Expert: Liew Cheon Fong, LiewCF
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About the Expert
Liew Cheon Fong, or LcF as he likes to be known, is author of LiewCF.com, one of the most popular blogs in South-East Asia. LcF is Malaysia’s first full-time blogger. A former professional programmer and webmaster, LcF courageously made the jump from hobby blogging to blogging as a full-time, successful career.
Today he enjoys working from home and spending time with his family as well as ever increasing popularity at liewcf.com with thousands of daily visitors and millions of hits per month. Chitika is pleased and honored to host this international blogger’s words of wisdom on crossing the chasm from part-time to full-time blogging.
I just finished reading John Wood’s “Leaving Microsoft to Change the World”, who made a life-altering decision to leave Microsoft and founded “Room to Read”, a non-profit organization that has established more than 3,000 libraries in the developing world. I am nothing to compare to John, but I also made a difficult decision which changed my life two years ago — becoming a full time blogger. Back in 2005, I was a small webmaster for a local cosmetic company who only blogged in the free time. My blogging income was as much as my job’s salary. The idea of quitting my job and becoming a full time blogger came to my mind. It was a hard decision. It was about quitting a stable job with fixed salary and bet on a new job with unknown income. As far as I know, nobody has done that before in Malaysia. I probably was the first full time blogger in Malaysia! I had no one to seek for advices or guides. However, I was only 25 year old and loan free. I had prepared enough savings for six months living as a backup.
My biggest risk would be failing the job as a full time blogger, wasted few months time, and back to 9-to-5 office job as a webmaster or programmer. I can handle it! My family members were not tech geeks. They did not even understand a “blog” nor “blogger”. I only told them that I will quit my job and work at home using Internet. Though my family did not understand what would I do after quitting my job, they still gave me their full moral support. Until today, my mother still does not understand what I am doing and how do I get checks every month! *grin* Family support was the most important to support my decision as a full time blogger. When I told my blog readers about my plan, I received generally good wishes and, of course, some negative voices. Some laughed at my poor English command. Some asked me to be realistic because blogging is not a job. There are always people to discourage your dream. Ignore them! After a month of consideration and planning, I handed over my resignation letter to my manager at August 18th, 2005, a day before my birthday. I became a freeman and a full-time blogger September 9th, 2005. The life as a full-time blogger is great! I have plenty of time for my family and freedom to go to anywhere at anytime. My current blogging income is few times more than the webmaster’s salary two years ago. But, I have gained a few more pounds since then. 😛 I proved that full time blogging is possible. Some bloggers, especially Malaysian bloggers, have been inspired and become a full time blogger too, or created their second income source. Cheers!