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Sunday, 12 June 2011

A glimpse inside the Goth Guide

Yikes. When the green fairy (no not you Steph, I meant the drink) came to visit last night, I think she had stompy boots on. This is only the second (actually, third) hangover I've ever had, and it hasn't gotten any funner. Ah, yes, this is WHY I rarely drink.

Today I wanted to do a bit more of a personal post, I hope you guys don't mind. I want to give you a glimpse into what goes on 'behind the scenes' at GothGuide HQ (my mum's living room) and a little bit of insight as to what you can expect from me in the future.


Cheesy pose, I know.
You can see more from this shoot in my guest post for Sophistique Noir.
The number-one comment I get from family and friends about this site is, "Why aren't you making money from it if you get so many hits?"

I haven't signed up to Google Ads because I wouldn't have any control about what would be advertised here, and I'm uncomfortable with that - I would not be happy promoting, actively or otherwise, products and services that I haven't seen, used or could honestly recommend.

I also am not selling a product - sure, I could make a Goth Guide book, but it would only be a re-hash of what I say on this blog, and other people have already done it better. Also, this blog has the advantage of letting me interact with my followers, drool over other people's blogs, get other people's ideas and advice, and make friends (I get weirdly attached to my online friends, you have been warned. Dan and I are in talks about travelling the world, and I promise I will make as many side-trips and arrange as many meets with you as I can, although it almost certainly won't be any time soon unless I conveniently win the lottery. Which would be nice, actually.). I do have a bookstore link in my sidebar to my fiction works, but that's mainly for show, I've sold one book in six years and I write them for fun, not for profit. ;-) They're not that great because I write them primarily as my own form of escapism, not to part others from their hard-earned cash.

I do, however, hope to be offering a few items for sale here soon, I'm just figuring out the logistics. Don't get excited, I just decided that five wardrobes was possibly excessive and thought I might see if anyone was interested in some second-hand Gothy bits-and-pieces for low prices. A bit of an online garage sale, if you will.

And in the long-distant future... well, my ambition is to bring out my own range of perfumes and make-up (that's why I'm taking a make-up course), all hand-made and designed by me, and yes, I would possibly use the Goth Guide to help promote this with occasional tutorials and the like - however, this will NOT become an advertising site; you can follow any of my tutorials with ANY products, not just the ones I list. Why? Because I never expected this site to be any kind of success and I do not intend to trade on what, hopefully, I can consider my 'good name' and reputation.

Following my recent poll, I'm intending to introduce some more kinds of posts and mini-series into my blogging activity, including:
  • movie, CD and product reviews as well as just book reviews
  • mini-guides to other alternative fashions and subcultures, I have done a few of these already and they always seem to prove popular ^^
  • home decor and gardening posts and tutorials
  • a series on Goth travel, e.g. Gothy places to visit, and first-person 'tours' of places I visit
  • spooktacular dates you should mark on your calendar
  • music recommendation posts and possibly band profiles
  • dark legends and folklore
  • reviews of token Goth characters in both niche and mainstream books, TV and film
  • interviews with other Goths from around the world (yes you can volunteer yourself, yes I know that The Green Fairy (now I AM talking about Steph) is also doing interviews, we have had a chat and realised we each thought of a different focus, so yes you can be interviewed on both blogs if you so wish) and hopefully, when I get brave enough to approach some people, influential designers, artists, musicians, and writers who we know as stars of the Goth scene. Fingers crossed, anyway.
I might also be popping up on some other places around the interwebs, I'm in talks with a few people at the moment - who have contacted me via this site, blogging really does create some great opportunities!

Lastly, on the subject of 'behind the scenes', I really wanted to thank you all for what I consider the success of the Goth Guide - all right, this is no Gothic Charm School but I do work hard on this site, and to have over 300 followers and - get this - an average of 2500-3000 hits a day over the last month is, for me, absolutely phenomenal and I love love love coming online every day to check my stats, read all your comments and go take a sneaky peek at everyone's blogs. ^^
A screenshot from my Blogger Dashboard, in March this year.
Just one reason why I love my readers.
Without wishing to get *too* gushy, I have met some really amazing and inspirational people via this site - Steph, Kitty, Amy, VictorianKitty, SiouxsieLaw, Sary and Boots just for starters - and look forward to checking out everybody's updates every day. We have such a great community here!

I write everything for this site at my family PC, usually with a cup of tea somewhere close by and wrapped in a black fluffy dressing gown. I'm not trying to look cool, I might not have make-up on, and my hair's probably a mess (it is right now, anyway!) but I've still made friends with some ridiculously talented and well-dressed people, most of whom live on the other side of the world - tell me that's not amazing.

Also, sometimes I've had a really crap day and someone's left me a comment so nice that it's turned the whole day around; sometimes I'm stuck for ideas and there's a note that gets me motivated again... and just knowing that there's this many people who give a flying one about whatever I'm rambling about that day is pretty awesome in and of itself. =)

Yeah, OK, so I'm getting a little gushy. Bite me - I still love you guys, thanks so much for all your advice, talent, brains and beauty, for cheering me up and for all your support.

32 comments:

Dr. Cult said...

Ghehe. It's so funny that most of "our group" associate The Green Fairy immediatly with Steph! :D

jessieann13 said...

You have a truly amazing blog! Your post are always interesting, entertaining, and informative. I don't really know if I'm what anyone would consider goth but I love the culture and the music. I dont feel like I have to be a certain way to be welcomed here and I really appreciate that! You always inspire me to work hard to improve my own blog. I wish you all the success in the world! :)

Ms. Lou said...

I love the blog! I think you should write a book. There's so much info here, I think people would really like it all in a book, even it it was just a collection of your posts. If you ever take a trip to Canada, you are welcome to visit (I just wouldn't advise coming in the winter, as it can go down to
-40 in Winnipeg). Looking forward to any garage sales you might have!

twistedIVY said...

Hi Amy(can I call you that? I don't really know you in ral life so tell me if you'd rather I not), I haven't ever commented on your blog before, but I have been lurking for quite a while, even back when you had the old piczo site. I just wanted to say how much I love it, it's really helpful for a babybat like moi!

Dirgesinger said...

If You'd write a book, I'd definitely buy it, you have such a GREAt way of writing, sweet personality and all the things in a goth that we other goth can love. and you write with such a heart, i love all of your posts.

ps. send Green fairy to me, I need Her like hell.

:P

E said...

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I love love love reading your blog and am ever so grateful that you wouldn't sell out your readers for a quick buck. Best of luck with the cosmetics line!

akumaxkami said...

This was a very insightful post and resonated a lot with me. I'm much the same about writing my blog, with a cup of tea or coffee at my side and usually not dressed to the nines in the fashion that I typically blog about. It's nice to know that others are the same way. ^_^

Anonymous said...

Yeah not reading your blog anymore bye

Ashlee said...

Yay! The comment page has a scroll bar now! I'm sorry, that's a bit off topic.

Now I'm excited to see what perfumes and makeup you will make. I can imagine lots and lots of pretty things.

I actually quite like the idea of you writing a book. It would be pretty hard, I guess to write something you haven't already written, but I like the idea of your blog in book form. I don't exactly agree that other people have already done it better, though. Well, I've only read Jillian Venters' book and Voltaire's book, but you can't really compare an Ultimate Goth Guide book to that. The Lady of the Manners mostly wrote an advice book (be polite and dress well, etc.) and Voltaire's was mostly for lols.

On the subject of money: Five wardrobes?! I can see why you would be wanted to sell some of it off. I don't think that's bad or using your fans for money, it's more like an online garage sale. Like when Aprella sold clothes via FaceBook and The Lady of the Manners has a closet culling.

Another bit about money: You said that you don't want Google ads because you can't control them. You could always rent ad-space for shops, like some of the popular Lolita blogs do. That way you could control it and it would actually be things that your readers might like, instead of whatever randomly gets thrown there.

Hayley said...

I would definitely be interested in your "garage sale online."
You have such a great blog and you're part of a great community of people. I really enjoy getting to read your posts. It makes me feel great to know I'm not the only one with a full closet of black. :)

Angel of Darkness said...

I really love your blog and it's easy to see why so many others do to. What you write is so interesting and inspiring. I can't wait to see more of what you have in store!

A book form of this blog would be so awesome! :D

Heartagram Lady ♥ said...

Awww n_n Amy, I love your blog! And you really are an inspiration for me :)

Kitty Lovett; The Unadulterated Cat said...

"Without wishing to get *too* gushy, I have met some really amazing and inspirational people via this site - Steph, Kitty"

Holy dicking dicks, batman! 0=

Publish a book, Amy! Doit! It would be amazing and I will endorse it! 8D

[captcha is "nosax". No sax for you. Next.]

Qwack said...

Aw.... Anon, that was mean. D:


I love reading tutorials! Yay!
That wasn't as cheesy as it sounds....

Psycho Monkey said...

I don't really know what else to say besides I think you're blog is great. I'm glad you have so many followers and hits :)

ultimategothguide said...

I wasn't fishing for compliments, honestly, guys! But thanks so much for all the kind comments, hopefully the Guide will keep getting bigger and better. ;-)

Do you all really think I should consider making a book? o.O

Also, Anonymous, really not sure what the point of your comment was, let's just say my heart isn't breaking...

Kitty - I want sax, dammit. >.>

The Green Fairy said...

You think YOU'RE getting gushy?! Holy crapola, I was mentioned like fifty times! I'm almost hyperventilating :P Oh shucks :P *blushes* And dammit woman, you'd better come to Australia! I actually was wondering the other day how people would feel if I went overseas and wanted to meet them :P I'm so glad I'm not the only one interested!

I also think you should at least consider publishing something, even if it starts as a little magazine or something. I feel you're much more approachable then a lot of well-known goths.

The goth travel idea I'm really interested in, because when I do eventually get around to going to Europe I wanna know all the hidden nooks and crannies that a goth might be interested in seeing. I should start making a list.

Garage sale FTW! I know I wouldn't be able to wear your clothes because you're so delightfully thin, but I'm so gonna get up in your accessories' grills, dude. :P

Yay for interviews and also your own cosmetics line! Oh and if you start making perfume, I would request you try and re-create Amor & Psyche from my favourite book 'Fas Parfum' pleassssseeeee!

Also, don't get adds unless they're rented spaces ones; please.

<3

The Green Fairy said...

*Das Parfum

ultimategothguide said...

@ The Green Fairy - requests noted ^^

Ahem, WAS delightfully thin. Had an embarrassing moment in front of the boyfriend the other day when I couldn't get into a pair of my own shorts... d'oh. I can assure you that if I look spindly in photos I'm actually a pretty normal shape, not bony or anything!

Approachable? I'm too intimidated by other people to be elitist and too cheerful to be sarky. Whatever works I guess... thank you XD

Zoe Alice said...

^ Totally agree with The Green Fairy about Amor & Psyche - I freakin' love "Perfume" :D

I find it really ispirational that even though you could probably make lot of money out of ads, endorsements, and sales on this blog (3000 hits a day? WOW!), you don't. That's a rare thing in this messed-up, capitalist world (I had a citizenship exam last month I hadn't studied the course for, so I wrote rants about the British government and how we should all adopt socialism. Yes I'm a geek ;), and proves to me you are an honest person with *gasp* MORALS. You win, Amy.

Don't change, girl! Keep your integrals! (Isn't that something to do with maths? I'm sure it is. But I can't think of the right word.)

...Ok, I'm done.

ultimategothguide said...

@ Zoe Alice - I think I love you a little bit ;-)

And to think that I was worried when I started this site that people might think I am really a middle-aged man who still lives in his parents' spare room... ;-)

Oberfinanzdirektion said...

Dark Tales, Legends, Folklore sounds good! :)

Dr. Cult said...

I'm going to blog about the one-day-meeting-for-our-bloggers!

And god, I still need to do the Kandi-project! *pokes Steph*

Julianne said...

I've only started reading recently but I'm looking forward to seeing what you make of all these great ideas!

Also, FYI, you can block ads you don't want on Google Adsense. You have to pay some attention to what appears on your site, but I think you can also block keywords. I've blocked dieting ads in the past I think, but most goth blogs with Adsense blocks from what I've seen tend to get a lot of ads for corsetsuk and goth dating sites, which are pretty inoffensive.

Also, you could join another ad broker instead, Adsense isn't the only option, different companies offer different options. I haven't tried them but lots of fashion bloggers use Project Wonderful, and I think you get to approve every ad.

Julianne said...

How many times did I use the word 'but' in the above comment? Cringe...

siouxsielaw said...

Nice to see behind the scenes. Great post. Especially where you mention Siouxsie Law! Congrats on all of your success.

SiouxsieL said...

P.S. I'd still like you even if you were a middle-aged man.

VictorianKitty (Sophistique Noir) said...

Ah yes, I agree, I loved the part with the honorable mentions! ;-D And the feeling is totally mutual!.!

I'm in if you do the online garage sale. Please tell me we are the same size!! :)

I feel the exact same way when I read a nice comment after a terrible day. Or just when I'm starting to question the point of my blog. It turns my whole brain around and makes me happy because I feel like I'm making others happy.

Anonymous said...

Anon.: You are a coward. So scary, posting anonymously on someone's blog. I'm sure you look like a distended anus, too. Amy is a wonderful person. You are not. Get over yourself, you small-cocked, brainless, empty wanker. At least amy has friends, and some sense of purpose.

-Kitty Lovett; The Unadulterated Cat (who can't log in from her phone)

rose17_rose said...

i just wanted to say that i love ur blog its helped me so much to understand that being goth isnt about the black or hot topic its about the music and that i do belong when i used to think i didnt belong anywhere:D

Amaranth Darkwraith said...

@First ANONYMOUS-- Wow, you're kind of an asshole. Just saying. I hope you break a testicle. Or grow a pair.
@Anonymous (AKA Kitty Lovett; The Unadulterated Cat)-- I am impressed by the power of your vocabulary. I would NEVER IN MY LIFE be able to come up with so witty an insult.
And I'm really not being sarcastic.

@Amy-- First of all, sorry I keep on commenting on your stuff so ex post facto, I only started reading about a month ago, and only just plucked up the courage to start commenting three days ago. Second, you are such an inspiring young woman. For about four years (I'm fifteen), I've been wanting to go down this path (AKA Gothiness xD), and reading your blog finally made me realize that it doesn't have to be complicated- in fact, I've been listening to the music and indulging in lace gloves and the like for YEARS -I just didn't really think about establishing it as my "style", if you will. Thank you for being such a wonderful help! I hope you publish a book! <3
Amaranth

~Gothipire~ said...

If you ever adventure to the USA, and for some crazy reason go all the way to Nebraska. Let me know. It would be super cool to meet you some day!

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