Since I’ve started my blog and been introduced to the Wonderful World of WordPress, I’ve been reading a lot of blogs, in particular travel blogs as that is my genre and I tend to attract and gravitate towards other writers of the same vein.
I’ve probably clicked through hundreds of travel blogs by now – the good ones I follow, the not-so-good ones I quickly click past and forget about. The reasons that I don’t follow a blog tend to be the same.
Too many words
One of the reasons most people visit travel blogs is to see another part of the world. Yet there are many blogs out there, particularly from study abroad students, where the author recounts in extreme detail everything that happened – with no pictures. This is fine if I am your mother or grandmother and am pouring over every single word you write, but since I’m not, I quickly grow tired of that. Of course telling stories and recounting what you did is interesting and part of a travel blog, but put some pictures up!
Too many personal pictures
That being said, show some discretion and common sense when you post pictures of your trip.
Picture of you in front of the Trevi Fountain = cute.
Pictures of you in front of every single monument in Rome = ok…
Repeated pictures of you and your friends riding a bus, jumping, eating, etc = I’m already on the next blog. Save those for Facebook.
Simple spelling or grammatical errors
Many authors of travel blogs are writing as they travel, during a brief moment of rest. I appreciate and applaud the effort, although that usually means they’re writing in a hurry and therefore make multiple mistakes. I get that you don’t have a lot of time, but you can read over your post at least once before clicking Publish. It’s hard to read a post with repeated errors.
A picture as the background
I understand that the picture of you in front of Machu Pichu is so cool you want the whole world to see it, but please refrain from using it as your backgroud!! This goes for all blogs. It’s hard on the eyes, the picture repeats itself endlessly as the reader scrolls, and it just plain looks bad.
Misspelling words in foreign languages
Before you use a word or phrase in another language, you should check to make sure you’re spelling it right. If not, you could commit the blogging equivalent of getting a tattoo of a Chinese character that doesn’t mean what you thought it meant or means nothing at all.
Case in point: One time I was reading a post written by someone professing to be an author, when I came across this: j’ ne se qua. I could assume from context that he meant je ne sais quoi, but come on! A quick Google search can show you the right spelling – don’t be lazy. Once I wrote a post with some Romanian words, and you better believe I Googled that junk before putting it up!
Wannabe philosphical posts with vague references to how travel “changes you”
You’re preaching to the choir on this one. People search out travel blogs because they like to travel. We get it. Traveling’s awesome. But seriously, we get it.
Some people have profound experiences while travelling that can only be described as life-changing. Others have witnessed extreme poverty and suffering that has truly given them a new perspective on life. But please spare us the story of how your capital-hopping, university-sponsored, summer study abroad trip “changed your life”.
Am I being a giant stick in the mud, or do these things annoy you too?
**Confession Time: I committed egregious error #3! I had misspelled words in this very post, which my own mother had to correct! They are now corrected, I hope no one noticed them…