Guest Post By Melanie McKinnon of Melanie Meditates
I started my first blog way back in 2006. I’ve been writing and blogging for years but only recently decided to up my game and start submitting my articles to other publishers. I write about motherhood, but most importantly, I write about mental health, taking care of yourself, grief and loss.
[bctt tweet=”‘I only recently decided to up my game and start submitting my articles to other publishers'”]
After years of struggling following the loss of my son in 2007, and 15 years of battling depression (and postpartum depression after 3 of my 4 babies), I decided it was time to bring my knowledge to the world to try to help others who were similarly struggling. Mental health has a huge stigma surrounding it, therefore it’s not a frequently talked about subject. I decided I wanted it to be! I mostly wanted people to know they weren’t alone because I felt that way myself for many years.
In October of last year, after having my 4th baby, I decided it was the right time so start sharing my stories. I started by submitting every article I wrote to BlogHer. At the time, I was preparing to have my tubes tied (Hallelujah!) so I wrote about why I was making that permanent decision at only 29. After a few days, BlogHer contacted me to feature it!
[bctt tweet=”‘I started by submitting every article I wrote to BlogHer.'”]
I was beyond thrilled but truly had no idea what I was doing that short time ago. Over the next couple months, I had another article featured on BlogHer about how I don’t like being a stay-at-home-mom and how I cope with it. After that, and the great response I was getting from other articles on my blog about depression and loss, I decided I wanted to think bigger.
I started with Scary Mommy and submitted 3 articles to them until they finally accepted a post about the loss of my son and how I’ve dealt with it. It was featured on March 31st and I got the most wonderful feedback. While I was waiting for that article to be published, I decided to make The Huffington Post my ultimate publishing goal, thinking it would take months for them to notice me, if at all.
In January, I submitted to them through their submission form and heard nothing for weeks. I assumed they didn’t like it or didn’t read it. Either way, I wasn’t surprised. When Susan (from Beyond Your Blog) came out with the list of emails for the Huffington Post editors, I decided to try submitting a post about anxiety to the Healthy Living section the night of February 22nd.
The very next morning, I got an email inviting me to be a Huffington Post Blogger! I had no idea what that was or what it meant, but they’d given me backstage access to submit anything I wanted. I assumed that meant they liked my piece about anxiety so that was the first thing I submitted. They said it would take 24 hours, but I really didn’t know what to expect. The next day my anxiety post was featured in the Healthy Living section of The Huffington Post! I was ecstatic!
In a million years, I never thought I would be a published author anywhere! More than that, I never thought I would be able to reach the amount of people I have who also struggle with depression and anxiety. I got such a great response from that article, which has only fueled me to write more about depression in hopes of bringing more awareness to this debilitating disease.
My ultimate writing goal now is to reach as many people as I can who might be struggling with something and hopefully inspire one person along the way. If someone feels a little less lonely after reading one of my articles, I’ll have achieved my writing purpose.
Melanie McKinnon is a wife, mother of 3 plus 1 in heaven, and a barre fitness instructor. She loves writing, Diet Pepsi, hugging her kids and dating her husband. On Melanie Meditates, you will find subscription box reviews, her experience with anxiety, depression and loss, stories about her life as a mother, and some tips for maintaining sanity. Connect with Melanie on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram