Wow, I have gotten so much great feedback from Part I of my interview with Tolly Moseley, writer of Austin Eavesdropper. 'Tis greatly appreciated, as always. You may or may not know this, but in Fashion Capstone, my class created a magazine. I wrote a piece about my move from Montana to Texas, and had the opportunity to do an interview. I chose Tolly because not only is she a fun-lovin' gal, but she's an amazing lifestyle blogger. Basically, I just wanted to pick her brain. If you do not read Austin Eavesdropper, be sure to ASAP! It will make you laugh and cry and pee your pants, simultaneously.
As was promised, here is the remainder of my interview with Ms. Tolly:
As someone who does have another career, along with a husband and a psychotic kitty cat, how do you find the time to sponsor events such as the Austin Bleet-Up and P.S. a Paramount/Stateside Affair?
I don’t know! Haha. I’m honestly working on cutting down my commitments. I’m just a sucker for a good party.
You have had amazing opportunities, including interviewing musicians for SXSW with Express Rocks. How did these opportunities come about/was your blog a part of these opportunities?
Yes, my blog was indeed a part of these opportunities. Often, a friend-of-a-friend will know someone who’s looking for on-air or writing talent, and they’ll send them to my blog. This happened with both SXSW (a publicist friend at Giant Noise recommended me to Express when they were looking for a TV host) and SheKnows.com. A friend of mine at Austin Convention & Visitors Bureau recommended me to them when they asked about local Austin writers. So it was partly my blog that landed this stuff for me, but honestly just having some really amazing buddies out there!
Your blog is now a for-profit blog with both a healthy readership and sponsorship. What made you decided to become for-profit?
I think the first time a business (Birds Barbershop) approached me, asking if I’d be interested. I said: “yes of course” and bam, for-profit blog. It was never an explicit aspiration of mine, but hey, if I can support local / worthwhile businesses and they support me back – I call that a mutually beneficial partnership.
What’s the best and most frustrating aspect of blogging? How do you respond to negative feedback?
The only negative feedback I’ve gotten is when I’ve posted about something political (like when I wrote about universal healthcare a few months ago). But shockingly, that’s the only time anyone has ever written something negative to me. No one has written anything overtly nasty (knock on wood) or borne out of jealousy. The most frustrating aspect of blogging is feeling like I just don’t have enough time for it. I always feel like there is so! Much! More! I could be doing! But, all in due time. Someday, I’ll get a good camera for it. Someday, I’ll create a Facebook page for it. If I have to let it improve gradually, then that is ok by me.
Give us a slice of a “day in the life” of Ms. Tolly Moseley.
7:30 : WAKE UP / breakfast / make myself coffee (even though I promised day before I was giving up coffee)
8:30 – 10:30 : BLOG STUFF / post / respond to email or comments / Tweet / Facebook
10:30 – 5:30 : WORK (from home) on book publicity: Email, write press releases about books, make calls to media, assure authors, bitch/laugh with colleagues, take lunch break, try not to get on Twitter or Gawker too much, walk outside, notice sun, vow to take walk after work, write more emails, attempt to charm a TV producer into booking my author(s), hug husband when he walks inside, dodge accusations (all true) of leaving dirty dishes in sink, pet my kitty.
5:30 : JOIN FREE WORLD via happy hour, samba school (husband and I take each Weds), aerial silks class (I take every Tues/Thurs), dinner or porch time with friends
10:00 : Remark that I should go to bed, start a blog post
11:00 : Say, “ok ok really I should GO TO BED” then sneak in a little Top Chef or book tim
12:30 : Finally turn off light (or, sometimes, realize I have a freelance story due the next day, four-letter expletives follow).
Do you have any tips for those who are currently blogging and/or aspiring bloggers?
Figure out what you are in it for – writing, photography, vlogging, displaying your art, etc. And then focus on that thing and try to do it really well. The other aspects of blogging will follow suit. Also, keeping a balance of consuming / producing art. I am a better blogger (and writer) because I am an obsessive reader. If you are a photographer or artist, study those who inspire you; if you are a vlogger, watch camera personalities who delight you. I think 60% of being successful, creatively, is seeking out quality examples and role models.
How would you describe Austin to someone who is visiting the city for the first time? What sights would you tell them are a must-see?
I would say that visiting Austin will probably make you want to move here. No, really. It’s so pretty, people are so nice, it’s funky and offbeat and there are lots of trees. So just be prepared for that, I will tell them. Next, I will say that you have to eat at a food trailer – DUH – and recommend Anthony Bourdain’s favorite, Odd Duck on S. Lamar. I would also tell them to get a fancy cocktail at East Side Show Room, and that even though you’ll have to wait a while because it’s tiny and disorganized, it’s oh-so-worth it. The drinks and the gypsy jazz music are just incredibly. Finally, if the weather is nice, I would tell them to go stand-up paddling on Town Lake! I discovered that last summer and it’s a blast. As well as easy, even though it looks like a feat of balance and abdominal muscles. You can go home and tell people, “dude, I totally did that.”
And, lastly, how would you describe your personal style from day-to-day? Where do you like to shop in Austin?
A (gay) friend described me as a little Stevie Nicks, a little Audrey Hepburn. I think that’s about accurate. My style is somewhat polished, somewhat bohemian. I ADORE vintage, and for that, go to Blue Velvet (on North Loop), Buffalo Exchange, and sometimes the vintage stores on S. Congress. New Bohemia has great bags, Feathers has killer boots. When I’m buying new, I tend to stick to Strut. But I fantasize about Anthropologie. I make an annual trip to Urban Outfitters and get a few things – skinny jeans, lockets, orange heels. Thanks Chelsea!
Thank you, Tolly!
If you did not read Part I of our interview, you can access it here.
My class is presenting our magazine as a whole tomorrow, and hopefully I will get some great photos in. Might even load the entire magazine as a PDF on here...we'll see! Hope everyone has a happy Monday!