Rant count down in 5. 4. 3 ….

Then came the blog

1. Twenty something

Yes you are somewhere in your twenties and don’t want to give your exact age because of the internet being stalker city, but be creative here. How about infant-adult, selfie generation, or ‘I can’t afford a house because of you fucking baby boomers’ age.

2. Lucky enough to

Screw this. As a blogger you are a commodity, you write (mostly for free because you want to) take pictures and sell your blog on social. So why the hell are you ‘lucky’ to be invited to an event or given a sample of something? If you weren’t a blogger and had no presence on the internet I would say you are lucky, but since you are its all your damn hard work and dedication that got you there.

3. SEO

This is just a conspiracy made up by bloggers who have been on the internet since MySpace was popular. When your blog is big enough they will show you the secret handshake and oh how you will laugh at the silly newbie bloggers attending SEO workshops as you drink gin based cocktail in a rooftop bar.

4. It will be great ‘exposure’ for you blog

Yeah this is the internet equivalent to a skeezy old man telling a 15 year old that she has what it takes to be a model. If the brand wants to pay you, fine. If you get some awesome product or experience out of it, fine. But exposure? Bullshit, you are just a component of a marketing campaign that is not costing them anything but that is costing you time and energy for a brand you don’t even like.

5. Wifi

A mythical kingdom that you will sometimes be given an overcomplicated password to. The password only works half the time, and when it does the signal is so bad you can’t send a tweet. But hey, thank god bloggers don’t really need a good internet connection to do what we do.

6. ‘All opinions are my own’

Sorry team, if you get something for free it influences your opinion. Weather it is wanting to work with the PR again, the fact they were extra nice because they knew you were a blogger, or just that if it’s free pretty much anything seems awesome. Good that you are disclosing (a curse on all the houses of bloggers who don’t) but don’t for a second think that you are un-biased.

7. Amazing/Brilliant/Stunning/Lovely/So Yummy

Oh hot damn I’ve shot myself in the foot with this one. But what other adjectives are out there? And to be fair that stunningly amazing coffee was just brilliantly lovely and so so yummy. DON’T JUDGE ME.

8. Blurred photos

Ok so this one is not really a phrase but who in the hell puts a blurred photo up on their blog? Your blog is your portfolio regardless of what you do in the real world. I once overheard a fashion blogger say ‘always dress as if you might bump in to Ryan Gosling at any moment’; same goes for your blog photos, only post the ones you want Ryan to have a gander at. Or something like that, I might have missed the point.

9. Follow me on Bloglovin

Can we all just accept the fact that it is mostly bloggers and the parents of bloggers that use Bloglovin? If I love your blog and find myself googling you daily like the true stalker that I am then I will follow you. The only result a begging tweet has is to make my finger work a little harder as I scroll past it.

10. ‘Top Secret’ or ‘Hidden’

If that gem of a place you just discovered is on the front page on Google then sorry but it’s not Top Secret or hidden…you are just oblivious.

11. Sorry

Oh you know I love a bad blogger, I live for bad bloggers, tweet me tales of your bad blogging and I will buy you a drink.

12. Haul

Awesome so you either spent a lot of money or sweet talked a PR, back in the day showing off like that would have been seen as bad taste. But please if you are going to do a haul please don’t lie about how good the products are, and by all that is holy please take a composed and pretty picture of the sodding thing.

13. Lifestyle

What the ten bells of hell does lifestyle even mean? “The way in which a person lives” yes I know that, but for a fashion blogger they live and breathe fashion so why the hell are they not a lifestyle blogger? I straddle way too many blog cliques to make anyone comfortable, so I will just continue to eat my lunch in the bathroom.

14. ‘Provided for review purposes’

Totally fine occasionally, seriously bad if on every post. How the kittens is the reader going to actually trust what you say if we don’t know what you choose to spend you’re hard earned cash on? At the very least imagine that you went to a shop and purchased it and add the justification of spending a weeks’ worth of lunches on a crappy neon lipstick.

15. Finding your niche

I got told by a PR the other week that my blog was not niche enough. I write about me…that’s one a one in six billion topic. How is that not fucking niche enough? Write what you want to write and if you fall into a niche then raise the flag and have a shot of tequila, bully for you.

16. ‘How to start a blog’ posts

Just start writing stuff on the internet and you are in the club. Show me a blogger that didn’t make some really valuable mistakes along the way and I will show you a liar.

17. ‘I’ve been nominated for…’

Can we all just be honest here and blog awards fall into three categories: publicity campaigns, chain letters and genuine awards. The publicity campaigns are the ones where a company ah la Low Cost Holidays have cottoned on to a brilliant way to get bloggers to tweet their name for very little cost. The chain letters are where bloggers nominate others and you answer questions, nice in theory (I love a good chit chat) but can we please not call them awards? And lastly we get the actual awards like the Cosmopolitan Blog awards, which to be honest after all the bad language in this post I think I have disqualified myself forever. Can someone pass the gin?

 

I wasn’t joking about the gin.

We interrupt the previously scheduled Paris post to bring you the February travel linkup, this time its all about the unexpected benefits of blogging. Now I could wax lyrical about the afternoon teas, the travel and the coffee, oh the coffee. But instead I bring you  my interpretation on the one truly unexpected benefit of blogging.

 

xx

Then-came-the-blog

 

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Little and Friday Flat White

The lovely Jamie from Angloyankophile tagged me in the Writing Process Blog Tour, bloggers tag bloggers and we wax lyrical about why and how we write. Of course what Jaime didn’t know is that by tagging me she would also open herself up to a world of Kiwi stalking and enforced cocktails (hi Jamie!).

I love reading about why others write, its like the reality TV of the blogging world. I have decided to tag the ladies I have been travel linkup-ing for the last few months; Kelly from Around the world in 80 pairs of shoes, and Emma from Adventures of a London Kiwi.

This is kind of like a chain letter, so Kelly & Emma you have one week to write or else you MUST BUY ME COFFEE. (I really do have to stop threatening bloggers into buying me food…). Even without the possible hope of coffee, I hope you all enjoy this glimpse into this little blogging world of mine.

Working on

 

 

I wish I was one of these bloggers with grand schemes or a book in the pipeline, but with a full time job just planning and posting is all I can manage! I currently have about four posts about food, two about theater, an exhibition and an expat rant floating around in my head – I just need to put fingers to keyboard and actually write them.

Genre

 

 

I think my blog is very very personal. I don’t mean that I give away all the juicy details, its just that it is exactly what is going on in my brain/life at the time. I guess that is how it differs, my blog is as unique as I am! I also tend to get super excited about things, I don’t like a cafe I LOVE IT & I write accordingly.

As much as being different is awesome, I really value being in the ‘expat blogger’ niche, we are at the same time tourists as well as finding all those hidden amazing spots that only locals can find.

Why

 

 

What you see on my blog is what I do with my life. I write travel when I travel, write rants when I’m upset and I write coffee pretty much all the time. I write as a creative outlet but also to make my mark on the world, I love feeling that there is something bigger than me out there.

It’s also amazing way to document my travels over in London. Where my parents can look back at the letters they wrote home when they were traveling, I have 500 (and counting) blog posts. It’s amazing to read back over old posts to see the places I have been, the good times and the bad.

How

 

 

That job I mentioned before? It’s pretty full on and involves a fair few weekends and late nights. That means that I write when I can (this is currently being typed on an iPhone while standing on a train back from Milton Keynes). I try to write as much as I can at the weekend and then schedule during the week because I tend to just crash after work.

 

Any questions? I would love to hear from you!

It is the pause that defines us, the collection of seconds after someone asks ‘why did you start blogging’. Of course everyone has their own story, but after attending a few tweet-ups and PR events I have heard enough replies to be able to sort them into the following categories.

Which one are you?

The Professionals

Portrait of a female executive

These are the kids  that have the marketing degrees, MBAs and are taking on this blogging lark for the challenge or career push. They talk SEO like other people talk Made in Chelsea and  inevitably find almost instant success because, hey they did it right from the start. Although it has to be said, blogging for the Professionals is a  targeted campaign rather than a passion, so while they may get the views, re-tweets and invites this is just another job for them.

The One Hit Wonders

One-Hit-Wonders

‘Oh my god, I’m a blogger too!’, sorry sweetheart three posts from 2009  does not a blogger make. This tribe generally have a Facebook friend who is a blogger and thought that looks easy, I can do that. But after putting all the effort into the URL and finding the right blog template writing sadly fell by the wayside.  As a general rule, you can call yourself a blogger when you have contemplated throwing your laptop out the window at midnight because you promised the internet you would write a post for the following day.

The Missings

missing

This is actually a majority tribe, although the members may dip a toe into the other tribes from time to time. These are the bloggers who were missing something from their lives, who needed a kick up the wazoo, who wanted another label and blogging was the answer. Always looking longingly at the Professionals, the Missings will try to decipher the SEO babble and may go to the lengths of downloading Hootsuite, but at the end of the day they are there for the passion, not the profession.

The Train-wrecks

Train Wrecks

When your world is crashing down around you a blog can be the perfect answer. Screaming into the endless storm that is the internet is the perfect therapy, and it can be damn entertaining to read.  With a shelf-life of a year, these bloggers normally transfer to one of the other tribes after that, if not … well lets just say regular blog posts are the least of their worries.

The Moms

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I don’t think I even need to explain this one, but here goes. Characterized by the tendency to over-share, casually talk about bodily functions and unintentionally polarise readers on seemingly uncontroversial subjects (breastfeeding anyone?). More than any other bloggers the Moms will fiercely defend their turf, although this is mostly because the turf if their children. Post wise the Moms are the most unpredictable, you never know when they will have a free nap time to write so there may be a week of nothing before three posts in a day. The Moms are the ones to follow if you want to figure out the PR system, they have the free samples and invites down to a fine art.

The Privates 

privateson-parades_2423627b

Read a blog about amazing things, places and eats but know next to nothing about the writer? It must belong to one of the Privates, the rare breed that want to be seen, heard and talked about but not if it has anything to do with their actual life. This tribe can be relied on for historically accurate posts, complete exhibition guides and detailed restaurant reviews, although the reader will always be left just wanting a little more.