Sunday, February 27, 2011

Google re-rank worries and newest articles

It's the 27th and I'm one article away from reaching my goal of 21 articles in February.  I got a slow start at the beginning of the month, but picked up speed mid-way and have been working hard the last couple of weeks, producing at least one, if not two articles every day.

I had a bit of a jolt that led to some panic the other day.  Google has done some re-ranking of sites to weed out the crap and bring good, relevant content to the forefront of searches.  Turns out, all three sites I work for are what Google calls 'content farms' and they've dropped significantly in the rankings.  When I read this information, I definitely panicked at first.  I wondered how it was going to affect my page views and revenue, and whether my dream of being a freelance writer was going to end shortly after it had begun.  I read a lot of posts in forums for each site I belong to and although there are people panicking, threatening to quit writing, or take their work elsewhere, there were quite a few people who chose to be the voices of reason.  These people said that Google re-ranks content every few years and things will settle back down, and that the sites that are considered content farms will hopefully do something so that they're not seen as content farms anymore.  People suggested to give it some time and see if the numbers and rankings settle out or even return to normal. 

It's hard because writing is part of who I am.  I've always wanted to be a writer - always.  I know that writers write, and it shouldn't be all about the money and it's not, not for me anyway - as someone who's just starting out, I'm not making great money and if I didn't love what I do so much, I'd find something else to pay the bills.  I realize I could do both, but when I love this so much and I'm able to dedicate my life to it, why shouldn't I?

So I'm going to continue to plug away, doing what I love most and just hope and pray that things work out for me.  After all, what's the alternative? 

Here are this week's articles:

I figured with mid-terms and finals coming up for both high school and college/university students, an article about Tips for Students to Stay Focused While Studying might be helpful.

I love reading writers' profile pages, but I've seen some that I just shake my head at.  Others draw me in and make me want to read that writer's work.  It helped me to come up with Information That Should Go on an Online Writer's Profile Page.

With Saint Patrick's Day coming up, I thought I'd do a few articles that relate to Ireland or Irish things.  Since I love Claddagh rings and want one really badly, I thought I'd research The History and Meaning of Irish Claddagh Rings.  I cannot believe how well this article has done so far - the pageviews its received and the Facebook 'likes' have made me so happy.  This was post-Google re-ranking and although most of the page views have come from places like HubPages itself, Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon, etc, it's given me hope.

As a new online writer, I've learned a lot.  Fiction writing and writing articles are so different and I thought that people who are just starting out might find some tips and tricks from a fellow newbie helpful, which produced the article Writing Online - Things I've Learned as a New Online Writer.

Last week, I wrote my first-ever book review, and today I wrote my first Movie Review: Gnomeo and Juliet - A Winner For Children and Parents Alike.  Amanda, Noah and I went to see this movie on Friday and we loved it.  I hadn't been to the theatre for ages, and I'd never seen a 3D movie before, so it was a lot of fun!

I've also updated my Knitting for a Good Cause lens on Squidoo with updates on Grama's progress, and my own progress as well.  She's an inspiration and I hope if you're reading this, you'll check it out and maybe even join my challenge!

So, that's what I've been working on this week.  I have another piece done, I'm just organizing pictures for it and it should be up tomorrow.  I need just one more article to make my goal, so hopefully I don't have many interruptions tomorrow!  For now, I'm off to make dinner and watch the Oscars.  I hope everyone had a great weekend!


  1. Marie,
    I'm posting this on Facebook as well so I'm sure you will see it.
    I've been hearing about this Google thing constantly. Part of the problem, as I see it, is that so many sites do publish so much crap. I've decided to handle it this way and this is rather confidential:
    There will be a BIG difference between budding writers and Elite writers, including pay scale. One of the things I want to achieve, however, is to help budding writers become better writers. Many of the writers on Triond, for example, write in English when English isn't their primary language! I applaud them but want to help edit their grammar, as well!
    So, part of our purpose will be to assist budding writers to get better at their craft.
    Secondly, there is always room for well-written content on the Internet; well-written and factually correct. Since I'm not an MD or an MBA, I will only accept articles on medical issues from M.Ds, RNs or LVNs when appropriate. I also hope to lure on board some excellent Science writers and if one is going to write an article on the biology of the crab, that person better be qualified to do so. I will do this to the best of my ability so that thepencentralelite will grow to be a site that people can count on for reliable information.
    This is just part of what I hope to achieve but I really can't get all worked up about Google's deal because Google, above all, has always been "all about the money from advertising." I doubt they'll cut their own throats when their OWN revenue begins to drop! Follow my thinking?

  2. Thepencentral sounds exactly like what is needed right now. There is so much crap out there, it's amazing to me. I think that people who can't really write should stick to blogs and not try to write articles for writing sites because then the people who can actually write are the ones who get screwed with a re-ranking like this. There needs to be more editing and more deleting/banning of bad content on sites that want to be taken seriously.

    I'm so excited about the launch of TPC, I can't wait!


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