This blog, while based on a Tumblr (RIP) started eight years ago, still felt new for much of this year. My website started gaining traffic and although I was often lumped in with “baby bloggers” by others in this field, I felt like I finally started getting some traction with an audience off Tumblr, as well. Just in time, right?
I started working with a lot of new companies this year. I branched out from my long-term affiliates, cut out some not-so-great companies from my recommendations, and started relationships with a few really good small businesses. I also had a few important “personal life” updates.
In April of 2018, my partner and I bought a house. It’s a lovely little Cape in Connecticut that has become a very fitting home for us and our two cats. Going through the process of buying a house together has brought us closer than before, and knowing that we have the freedom to modify and improve our home gives us a lot of hope for upcoming years. It’s a blessing to be paying a mortgage instead of rent, and I hope that this home serves as a basis for a better life for us in the future.
My partner ended his teaching career this past summer, and for a while it was a little scary. I spent months worrying but hoping he’d find a suitable job by the time our money ran out. I’m very happy to report that he has started a new career that not only pays well and provides him with benefits but also has him coming home every evening to tell me how much he loves his job. Seeing him flourish in this new field is a wonderful feeling, and I have so much hope and optimism for his future in this new field.
My partner and I have also explored a lot more in the terms of our polyamorous relationship. While we’ve played with others and shared partners in the past, I’ve begun seeing a few partners solo and even entered into a new relationship with one of them. They’ve all met and we do board game nights like a proper nerdy polycule. It’s cute–and it’s been going really well for us. There have definitely been bumps in the road, but we’re learning how to better our relationship(s) with open communication every single day and I don’t know if I’ve ever been happier with my dating life.
Woodhull’s Sexual Freedom Summit
This summer, I ended up raising enough money from generous donors and my sponsor, Tantus, to drive down to Alexandria, Virginia and attend the 2018 Woodhull Sexual Freedom Summit. Getting to go to Woodhull was definitely the highlight of my year. I never expected to get to meet and form bonds with all the amazing sex bloggers that I did. I had a really fantastic week of professional development, attending workshops and networking with sex toy companies and other professionals in my field.
Woodhull was probably the most important professional step I’ve taken as far as my blogging and I could not be happier with how it went. I’m hoping like hell I can raise enough money to go back next year!
This year I was nominated and won spots on two blogging award sites! I’d never even been nominated before so this was a big deal for me to get this sort of recognition. I even placed FIRST in one of the categories!
Over at Kinkly, I placed 1st in their “Sex Toy Review Blog” section and 2nd in their “Reader’s Choice” section. I was so excited and couldn’t believe how well I did when I was alongside so many incredible bloggers!
In addition, I also placed 36th on the Top 100 Blogs chosen by Molly’s Daily Kiss. Again, this was an incredible honor and I was so touched to be on a list alongside names I have read and admired for years. Also, now that I’ve been to Woodhull, I knew some of them personally!
A huge thank you to those of you who nominated me for those awards!
As 2019 approaches, I want to set myself up for more success in the upcoming year. I like how far I have come in the last 12 months, but there is still so much more that I’d like to get done. The community of sex bloggers (AKA #blogsquad) that I’ve found myself in is so supportive and connecting with them this last year has given me so many ideas for my own content as well as some literal life goals. Here are my five main goals for 2019:
1. Shift the balance of my main source of income to the blog
I have a day job that is super flexible where I basically build my own schedule and work when I want to. It’s great for me in the sense where I can work around my fluctuating mental health, my needs at home, and when I need to get work done for the blog. This year, I’ve spent a lot of time “working from home,” which doesn’t mean working my day job, but working on sex blogging. My partner has been very supportive of this, both emotionally and financially. However, for 2019 I want to really focus on shifting my main source of income to the blog itself so I don’t have to rely on my day job or my partner as much.
If you’re wondering how you can help me out with that, you can remember to use the affiliate links on my sidebar or in my reviews. If you’re a company or organization in the sexuality field and you want to work together via reviews, ad space, sponsored content, etc. you are more than welcome to contact me.
2. Attend Woodhull’s Sexual Freedom Summit in 2019
Because this event was so important to me, I’m really aiming to go back to Woodhull’s Sexual Freedom Summit in 2019! I’m even thinking about submitting a proposal to do my own workshop there, but I know the pool of applicants is usually full of some really great sexuality experts so I’m a bit intimidated. I think I’m going to go for it, though.
Regardless of whether or not I apply to present, I want to go back to educate myself further and find more networking opportunities. If you’d like to make a donation to those funds please do so here and note that it is for Woodhull 2019.
3. Connect with more sponsors
I’ve really branched out from my few main affiliates this year and started selling ad space and doing sponsored content and I truly love it. I’ve especially enjoyed working with smaller businesses that I know and trust to make good products. In 2019, my goal is to send more article pitches to companies I think could pair well with my audience and take more chances when it comes to putting my brand out there. I need to work on having more confidence in my abilities to do well because when I do connect with other brands, it’s always a very positive experience!
4. Take steps towards hosting my own workshops
I co-hosted a workshop on polyamory and BDSM back in November of 2016 on a Connecticut college campus and haven’t done any workshops since. This is something I have a lot of anxiety about, but it’s something I also think I can do well and would get comfortable with if I just put myself out there more and went for it.
In 2019, I will be creating several workshop structures and pitching them to college campuses, sex shops, and other sex-positive spaces. I’m going to stop holding back on this aspect of sex education and see what I can put out there into the world.
5. Work on educating myself to help my blog grow
Starting a website (and essentially a business) isn’t something I ever really prepared for. I started blogging on a public platform as a hobby and it wasn’t until I got my own website and started turning this into a career that I realized how much you need to know to make something like this work! I didn’t know coding or web management. I didn’t know about SEO optimization or photography. I didn’t know how to price my services or keep a log on finances. I didn’t even HAVE a Twitter until this year–let alone know the social media management of several new platforms. There’s so much about being a sex blogger that makes me wish I had taken a single business class in school because I had to learn it all as I went along and it wasn’t easy.
This year, I want to work on improving my skills in these areas. I want to make sure I know how to run my website efficiently, take pleasing feature photos, learn some business basics, or maintain a stronger social media presence. I have a tough time focusing on self-teaching, but I’m going to try to access more resources and really try. Earlier this year, I purchased a guide by Taryn on SEO for sex bloggers and, damn it, I’m going to read it!
I had such an amazing and productive year in 2018 and I hope to continue that in 2019. I feel motivated to tackle the upcoming months and be as productive as I can be! What kind of things did you accomplish in 2018? What are your New Year’s goals?