Especially if you’re creating it on your own

A woman sits outside and works on her laptop.
A woman sits outside and works on her laptop.
Photo by Christin Hume on Unsplash

Seeing as it’s easier than ever to create a website, it’s no surprise that the number of active websites increases year-on-year. In September 2014, an impressive milestone was reached — over 1 billion active websites. Today, that number is closer to 1.2 billion, according to Siteefy.

Thanks to modern CMS like WordPress, Wix, and SquareSpace, it’s also now really straightforward to create a website that looks good and supports your business goals, all with minimal effort (at least to start).

It’s pretty tempting to launch a website without much forethought (I mean, look at that pretty template library!), but I’m…

Shadow of the Wind’s teenage protagonist lands in hot water yet again

Pile of old books in a dusty room
Pile of old books in a dusty room
Credit: Jessica F

Ah, the throes of young love! That is where author Carlos Ruis Zafón takes us in the Shadow of the Wind, as young protagonist Daniel Sempere navigates a series of complex, dangerous mysteries.

Daniel starts the story at ten and finishes it in his late teens, growing up in a post Civil War Barcelona in 1945. We often take turns into dark, unexpected corners, but Daniel’s self-proclaimed clumsiness paired with Zafón farcical, poetic descriptions also provide plenty of laughs to the reader:

Burger King #IWD campaign infuriates thousands

In December 2020, Burger King UK gained a noble nod of approval when they handed over their Instagram account to local restaurants for free advertising. ‘They need you more than ever!’, they said in the post, explaining their wish to help independent restaurants hard hit by the pandemic.

Burger King’s post offers free advertising for restaurants

I’m not going to analyse the attempt, but I’ll say it was well received. Marketers and journalists covered the idea, citing a great example of how social responsibility can help brand likeability. For the most part, consumers liked…

Anton Chekhov’s narrator has a go, but lacks the courage and ‘fitting temperament’ for the task

Anton Chekhov, 1889. Credit: WikiMedia

“Sasha undid the object and put it solemnly on the table. It was a not very tall candelabra of old bronze and artistic workmanship. It consisted of a group: on the pedestal stood two female figures in the costume of Eve and in attitudes for the description of which I have neither the courage nor the fitting temperament. The figures were smiling coquettishly and altogether looked as though, had it not been for the necessity of supporting the candlestick, they would have skipped off…

Washington Irving leaves luxury behind in search of an untamed Spain

Let others repine at the lack of turnpike roads and sumptuous hotels, and all the elaborate comforts of a country cultivated and civilised into tameness and commonplace; but give me the rude mountain scramble; the roving, haphazard, wayfaring; the half-wild, yet frank and hospitable manners, which impart such a true game-flavour to dear old romantic Spain!” — Washington Irving, The Alhambra (1832)

I love the rejection of luxury in this quote, in its place a thirst for the raw, rugged Spain that will be present throughout Irving’s 1832 book…

For the love of puzzles! Sherlock Holmes shares cocaine-hazed, impatient words

In the second Sherlock Holmes book, The Sign of Four, Holmes vents his boredom in a cocaine-induced haze from his apartment in London’s Baker Street. As the reader will suspect, he will not stay bored for long.

Don’t you worry, this story contains no spoilers. I’ll just say I was delighted to find humorous (sometimes farcical) characters in mysterious situations for an enjoyable, short read (The Sign of Four is around 40,000 words and can be read in 2–3 hours). …

663 Words You Need to Hear When You’ve Had Enough

Credit: Kelly Sikkema

Dearest Writer,

If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance you’re keen on making it as a writer. This means you probably have that thing that almost all writers have. Do you even need me to tell you what it is?

No, you already know. But I’ll remind you because maybe you need reminding today. The common ground is doubt. Crippling self-doubt. Of course.

I don’t know what it is about writing that makes you so insecure. It’s so personal, you say to yourself. Like giving someone a peek into…

Guidelines and helpful advice for a career in healthcare and marketing

A stethoscope and sphygmomanometer against a blue background.
A stethoscope and sphygmomanometer against a blue background.
Image: Canva

Jobs within healthcare can be a wonderful choice for marketers. You have the ability to educate and attract people to a service that can enhance their livelihoods. You gain a deep understanding of an area of health, perhaps advancing your own health.

Salaries can be higher for marketers than in other industries, and once you’re in, it’s much easier to find other positions within health. This is for good reason — the employer knows that you are privy to a set of industry-specific considerations. …

Life Lessons (or bad advice) from a recent member

Photo from Icons8

Sometimes I look at my age and I squint. 30? I certainly don’t feel 30. Perhaps it’s because most people under 30 imply we’re dinosaurs. And growing up, I thought 30 (even 20) was quite an adult age. Ha!

Surely by 30, the getting together of the shit is complete, you enjoy coffee and wine, crosswords and crocheting, perhaps even picking lavender on a warm spring day? Not quite, younger comrades. Although I’d be lying if I said they didn’t sound enormously appealing.

Of course, you, dear reader, know that not…

A tale of stubborn proportions

“I recommend a cab,” the curly-haired hotel receptionist had suggested. “At this time of year there aren’t many buses that go to Picos, so that’s really your only option”. Maria handed me a number for a local taxi company. I smiled and thanked her, taking care to conceal that her advice had fallen on deaf ears.

I already had a route, one imparted onto me by Google Maps. A bus could take me directly from Cangas de Onis, the charming Spanish countryside town where I was staying, to the entrance of the province’s fame and…


Marketing copywriter based in London. Follow me for stories on writing, marketing, travel & philosophy.

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