I quit blogging

On quitting travel blogging & what’s next

Firstly – did you miss me?! Doubtful. With the amount of travel blogs and sites out there on the ole interweb, I doubt my silence even registered. However, that’s about to change (I hope).

You see, there’s been a good reason for my silence. Well, 4 good reasons in all honesty.

  1. My health. If you’ve been following my journey, you know it’s been a tough one to get my head around and so I needed some ‘quiet time’ though thankfully things seem to be turning around for me.
  2. I’ve launched a new website! It’s called Reclaimingyourfuture.com and it’s a personal development site for all the people that want a little real advice and comfort when life gets a little tough. It’s a sort of ‘anti self-help site’ πŸ˜‰
  3. I’ve become totally disullusioned with the travel blogging world
  4. I’ve finished my ebook about Africa! It’s been on the back-burner ever since I returned from the continent that changed my life but now it’s in the final stages of being proofread and edited and I can’t wait to share it with you!

 

My Health

For anyone that’s been following my journey, you will know that within a few weeks of arriving I became very ill and after a relapse in February I made the extremely saddening decision to return home from my indefinite travels in Australia. Thinking I would be back in Australia within a few weeks, my world collapsed when I was diagnosed with an incurable autoimmune disease and told I would be on drugs for the rest of my life.

It’s taken a great deal of mental strength (or should I say lack of it) to understand a condition which is random both in its cause and progression but I’m slowly getting used to the idea that breakfast now consists of drugs as well as cereal.

I have, however, recently had some more positive news about my health (update soon) which I’m extremely grateful about!

 

My new website

It’s been a while since I posted purely travel-related content and I naturally seemed to distance myself from it as I discovered that my true passion wasn’t travel writing at all but personal development writing and so I’ve created a new website called Reclaimingyourfuture.com.Β It has honest pieces in which I talk about advice, failures or difficulties in the hope that it helpsΒ just one person reading – I deemed my writing on here as ‘personal words’ but in truth, I think most of what I have to say is personal; it’s simply a wonderful bi-product when someone sends me a heartfelt thank you message saying they can relate.

And so, I realised that I had far more to say on a personal, advice level than I ever did travel-wise, particularly because I am currently back in the UK until I work out my new move and partly because of reason number 4…

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I’m done with travel blogging

I just can’t be doing with the ‘schmoozing’ of it. The cliques of consistent people going on so many campaigns, tours and ‘quick breaks’ that their surnames might as well have been replaced with hashtags. Am I bitter or jealous? No. I couldn’t think of anything worse than going on trips with no personal meaning sharing that time with fake people that just want to network instead of getting to know each other on a deeper level.

But I can’t bring myself to network online either. When I first started this site, I went on to every ‘big’ blog and commented etc to ‘get my name out there’ and sure, it worked (slowly) and I got more likes and followers etc but now that I’ve started my new website, I’ve realised more and more just how fake that is and how little I want to repeat the same pattern of leaving ‘nice photos’ as a comment when really, every big blog you comment on is already in a clique of their own in the first place.

So I’m done. I’m done with the egos. The fake and fragile ‘friendships’ (including all the bloggers (who I considered friends) who have stopped connecting with me now that they have become bigger than me). The constant hashtags. I want to write on my own terms and in my own parameters and I’m struggling to do that currently so bear with me as I attempt to reconnect with myself and you as a travel writer and work out what that means for both this site and my Facebook and Twitter accounts.

 

I have a book coming out!

It seems like every other blogger and their partner has or is writing an ebook right now and I think that brings a misconception that they’re easy to write. Sure, if you’re dedicated, have the time etc then I’m sure you can write one within a couple of weeks or a month depending on the subject and depth. Mine has taken 2.5 years to finish.

I could tell you that there’s one good reason for that but in all honesty, there are a few. I became quite unwell mentally and it took a long time to recover, I also had a full time job and lost motivation, I moved to the other side of the world to start again. But in it all, every now and then I would open my document and continue to write a few words, sentences or sometimes even pages at a time and I felt good for it; not just because I was writing a book I felt passionate about but because I was battling my own demons to complete it.

So what’s it about? In short, overlanding Africa. Before I backpacked from Cape Town to Nairobi, I was blown away by how little information there was to research in terms of what I needed to pack, what I could expect from the countries I was visiting or even how overlanding worked; my book attempts to overcome all of those issues and I’m excited to bring it to you! I’ll keep you posted!

And so, there you have it. Β My news. Β Things are about to change here and on my social media channels and I look forward to having you along for the ride…

Leave a Reply

21 comments

  1. “if you’re not in it for love, I’m outta here!”

    A good song by Shania Twain — and how I feel about your change. Your heart has to be in it, and I must agree, the travel blogging world is filled with so many fakes that even I have found myself distancing a bit from it. don’t get me wrong, I still want to network and all, but I only find myself spending time with those who are a little bit more than that, you know?

    Just do your own thing, follow your heart and everything else will follow. I have started to see some of the posts on your new Facebook page and LOVE them! πŸ™‚

    -Maria Alexandra

    -1
  2. Great changes are always preceded by chaos. Wishing you all the very best as you take strides in a new direction. I can’t wait to get hold of you eBook!

  3. I did NOT know you were writing a book, that’s awesome Toni! I think it’s really brave of you to stand up and say, “Y’know what? This travel blogging thing isn’t for me anymore” and write what YOU want to write πŸ™‚

  4. Here’s to an exciting new step gorgeous girl! Very proud of you and can’t wait to get your book!! xx

  5. It seems like every time you call out bloggers for the fakers that they are, I’m right there beside you saying “Mmmm, hmmm – You go sister!” *snaps fingers*
    But….it’s so true. *sigh*
    Back when we started out, people used to have a laugh on Twitter. Heck I even wrote a post about it. Now it’s all “blogging conference” this, “awards I’ve won” that and “look at the free trip I got!” What is the point of it, really??
    I also agree that so many other blogging circles aren’t like that. Sure, there’s probably backstabbing and competition between anyone anywhere, but it does seem like a lot of travel bloggers are out for blood (and will do anything for more followers or more trips).
    I always feel inclined to give people the benefit of the doubt, but find myself cringing more and more at what some of the “big names” have to say. For now, I’ll still dip my toes in the water, but totally respect you for backing away. Every luck with the book and the new site!

  6. Sad you are leaving travel blogging Toni, but I guess you have to do what is right for you and what makes you happy, which becomes increasingly hard in this crazy world! There have been so many times this last year when I felt the same, completely overwhelmed with, well just everything. It’s like hitting a brick wall most of the time and I get really disillusioned sometimes too, but am sticking with it for the time being if only for fun!

    Awesome news on the book and the new site and I look forward to reading!

    x

  7. Ali

    I don’t blame you for quitting travel blogging. It gets really discouraging seeing people who used to talk to you stop because they’re “too big” now. I’ve had plenty of those. I enjoy blogging and encouraging others to travel, so I keep doing it, but I’m not trying to be one of those 10 press trips in a month type people. Or any press trips really. Ugh. I love your idea for the new site, it sounds perfect! It sounds like that’s where your real passion is, and that will make it an awesome experience for you, and I’m sure you’ll be able to help people. And congrats on the book! Good luck!

  8. Pingback: Reclaiming Your Future #100happydays Week 2 » Reclaiming Your Future

  9. Hi Toni, I’ve been reading all your posts over the past while and just want to wish you all the very best. I agree with you on so many things about blogging. Hope you find lots of happiness in your new direction. And hope you feel loads better, too πŸ™‚

  10. Maria – You couldn’t have said it better; you (and I) want to network but with those people who have something quality to offer in their personality and words, not the fake people. You’re right; that we need to follow our hearts and everything else will follow with us.

    And thank you for your support on my new FB page hun; I’m truly grateful! πŸ™‚

  11. Charli – That’s such a great quote!! Thank you for the support hun and let’s hope the ebook is as successful as I am passionate about it πŸ˜€

  12. Beverley – There’s definitely going to be some changes around here for sure! Starting my new site has made me realise what I really want from myself as a writer and how I want it to look.

    Having some problems with the book unfortunately due to the software I have been using but I’m determined to get there πŸ™‚

  13. Scarlett – thank you for your never-ending support gorgeous πŸ™‚ xx

  14. Julia – haha I LOVE the snapping fingers πŸ˜€

    I think you hit the nail on the head; when we started out (particularly you and I and a few others), we were all equals but I’ve seen friends turn into total douchebags because of blogging and, as you say, all the ‘awards’ and conferences etc and I’ve had my fill of it! I’m starting to dip into the lifestyle blogging ‘niche’ and there seems to be genuine love between bloggers unlike the backstabbing as you mention.

    Nothing wrong with dipping your toes my lovely; I’m sure I’ll join you once I’ve calmed down a bit again πŸ˜‰ xx

  15. Helen – I’ll still be writing about travel when I want to; I just don’t want to be associated with the ‘community’ of it anymore; I want to do it because I have found my passion again which I’ve sadly lost to a sea of bullshit over the past few months.

    Good for you for sticking with it; each to their own gorgeous and I hope your journey continues strongly! xx

  16. Ali – You’re right, it really is discouraging when people stop talking to you since they don’t ‘have the time’ anymore. I think you can still encourage people to travel but keep your words personal and honest which, I think, is what people truly want when they come to travel blogs for help in the first place!

    Starting the new site has really made me see what I do and don’t want from my writing and this site so hopefully I’ll be making some positive changes here too in the future πŸ™‚ x

  17. Linda – Thank you so much for your lovely, kind words of support and encouragement; they mean a lot πŸ™‚ I’m getting better thankfully and working on my new site has certainly helped clear a few things for me πŸ™‚ xx

  18. Don’t forget, communication is a two way street. πŸ™‚

    Good luck on your new ventures. Liking the design of the new site!

    -1
  19. I painted this great picture in my head of travel blogging, a world where people travel and experience the world on a daily basis, giving others inspiration to pursue their dreams. After I came home from my trip and asked myself why travel blogging wasn’t working for me I realized just the opposite. All these major bloggers aren’t doing what I dreamed about at all. Sure it might seem better than an office job, but why even bother. I can’t get excited about writing 100 new tweets in hootsuite no matter how hard I try. I don’t think I was cut from the same cloth as those people.

    But now I’m back in the US spinning in circles over what I can do that excites me daily while earning a living? If anyone has found a job that truly inspires them daily, let me know, because right now I’m all ears!

  20. WOW… There is nothing wrong with following what speaks to you. Kudos to you for making that happen. I also just read on your about page you are from the south coast of UK, so am I, the IOW. Left a long time ago and really don’t miss it.

    I hope that all goes well for you, i’ll be sure to check back in.