Post Number 500

This is the 500th post on ScottHYoung.com. Although some of the posts are news-related, if you include the 100-200 articles I’ve written off the website, 3 e-books and an interactive program, I’d guess I’ve written more than 500 articles worth of content.

I thought I’d take this opportunity to share a little about how the site has evolved, where it is now and where I want to take it in the future.

It’s been a lot of fun writing and while it hasn’t always been easy, connecting with readers has made it worth the effort. I’m amazed at the quality of reader comments, which are both insightful and don’t have the usual hostility and bickering notorious for internet communities.

Where We’ve Been

My first post to this blog was in February of 2006. For the first month I had less than 10 visitors and was thrilled when I got my first linkback to my article What is Important? It was six months until I started monetizing the website and my first months AdSense earnings were $40.

Flash-forward to today and what do we have?

  • 647 individual websites that have pointed to ScottHYoung.com in the last six months.
  • Nearly 6000 subscribers through Feedburner (I estimate about 8000-9000 regular readers)
  • Although I’m definitely not rich, I expect this website to earn roughly $15000-$25000 in 2008.
  • Has been one of the 4000 blogs out of over 2 million.

I estimate that between articles for this website, offsite articles, e-books and programs I’ve written about 750 000 words of content. I wouldn’t be surprised if other bloggers I know have written a few million. I think the reason most people fail at blogging has less to do with probability and talent and more to do with not being able to sweat out a million words of content.

Where We’re Going

I’m thrilled about all the progress the website has made, but I still have big ideas for where I think it could go:

In the next few months…

  • An E-Book on E-Mail/Internet Productivity. I’m working with a blogging friend on a small, upcoming e-book designed as a guide to simplifying and speeding up your e-mail habits. I’m not going to be directly involved in the pricing, but I’m estimating the book will be 5-10 dollars.
  • A “Best Of…” book/e-book. One of the problems with an archive of 500 posts, is that most readers will read new content but won’t dive into old content. I’ve been brainstorming various ways to solve this archive problem, which I expect will be even bigger as I continue writing. One way is to do a “Best Of…” book that organizes the best 50-100 posts. Considering the content is already free, I’d probably release the e-book version for free and have a low-cost hardcover version through Lulu.

In the next few years…

For the most part, I’ve stopped setting goals beyond 2-3 years. Goal setting is useful for a short time frame, but considering the rate of change in my life, 5-10 year plans aren’t realistic. Ninety percent of my life today wouldn’t have been recognizable three years ago. I’m sure life when I’m 22, three years from now, will be nothing like how I can imagine it today.

For that reason, I don’t have any specific plans for this website. Hopefully, I can provide value to people and continue growing the website. A few ideas I’ve had for the future:

  • Enhanced Website. Blogging technology can be both a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, existing technology allows me to immediately communicate with thousands of people. On the other hand, I feel there is so much more that could be done to make this website more valuable. Smarter archives, better commenting functionality, easier searching and organization of content are just a few of the ideas I’d like to put in place.
  • Professional Speaking. Public speaking is a completely different medium than blogging. I’m not sure how much crossover exists between how I write here and potentially speaking to an audience, but I’d love to look into that more.
  • Publish a Book. A few people have nudged me into trying to get a book published. Right now I’m happy focusing on my online presence and digital content, but this is something I’d definitely want to look into in the future. With many of my blogging friends getting books published, this looks like too much fun to ignore.
  • Personal Development Systems. One of the problems with the content of this website is that articles are really a poor way to train new ideas. I read hundreds of articles a month, but most of my implementing of ideas is completely separate from that. I think the internet and technology has amazing potential to connect people and transform content, so I’d like to invest more time in systems that can make it easier to put great ideas into practice.
  • Continue Writing Articles. Hopefully in another year or two I’ll be able to claim my thousandth post on this website. Until then, thanks for reading the website, hopefully you’ll continue to make this the best job in the world.

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