Reflecting on 3 Years of Blogging on Out and Out

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Three years, eh? I can hardly believe it.

When I started Out and Out, I was floating through life, working at a public relations firm in Manhattan. Yeah, your typical rat race 9 to 5 that was actually 8 to 6ish. I was tired most of the time, and didn’t travel nearly as much as I wanted. Most of my travel was to and from a cubicle.

On a whim, I bought a domain, OutAndOut.net (it still works btw), and used it as a journal for all the points and miles stuff I was reading as my daily dose of escapism under the fluorescent office lights.

Yup, that included The Points Guy, View From the Wing, and Million Mile Secrets. Those blogs have all changed in the past 3 years. And so has this one.

400 posts

On March 1, 2013, I put up my first post, the not terribly original or thorough “Chase Sapphire Preferred 7% Annual Points Dividend Posted.”

I kept at it. I blogged about trips to Hawaii, Madrid, and Santiago. I was so excited when I got 7 page views in a day. When I got my first comment on a post. The beginnings were humble (they’re the best!).

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Designing the Out and Out logo

Somewhere along the line, I switched jobs a few more times. I worked in New York real estate – yep, a total shark, working in Manhattan.

I kept writing. Those first posts were brief, shaky little capsules shot into the black hole of the internet. The titles weren’t particularly imaginative.

Randy Petersen invited me to join BoardingArea while I was Club Carlson-ing through Europe in October 2014.

In January 2015, I finally joined, officially, which spurred blog growth tremendously.

That feels like yesterday.  And now, here I am, working toward Year 4.

To celebrate, I made a page of Every Single Out and Out Post.

You can see all the fixations, trends, periods, etc. In case you feel like poking around. 🙂

So far, there are 400 posts. Some of them still hold up well. Others are obviously outdated. It felt like a good time to catalog everything properly.

400 more?

The blog’s tagline has always been “Investing. Positivity. Oh, and travel.

I feel like I’m finally getting to the “investing” part of it. That might mean for personal finance posts. Positivity catches ideas about health, philosophy, and my best advice.  Oh, and travel? That’s everything else. 🙂

I’ve never tried to hit a quota, with number of posts or word count.

Some months, I’ve had dozens of posts. Other months, none. Some posts are 30 words. Others climb over 2,000.

There’s never been a particular direction. Whatever’s interesting is the topic.

Points and miles stuff is getting harder, that’s for sure. But there’s still a lot left to talk about. The next 400 posts might veer in a different direction after I finally move to Dallas. I’m surely looking forward to it.

New chapters, new beginning. All that good stuff.

Bottom line

I’ve met a lot of peeps in the past 3 years. Some stuck around, others didn’t. That’s how it goes. It’s all been a blast.

My writing has changed a lot. For starters, I’m better at titling and formatting posts. I’m also focused on different things now as opposed to 3 years ago. Interested in new topics. Open to changing my opinions over time.

It’s been an exciting journey so far. I still feel like Out and Out is my little baby lol. And I hope the original spirit it had when it was started still translates.

I didn’t set out to nurture a blog for 3+ years when I put the first post. God, no.

It’s happened very naturally. If I let it go at its own pace, it’ll continue to be something fun. I’d never want to approach this space negatively. I’d like to keep it it for the long-haul.

What that means and looks like is anyone’s guess. What with the strong economy, rampant mergers, tougher rules, and closed loopholes, topics have to accommodate those changes. I feel, overall, a shift in the overall points and miles landscape has started. (Do you, too?)

Out and Out started as a kind of journal to record my adventures with points and miles, and travel-related ideas (and some not related to anything at all!). As long as that quality stays, I’m on board. Whatever that looks like is fine by me, even it’s a slightly re-tooled direction.

Now, you can see every single post, which I’ll continue to update with whatever pops out. You can always find it in the top menu under “About.”

Thank you for all the comments, introductions, encouragement, questions, likes, clicks, follows, and all the rest. It means the world.

Cheers, indeed!

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About Harlan

Just a dude living in Dallas.

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