Amazingly it’s been six months since I started this blog. Time flies by.
My previous blog had drifted on, with me updating occasionally and not really knowing what to do with it. Then I took a course called ‘How to run a successful travel blog’ with A lady in London (excellent course; really recommend it for anyone interested) and decided to close the old one down, start again and try to keep this one more focused. I still struggle with the whole ‘focus’ thing.
In reality I only kept the old one going for so long because I was being bullied by a Chinese blogger and her sycophants, trying to get me to take down a post she disapproved of. Stubborn to the end, I was afraid that if I took the blog down she would think she had won, even though I’d been looking to make the change anyway. Finally, eighteen months later, I felt I’d given it long enough to make my stand and so could safely take it offline and start again.
However, the new blog hasn’t grown as fast as I had hoped and it still only gets around a fifth of the hits that Sarah in Guangzhou had.
In part this is down to my inability to dedicate my life to shameless promotion on Twitter and Facebook.
Another big reason is because a few posts about dating and relationships (as there were on SIG) encourages a higher readership, although you may not want to spend your time dealing with some of the ‘replies’ that this results in. Something that cropped up in one of the TBEX workshops was to be careful with what you share on your blog and avoid the whole ‘sex and the city’ type posts unless you’re prepared to deal with the aftermath. This is advice I wish I’d been given before I started my previous blog.
It is still my contention that the quickest way to increase your hits (and consequently your Google rating) is to tag all your posts with the word ‘sex’ or give them all raunchy sounding titles.
Nevertheless, the past six months have been pretty busy for me. In that time I’ve been to Spain, Norway, Croatia, Hungary, Austria, Paris (three times) and Athens.
In between I’ve bought a flat in London (after around seven years of drifting with no permanent address), attended my first blogging conference (TBEX) and next week I head off to the South of France for the ‘winter holiday’ (we can call it ‘Christmas’ if you really insist).
My most popular posts in the past six months have been on street art in Athens, closely followed by Hatyai (Maybe because Hatyai isn’t much visited by western tourists so there isn’t a lot of information out there. Also interesting to note that many of the searches that took people there consisted of ‘prostitutes in Hatyai’, ‘Hatyai girls’ or similar). The third most popular is Bergen.
I have no idea what the next six months will bring. I still hope that I will make it to Argentina and get to give my Spanish the final push into something resembling fluency, although I am also keen to restart learning French and have been looking at French courses too.
Ah the 21st century dilemma: too much choice.