only do they challenge the hell out of me with such a short footprint format as is forced by twitter, but they also allow me to “cover”many more wines in a week than would otherwise be possible in the longer (read: badly in need of editing) format reviews / coverage that I normally publish.

1WD is still going to be a one-man outfit, which means I am going to have to turn down many, many more opportunities to cover wines / events / people / regions / products than I accept (though I still plan to make 2011 the year of the travelin’ dude and to triple the amount of wine region touring I did this year).  I’ve seriously considered bringing in collaborators and expanding but there are other sites doing that so well right now (PalatePress.com, for example) that I haven’t been able to come up with a value proposition around expanding that isn’t essentially “more of the same” – and that’s just not good enough to justify the additional effort required because it doesn’t bring the right level of value to YOU.

Your thoughts, of course, are as welcome as always (unless your comment is for me to make money by selling my blood or starring in a porno…)!






  • Dale Cruse

    This is a huge step, Joe. One that too few wine bloggers have taken. Good luck – there are lots of us in your corner, cheering you on.

    • 1WineDude

      Thanks, bro! How about cheering me on by throwing some checks my way? ;-)

      It's an exhilarating feeling – and scary as all hell, too. Just save a cardboard box under a bridge for me in case I need it…

  • Robert Dwyer

    Very cool stuff Joe. Count me as one of many who will be looking forward to your Wednesday updates in particular.

    • 1WineDude

      Thanks, Robert! Just be prepared that not all of them will be pretty (there's always the possibility of the "I had to eat cat food this week to survive" post… :-)

  • @wineywomen

    Hi Joe,

    I really enjoyed the winetvchannel chat you were on last week! I plan to attend more. You are a great inspiration and "foot print" as you call it for others like me who love wine and just want to talk about it and hope that one day someone will take me serious, especially myself" to take that next step.. Although I have my own Website Design and Marketing Business and work from home, my dream one day is to be all things wine, especially for the state I am in now which is Colorado.. I want to be known for one of the few who put Colorado on the map for the great wine the winemakers make!

    Good luck in your venture and I will stay tuned for the ups and downs of your transition!

    • 1WineDude

      Oh, and I expect the grand wine tour the next time I'm out in CO… :)

  • Richard Scholtz

    Best of luck to you in your new venture. If you would like contributions for future articles, let me know. I'll even do it for free.

    • 1WineDude

      Thanks, Richard – fortunately, that is exactly how much I would be able to pay you as well! :)

  • El Jefe

    "When the going gets weird, the Weird turn Pro." – HST

    'Nuff said. Best of luck!

    • 1WineDude

      El Jefe – and as my father-in-law says, "When you're dumb you gotta be tough." :)

  • Steve Raye

    It's about time! I'm a bit miffed you haven't asked for my advice, but I'm making a public offering of same here. Dude, lemme help.

    • 1WineDude

      Ah, Steve – you will be hearing from (very) soon!

  • @viniculture_pl

    All the best Joe! I'll be keeping me fingers crossed:) Best of luck and have fun! To me this "manifesto" (http://www.lifeaftercollege.org/blog/2010/09/21/holstee-this-is-your-life/) really works if someone really believes it!

  • 1WineDude

    Thanks so much for all of the support!

    Those of who are offering help are absolutely going to get contacted by me! You have been warned :)

    • RandyHall

      Hey, if you're not busy enough, let's talk about getting you a regular commentary spot on Wine Biz Radio. Let me know if yo're interested.

      • 1WineDude

        I'm interested, Randy – email me and let's talk. Also, tell Kaz he has a sexy voice! ;-)

  • Melissa Sutherland

    My best to you, Joe. I myself moved on from senior corporate life this summer to focus on my own growth and opportunities. I read more Gitomer than ever before and run very long distances when the banshees stir up tunes in my addled brain… and despite it all, I sincerely made the best move. I'll be a-rootin' for you, with all the other fellow travelers…

  • Amanda Maynard

    Congrats, Joe! Huge news. I hope you rock it at a pro-blogger (you will).

  • 1WineDude

    Thanks, ladies!

  • 1WineDude

    Thanks, Alder – I should take a moment here to thank you for all of your help and encouragement, and for setting the bar so high for blogging (not just in wine, but in *any* genre). Reading Vinography and generally just getting to know you have been a real pleasure and a real honor.

  • fredric Koeppel

    what am i missing? where does the "making money" part come in?

    • 1WineDude

      It's quite simple, really, Fredric: I write a book about making money wine blogging and you all buy it! ;-)

      Actually, I will be working on exactly the money making portion of all of this in 2011. It won't be 1WD alone that makes me sustainable income – it will be in combination with a host of other things (much more to come on all of that).

      • @viniculture_pl

        If you're really about to write a book I will buy a lot of copies;)

        • 1WineDude

          Thanks, viniculture – I figure if you buy approx. 8,400 copies then I'll be set for the year. Deal? ;-)

  • Irene King

    Here's a wine blogger who's envious as heck. Best of luck! Does that mean that you get to take out all of us poor wine bloggers to dinner when you've become really really rick and famous? I'm so happy to see that someone's hard work has paid off. Sincerely, good luck.

    • 1WineDude

      Thanks, Irene – I'd reserve the jealousy for the time I'm actually making a living at this, which is definitely NOT now.

      It's interesting how this is playing out, in that it's almost impossible to describe this yet… I don't plan to be making a living *directly* from blogging, so I'm not calling it "Pro Blogging;" and I'm not going to be in the wine biz directly either (as a buddy of mine in the biz pointed out today, I have no wine business skills whatsoever in terms of wine buying/selling/making/etc., and he's right), or in PR directly either… it's gonna be hard to articulate it and that's because we're coming up with something new here which is amazing and fun and scary as all hell for me! :-)

  • jjurkiewicz

    Good luck with all your plans Joe. I'm sure you will suceed!

  • dhonig


    Everybody at Palate Press is behind you.


  • Melissa Dobson

    Best of luck, Joe! I want to hear more about your Wine Biz Radio gig :)

  • 1WineDude

    Hey Jeff – thanks, I probably didn't explain that relationship as clearly as I should have, mostly because it's still not finalized, but it's consultation and blueprinting, not fly-by-night schemes or a pyramid sale.. ;-)

    Speaking engagements are starting to happen, as are other opportunities along the lines of what you've mentioned. One thing I still don't quite get is the book deal – I mean, I'm not shopping around, mind you, but I've seen friends who are bloggers in other fields getting book deals and those people, while I love them, are great at writing short pithy blogs and are NOT great at writing books.. So why we don't have GoodGrape.com book offers coming is a real odd thing for me to try to get my head around, for example, because I'd totally read a book if you wrote it!

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