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« Increase your improvisation | Main | Cinnamon rolls, gluten-free »

Word clouds

The new year brings quiet on the blog as of late. 

I’m plugging away on a few exciting things: my new part-time job at the county extension office (volunteer coordination for the Family & Consumer Sciences agents and working on the curriculum for the Texas Master Food Preserver Program!) and two small books commissioned by my editor, a pickle and a jam book (to launch before the larger kitchen book, more details on that later).

I’m also rolling around on my yoga ball, slicing citrus peels and hemming the curtains to give my body something to do while nurturing the word clouds swirling around in my brain. We need a new name here. This brand is so much more than ‘hip girl’ or ‘hip homemaking’ and the poet in me is itching to find a better linguistic frame.

Paper on the floor, calligraphy pen in hand (why write with a boring pen?), thesaurus spine splayed at the ready. I am talking to as many people as possible, trying to nail what it is I do and why people might pick me to spend their precious few moments reading/browsing and getting hip to their home/kitchen.

I want to call us something that needs no explanation, no qualifiers, no disentanglement from sticky connotations.

Maybe you can help? How does the book/blog make you feel? My thesaurus is ready for your adjectives and adverbs…

Reader Comments (9)

achievable... make us believe it can be done. :)

January 11, 2013 | Unregistered Commenteraneelee

nice! i am the volunteer coordinator for master food preservers in maine - and i teach extension canning classes. if you'd like to see our curriculum, get in touch!

January 11, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterkate @ bbf.

It is unwise to change the name of your business at the height of success.
You have attracted your market and I believe there is more to come.
If you want to change because you feel the need to incorporate these new "staider" pursuits, why not supplement rather than tear down and rebuild?

Your "blook" makes me feel that there is hope and that there are people who understand the success of doing for yourself, developing skill and awareness, and sharing.


January 11, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterpattyskypants

The first word that came to mind was capable, and the second was practical. This blog is so encouraging and approachable, like a good friend saying, "hey, I just figured out this <fill in the blank> that really helped me." good luck, and it is really great you are working for a cooperative extension office, you will be able to help a lot of people!

January 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterRachel

The words homey, confidence, instructional, attainable come to mind when I read your work. If that helps. Can't wait to see what you come up with in terms of new name/brand! And congrats on the new gig at extension. That is really cool that you are working there without those nerdy degrees you're supposed to have. I guess your professional experience/publications qualified you in their eyes? I hope they feel lucky to have you! I'd love to see more extension services get "hip" - the ones in my state are soooooo stodgy and academic. Extension is going to go extinct unless they become more relevant, especially in states that don't have large agricultural sectors. Would love to read a blog post from you someday that is about your impressions of extension.

January 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLucy

I agree with PattySkyPants. People know who you are with the name and 'brand' you've developed. If you feel a major project is different enough than the content of this blog, consider another 'division' - hip girl's guide to homemaking, hip girl's guide to < ___ >.
Just a thought! Because with that said, you're the one who's writing this - trust your instincts. :)

January 16, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBeth

Thanks all for such thoughtful comments.

The way I see it is that I'm looking to engage more readers into the fold who either don't like/understand my current usage of Hip/Homemaking/Girl (being what I'm calling myself not prospective readers). My book's title, Hip Girl's Guide to Homemaking, will never change, but moving forward I have the opportunity to evolve the brand and different home areas within it.

What do you all think about me just using my name, Kate Payne, and some brand qualifiers like home ec skills for real people or something more artful and creative along those lines?

January 16, 2013 | Registered CommenterKate

Why not "The Hip Homemaker: Domestic Skills and Arts for the 21st Century"? It's gender neutral and more inclusive and explanatory, yet still retains some of the brand you've developed with the book and the site. (I agree that it wouldn't be smart to completely change the brand you've built, but understand that you'd like to welcome some others into the fold.)

Maybe you could go with that branding for the site, and future books/classes/efforts could be similarly titled along the lines of "The Hip Homemaker Cans", "The Hip Homemaker Gardens", etc.

January 22, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterRachael

Those are interesting ideas, Rachael. Thanks for the thoughtful feedback and insight. I like that approach and will mull it over!

January 22, 2013 | Registered CommenterKate

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