One year ago, with the help of
I launched a website of my own.
Not only did I have this blog, where I wrote more from a literary perspective, but I wanted a separate place to focus on my love of travel. I thought a lot about persona and branding and I guess Her Headache wasn’t enough, wasn’t quite expressing all I had to say.
The idea came to me that previous summer. My parents were away on a whirlwind road trip out west, through Canada and the US, I had travel on the brain, and I was trying to reinvent myself.
I was sending out my writing more and more, starting to learn how to handle rejections, and trying to figure out what I was truly passionate about.
Within a few months,
So, though I think I was ahead of most when I came up with the name, I had no idea if I could handle two sites. I decided to jump in and go for it, but it’s been a year and I admit, I haven’t accomplished as much as I’d liked to.
I came across this article this morning:
Why Travel Blogging Needs More Storytelling
This is what I wanted to do. I wanted to combine my love of writing and stories with my travel obsession.
I had begun checking out all the travel blogs the Internet has to offer. I read dozens and dozens of these things. I saw the serge of these sites. I wanted to be one of them, but yet I didn’t.
I could easily have become caught up in the hype.
How do you make money as a travel blogger? How to work with brands and travel companies?
I focused on my own bucket list. I found the travel blogs, same as my more literary ones, that really spoke to me.
I ate up all they had to say about their travels. I admired their adventurous spirits. I thought
were super women and I wanted to follow in their footsteps.
I didn’t want to use my blindness, but yet I saw it as the best way to express myself and capture a reader’s attention, in the travel world.
I liked my idea. The Insightful Wanderer just seemed to shape itself. I know many struggle to decide on a name for their travel blog, but the name was the easy part for me.
Then, I feared I had made a mistake. If I couldn’t be completely comfortable using my blindness as a hook, why did I think Insightful Wanderer was a good idea after all?
I’d gotten the ball rolling by then and I feared I wouldn’t be able to make something of it, but something still propelled me forward.
I had become comfortable with this blog. I had my MacJournal program, for writing my posts, and I knew how to transfer them over to WordPress.
The new site would require a whole new process. It did not seem to connect to MacJournal.
How would I do this? I barely knew how to do anything. Okay, so I was improving, but it always seemed to happen at a snail’s pace, in my own time. I haven’t had help to learn in a while, and the help I do receive is sporadic at best.
I needed a teacher, but where would I find one who knew VoiceOver?
I have had all the website work done for me. That’s why I found Fresh Idea Websites, but since then I have found it difficult to communicate with them just what I need.
I have written a handful of posts. I don’t know why I haven’t written more. I have a whole thirty years of travel I can write about. It’s all in my head and I know I could write, do what the article said, and bring the art of storytelling into the travel blogging world.
I know these things take time. I know that.
On this Throwback Thursday I needed to look back on all this, to see where I hope to be in one year from now.
I have no idea how I’m going to get there. I’d planned to work on the other site for a few months and then have this big reveal here, to connect my two sites, but this revelation has not happened.
Instead, on this one year mark and approaching two years with this here blog, I needed to say something.
I feel anxious a lot because I want to say so much, write so much, share so much. I can’t get it all out. So much was rushing to come out that there seems to be a clog somewhere, a bunch of it seems to have plugged up the line and now I hardly say any of it.
I don’t believe travel needs to be big, grand trips all the time. I’ve been to Niagara Falls and Ottawa this past year. I haven’t published about that on the website.
I still don’t feel comfortable posting over there. I have no help, as even though I say it’s not about the visual aspects, I sometimes have pictures I’d like to include.
People like Amanda travel, independently most of the time. People like Annette travel with her husband, I believe.
I have no partner who wants to experience the world with me. I know the real risk of traveling solo, as a woman who is also visually impaired.
I wanted to be this brave, tough, independent woman and do it anyway, but I continue to hesitate.
I saw how relationships were made and I wanted to form these cool friendships with other female travel bloggers, to connect and travel along with them, but my lack of independent travel made this an unrealistic dream.
I know female travel bloggers are out there, that it’s not all fun and games, but that they’re making it happen. I wanted to make something happen, but I was trapped between wanting to have that life and to write about something more.
I know there is no rush and that I am on no clock, but I feel like I am. I want to write, to make a difference, to do something great with my writing, but I know I have a lot to learn.
If I’m not totally decided on what I want to do, travel or write, or both, how will I combine the two?
I know I am interested in insight. That’s why I write in the first place.
I also feel like I am wandering and how that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. That’s just where I am with my life at this time.
On the Internet radio show interview I did a few weeks back, I said that I hoped my thirties would be this whole decade of discovery, when I would get back into the world, to find what I was looking for. I hope having both these sites will be a part of that. I hope, in the next year and the years after that, I can figure all this out.
I don’t have The Insightful Wanderer as I’d like it to be, not yet. It’s hard to completely lay out how I’d like it to look, when I can’t even see it. I hear it through audio voice, reading it to me, but I don’t know how to explain my vision for it.
I still know nothing about CO and stats. I don’t write top ten articles that get travel bloggers on the map. I don’t have a mailing list. I hardly know how to handle the comments for my posts. Relaying what I’d like hasn’t been easy and it’s down to me to get that all straightened out.
I’ve met travellers who are taking a more literary approach and I would like to see if that’s where I belong, but I’m still unsure.
Maybe I’ll carve out an entirely new path for myself, doing something nobody before me has really done, and that’s why I haven’t been able to decide. I try not to focus too much on the destination, and just enjoy the journey as is said, but that’s really hard sometimes.
I like to know what’s going to happen, how things are going to turn out, but I also want to enjoy the learning process. I know that’s the only way, with writing, and that’s what I am all about, in the end.
Happy One Year Anniversary to TheIWanderer.
Sorry I’ve let you down, let myself down, but I believe in you, in us, in possibility.
5 thoughts on “One Year, Two Blogs – #tbt”
You haven’t let anyone down. It’s just as you said, it’s your own journey as you are exploring, dabbling. Be patient. You are doing so much more than you think. You are whittling out a niche for yourself. It’s like going out on a ledge, feeling each step of the way so you don’t tumble down. I like how you ended the post: “I believe in you, in us, in possibility.” Not sure if ‘you’ is the reader, or your blog. But at least your words lead to hope. No need to apologize. It’s your honest life and your courage that brings everything together.
I started out with a travel blog. I had traveled to so many countries! Travel defined me. I mostly traveled alone. I married abroad. I have all those stories in my head. But my blog gradually diverged and led me in a different direction. A reader pointed it out to me the other day. My mother’s friends say they want to read about my travels in a book. But they’re not coming out now. They have to stand in line or something.
Happy journeying into year 2. May it bright surprises, delight and comfort as you wander deeper out…
I enjoy listening to your travel stories as well. I’m in Line too.
Thank you. Out on a ledge, exactly right.
Kerry I admire your brutal honesty here. Your journey is yours alone and that is what makes it unique and interesting. Just by the mere virtue of you managing two sites (even though it’s rough), for others watching it gives hope and hope is what keeps us going.
Thank you Steph.
You’re welcome =D