Blog to Book and Rags to Riches
Dana LaRue’s Lesson in How to Write a Book
Broke Ass Bride, by Dana LaRue, a blog to book success
From blog to book is Dana LaRue’s proven new method for writing and publishing a book. Here’s how it all started. When aspiring actress 30-year old Dana LaRue went searching on the Internet for budget wedding items and couldn’t find any, she started Broke-Ass Bride, a blog for budget wedding ideas.
Much to her surprise, her authentic writing about a money is mum subject, hit a nerve. There were plenty of women also looking for ways to create a budget wedding. Within a short time Dana’s blog was recognized by Google as one of its “Blogs of Note” in 2009. The Wedding Channel called it the “best budget wedding blog” of 2010. Today, the Broke-Ass Bride Twitter page has over 29,000 followers.
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With loads of fans and readers, naturally what followed was the book, Broke-Ass Bride Wedding Guide, published by Random House. the book hit the bookstores just last month. For more, on LaRue’s Broke-Ass Bride story, book see the article in the Deerfield Review:
“I was stunned that there was traffic and, all of sudden, I had an audience I didn’t expect,” she said. “I just sort of wrote in a way that felt natural to me, and people appreciated it.”
Wedding fever spread across the Internet. Google recognized TheBrokeAssBride.com as one of its “Blogs of Note” in 2009. The Wedding Channel called it the “best budget wedding blog” of 2010. Today, the Broke-Ass Bride Twitter page has over 29,000 followers.
LaRue’s sassy online musings eventually blossomed into a book deal with Random House, and “The Broke-Ass Bride’s Wedding Guide” hit bookstores Dec. 17 just in time for the peak engagement season.
Included in the 256-page paperback (also available on Kindle) are hundreds of budgeting tips and cost-saving ideas LaRue first explored on her blog. For instance, why LaRue didn’t rely on online calculators or formulas to determine how much to allocate to each wedding expense.
She recommends couples write out their priorities separately, share their ideas, and then compromise about where to put most of their money. Whether it’s flowers, food or entertainment, “make the wedding represent what matters most to you,” she advised.
The blog’s most popular posts discuss strategies for negotiating with vendors.
“No one tells you how to do it,” LaRue said. “Women especially aren’t empowered to take the lead on that.”
She would also like to see more modern-day brides try bartering for better deals. She landed her custom wedding dress for half the price in exchange for helping out in her designer’s shop.
Another strategy LaRue found useful was sharing decorations (and thus costs) with others who are getting hitched. The expense and waste automatically get halved.
Getting a newlywed’s used items, like dozens of glass votive holders, also helps keep a budget in check.
“It’s a really effective and great way to save money and be eco-conscious, but also to make connections with other brides,” she said. “I love the idea of passing objects from wedding to wedding and them being infused with all this great spirit.”
LaRue said her wedding in 2009 was not completely flawless, but it sure was fantastic. TheBrokeAssBride.com got an even bigger boost in readership after photos from the day were posted.
It was with sadness, then, that she later announced to her readers that she and her husband – who also contributed regularly to the site – were separating after 3-1/2 years of marriage.
“We didn’t fail,” she wrote online. “It just didn’t work out.”
LaRue said, in retrospect, she was “ready to plan the perfect wedding but not the perfect marriage.”
The divorce was amicable, she said, and she holds no regrets.
“It’s amazing the way that your journey takes shape,” she said. “You appreciate the elegance of hardships.”
With her first book hot off the presses, LaRue, now 35, continues to grow the Broke-Ass Bride brand. She has two full-time staff members helping with the site, and is in the midst of launching a second lifestyle blog centered on her interests.
She’s also fallen back in love, and is planning a fall wedding.
This time will be different, LaRue believes.
“I’ve grown up quite a bit,” she said. “It won’t be as ‘broke-ass’ an approach as much as financial-savvy so we don’t expend more than we need to.”
Published teachers, entrepreneurs, and celebrities make more impact and more money. From blog to book is just one way how to write a book. Read this article to learn other methods on learning how to write your first book.