In high school, I worked for the local newspaper, first as a sports reporter and then as a "help-about" photographer and darkroom worker. The next year, I wrote a blog-like column about freshman college life for said paper. Seeing your name in the byline is addictive. Having people who you know come up and tell you that they loved your last column is a rush. Not to mention that $20 a month for a college student in the early 90s for around 2 hours work a week was wonderful money. In the end, I stopped the column because I was having trouble keeping connected with my audience back home, not because people (or more importantly, my editor) wanted me gone.
I would love to make a living writing, but I have a wife and kids now, and happen to have a career that I'm really good at. Blogging is a nice compromise, since I can write where (hopefully) many people will read it, and if no one does, so be it. Money would be nice too, or a phone call from the BBC, but that's hardly necessary. I'd settle for more permanent links. :)