Blogging might not look like a real job at first. For starters, you just sit there in front a computer, preferably in your underwear, sharing your off-the-cuff insights on everything from organic gardening to foreign policy to professional wrestling. But if you're a compelling writer with a strong voice, and you give yourself time to develop a small following, a good blog can become like an open conversation with the world.
To make a living as a blogger, you have to become savvy with Google Ads or get picked up by a paying blog network. For a more traditional route, you can apply to be a columnist for a publication, online or print, in your area of expertise. Liz Ryan, for example, is a widely published career advice columnist who was formerly a human resources executive for a Fortune 500 company.
It's best to start small and aim for a very specific niche -- recreational bow-hunting or small business accounting -- and sell yourself to trade publications in that field. Get ready for a lot of rejection, but be persistent and you could find yourself with a satisfying second career as a writer and a little extra cash to spend on a nice thesaurus.
If the fame from your blog and columns starts to go to your head, you might start entertaining crazy thoughts like our next second career idea for retirees: politics.