Today is blog number 1002, and it’s exactly five years later from my very first blog posting…

This year I’ll also hit that 1,000th blog milestone.

I’ve learned a lot in this process, and so I’m going to share. I do have to share, first, something that I just learned, and is probably the most poignant thing I’ve learned in this entire process. It just happened at UC Davis, while Jose and I were panelists for Rusty Eddy’s extension class on winery PR. Steve Heimoff and Bart Hansen (Dane Cellars) were also presenters.

Steve began as the first presenter for the day, to share his enlightenment and perspectives. When he handed the program over to me as being next, he introduced me. “Jo Diaz also blogs, and is a great story teller.” He turned to me privately and said, “And, you’re also a very good writer.” This was done with a smile of  acknowledgment and a brief nod. The man whom I greatly admire for his writing, also admires mine.  That’s an important moment for anyone, but most especially me at this exact time after five years of writing this blog…

That was my “Congratulations!”

Top 10 things I’ve learned about blogging in general:

  1. Blogging is addictive.
  2. Everyone seems to be doing it.
  3. Bloggers like to be with other bloggers.
  4. As in all things in life, some people are better at it than others.
  5. Some people love to rant and some people love to rave.
    • Blogging allows for both.
  6. There are a lot of reasons to blog:
    • Journaling as a hobby
    • Having a platform from which to be published
    • Wanting to store information on the World Wide Web
    • Needing to get the copious amount of stories in one’s head out, to make room for more, while still not losing the details of all the older stories (my reason)
    • Enhancing and advancing one’s credibility and career
  7. You meet people through your comments.
    • Not only are virtual friendships formed, but some wonderful personal friendships are forged.
  8. Blogging opens up the world for relationships being built from any country in the free world.
  9. Like all things, it will come and go for the blogger… as interest is keen, peaks, and then wanes.
  10. I could write a romance novel, based on the discipline I’ve learned while blogging.

Top 10 things I’ve learned about wine blogging:

  1. I’m glad that I got in during that macroshifting period of 2004-2005. I caught a lead as a female wine publicist.
  2. As in all publishing, it’s primarily a man’s world.
  3. Men like to read other men, as evidenced by the comments (and research about that fact).
  4. There are a few really good women out there who have been able to successfully make their presence known, by finding their own interesting voices and filling important niches.
  5. Some of the original hobbyists are leaning toward wanting, and some actually finding, wine as a career.
    • I once heard that we mostly do what we’re second best at… I believe that.
  6. You can’t always depend on a hobbyist to be putting out the most educated, researched, and up-to-the minute facts and figures about wine.
  7. Some of what is being written is the blind leading the blind, so some things are getting really screwed up.
    1. Every time I read Petite Sirah with a “y” it’s like fingers down a chalkboard.
    2. If these people would write exactly what they see on a label as it’s correctly spelled, this could easily be remedied. (Would you spell Petit Verdot with an “e” at the end of Petit? Yeah, it’s that bad when Petite Sirah is spelled with a “y.”)
  8. Wine bloggers love to write for other wine bloggers… their own image and likeness… the club, the clique, the validation.
  9. It has opened up a world to me that I wouldn’t have had prior to blogging.
    • Being in the industry already, I had an inside edge solidly established.
    • It’s greatly broadening my wine knowledge, way beyond the Northwest, spreading out into the big, wide world of wine.
  10. I could write a book about wine, based on the discipline I’ve learned while blogging.
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