… later, I complete a decade of writing this blog. A DECADE ! There is a sense of disbelief mixed with pride as I type this out — the annual blog anniversary post where I record the blogging year that was, sum up the highlights, rant a bit, rave a bit, reflect a bit, with hopes and share plans for the year to come…
For those who came in late, let me summarise this blogging journey in brief. “My Favourite Things” began on this day 10 years ago when I hit the publish button on a post about Mumbai’s Bandra Fort. It was supposed to be a travel blog, at least that was the plan. But my blog had a mind of its own and soon I was blogging about movie and book reviews, social issues, and also writing on a lot of miscellaneous topics. Basically, it was a lot of that and this, which kind of worked as my blog URL for a long time was That And This In Mumbai.
I experimented with topics and genres to discover what worked for me — travel, books, art, museums, music — and what didn’t — food and restaurant reviews, product reviews, movie reviews, among others. The external blogging world also impacted my choices for the blog’s content: I flirted briefly with writing sponsored posts and collaborations, but found out that they made me very uncomfortable, and dropped them with great relief. In other words, my blogging journey was also about persevering in what I liked and letting go of what I didn’t like.
The 10 years of blogging have been challenging, particularly in the last few years. I have been publishing lesser number of posts with every passing year. I published only 10 posts in Year 10, but there was a big difference this time around.
So what was different about year 10 of blogging? I didn’t feel guilty about not blogging. I didn’t feel guilty seeing the 50 odd unpublished posts in my Drafts folder. I stopped getting annoyed or irritated or amused with unsolicited mails from those seeking my expertise as an “influencer” (I absolutely dislike the word “influencer”).
Instead, I focused on experimenting with new ideas for the blog. One of them is the Stories from My Home series, which I started on Instagram and was pleasantly surprised at the way it was received. Those posts have since then made their way to the blog with more in the pipeline. The other is at the point where my varied interests — travel, art, books, museums — merge and intersect. My friend Radha realised the potential before me and during Hoysala exploration in Jul-August in 2019, she suggested the idea of me doing short videos explaining some of the Hoysala art in the temples. It started with a suggestion, then a gentle nudge. This was followed by nagging where she pleaded, cajoled and even threatened me to do it.
I agreed after which Radha filmed some videos of me explaining some narrative panels. I was very self-conscious and I fumbled and mumbled and made bloopers. But it is an idea I would like to take forward in Year 11 of blogging (provided the current external environment a.k.a. the pandemic eases up). And also work towards clearing the drafts folder, at least partly, if not fully.
Here’s one of the videos. Do tell me what you think of them:
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In which I attempt to explain a panel that shows a procession of the Ashta (8) Dikpalas (or guardians of the directions) and consorts on their way to visit the Gods – Brahma, Shiva and Vishnu. . The video is unedited which means the bloopers in my narration are there for you to see. Instead of guardians of the directions, I call them gods ! Then I mention Ishana twice and correct myself, and also fumble while mentioning Nritti. 🙈 This video too was shot by the patient and ever encouraging @radzzie. Thank you, dear friend and fellow #HipHopTraveller 😀 #IGTVGram #IndianArt #IndianAesthetics #HoysalaArt #TemplesOfIndia #TemplesOfKarnataka
So, this was a round up of 10 years of blogging with a total of 558 posts comprising 5,18,284 words, 63 videos, 2 audio, and 3,852 images. Till the time of publishing this post, the blog has elicited 8,61,284 page views, 13,840 comments, and 1,09,017 spam comments.
A big thank you, dear reader, for being part of my journey for every like, comment and share; for pointing out typos and errors, and for inspiring me every single day. This blog wouldn’t it be what it is today without you and I appreciate the time you take to read every post.
Onwards to Year 11 of blogging… 🙂