Footnote 7: Of advertising and feedback

WordPress accepted our Word Ads application, so this means that we have ads on The Background Story. Those ads can’t be resized or repositioned, but they can be switched off. We do wish to earn a little extra, but we care about what you think.

Are the ads distracting or unnoticeable? Can you ignore them, or do they take up most of your attention? Do you think it will benefit our blog or harm it in the long run? We would like to know your opinion!

Advertisements

Footnote 6: Of 6th month celebrations and every-other-day updates

Our blog just hit its 6th month today! Thank you very much for your support. So far, we’ve had 35,174 views, 566 followers, and 8,029 unique visitors from 102 countries. We know our numbers aren’t that much compared to other blogs, but we’re still very happy with what we have so far.

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Until now, we’ve been posting entries on a daily basis. However, starting tomorrow, we’ll update every other day. This means that we’ll have more time to produce high-quality content for your enjoyment. 🙂

If you like our blog, please feel free to share it with your family and friends.

If you’re not a WordPress member, there are several ways to follow us so that you can keep up with our updates:

Facebook
Twitter
Bloglovin’
Pinterest
RSS feed

Once again, thank you very much for your support!

Footnote 5: Of taking breaks on long weekends

There will be no new entries on Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Black Saturday because all of us will be away for the long weekend for some self-reflection and of course, sleep. We’ll be like this:

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

We’ll be back with a new entry on Easter Sunday. See you!

Footnote 4: Of favorite entries to our V-day contest

Happy Valentine’s Day! May this day be full of love and joy for all of you.

Thanks to everyone for joining our little contest. We might not have received as many entries as we would like, but we did get enough for us to choose our top five. 🙂

The winning entry is from Ehpem. You can click here to view it.

Here are our four favorites other favorites, in no particular order:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

bride, wedding, sepia

Pure love begins, along with a new life,
when you choose to walk down the aisle;
and it ends not, for it is this very pure love
that will last for eternity.

Photo and text by Richard C. So

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

wedding rings, gold rings, jewelry

My stories have always started with “once upon a time”
for I believed love exists only in fairy tales.
But you came along to write
“and they lived happily ever after” in it.

Photo and text by Glaiza G. Olase

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

reflection, solitude, alone

I search for fragments of my love,
to skip,
like beach worn agates,
across the surface of your cold heart.

Photo and text by Ehpem

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

path, walkway, road, tree-lined street

You will never find out
where the path leads
until you walk it.

Photo and text by David Agnew

Footnote 3: Of contests and Valentine’s days

Valentine’s day is less than a week away. With that in mind, we decided to hold a contest!

Just send us your photo-and-caption pair along with your name and blog link. In return, you get the chance to have your work posted as an entry this coming Valentine’s day. We’ll include your name and blog link, of course. 🙂

The rules are pretty simple:

1) Photos and captions should be your original work. If you want to work with a friend (you take a photo, they write a line or vice versa), also send in your friend’s name and blog link.

2) No blog link? Send the link to any of your social networking accounts or online profiles.

3) Photos should be 384 x 576, or 576 x 384. If you can’t get those exact dimensions, resize your photos as close as possible to the given measurements.

4) Captions should be short. We’re sorry for not being specific, but you can check our entries to get an idea of our blog’s average caption length.

5) Photo-and-text pairs should follow this theme: Love, how it ends and begins again. Interpret it any way you want.

6) Entries should be sent to thebackgroundstory@gmail.com by Feb. 14, 5am (GMT+8).

The winning entry will be posted on The Background Story. The rest will be posted here on Footprints and Margins. All the entries we’ll post will have the sender’s name and a blog link.

We hope to get many entries to choose from!

Footnote 2: Of horror and hope, loss and love

Life is short. We don’t know when it’s going to end. We could be here today, taking photos and writing lines, but be gone tomorrow, or maybe even later tonight. Or perhaps, as soon as the next hour, minute, or second arrives. The same thing can happen to you, too. It’s a truth we face in every single day that is given to us, which is why it’s very important to savor each moment and dare not to waste even one.

But the fact that death is a part of life does not ease its devastating blow on the loved ones left behind. Death is much harder for the living — those people who are expected to find a way to go on even after their world ended.

Last weekend, death came in the form of flash floods caused by Typhoon Washi (locally named Sendong), sweeping away hundreds of people from their homes in the southern part of our country, the Philippines. Survivors are still looking for missing family members who, with the way things are looking, are most likely dead. In our country where Christmas is primarily about family, the devastation of this disaster is double in magnitude. Even though we do not live in the affected area, we feel the pain of the survivors. We are, after all, their fellow countrymen and more importantly, their fellow human beings.

sendong, father, child, dead, washi, sendong, typhoon

A father holding his dead child

If you would like to give love and hope this Christmas season to people who desperately need them, please send your donations to The Philippine Red Cross. We believe this is the safest way for sending monetary donations electronically. PayPal, PayDollar and credit cards are accepted there.

red cross, sendong, washi, charity, donate

If you don’t have anything to give for now, prayers and good thoughts are most welcome, too. Also, exposure matters a lot, so please feel free to share this through your preferred medium (WordPress, Twitter, Facebook, etc.). It would be great to have more people aware of this so that more help can be sent to the affected area.

Thank you very much.

Footnote 1: Of first month celebrations, 5,000 hits and Versatile Blogger Awards

It’s The Background Story‘s first month, and we hit our target of 5,000 hits! We don’t know how that happened, but somehow it did.

The past month has been an amazing journey for us. We launched The Background Story on Oct. 22, just a few weeks ago, yet it feels like we’ve been doing this for a long time now. Technically, that is true. The photographers in our team have been taking photos and the writers have been dabbling in creative writing for years. On top of that, the blog took six months (or maybe even more) to plan. For some reason, things just didn’t work out for us; something was always in our way. But perhaps, things do happen for a reason, because when it was time for us to officially start the blog, things just fell into place like puzzle pieces coming together.

Of course, it wasn’t always easy. We discovered that it took a lot of effort. Blogging is more than posting an entry and going offline after. Blogging is about meeting people, connecting with them, and building relationships. We didn’t mind the extra effort, though — and we still don’t — because it allowed us to virtually meet amazing people oozing with talent, wit and creativity. 🙂

But it got better for us because these people whose work we admire appreciate the work that we do. We’ve been nominated twice for the Versatile Blogger Award in the same day, and we want to celebrate our blog’s first month by paying it forward.

The Rules: Rule 1 – Thank the person(s) who nominated you for the award.

We’ve been nominated by Angry Pear. This blog, simply put, is hilarious. It’s a comic blog about a grumpy pear (yes, a pear) who complains about the littlest things in her life. They’re all random but very true.

We’ve been nominated, too, by A Gap in the Clouds. This poetry blog has lots of lovely poems with great rhythm. All they need is a melody and they could be songs you hear on the radio.

Check out Angry Pear and A Gap in the Clouds. They are two of our favorite blogs. 🙂

Rule 2 – List seven things people may not know about you:

1) We are a team of two photographers and two writers.

2) We’re all 80s babies. We’re part of the class of ’98. We still get horrified that the phrase “fifteen years ago” now conjures vivid teenage memories in our minds. Weren’t we teenagers just yesterday? Apparently, not.

3) We all have strong roots in the sciences but we prefer to fly on our artistic wings.

4) C isn’t moved by Adele‘s music, and sometimes, she wonders why because she usually likes ballads.

5) A lives near a beautiful beach but she doesn’t enjoy going on boat rides. She prefers to ride on her yellow bike along the shore instead.

6) L has an extensive GIF collection featuring almost all emotions and reactions imaginable. And oh, she also has an extensive GIF collection featuring Cillian Murphy and Tom Hiddleston.

7) M is very particular about toilets. He can go anywhere in the world as long as there is a functioning toilet nearby. This means he hasn’t been on a hardcore camping trip yet, and he doesn’t think he will ever join one for precisely that reason.

Rule 3 – Nominate 15 blogs you think should receive this award.

Here are our favorite blogs which we believe deserve the recognition. They cover a variety of topics, but they are all wonderful! In alphabetical order:

1,000 Awesome Things – humor
Ayakashi Memoirs – poetry and photography
Becoming Herself – poetry
Belfastdavid – poetry
I Wrote This for You – poetry and photography
Iron Wulf – travel
Journey Into Poetry – poetry
Lakwatsero – travel
Live, Nerd, Repeat – humor
Mimo’s 365 – photography
Poetry and Ice Cream – poetry
Seasonings – poetry
Sole Sisters – travel
The Kayumanggi Trails – travel
The Purple Doll – food

Okay, so that’s it for now! Hope to see you all again when our blog hits its first birthday next year! 😀