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Travel Blogging Eight Years On

  • October 28, 2020
  • By 50 Shades
  • 20 Comments
Travel Blogging Eight Years On

Next month marks the eighth year since I commenced my blog. Although it only seems like yesterday, in some ways it seems like an eternity ago. During this eight year period I’ve seen my blog evolve from the ravings of a fifty-something year old to a respectable travel blog.

I must say that travel blogging was my passion, and my life has very much revolved around it for the past eight years. I loved sharing my photos and passion for travel, particularly in my own country Australia.

Travel Blogging 8 Years On

My Inspiration for Commencing the Blog

As my biography says:

I commenced 50 Shades of Age in 2012 as a platform to encourage and inspire women of my age. The majority of us have led a busy fulfilled life being mothers, wives and co-breadwinners. After reaching that milestone age of 50, with kids leaving the nest and feeling unemployable, I felt a big void in my life. It was with this in mind that I decided to start up 50 Shades Of Age – a website where I could reach out to my sisters and tell them that their lives could be so much more. I wanted to be the voice for the new-age over 50 year olds to empower and motivate them to feel worthy again! We have so much to offer.

Even though I wrote this bio at the commencement of the blog eight years ago I still feel that these words describe the blog today. I really did want to inspire women of my age and I hope that I have achieved this even if it has inspired one single person.

Travel Blogging 8 Years On
Map showing our travel route in 2014

After a very bumpy start with my blog I travelled around Australia in a caravan at the beginning of 2014. This was where I changed track, metaphorically speaking, and developed into a travel blog. My newly acquired photography skills influenced me to share some of my amazing photos of Australia and to write about my journey.

Challenges of Blogging

Initially when I commenced my blog in 2012 I wrote from personal experiences and some of the things I was going through at that time of my life. After a few months I noticed that some of my friends at that time were very unsupportive of my blog. They simply didn’t understand why I would want to put myself out there on the worldwide web.

Travel Blogging 8 Years On
Lunch out with blogging friends in 2017

As a result I almost gave up on the blog! It was a life-defining point of my journey and as a result I lost two friends. I was completely shattered by the experience. I felt like the victim of a lynching mob! Thankfully I had a couple of friends that stood by me during this time. They had enough intelligence to understand what I was trying to achieve.

So lesson number one was not to write about personal issues and I quickly resolved this by becoming a travel and lifestyle blogger. I was finally free of the naysayers in my life!

Travel Blogging 8 Years On
Hiking in Kalbarri Gorge, WA

The other big challenge of travel blogging was getting my head around a lot of the technical issues. I’ve certainly felt out of my depth on many occasions and have had to struggle my way through. Technology is ever changing and I had to learn (and I’m still learning), new skills to keep abreast with the blogging world.

Travel Blogging Achievements

Following my return from my around Australia trip in late 2014, I landed a job writing blogs and social media promotion for a hotel marketing company. This was a fantastic flexible job that I could do from home and involved a small amount of travel, which was perfect for me.

Travel Blogging 8 Years On
My first media famil trip to Japan in 2016

My travel blog went from strength to strength and I started to earn a small income from sponsored guest posts and travel writing for some tourism websites and a couple of magazines. These included Destination Gold Coast, Discover Ipswich, Better Living Magazine and a famil trip to Japan for Japan National Tourism Organisation. I felt as though I was finally making my mark.

During these golden years I was still learning all the time and managed to do as many courses and workshops as I could to keep up to date. However I could see that the travel blogging world was changing with many new players in the field. Plus Instagram and social media influencers started to make an impact in travel blogging circles. These pretty young things with their photoshopped and filtered images were hard to compete against.

Travel Blogging 8 Years On
Attending a Problogger Conference in 2016

Travel Blogging in 2020

This year has brought on its own set of challenges for travel bloggers. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic not many of us are travelling. It’s a whole new world and we don’t know what the future will hold particularly for international travel.

During the year my husband and I have used this opportunity to explore our own backyard a bit more. We’ve been away in our caravan on several trips both in Northern New South Wales and one trip up north into Queensland (when the border opened momentarily). As an ardent traveller, these trips have been my saviour!

Travel Blogging 8 Years On
Caravanning at Carnarvon Gorge in 2020

Fortunately this has given me the time to reflect back on earlier travel blog posts and tweak them a little to re-post. I’ve mostly concentrated on regional travel for the past six months. However as the year has progressed I’ve become less and less inspired to write.

Part of this lack of motivation has also stemmed from becoming a grandparent (with a second on the way), and pursuing new interests. It’s time for a new chapter in my life.

Travel Blogging 8 Year On
Becoming a Grandparent has created a new chapter in my life

The End of an Era

So after eight long years I’ve made the decision to discontinue with my travel blog. I will no longer feel the pressure to write a blog once a week nor try to come up with interesting subjects to write about. I am stepping away!

I will continue to be active on social media on my private page and also on my Instagram account. So please continue to follow my daily photographic posts and travels. I’m not giving up on travelling entirely!

Travel Blogging 8 Years On
A beautiful sunset marking the end of www.50shadesofage.com

This will be my final post here but not the end of 50 Shades Of Age. My website will still exist as a resource for travellers doing research. With a very heavy heart I’m saying adios my friends! I’ve enjoyed the ride. I would like to thank all of my followers for their comments, friendship and support over the past eight years.

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By 50 Shades, October 28, 2020 Kathy was a 50 something year old when she started up this blog 6 years ago, but has since turned over another decade and is now in her early 60s. She is married with two adult children and lives on the Tweed Coast of New South Wales, Australia. Kathy enjoys living life to the fullest and loves to keep fit and active by maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly. Some of her interests include reading, photography, travelling, cooking and blogging! Kathy works part-time as a freelance writer but her real passion is travelling and photographing brilliant destinations both within Australia and overseas and writing about it.
  • 20

50 Shades

Kathy was a 50 something year old when she started up this blog 6 years ago, but has since turned over another decade and is now in her early 60s. She is married with two adult children and lives on the Tweed Coast of New South Wales, Australia. Kathy enjoys living life to the fullest and loves to keep fit and active by maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly. Some of her interests include reading, photography, travelling, cooking and blogging! Kathy works part-time as a freelance writer but her real passion is travelling and photographing brilliant destinations both within Australia and overseas and writing about it.

20 Comments
  • Jan
    October 28, 2020

    What a ride it’s been. Good luck, happy travels in your back yard and beyond and enjoy your grand parenting Kathy.

    • Kathy
      October 28, 2020

      Yes it has been a great ride! I know I’m going to miss blogging but it’s time to move on. Thank you for your friendship and unwavering support over the past years Jan. I’m sure we will keep in contact. :)

  • Carol Troop
    October 28, 2020

    Kathy, I have loved your blogs. They gave me great inspiration for holidays, and also great memories of places that I too had visited. I wish you all the best for the future. Thank you, and happy travels :)

    • Kathy
      October 28, 2020

      Thank you so much Carol for your kind words. I truly hope I’ve helped someone and inspired them to travel. There will be many more travels for me, but just not writing about them. :)

  • Debbie Harris
    October 28, 2020

    Hi Kathy, I’ve enjoyed reading your various posts and feel sad that it’s ending for you, but as you say there are new things on your horizon. We both started our blogs in 2012 and I feel you have done far more with yours (and made money!!) than I ever could hope to achieve.I congratulate you on your successes over the years and wish you well in your next adventures. I will still look forward to following along on your other social media platforms. By the way, I must say your paintings have been fabulous lately, you are seriously talented :) Take care x

    • Kathy
      October 28, 2020

      Thank you so much Debbie. I have had a great adventure over the past 8 years and have enjoyed the majority of it. There have only been a couple of times that I’ve wondered “what the hell am I doing this for?” You have certainly also been a stayer and endured the many new technological changes in the blogging world. So well done to you too! I will still be kicking around Insta and Facebook so I will be following you as well. You take care too. xx

  • Annette Jones
    October 28, 2020

    So glad your blog will still remain although its time for you to close this chapter of your life. I’ve always enjoyed reading your posts and the info you’ve provided.

    Congratulations on the upcoming 2nd Grandie, they are so precious.

    Enjoy life! xx

    • Kathy
      October 29, 2020

      Thank you Annette. There’s a lot of my blood, sweat and tears contained in this blog. So the decision to leave it put was an easy one. Hopefully people will still come across it on Google. I’m so glad that I took this path and I am looking forward to the next chapter. xx

  • Min @ Write of the Middle
    October 29, 2020

    Kathy, congratulations on 8 years of blogging! You created a wonderful resource here for those planning travel. I’m glad you’ll be leaving it here for people to access and refer to. I can understand your decision very much. I’ve been blogging for 8 years too – since Sept 2012. There is so much work involved, time, money, research, learning, having to come up with ideas and keep up with technology and the online world. My enthusiasm has waned this year. I’m not sure if it’s Covid or something else. I’m not ready to stop blogging yet but there’s been a shift. I do hope you stay in touch and we will still see you around online and I am still hoping to meet you in person one day! Enjoy those grandchildren (well soon it will be more than one!), and a lighter load on your time. xo

    • Kathy
      October 29, 2020

      Thank you Min. It has been a wonderful journey and I’ve met so many lovely people (like yourself). It is hard to constantly keep motivated and come up with interesting content, plus keep abreast with newest developments and technology. I’ve been struggling a bit with all this. I hope that people do continue to visit my website for travel information. I will be staying in touch for sure and enjoy following all of your adventures. Take care. xx

  • Jenny P
    October 29, 2020

    Kathy, thank you for this fabulous blog. I remember discovering it when we lived inMilan back in 2013. I’ve followed you since then and now I’m inspired by you all over again when I see your Instagram posts.
    Best wishes, Jenny

    • Kathy
      October 30, 2020

      It has been a pleasure. So thank you for being one of my most loyal followers. I truly hope that I have inspired people to get out and discover our great country. Best wishes to you too Jenny xx

  • Fran
    October 30, 2020

    Kathy, as a hopeless commenter I had to take this last chance to say thanks for all your stories over the years.Fran

  • Denyse Whelan
    November 3, 2020

    Congratulations on all you have achieved Kathy! What a great wrap up too. Interesting to see how you have evolved & changed with your future focus. Lovely news about a second grandchild coming. Looking forward to hearing more then too. Thank you for your social media support! Denyse

    • Kathy
      November 3, 2020

      Yes although one page closes for me there is a whole lot more happening ahead for me! I’m very excited about my second grandchild and also taking up some new interests. Thank you for your support over the years and I wish you all the best for the future too. xx

  • Life Images by Jill
    November 19, 2020

    Oh so sorry to see you go. I have not been a regular reader, but when I pop by I always find something interesting and informative to read. Thank you Cathy for your many insights into travel both here and overseas. Blogging certainly opens up the world, and I have made many contacts through blogging. I often wonder for how long I will continue. Congratulations Cathy on the many achievements you have made and your blog – I am sure you have inspired many to travel. Congratulations on the arrival of your new grandchild. Stay safe and happy travels in the future.

    • Kathy
      November 20, 2020

      It has certainly been a wonderful experience and opened up so many opportunities for me. I will miss the world of travel blogging immensely but I knew it was time for me to stop. It’s been lovely to meet people like yourself. You’re extremely talented Jill and I wish you all the best in your future endeavours. I will be popping in to see what you’re up to from time to time. Thank you so much for your lovely comments.

  • Angela Clatworthy
    November 29, 2020

    Hi Kathy
    I am looking into writing Blogs mainly to do with travel aiming for the over 40’s. I came across your inspiration Blog and wanted to say well done, you have given the lift to continue. Not everyone understand the passion to do this and you show hope to people who are not young but young at heart, who are continuing in the second stage of their life.

    • Kathy
      November 29, 2020

      That is wonderful Angela. I wish you the best of luck with your travel blog. It did open up many opportunities on both a personal and professional basis. I loved my job! Thank you for lovely comments.

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