I’m probably the Worst Travel Blogger…
I should care, but…..
I could give a plethora of excuses like I usually seem to as a cold opening to every other post I write, but excuses are like assholes…
So here we go:
I don’t post often… Anymore
Once upon a time, I set myself to a ridiculous challenge, where I said I’d post each day for one month. Surprisingly I made it past the mark and posted 40-some days straight.
In the great words of Sweet Brown, “Ain’t nobody got time for that.”
Well, maybe some people, probably successful people. But not me. Nope.
That was stressful.
I should write more, but I don’t. And I won’t.
I don’t write controversial posts
Sure there’s controversial shit I have opinions on, but I don’t really ever feel like writing about them. Plus many of them are, well, stupid… And complete attention stunts.
One travel blogger recently made a post that stirred the shit pile came off as racist, which I can see precisely why. I can sympathize with her side at a minuscule level. But really I think she’s now trying to hide behind the guise of her upbringing as a scapegoat for the poor subject choice. And it’s attracted the utmost buffoonery from about every angle.
Another recent one was about how some nationalities pretend to be another nationality while traveling and why that pissed her in particular off. What? I’ve not done it, I’ve not heard of it, don’t know anyone personally that’s done it.
Is this a real problem that needed addressed? Probably not.
I get confused for being a different nationality quite a bit, I generally point them in the right direction. When asked where I’m from I always say Alaska. Not because I’m avoiding being associated with generalized American stereotypes, but because when I have responded with American, I’m immediately asked from what state. So let’s cut to the chase, why don’t we?
Does it piss me off that she wrote this? Not really, but netizens will stop at nothing to tell you that they now don’t like you and hate the post. I can’t help myself, I love reading the comments section on just about anything. I find other people’s rage hilarious.
Or the lovely one last year that came off as super conceded about how it’s so hard being pretty and traveling solo. Call a wahhhhhmbulance. It’s a rough life and no one cares.
We all have god damn eyeballs and can see you’re pretty. You just wanted the ego boost, admit it.
I think she didn’t like that people of the Internet will stop at nothing to call it like it is. Yes, an Instagram feed littered with selfies does come off as narcissistic to the general populace. So don’t get mad when they tell you that.
Maybe you’re not a narcissist, I don’t know you. And I didn’t intend to come here and judge you, but the Internet did and will. People have no problem saying what they think, especially behind an avatar online.
I truly don’t think that her actual drive behind the post was to say OMG I’m so pretty! Poor me! and wanted that to be the takeaway, I think she was addressing the weird looks and treatment you receive as a solo female traveler in general, ugly, pretty, or in between. Just picked a controversial title for the post and voila! The virulence is infectious.
Oh….. and anything political. People get real butthurt over politics. Politicians all suck. Very few are in it for the greater good. And I really do think our two nominees here in the US for each major party are awful human beings.
I think my write in vote for November will be ‘Flush The Toilet 2016′. We need an overhaul in this country, and bad. So there I got all political for you.
I’ve traveled. A lot. So, things could be A LOT worse here in the US. I’ve seen much worse in many other countries, straight oppression. I’m not saying things in the US are the best, or better than anywhere else. I think the takeaway here is that we could have it a lot worse here in this country.
Social Media Sucks
I hate it! So I generally don’t do it. The one thing I am decent at is Instagram. Probably because I apply myself a little (but I seriously don’t know what I’m doing). I just hit 50K followers.
I had my photo of the Rainbow Mountain go nuts on there over the course of the last week. One account featured it and it has over 50K likes, and the features keep rolling in… Tay, it’s safe to say the back of your head is now famous, you’re welcome.
I don’t have time to figure out how to get around the algorithm and make sure my posts are seen. They’ve proven paying for post boosts is a sham. So I pretty much don’t use it.
I just share my Instagram photos and blog posts on there, sometimes other writers’ posts as well. But that’s it.
Oh, and I completely shut off the messaging function. Real people never messaged me. Just other bloggers wanting to invite me to a circle jerk, a few creeps in far-flung lands, and others begging me to like their page.
My Twitter is essentially on autopilot. I have some app the auto-posts old posts. I do occasionally bitch at American Airlines for being terrible on there. And to read what Pakalu Papito wrote because his posts make me laugh.
And I shut off my stupid thing that auto DM’d people thanking them for following me and directing them to my other pages if they were interested. But people kept responding with an auto message of their shit. Nope.
Plus isn’t Twitter on its last leg?
I tried. I think I could do well there if I put the time into it. We know I got the images for it. I just don’t feel like doing it. It pains me to lay text over a beautiful picture.
I actually shut off all Pinterest notifications. When there are red dots with a white number on an app on my phone it makes me absolutely insane and I will stop at nothing to make it go away. I’m sure this is a sign of some sort of mental disorder.
I had Snapchat back in the day, like pre-2014. Then I deleted it when even though I had it set for only friends to Snapchat me, I was being sent porn videos from strangers. If I want to watch adult videos, I’ll do so of my own accord. So, bye Felicia.
Now Snapchat is just annoying to me. And sorry, but I’m not going to find a way to convince people that every second of my life is packed with excitement. It isn’t. I do boring stuff a lot. Like, write blog posts on my phone, read books and go poop. No one wants to see that.
Google+, Stumbleupon, Reddit, Periscope, Linkedin. Just go away.
And Linkedin, why are you even a social media?
Oh, and PS: I don’t give two fucks about my Klout score or being in the top 100 bloggers.
I don’t pitch to companies, hotels, tour boards, etc. very often
It makes me feel like a bum begging on the side of the road.
Then when you do pitch, most of the time they don’t respond. Anymore if I’m planning on going somewhere and doing a certain activity I’ll email them telling them I’m interested in it and that basically I’m gonna do it no matter what… But also I have a webpage and stupid social media accounts and will promote you in return for a sponsored activity.
It’s actually worked. Not every single time, but it does work. I think it may be because it doesn’t appear so much that I’m acting out of desperation. Which also leads me to:
I don’t pitch big websites, except for maybe once
I submitted my ‘6 People to Hate on Airplanes‘ to Thought Catalog, and voila it was published on their website. Did it bring me the droves of followers and traffic reminiscent of Los Angeles at 7 AM? Nope.
I had read so many times about how you must be a published writer and how it would do all these magical things for you. I am suspicious of pretty much everything, but I gave it a go. Plus all these travel bloggers in groups I had joined on Facebook were constantly bragging about how they were published in Huffington Post, Elite Daily, Thought Catalog, Matador Network, and more, so naturally I thought that I should hop on that bandwagon.
I think it’s mostly a waste of time, then the other thing I started to notice is that well-known travel writers aren’t constantly bragging about being published somewhere… hmmm.
The most traffic I actually ever received was long before that very same post was published on Thought Catalog. The Boarding Room’s Ed Pizzarello shared a link to it on his blog talking about how he thought the whole thing was hysterical (something along with those words… I can’t remember), and that’s what truly drove heaps of traffic over.
I don’t write top 10, and 20 reasons to visit _________ posts
I know I’m contradicting myself by preceding this section with me speaking of how ‘6 People To Hate On Airplanes’ was published and shared.
They’re lame clickbait. I tried it in the beginning and then I felt like a shill. Then one time I tried a popular blogger’s course they were offering. They only write posts with a number in the title like a top 10 because it attracts more readers.
Also, don’t write very much beyond each bold number slot. People don’t want to read what you have to say.
I dropped out.
Guess I’ll never make it in this “industry*”.
I’d also like to add: I FUCKING HATE OPEN LETTERS! So please for the love of God stop writing them! This is an open invitation to shut the fuck up and stop writing them. K thanks.
I know no one listens.
*is this really an industry? Very few people with blogs have any background in writing or journalism… which leads me to:
I’m actually not a writer
I nearly failed every English course I took in high school and college.
I am a very visual person. So let’s stop pretending I’m something I’m not. I write as I speak. People who know me personally have said they love reading my writing because they can hear my voice in it, or maybe they’re just trying to be nice. I don’t know if my voice reads across to the rest of you.
I’m not very descriptive either. I’m blunt and to the point. Writing on here has been a challenge in itself for me because of that. I try to write more descriptive posts. I use a thesaurus a lot. I can’t say this is pretty 100 times in a 300-word post.
*I never used a thesaurus until last year.
I don’t read other travel blogs
And I sure as fuck don’t comment on them.
Ok, so the beginning of this section is a lie. I do read a few. I have a handful of people I love. It’s very small. Every now and then I’ll get a wild hair and read someone else’s. But even the people I love, I don’t religiously read. I’ll binge-read them when I feel like reading it. I rarely comment. I bought into that whole ‘read other travel blogs and comment a zillion comments a day. That lasted
about 3 days, 3 minutes. Sorry I have a life.
I suck at posting articles when traveling
The people that constantly write posts while on the road seem sketch to me. Like are you actually having fun? At all? Or the people Snapchatting it as it happens… Live in the moment for a change!
Yeah, I can understand those of you that have turned this into a burgeoning career, because, well this is now your work, your job, and in a sense your employer. Which is more like a baby, because if you don’t constantly dote over it, love it, and change it, it’ll die, or shit everywhere.
I don’t know about the rest of you, (the vast majority) I still use my hard-earned money to travel. I’m sure as hell going to enjoy myself during it. When I’m hiking in the Andes with giant toothache I can’t be bothered to take the time to write a post as soon as I get back to my room. Or Snapchat a visit to the dentist in Cuzco resulting in a tooth extraction.
I haven’t written an e-book
Who is gonna pay to read shit that you can find online for free?
I could write a personal memoir and try to sell it. But I’m not that important.
I could tell you how to be a successful blogger. But I’m not a successful blogger. So who would pay money for that? That’s like paying a perpetually unemployed person for their career advice.
I’m an efficient individual and all of the above seems like a colossal waste of time. And time is one of those things I can’t make back.
Maybe I’ll revisit the e-book idea when I have something useful to provide the world of travel.
I don’t sell bullshit
I’m not gonna tell you things are amazing when they weren’t.
I’m also not going to tell you to quit your job and travel, or that travel is always a great time. It isn’t. While it’s a privilege to travel, it’s not always fun.
And also, not everyone likes traveling. Newsflash people: that’s perfectly okay.
We all have different priorities in life. I never picked up the bassoon or began smoking crack. And that doesn’t make me a horrible, close-minded person, does it? No.
Does not traveling make you close-minded? No. We’re just wired differently.
Just as easily as I’ll book a one-way ticket to a country most can’t pronounce someone else may be opening their door to 4 foster kids. So stop posting that stupid picture with the caption ‘The world is a book and people who don’t travel read only one page.’ Get off your high horse, travel doesn’t make you or me superior.
I don’t take enough photos
Don’t let a completely full 1 TB hard drive and a nearly full 250 GB hard drive with ONLY photos on them fool you. Yes, I take lots of pictures. Hundreds of thousands of pictures.
We all know photography is one of my main drives… Remember earlier when I said I am a very visual person? Yes. I just tend not to take photos of things that are of no interest to me or I don’t find visually appealing.
I’ve heard for a travel blog you pretty much have to take a photo of literally anything and everything along the way. I don’t.
Plus, there are just times where I want to look at things with my own two eyeballs. You can’t stumble through life constantly looking through a viewfinder, there’s just so much you miss and don’t take in. And also shutting one eye and squinting the other to look through said viewfinder is starting to give me a weird wrinkle dead between my eyebrows… Think I need botox, BAD.
Sometimes no photo will do a location justice, sure I’ll take a picture of it but sometimes I just gotta put the camera down.
I think SEO is annoying, and the people who write for it are the worst
I should really care, but I don’t.
These are just a few of the reasons that I suck. Ok, bye.
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8 thoughts on “I’m Probably The Worst Travel Blogger”
This post just made me respect you even more. You remind me so much of my friend who just says whatever is on the top of her mine without sugarcoating it or censoring her language!
Thanks Ray! I feel like if I took out my colorful language and started being all positive n shit it would be sooooo boring!
I really enjoyed your post. Thanks and happy travels!
Haha, omg, I think I just fell in love with you, haha 😉 Ok, not for real, I´m not gay, but mentally – if you know what I mean. I actually started blogging a few months ago and I´m struggling sooo much and when I read your caption “I’m probably the Worst Travel Blogger…”, I just thought you read my mind. And now I don´t know if I should laugh about that or cry 😉 I don´t know where that sh** will take me, but I just love travelling (not always, but most times) and photography (and for that Instagram). Still I can´t force myself to write those “20 things to do in…” etc. articles, even if they would bring me lots of traffic, but I don´t know if I have anything to offer who doesn´t exist already 100 times – just to go with the flow. So I just write about my experiences and don´t care if anyone reads it, haha 😉 Thanks for that awesome post – you made my day!!! And I´m more than happy not to read any mainstream stuff on your FB page and just enjoy your freaking awesome Instagram feed! Go girl!
Haha, thnanks Ella!
Stay real and write what you want! It’s your blog and your experiences that are the most important.
Post often or not, do as you will and enjoy, that is the most important thing. As for me, I like your writing style so when/if you do write more, I’ll read it. Plus still thanks for the good tips on backpacks, the scrubba, etc!
Oh thanks Carl!
I think I’ll have some more material coming this fall, and I’m sure it’ll be thoroughly entertaining given where I’m headed!