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1WineDude TV Episode 20: A Simple Way To Vastly Improve Your Wine Writing (Going Pro)

Vinted on November 10, 2010 under 1WineDude TV, going pro, wine blogging

In this episode of 1WineDude TV, we’ve got our first video in my on-going Going Pro saga, in which I talk about something very simple that every budding wine writer should do to vastly increase their writing skills.

A couple of points for you before watching:

  1. The reason I’m flushed and sweating (gross!) in this vid is that just before filming it I ran for three miles, showered, and then got dressed and jumped in front of the camera – basically, I didn’t give myself any real cool-down time.  I know, rookie error… just try to ignore it…
  2. This advice is going to seem obvious and maybe even stupid to a lot of people.  If you’re among their ranks, rather than tell me I’m a shallow idiot in the comments, I humbly suggest that you forward this advice to a blogging friend who needs to see it – and I personally guarantee that you know more than one who needs to see this (if I’m wrong, then you can call me an idiot in the comments!).

Mentioned in this vid:

Cheers!

Help Some Nice Canadians Study Wine Writing (And Maybe Win $700 of Stuff!)

Vinted on November 9, 2010 under giveaways, wine blogging, wine polls

I was recently contacted by a nice fellow by the name of David Cray.  He seems nice, anyway, from our brief email discussions (it’s probably because he’s Canadian – they all seem to be nice, don’t they?).

Anyway, David is an Associate Professor at the Sprott School of Business at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada, and along with colleagues Louise Heslop and Alex Ramirez, is studying (in his words): “how [wine] blogs operate and what differentiates between a successful blog and one that is less so.”

Well, I’m interested in that big-time, so I took the survey they’re using to help capture some of that data, and nice-guy-Canadian David asked me to pass along the survey to you out there in blog-o-land, in the hopes that you’ll take 15 minutes out of your busy day to help their cause.  To encourage participation, David also told me that there’s a prize involved:

“The name of anyone who completes the survey will go into a draw, with the winner receiving a $500 gift certificate at the wine store of their choice; those who complete the survey before November 15 will go into an additional draw for a $200 gift certificate.  The questionnaire is at http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/SZ76K86.

I’m guessing the combination of academic curiosity and prize winnings will get a few people moving (though David didn’t confirm if we’re talking U.S or Canadian dollars here…), so here’s hoping that you can help David and his friends.  David will be reporting on the findings on his blog so we can check out the results (more details – in David’s words – after the jump).

Personally, I’d be fascinated to see differentiators for wine blog success undergo the scientific treatment – how about you?…

Read the rest of this stuff »

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

Vinted on October 14, 2010 under 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.

But…

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…

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What Do YOU Wanna Talk About? (2010 Americas Wine Bloggers Conference)

The 2010 Americas Wine Bloggers Conference is nigh upon us (June 25-27 in Walla Walla, WA), and I’m getting excited to attend (despite the major pain in the ass it is going to be for me to even get to Walla Walla from Philly in the first place).

There’s a great deal to be excited about in this case – the sponsors and participating wineries will allow us wine bloggin’ types to get a deeper dive into the WA wine scene; the lovable madness of the live wine blogging “speed tasting” sessions is back (in an expanded format); friend of the Dude and Wine Enthusiast West Coast editor Steve Heimoff will be delivering the keynote; last, but most importantly, there’s the opportunity to meet with friends, old and new.

This year’s conference will be a bit more involved for me than in the past (in other words, I have to be sober on Friday) as I’ve been asked to sit (with Jeff Lefevere of Good Grape and RJ Hilgers of RJ’s Wine Blog) on the “About Wine Blogging” Breakout Session panel, specifically for the “Advanced Bloggers” session.

Which is kind of odd for me, because otherwise that was the session that I’d planned on attending.

I’m totally cool with this – and in fact I’d told the WBC organizers to feel free to consider me to help out or sit in on a panel (though I’d imagined then that it would have been the “Novice Bloggers” track or something similar) because I really wanted to try to give something back to WBC and to other bloggers this year, if I could.

I know that a lot of other wine bloggers read 1WineDude.com, and I’m stoked to go to Walla Walla to meet / catch-up with you, and if there was any chance that I could help make the experience cooler for you (outside of spending my hard-earned cash on you, of course) then I really wanted to be a part of that somehow.  I also had a great time sitting on the Social Media / Monetization panel at the 2010 Professional Wine Writers Symposium, and so I thought I would potentially be bringing some legitimate and useful panel experience to the mix.

But now… the pressure’s on, and I’m hoping that YOU can help ME

Read the rest of this stuff »

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