I got to hear from a few people I met last year in the US, and I even got to hear from my cousin in Ireland whom I have not seen or heard from in about 30 years. Last I saw her she was my little cousin, she's now a Mom.
Where does the time go.
Words I live by.
So, to address a few of the main issues here from the comments I received.
From what I read there appear to be 2 things that are top of all of your lists in terms of issues or things that you don't like so much on the blog, and they are:
a. The issue of the RSS feed.
b. The white lettering on black background.
White on Black
When I started this blog a few years back I picked out the black background as it sets off photography much better than a white background, it gives much more of a dramatic feel to the images, and I didn't write that much in the beginning either, but over the last year or so the narrative on each post seems to have increased, and has turned it from a photo blog to a photo essay journal. I have tried to like a white background, but it just doesn't do it for me or my photography. To me, it's bland and boring, there is no depth or dimension to white. But, I'll look into a dark grey and see what I can come up with, but a white background I can't see happening, but I never say never..........ever.
I may try the white for a month and put it out there for your thoughts.
I have read a number of comments from you about this, one indicating that if the whole post is not all RSS syndicated, that if you're forced to 'click through' to my site to read the whole post, then you'll unsubscribe. Really?.
Well, here's my dilemma with that. From a statistical standpoint, I need people to 'click through' to my site, it's the only way I can generate traffic, and traffic for me will hopefully amount and equate to a sponsor or two or three advertising or supporting me with their product and some funding, as thats the direction I am going with this.
I myself do not have the means to self-fund this whole trip, a 7 yr or even 5 yr Round the World trip of this magnitude on my own, I need sponsorship help
and your support also. In fact, I really only have enough money left to keep this going on my own for another year, two years at the most. After that it's no more pictures and no more blog, because I will not be able to afford to travel to the places that I would like to to be able photograph and write about.
I am spending the bulk of my savings on getting this sidecar outfit built here at LBS Sidecars, and all of the travel expenses incurred in getting me and my motorcycle over here to begin with have all come out of my own pocket, as have the last two years worth of travel and blog posts that you all have been reading.
And honestly, I put a tremendous amount of work into each and every post and article here on Wherethehellismurph.com, even though it may not seem like it, what with high quality photography, photo editing, narrative and proofing to make sure I put out the best article that I can. I take a lot of pride in this. And, it's all free here on my blog for everyone to read.
But to get it up on the blog is not free for me, I invest my time, travel expenses and camera gear (approx $12k worth) to get these articles published. You, the reader get a birds eye view of where I am and where you can't be, free.
The ONLY thing I ask is that readers 'click through' from the RSS feed to Wherethehellismurph.com, that's it, for now anyway.
Is it really to much to ask to click through and go on to Wherethehellismurph.com in return?.
I don't make money at this, I'm trying to, what with selling a few articles, some decals, some photography prints,and donations, but for now the best I can hope for is to break even with expenses, which it's nowhere near breaking even yet.
So I'm running out of money.
I wish I didn't have to care about money to keep this going, I wish I didn't have to care about generating traffic or hits on my little blog here, but until I hit the lotto, I need to generate traffic. Aside from sponsorship and money, site traffic is the main thing that will directly help me.
I read of a blogger that rode down to South America on his motorcycle a few years back , went down there for a couple of reasons, one was to get dental work done that in the US would cost him about $15k, but he got it done for $3k down there instead. He also lived with a family and did an 'immersion spanish' course, he paid $500 a month for a room, 2 meals and 6 hrs a day of immersion spanish lessons.
He set up his blog so that when all his friends came to his site and clicked on the links there, he ended up making between $100- $200 a month out of it. But he couldn't do it without the help and support of everyone of his readers clicking on the links on his blog.
That's the direction I'm heading with this if I can, I need the support of you, the readers, to help me do this. I have no outside funding for all the work I put into this blog, no paid subscriptions, I don't get free camera gear, no free tents, no free BMW service or parts, nothing, everything I have I have bought and paid for myself.
If you think about it, would you go to work everyday and not expect to get a paycheck at the end of the week?. Well, this is my place of work, only difference is I don't get a weekly paycheck. Am I worried?. Yes, a bit, sometimes a lot.
Sometimes I feel like I'm probably the worlds most irresponsible person, I should be keeping what little I have left, get a job, even if it's a minimum wage one, and just toe the line. I have good days and bad days, otherwise known as depression. Not so much now that I'm sober. When I drank, I was like a pendulum, I never knew what the morning vs. the afternoon would hold. But I try to be pro active and positive in my daily activities, as when I look around and see decades of abuse and neglect turn ordinary people into shells of their former self, I don't want to live like that. I would rather live one day to it's fullest than a week just going through the motions of life.
So I ask for your time to come here to my site and help generate traffic with your support, maybe tell 1 or 2 or 3 other friends about it. I would like to have a readership of a few thousand per day if I can, thats my goal, and I can't do it without your help.
If you purchase prints, decals or even help with a small donation, even as little as $1 a month, it helps a lot, more than you know. Gas is my biggest expense here in Europe, it's nearly $10 a gallon.
I am working on some merchandise, some of you have suggested T-shirts, and another few readers suggested to put more of my prints up on my Smugmug Photo Account, I know I have to get the pricing sorted out there, so Scott and Sara, thanks for the push, and I am working on it.
So, I leave you with some more images from Holland, and hope to hear from you regarding this new post.
Interior of St. Catherine's Church near Market Square,
Eindhoven, the Netherlands.
Traditional Thatched Roof Farmhouse,
Elsendorp, the Netherlands.
Early Morning Sunrise, Uden,
Have the day of your choice......