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Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Interview... Darren Rowse of ProBlogger


Darren Rowse is probably the main reason I didn't give up on Blogging. Long ago, I was searching for various ways to improve my work at home situation. In surfing through different websites, forums and blogs I was continually coming across ProBlogger and some guy from Australia named Darren Rowse. In visiting and reading some of the posts Darren had written, I became a regular reader.

That was back in October, and since then I have found enough information on his Blog to encourage me to continue with my efforts.

So, may I present my interview with Darren Rowse...


Me... Could you give us a short description of your workday?

Darren... I work at home so work generally starts a few minutes after waking up with a coffee in hand.

I’ve experimented with different workflows but am slowly moving towards a new weekly rhythm where I focus upon a different task each day of the week.


Mondays tend to be ‘writing day’ where I leave the house and camp out at my favorite café with my laptop and just write. My goal of Mondays is to write enough quality content for two of my main blogs that I don’t really need to write much else for them during the rest of the week.

Tuesday through to Thursday I tend to work on updating my news oriented blogs in the mornings and use afternoons to... respond to emails, network, work on b5media etc. In the evenings I also tend to do newsy type posts as they are less demanding and I can do them while watching TV with my wife.

Fridays are becoming a day that I try to spend more time with my wife in the mornings. We go for breakfast and sometimes a movie in the mornings and in the afternoons I usually get back to work.

Weekends I work intermittently throughout the weekend depending upon what else we’ve got on and what is happening on the blogs.

For a fuller description of the types of things that are in my workflow you can read my ‘
Day in the Life of a ProBlogger' post. It is obviously a little different these days but the tasks that I try to achieve are all in there.

Me... How many projects do you work on in any given day?

Darren... I have 10 or so blogs that I personally write on at this point. I’m also a director of b5media which is an increasingly large focus for me and am involved in a number of other writing projects. Most days I would do some work on virtually all of these tasks (some of them would only take 5 or so minutes though).

Me... Do you have any special way to schedule so many projects?

Darren... Not really. I am a pretty spontaneous guy and go with the flow a fair bit. I do use the calendar feature on my email client (Entourage) to schedule meetings (mainly for b5 or my collaborative writing projects) but much of the rest of my work is scheduled largely upon what hits my news aggregator (Bloglines). As things come into that I tend to write posts that bounce of it.

Me... Have you had any projects that you gave up on for whatever reason? Not profitable, loss of interest?

Darren... Sure – there are a number of blogs I’ve stopped posting to in the past 6 or so months. This was mainly because the amount of time I was putting into them was not justified by the returns. It probably also reflected my own waning interest in them.

Me... With a baby coming soon (congrats by the way) have you thought about what type of adjustments you'll have to make?

Darren... This has been something that we’ve been pondering for the last few months. I guess as first time parents we don’t really know the pressures that having a baby at home in the same space as a home business will bring.

I’m really looking forward to it on one hand as I’ve always wanted to be quite involved in the lives of my kids growing up. On the other hand it’s a bit daunting as I look at how much I already pack into my life and wonder how I can possibly sustain the levels of work.

My wife’s been at home for a couple of weeks now and we’ve begun to work through how to make that work (it’s odd having someone here all day) but having a baby home as well will be more of a challenge I guess. For one I know I’ll be tempted to want to be pretty involved (a good thing) but also know that there will also be times of real distraction.

I suspect I’ll take my work on the road a little more to give us all some space but am not terribly worried because the nature of my workflow is that my day is very ‘bitsy’ and I’m moving quickly from one task to another all day – I think this could lend itself to having interruptions all day.... But then again I could be kidding myself!

Me... What do you do when you just need a break?

Darren... I’m an avid photographer so a lot of my relaxation happens around that. I also enjoy movies, reading, gardening and some mates and I occasionally have a poker night which is fun.

I should also mention that in my ‘spare time’ I run a small church which we started 3 years ago (it’s how I actually got into blogging). So time each week is devoted to that. I used to be a minister as a job but these days it’s just a voluntary thing.

Me... Any new projects in the offing?

Darren... I started Digital Photography School a few weeks back so that’s taking a lot of my creative energy at the moment. I’m also working on an e-resource and we’re working hard at taking b5media to the next level which will involve quite a few new things.

Me... Do you have any advice to share with people that work at home on the internet?

Darren... Probably the main thing I’d advise is to take a long term approach. While many claim that you can make quick and easy money online I’ve found that it’s anything but quick. I’ve been at it for over three years and have worked very long hours to get to the point that we’re at.

The early days didn’t pay much at all and I could easily have given up – but I’m very glad I stuck at it!


I really enjoyed this whole experience, from asking Darren to do the interview to being able to give you an insight into the work at home life of Darren Rowse, THE ProBlogger.

I hope you found this as rewarding as I have. Comments are always open, so let me know what you think.


Darren Blogs at:
ProBlogger
Digital Photography Blog
Digital Photography School Blog
b5media

If you were on the new Home Page and got transferred here through a link in an article,
Please Click Here to Return to Working at Home on the Internet (the New and Improved Version).

For your convience:
E-Mail Questions

Good Luck in YOUR Endeavors


10 Comments:

At 12:06 AM, Blogger ME Strauss said...

Great job, Joe. You got a side of Darren that so many folks don't get to see. They'll be really interested to read about it.

smiles,
Liz

 
At 12:26 AM, Blogger Joseph said...

Hey Liz,
Thanks, I am glad Darren was so forthcoming with his answers, it made my job all the easier.
Joe

 
At 8:54 AM, Anonymous DavidC said...

Another great interview, Joe. I'm a regular reader of ProBlogger, and there are things in this interview that I did not know. Well done.

 
At 9:19 AM, Blogger Joseph said...

Hey DavidC,
Thanks, I too read ProBlogger daily, that's why I thought an interview with Darren would be helpful to my readers.
Joe

 
At 10:21 PM, Anonymous Tania from Germany said...

Joe,

thanks for your good work! I enjoyed reading this interview as well as the one with Liz Strauss. I know I will reread them. Sometimes blogging is very discouraging and I find a lot of support in reading this.

Tania

 
At 10:40 PM, Blogger Joseph said...

Hey Tania from Germany,
Thank you for your kind words.
I have learned as much as everyone else from these interviews.
I am glad you enjoyed both of them as well.
Stop by anytime, you don't have to wait to be invited.
Joe

 
At 10:11 AM, Anonymous Ben Yoskovitz said...

Nice work on the interview Joe.

It is a different side of the man, which is worthwhile.

Good luck with the baby Darren. Having just had a child myself (ok, he's almost 2) I've gone through the fire (so to speak). I don't work from home full-time but I do a lot of work at night from home, so I can tell you that it is challenging.

And the first few months are a wild, crazy fog. Best of luck!

 
At 12:19 PM, Blogger Joseph said...

Hey Ben,
Thanks, glad you liked it. As I advise all young parents, enjoy it now because the do grow up fast. I speak from experience, my "baby" is almost 30. ;-)
Joe

 
At 10:13 AM, Anonymous Ben Yoskovitz said...

Enjoy it? Oh right...good point. Let me get on that.

I'm kidding, it's a blast. Now my wife is starting to talk about #2...but she likes the name Boris, so I'm a bit scared. Not that I don't think the name is cool in certain instances -- like Boris Becker...but...

They always stay your "baby" don't they? :)

 
At 12:39 PM, Blogger Joseph said...

Hey Ben,
Yep, they are always your "baby"
I'm still my mom's little boy and I'm 53 ;-)
Joe

 

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