These past six months have been the busiest I have been as a full-time freelance content creator.
There were many mouths to feed – myself included. Many obligations to fulfill. The miles put on for travel content earlier this year was just the beginning of what was to come.
The world started opening up again. We were getting vaccinated, which gave us the license to go wherever we like. There were some places that required a mask to be put on to go inside or to use a plane, train, bus, shared ride service, and so forth. Others welcomed us without one because we were vaccinated.
With an increase in activity towards re-opening up the world, I welcomed many new vehicles. In turn, the stories were written as quickly as possible. On top of other content related to what I do on this site and in other outlets.
That was a lot of work. It was very fulfilling. It returned results in some of the highest traffic numbers since before the pandemic. With that I thank you!
Not to rest on my laurels, I sincerely needed a break. The extended national holiday weekend provided that respite. I was exhausted, even though I tagged along with a club dinner and a car meet the next morning. Once I got home, I was done.
The rest was needed, but I am still feeling the effects of a hectic six months. I’ll recover some energy, but I will do what I can to deliver on the content you want on here.
There are a lot of thoughts that I needed to parse out. Not to bore you with the details, but I felt compelled to pause all thoughts in the past and look onward into the future.
I wanted to reiterate a few things about why I am in this business and the importance of maintaining this space on the Internet and in social media.
Right off the bat, I personally stick to the principle that hard work earns rewards, respect, and relevance. If it did not, then why am I doing this in the first place?
The rewards are not financial, but it relates to other measurable metrics, such as readership and connectivity to stakeholders. However, respect from others who do this work alongside me and of the readership is more important than monetization. Relevance comes from whether you can tell the story to all audiences, regardless of demographics.
These are not things you buy. Why some websites and social media feeds buy their followers and readership are absolutely beyond my comprehension. You have to earn these things! You have to put out quality work to get quality readership and followers! That’s why you have to fight for every page view and feedback you can get!
To get quality traffic, you have to tell your story in your own way. That is how I do it through V&R. Granted, I write for outlets that have more stringent guidelines for writers – it is here where I can express myself freely within comprehensible reason.
Why am I writing all of this? Perhaps this dedication to earning relevance, respect, and rewards, along with working hard towards delivering quality content, have been kicking me in the butt. I had to pause everything, even for a few days.
It was a way to celebrate the good things that happened this year, so far. Moreover, to celebrate ten years of this website and twenty years of this work overall.
As far as the future is concerned, I admit that I am anxious. There is so much more I want to do the remaining half of the year, including travel, media association and manufacturer events, auto shows, more vehicles to work with, more stories to tell, accomplishing professional and community goals, and so forth.
However, I need to pace myself better. Take better care of myself. Not get too wrapped up with being competitive and all of the things that distract me, including dealing with trolls, scammers, and bots that want to intrude upon this work. I do need to protect my work and my personal life, but I have seen a lot attacks upon others thanks to the imposition of evil intent through technology.
I hope your second half of 2021 is a better one for you. We're getting closer towards leaving this pandemic behind. All we have to do is to walk together and put aside what is keeping us from seeing its end to do so.
Now, it’s back to work…
All photos by Randy Stern