I’m passionate about normal people intentionally creating a unique life that they love. The Creative Life interviews are a place to dive into the stories of people in the process of creating inspired lives for themselves- whatever that means to them.
Today I have an interview with Kam from Campfire Chic. Kam is a talented blogger and crafter who loves the outdoors. I've been following her for years now, and I love how she mixes all these areas of her life on her blog. And the amount she gets done every day, all on top of taking care of business at her day job, is truly inspiring! Ready to get to know her?
Please tell us about yourself, your blog, and how blogging at Campfire Chic became part of your life.
Campfire Chic is my story as a crafty camper. I share my story as a 9-5er looking for adventure and a handmade life. The posts I share encourage readers to take risks and try new things, like camping, rock climbing, and yoga, while maintaining their current interests and responsibilities. Campfire Chic is about accepting challenges, setting achievable goals, and documenting the journey toward the finish line.
The posts I share encourage my readers to take risks and try new things, like camping, rock climbing, and yoga, while maintaining their current interests and responsibilities. Campfire Chic is about accepting challenges, setting achievable goals, and documenting the journey toward the finish line.
I started Campfire Chic after a weekend camping in Sequoia National Park in 2010. I didn’t have a job lined up after graduate school and needed something to keep me sane while I filled out job applications and watched my bank account dwindle. What started out as a way to promote my Etsy shop turned into something much more.
How did you start to discover your passion for blogging and social media? Was there a turning point or “Ah-Ha” moment for you?
I think I knew I was going to love blogging and social media when I was able to find a community of like-minded individuals who weren’t concerned with what I was “doing next” once I was out of graduate school. I love that I am inspired by others and can help others find their inspiration and motivation.
Take us through a day in your life.
My weekdays are pretty average for any cubicle-dweller: Wake up, go to work, go to lunch, go back to work, head home/run errands/be active/stay up too late. And repeat. It’s not glamorous, but it allows me the flexibility to go on trips and try new things.
When I’m at home, I am attached to my computer/phone for an embarrassing amount of time responding to emails, refreshing Twitter, drafting blog posts, rearranging my editorial calendar, updating social media accounts, and slowly working on new products. I’m usually watching TV at the same time. I go to bed later than I should, and I repeat.
How do you reward yourself?
I try to scale my rewards – I plan on ordering a bunch of fabric for a quilt once I launch my next ebook! But if I’m bribing myself to do the dishes and clean the bathroom, I’m probably going to reward myself by listening to a podcast specifically set aside for boring housework.
I have the bad habit of rewarding myself with food – it’s not something I’m proud of, so hopefully admitting it will help me kick that habit.
How do you stay balanced, or get back to centre when life happens?
I think that giving myself permission to be a human being helps me stay centered – If I’m not able to schedule all 5 blog posts for the week on Sunday night, maybe I don’t have a blog post go up one of those days that week. When I’m getting ready to launch a product/class, I am usually hunkered down in front of my computer for weeks on end and once I hit “publish” I leave the house and leave my phone behind.
It’s about setting priorities and making sure my actions reflect those priorities – If my schedule is to blog on Sunday nights then making plans for that night shouldn’t be an option, BUT because my relationships are more important to me than producing free content, I make the plans and adjust my blogging schedule accordingly. When all else fails, I ditch the internet for a few hours, start a Firefly marathon, and make lists and lists of things that are on my mind and get back to square one.
Do you keep an editorial calendar for your blog? If not, do you have a favourite way of capturing & planning post ideas?
My editorial calendar keeps me sane! I have so many ideas and plans and things I’d like to share with my readers that without my editorial calendars…yes, plural…I’m not sure what I would do with myself! I use a sub-calendar in my gmail to plan out some ideas for the up to 4 months and then I use the Editorial Calendar WordPress plugin to keep my drafts organized.
When I’m not able to access my calendars (like when I’m at work) I use a yellow legal pad to keep my ideas in one place – I highly recommend using one!
Share your favourite quote with us.
Done is better than perfect.
I can get too caught up with making things perfect before launching a blog post or something that I put off the actual launch! I figure that finishing the blog post and then editing that missing Oxford comma after is better than holding off and not publishing that post. Does that missing comma really matter? No, not at all.
The same is true for my craft projects…perfectionism is a crutch for my feelings of inadequacy and I’m working toward kicking it out from under myself.
How do you fight blogging burn out, or is that something you encounter? How do you approach writing, and do you take any content creation holidays during the year?
I mentioned earlier that my editorial calendar is pretty planned out for about 3 – 4 months. Don’t get me wrong, I keep things flexible so I can change my mind about topics as the days approach. I like to write all of my posts on Sunday night and schedule them for the week… it’s a fair amount of work, but it frees my time up during the week for other things! I haven’t taken any holidays from blogging, if I can’t think of something to write about, I take a look at my own ebook or pull up my iPhone app – Three Sixty-Five: ideas for blog posts, scrapbook pages, and art journal entries. There are plenty of ideas (365, in fact!) in the book so I’m rarely at a loss for content.
As for taking breaks during the year, I slow down toward the end of the year because Thanksgiving week in the United States is a pretty slow week and the weeks of Christmas and New Year are equally slow — so that's a perfect time to have more reflective posts or shorter posts that take less time to create.
What's your current pump up song?
My current pump up song is my long-time pump up song: Everything is Alright by Motion City Soundtrack! It gets me moving but also reminds me that whatever mountain I'm dealing with is probably just a molehill.