Hi! I’m Deah, I’m from the US, and I’ve been blogging about my travels for a long time! I started my travels working as an international high school teacher, then transitioned to library work. I’ve traveled to 124 countries; about 80 with my husband Chris and the rest either solo or with friends. After teaching abroad for nine years, I moved back home to the US (Virginia), but now we are on the road again on a fabulous 16-month adventure!
1. How long have you been blogging?
I started my blog in 2003 when I moved to Haiti for my first international teaching job. Back then my blog was on AOL, so that tells you how long ago that was! It’s morphed a few times and is now on WordPress.
2. Are you a full-time blogger or do you also have another job/career?
I am a high school librarian, but I have taken this year off work to travel- and to blog.
3. What got you started into blogging?
I started my blog because I was living in Haiti, a beautiful Caribbean island. I wanted to show my mom and my friends the photos of this beautiful place and email wasn’t capturing that. Then we had a coup d’etat there and writing about it as it was happening was fascinating. I realized I wanted to write about all my travels as I was experiencing them, a kind of first-hand history and geography project.
4. What is your blog about and how does it help others?
My blog is about traveling to new countries. I consider us “flashpackers”- so we’re not exactly on a shoestring budget but we’re not exactly going five star luxury (unless we find a great deal). In general we figure out routes and accommodations on our own, but occasionally we join a tour. I try to give practical info about costs in my blog, as well as a brief overview of the history of a place.
5. What is working for you and your blog? Why?
I used to do my own photos, but now my husband Chris takes most of our pics and edits and sorts and tags them- which is a huge help! Occasionally one of mine makes the cut, but his pictures from his Canon EOS 7D usually turn out so much better!
6. What did not work out so well for your blog? Why?
I hate the way ads look on my page so I actually pay more to turn them off. I like a clean look! I don’t monetize my blog; it’s mainly just a hobby for me and a way of remembering where I’ve been and what I’ve done.
7. What tools, programs, apps do you use to create your blog/website (tools that you can’t live without)?
I’m currently on WordPress, but since I have so many photos, I have to pay more for extra storage. Their prices are going to increase when I have to renew soon, so I’m starting to think about moving my site and learning how to self-host it and get a little more flexibility. But I’m on the road right now with just my I-phone so I need to wait till we get home before I make a major change.
8. What piece of advice would you give to someone who is interested in starting a blog?
I find WordPress to be pretty easy for beginners. That’s really all I know!
9. What do you have planned for the future of your website?
We are in Central Asia right now, which has such a fascinating history- the Silk Road, a meeting of cultures, Soviets, etc. I’m really loving this part of the world. In late May I will be hiking the Camino Santiago in Spain on my own, and in July my husband will join me again and we’ll be exploring Moldova, Ukraine, and Belarus. And in August we’ll be attending Burning Man for the second time- an amazing amount of art and general weirdness there. Definitely check back for those pics!
10. Where can everyone find you?
For now I just blog and tweet. (I used to have a Facebook page and an Instagram but I found them both relentless so I quit). You can find my blog at www.palmtreemusings.com
And my Twitter handle is @palmtreemusings
If you enjoyed this post, please leave a comment below. Your comments really help and I read and respond to each one. If you are a little shy, email me at dan(at)danswords.com. Just like the comments, I respond to every email.
Until next time everyone,