Sunday, March 31, 2019

4 Years of Adventures

My, how time has flown! Adventure Awaits is past its toddler stage and is now four years old! (Who am I kidding, though; it's still a Very Small Child.)

Despite my spotty absences in the past seven months, I treasure this space. And the reason I treasure it is because of you! This is a gathering place for book dragons and adventurers and old souls. I've met so many wonderful people in the comments here. So thank you! If you've ever read a post or left a comment or two or a hundred, I appreciate you!

To celebrate four years of bloggerly adventures with all of you, I've dreamt up some reminiscent lists. Read on, friend. There might be some announcement-type items at the end.

Four Friends I've Met Through Blogging

I could probably list 400 friends I've met through Adventure Awaits (okay, maybe not quite that many), but four that spring to mind are . . .

  • Jenelle Schmidt - half of the brainpower behind the Silmarillion Awards, a lovely author, and supermom of four hobbits
  • Mary Horton - if it weren't for her adorably long comment years ago, I never would've met this lovely friend who steadfastly holds to the light
  • Blue - this fellow old soul deserves a gold star for her loyalty and faithful commenting
  • Emily - who became my Scottish pen pal and critique partner thanks to bonding over each others blogs

These four ladies are dear friends whom I probably wouldn't have met otherwise! And I honestly could sit here all day listing so many more, along with friends I met elsewhere but have since connected with through blogging as well. YOU ARE ALL AMAZING.

Four Guest Posts

We've seen a modest number of interviews and guest posts over the years, but here are four particularly good ones.

Four Special Things I've Written for the Blog

  • hey dreamer // a love letter to creatives and dreamers everywhere
  • The Cage // a creepy story for Halloween
  • Fantasy in My Veins // not a fictional story, but a tribute to the mark that fantasy has made on my life
  • Rewritten // a self-aware look at the torture characters go through (mwahaha)
And as a bonus (yep, we're breaking the rule of four), here's Ann Marie. As it turns out, this is one of the very earliest inspirations for my main work-in-progress, The Brightest Thread. I didn't know at the time that a spark from that flash fiction would become a faint echo in TBT!

Four Struggles of Blogging

  • Finding ideas! I'm out of practice due to college life, but blogger's block happens even when I'm posting regularly.

Searching For Inspiration - Writers Write
  • Taking the time to visit other blogs. I've been almost completely MIA on my friends' blogs lately, and I want to find a way to change that!

  • Imposter syndrome. You know how it goes. "Who am I to speak to others? What do I have to teach? I'm no expert. Who am I to inspire anyone? I'm as messed up as they are. I'm not like what people think I am." It's a load of garbage, but we probably all face those thoughts from time to time.

  • Balancing authenticity and privacy. I love sharing life with you all, but sometimes it's hard to know how much of life to share online.

Four Joys of Blogging

  • Connecting with followers and other bloggers. You all are the best, okay? I can't say it enough. It's the relationships formed that make this so fun and rewarding!

  • Writing discipline. Not counting these past few months (*cough*), blogging has helped me regularly exercise my writing muscles. Holding myself accountable to a schedule means learning how to show up to the table even when the Muse declines the invitation.

  • Reflection. My monthly Subplots and Storylines posts are signposts showing me how far I've come, inspirational posts cause me to reflect, and others force me to define my thoughts. It's a good exercise, putting what's in my head into actual words.

23 Awesome Facts You Probably Didn’t Know About “The Lego Movie” Vitruvius’ line, “Ah, we gotta write all that down ‘cause I’m not gonna remember any of it, but here we go,” wasn’t originally in the script. It was only added when Morgan Freeman said it during filming because he was frustrated with all the line changes.
  • Making a difference. I won't bother to quantify what sort of difference I make here. That's impossible. But I have long dreamed of lighting hearts aflame with words. Publishing is a long, long journey, so it has been pretty incredible in the meantime to send words into a corner of the world and (hopefully) fan a few flames.

Four Things I've Learned About Blogging

  • It's not about me. I mean, YES, obviously I talk about myself here. Quite a bit, in fact. But I am gradually learning that the purpose of my journey is not me. My highs and lows are, in fact, a means of connecting to others taking their own journeys. And so I try to structure my posts as a means of illustration and companionship to make your path a little better.

  • It's okay to talk about me. Doesn't that contradict the first point? No, because part of that companionship is me being me. Offering up a piece of myself, however silly and trivial or deep and heartfelt. We need each other. It's actually inspiring to hear someone ramble about what they're passionate about or share a story of what they're going through! I can recognize that in others, so it's about time I recognize that in myself.

  • We are lazy readers. Short paragraphs. Lots of images. Lots of white space. Easy to read fonts and light colored backgrounds. Please and thank you.

  • When the well runs dry, there's a good chance you've stopped adventuring. This applies to all of life, all of creativity. You can't write about new things if you're not experiencing new things. It's hard to produce good content if you're not living life, dreaming dreams, meeting people, getting things done, etc. Get out and go on an adventure. Live a life worth writing about!
I got You're free-spirited and adventurous.! The Color You Love Most Will Reveal A Deep Truth About You

Four Ways I'm Going to Improve as a Blogger

College is over in just one month! Which means I'll have time to sweep out the dust bunnies around here and start posting more often. I've learned a l o t in the past couple of years, and I'm excited to start executing on some of those things! So here are four ways I plan to improve as a blogger.

  • We are moving house! Yes sirree, if you missed the mentions in earlier posts, Adventure Awaits is going to pack up and move to a self-hosted website. Blogger has served me well, but I would like to step it up in terms of design and professionalism. Tentative moving date is the end of April/sometime in May! Don't worry, I'll keep you all in the loop and make sure that migrating to the new platform goes as smoothly as possible.

  • Post regularly. No explanation needed there!

  • Hone my focus. I'm going to zoom in on my niche (once I define what that is for me) so that I can offer you sharper, more valuable content on a consistent basis!

  • Launch my super secret project. Yeah, everyone and their pet dragon has a "super secret project," and yeah, you might've forgotten mine because it's been forever since I dropped a hint. But! It is stillll on the backburner! And I'm more excited than ever to get it going for real. (Note: the fact that this secret project is listed under improvements as a blogger might be a big hint in and of itself.)

Well, friends, let's pass out the chocolate cake and break out the balloons. Thanks for popping by for my fourth blogoversary! I'm looking forward to many more years with you!

Image result for divergent four gif
(I couldn't resist, Four.)


  1. Oh my goodness, CONGRATULATIONS on four years of blogging! That’s so exciting!

    Good luck on transferring to a self-hosted website and launching the Super Secret Project! I can’t wait to see what you do in the coming years!

    1. THANK YOU, NICOLE! *throws confetti and hugs you*

      I'm looking forward to working on both! Thank you for following along and sharing in the adventure!

  2. Four Years, wow! Time really flies. Excited about the move, Blogger does seem to have it's limits. Your blog has always been one of my favorites! It's been cool to watch it grow.

    1. It does! Doesn't feel like it's been that long. ^_^

      Awww, that means so much! Thank you! I love having you here. <3

  3. Yay for four years! I'm excited to find out what your secret project is and see what you do with the blog once you move it!

    1. Thanks, Emily!!! I'm super duper excited to unveil it all... soon. Ish. ;)


    I absolutely and completely adoooored this whole post! So, so many good thoughts!

    I don't think I knew (or remembered?) Anne Marie was inspiration for TBT. I vividly remember that beautiful piece! How special it sparked TBT!

    Your four blogging struggles are SO relatable. Goodness, yes! I feel like I struggle with those daily. Blogging takes SO much time and mental energy. But I love it, I do. All the joys outweigh the hardships tenfold. And I LOVE the joys you listed. Your blog absolutely has fanned flames. I can't tell you how many posts you've written that spoke to me at such a deep level, and refreshed my soul. Your words have so much power. It's beautiful and inspiring. <3 For example...

    Your very next list! Those are SUCH good things to remember when blogging. YES.

    I'm sooo excited about all the things you have planned, and the many more years to come of your beautiful words. Happy Blogiversary again!!! <33333

    1. THANK YOU TO ONE OF *MY* FAVORITE BLOGGER PERSONS! <333 You're so sweet, and you've been incredibly encouraging this whole time.

      It wasn't *supposed* to be, but I stumbled across Ann Marie after the fact and realized OH, it carries some common threads! (No pun intended.)

      It's definitely an investment! (One that I've neglected lately, but for good reason. Looking forward to coming back full force!) YES, the joys are worth all the work! And awww, girl, I'm going to cry now. <333

      Thank you again, Christine! Here's to many more years of being blogging buddies! :D


  6. (SO I've been low-key stalking your blog for a while. Not sure if I've ever left a comment, though. Aha. *cough*) BUT EEK CONGRATULATIONS ON FOUR YEARS OF BLOGGING!!! That is crazy!! You definitely deserve all of the cookies!!

    Also I think I might have died at >> everyone and their pet dragon has a "super secret project" <<'m totally guilty of this. XD BUT IT'S SO MUCH FUN I CAN'T NOT HAVE ONE. XD

    I am so excited for all the new things to come!!! Congratulations again!!! *flings confetti*

    1. KENZIE! I feel like I sort of know you, actually! Don't you comment on Musings of an Elf??? Also hiiii, I love blog stalkers! Welcome! *will gladly take cookies*

      WE ARE ALL GUILTY OF THIS. And you're right, it's way too fun to be a tease and work on secret things behind the scenes. Maybe it's the writer/book dragon in us? We like suspense and cliffhangers?

      Thanks so much!!!

  7. Wow, four years...
    It's been wonderful reading! Thank you for sharing with us these four years, and happy Blogversary!
    (Looking forward to seeing that Super Secret Project take wing!)

    1. It's starting to age me. XD

      Thank YOU for reading and commenting so faithfully! It means a lot, my friend!

      (Me too. It's going to be fun! ;))

  8. AGHH YAY!! Happy blogiversary, Tracey!!! *throws confetti in the air*

    "We are lazy readers" <~ Way to call me out like that...XDD But it really is so true! It's funny how we (at least I) feel like so much time and effort needs to be put into blog posts, when in reality, they'll probably just be skimmed most of the time. XD And don't feel too bad about not visiting others blogs very often...I've been struggling with that too... O-o

    I am sooooo curious about this Super Secret Project...But I suppose I will just have to wait. *impatiently twiddles thumbs*

    1. THANK YOU! *twirls in confetti*

      Wellll, I am also calling out mySELF, because I'm bad that way. At least lately. >.> It's making me realize that shorter really is better. People's attention spans, which are already not great, are even worse online. XD

      *snickers evilly* I'm looking forward to unveiling it sometime hopefully soonish! ;)

  9. Happy blogoversary!!!! Loved reading about this, and awwwww thanks for the shout-out! Meeting you online (and in person last summer!) has been one of the highlights of my blogging-journey!!!

    Beautiful post and good reflections. Zeroing in on my niche on my blog is something I'm still trying to figure out as well... :)

    Very curious about your Super Secret Project!

    1. Thank you, Jenelle!!! <3 You've been such a wonderful blogging buddy! And YES, meeting you in person was the actual coolest. :D

      Ah yes, the ever-elusive niche. I have a lot to chew on myself in that regard!

      Mwahaha... >:D

  10. This is such a clever blogoversary post ... and the Divergent image at the end; so hilarious! Congrats to four years!

    1. Thank you, Keturah! I couldn't NOT include Four in a fourth blogoversary post. XD

  11. Happy Blogiversary Tracey! :D I really enjoyed this post ^.^
    Also I am very very curiuos about the super secret project..

    1. Thank you, Sarah! I've loved having you along for the ride. :D

      Heehee, all will be revealed in due time...

  12. Happy 4th birthday to your blog! I'm so glad to have found you here and gotten to be part of your journey, and I can't wait to see what the future looks like! I also can't wait to find out what your super secret project is! :D *bounces up and down excitedly*

    1. Thank yooouuu! And I'M so glad to have you met here in the blogosphere! Your comments always make me smile! <3 Also your excitement is g r e a t, and I can't wait to let everyone behind the curtain!

  13. I love this format! It's awesome! And so exciting moving URLs! I'm hoping to do that in the summer! So much excitement!

    1. Thank you! (I have my friend Arielle to thank for the idea. ;)) So cool that you're moving too! It seems like quite a few of us are making the switch this year. :D