On year three

I was up to my eyes at the time so couldn’t mark the event properly but on the 25th July this website turned three.

As is tradition at this stage I tend to mark this anniversary with a bit of navel gazing about what has happened in the last year, both in terms of the site and in terms of my career.

In pure statistical terms, July 2007 – July 2008 has been a good period for AdamMaguire.com. Of the 40k+ visitors that SiteMeter tells me have visited the site during its existence, over 50% have done so in the past year alone. Every month in the last twelve has seen over 1k visits and only one month (September 2007) has seen less than 2k page views. These are hardly awe-inspiring statistics but given my low profile, the very limited appeal of what I do here and the fact that I don’t blog nearly as much as I should I’m more than happy with them.

Of course as any blogger knows improving statistics do not correlate to an improving career – even when your blog is based around it – but things have thankfully been on an equally upward trajectory in that regard too.

It must have been around this time last year that I realised I had gotten myself into a rut, owing to a mixture of complacency and poor organisation. I was getting published regularly (as the portfolio shows it’s almost entirely in The Sunday Business Post‘s Media & Marketing section) but had not moved much beyond one or two mid-sized pieces a month, even though I had plenty of spare time to fit more work into.

To remedy this I made the decision to expand the base of publications I pitched to and widen the topics I looked to cover – since then I’ve been published in Business & Finance Magazine, The Dublin Informer, Technology Ireland (a trade mag. run by Enterprise Ireland), The Press Gazette, Computers In Business (supplement of the SBP), Village magazine and The Irish Times. I’ve also been on Today FM‘s The Last Word a fair few times in the last year to talk about technology and media, which has been an extremely enjoyable opportunity I hope to continue to have in the months and years to come.

Oddly enough, while I’ve expanded the things I write about in general the bulk of my work in the last year has shifted significantly from media to technology, although It’s my firm belief that the line between these two is narrow and has been blurring for some time, in fact I think it is just a short step away from disappearing altogether. (Mark my words, it won’t be too long until it makes more sense for newspapers and magazines to couple media with technology as opposed to marketing.)

There are one or two things that have not gone quite so well during the year too but I’ve learned as much from the processes that ended in failure as I did from those that ended in success – which is crucial to improving your approach in the future.

For example I did have somewhat of an opportunity to get a job in Village earlier in the year but things just did not work out and it never came about. I took a lot from the experience, however, and frankly while not getting the job gave me some regret at the time I now see that the outcome was actually a good thing for my career (most of my reasons for that conclusion are explained further down this post).

If I have any other regrets I’m thankful to say that the biggest is probably that I’ve not blogged consistently enough. This website has proven to be a crucial tool for me even just in being on people’s radar, and it deserves more than neglect. I do solemnly commit, for the 463rd time, to doing more here over the next year. Another regret is sure to be the lack of progress with Dail30.ie but there’s still plenty of time to put that right.

But as generally positive as the last year has been, it’s the past month that has given me the best news – and likely plenty to talk about in the lead up to the site’s fourth birthday.

Having lived off scraps for the last two years as a freelancer I’m finally (and only very recently) in a position where I’ll have some regular, dependable work in the form of writing the tech spot in Business & Finance magazine. Perhaps even more interestingly, at least in the sense of me not seeing it coming about two months ago, I’ll be taking up a teaching/lecturing post in my old college in September. Needless to say my nerves are wracked at the prospect of teaching but I’m equally excited by the whole thing.

I fully expect both of these new roles to be major factors in this blog in the coming months – hopefully with plenty of other content.

So thanks to everyone who’s read and subbed to the site over the last three years, particularly in the past twelve months. Hope to see you around again for the next few years and more.

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