My Fourth Anniversary on Hubpages

What I look like now

I was recently notified by Hubpages that I had arrived at the four year mark. I have been a hubber that long. Four years! My involvement at Hubpages has been dialed down of late, but I have never closed my account and am a member in good standing. While not everything has gone as well as i might have liked, I can honestly say that I have learned a lot on Hubpages, and that I would not be where I am today without learning those lessons.

The Trip to New Hampshire 2005

Learning to live as a shut in

Everybody has a story about how they discovered Hubpages and why they found it so compelling. In my case, the story went something like this: I was an ape language researcher who had suddenly found herself shut away in the pens, behind steel grids, in an enclosure within an enclosure, and I was trying to find ways to continue to live and thrive despite this confinement.

I had been used to being able to travel and go places with my two children, the human and the chimp, but now all of that had ceased. I was locked in a cage with a chimpanzee, who still needed almost all my attention every moment of the day, and though I had achieved my research objectives, there was no way to get the established scientific community to publish them.

I was alone. I was trapped, and it didn't look good. And then a woman who was offering me proof reading services for Inverted-A Press, the small press I had inherited from my father, asked me to join Hubpages so I could be her fan. I did, and though she never wrote any hubs, I looked around, and I decided that I would.

What Bow looks like now

No Limit to What You Could Write About

At first, I was quite cautious in what I chose to write about. My first few hubs were about nutrition. Eventually, I took a chance and started writing about Bow. I dared to tell the world about my discovery, and this brought me a certain amount of fame with the reddit crowd, and lots of traffic for a while, but no earnings.

In time I found that I could write about anything and everything, and there would be people to read it and comment on it, and sometimes I even earned some money in the process:

I wrote about:

No topic was too mundane or too highbrow and since I was allowed to write about whatever preoccupied me at the time, I enjoyed myself immensely.

Making New Friends and Setting New Goals

Hubpages was an amzing place for me, because it was not just a site to write on or a spot to advertise my research. It was also a place to meet new people and to interact with them and learn from them and this eventually led to other opportunities. Some of the people that I met through Hubpages who are still friends today include:

Jerilee Wei

SweetiePie

Sunforged

Darkside

Misha

Sally's Trove

Daniel Carter

Hot Dorkage

This is not a complete list, for there are many more hubbers whom I consider to be my friends. For someone who is shut in and finds it hard to get out and meet people in a normal environment, the Hubpages site was a significant factor in combating social isolation.

But what about making money?

Isn't Hubpages a good place to make money? Well, not really. At least not for me. For me, it was never a truly significant place to make money, and just as I was beginning to learn the ropes when it came to SEO and was beginning to slowly build some consistent income from HP, the Panda update threw everything off, and attempts to recover have been pretty much negated by subsequent Google tinkering in their algorithm.

Today, I just don't see Hubpages as a significant source of income, now or in the future. Traffic has ground down to a terrible halt, and I'm moving on. And no, it's not just because of mistakes that management at HP may have made as an attempt to react to Google. Other people who have independent sites and used to make significant money both from HP and from their own sites and blogs are reporting the same thing. For instance, read this blog entry by Lis Sowerbutts.

Everyone agrees that the new game is in publishing. Even when Google does its best to label your work spam and to deny it a place in the rankings, you can still sell your books on Amazon.

Here are some books that I have published. Some of them are selling really well, and some less so, but they are all selling and give me more hope both in communicating with others and in the very important question of generating an income for me, for my daughter and for Bow.

Hubpages is Still Here

Hubpages is still here, and I will continue to monitor its progress and to see if I should reassess its capacity to contribute to my well being. Things could change for the better, and if they do I will react accordingly. But in the meantime, there is much to be thankful for. I will always have good memories associated with my early years on Hubpages.


Copyright 2012 Aya Katz

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Comments 58 comments

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 4 years ago from Southern California, USA

Hubpages was very informative, fun, and helpful in the beginning. I treasured the early days, but now it seems most of the people I interact with here on Hubpages I talk to on Facebook or other sites. I still write a few hubs every once and awhile, but I also concentrate on my other sites. You have many good and helpful observations here, Aya!


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Thanks, SweetiePie. I think we have had similar experiences, and we both value all the good things HP had to offer and may still have, but we are also able to move forward with other plans.


Arlene V. Poma 4 years ago

Fascinating article. I am shooting for as many years on HubPages as you, but after a year here, I've found that I am here mostly for my (retirement) enjoyment. Since I've joined HubPages, I rarely need to buy magazines. There is no way I could support myself on my Hubs. I get it! As far as this site goes, you have to figure out what you want out of it. HubPages could possibly be a springboard for any writer. The idea is to grow.


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Thanks, Arlene, for getting it, and for sharing your own experiences here on Hubpages. I agree: the idea is to grow!


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 4 years ago from North-East UK

Aya, interesting hub. It's a shame we can't all make a living wage from Hub Pages but it does offer its own rewards and I see Arlene's comment alludes to her 'enjoyment' and I concur with that. For now, I really like Hub Pages but I toast your success in e-publishing and wish you further success in the future, well done!


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Thanks, Jools99. I agree that enjoyment is important, and Hubpages was a place where I did enjoy myself for quite some time. I hope it continues to be that for you, too.


ServandoSilva profile image

ServandoSilva 4 years ago from Somewhere between my Laptop and my Desktop

Interesting article. I've just seen more and more traffic with every Google update, as long as I follow their recommendations and try to do great articles (non personal).

Or maybe it's just my niches are quiet different to your writing niches.

I've just been here for some months, but the boost happened in my self-hosted blogs too.


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Servando, I'm glad it's working for you. I suppose it is better if we go after specific niches, but I'm a bit of a generalist, so what I really enjoyed on Hubpages was being able to write about very diverse topics in depth and getting a boost of traffic each time, no matter what the topic. It really was like that for the first three years, and it was a great time for me!


vox vocis profile image

vox vocis 4 years ago

Sorry to hear you're not doing well on HP. Good luck with publishing!


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Thanks, Vox Vocis. How about you? No drop in traffic since Panda?


vox vocis profile image

vox vocis 4 years ago

Oh, yes! :( I'm turning into an octopus and expanding my arms to embrace other websites, such as SeekSuccess and Wizzley. Basically, I like the community here and the chance to practice writing more often. Each day, I start to think about AdSense as a bonus and Amazon as the better MMO opportunity. It took reading a few books on copywriting to understand how to write to sell, and now the experiment comes next :) Also, I'm eager to see how self-help topics will do on SeekSuccess. Of course, there are a few more dreams I'm chasing, publishing my first novel being one of them :) Keep us informed about how you're doing with your books!

P.S. It has always been hard to make money online. It's either live hard or die. I choose not to die :) Although so much work isn't worth the money I get, I'm constantly learning and that's a good substitute.


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Vox vocis, I went through that process that you are describing, too. At first I was fixated on Adsense, but then I started to learn how to sell on Amazon, and Adsense became much less important. Then after Panda, I started my own article directory, PubWages, which is still going, but has lost some traffic under recent Google updates. Now I focus more on Createspace and Kindle. Not all the books I publish are by me. I have great writers submitting exciting material to Inverted-A Press. But I do occasionally publish one of my own novels, and that is very gratifying, too.

The good thing about Hubpages is still the interaction with others, such as yourself. We don't have to stop writing here altogether, because any article we post on Hubpages can eventually become part of an anthology and be published as a paperback or ebook. But the mode of earning has undergone a lot of revision.


kartika damon profile image

kartika damon 4 years ago from Fairfield, Iowa

Hi Aya! This is a great article and I appreciate your honesty. Your books on Amazon are amazing - you are so creative and interesting and if you can't make money on Hugpages, who can? I certainly have not seen much coming my way - I just got back after a couple of years of not putting any attention on it. Well, it is a lot of work for no money - there are some very cool people you can meet here. But, I am a bit conflicted. I would like to get my first check and perhaps, if and when I do, I will feel a bit more inspired. All the best! Kartika


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 4 years ago from Southern California, USA

I still make monthly payouts on Hubpages, but there was a time when I made more. Those were the great days of Hubpages, and I think if you are starting out now it is a lot harder to get to the point where you are making monthly payout, but it is still possible.


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Kartika, thanks for your comment. I think it is definitely not a passive income on Hubpages, the way at one time it was touted as being. The idea was that we could write so many high quality hubs on evergreen topics, and it would continue to pay out with a steady income, long after we had written them. So leaving things alone for a couple of years should not have been a reason for you not to reap rewards on existing hubs. But... the fault is not entirely with HP, because Google actively went about demoting good articles in the rankings and giving their place to less valuable substitutes, often because they were the promotional effort of a big name company. For me, this is not so bad now, because Amazon is one of those companies whose listings are ranking first.

SweetiePie, up until recently I was reaching payout with HPads every two months, but that came at the expense of Adsense and Amazon payouts. Is Adsense on HP still paying out monthly for you?


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 4 years ago from Southern California, USA

With the Hubpages program I do make the monthly payout, but Adsense is more like every two or three. I miss the old days when the payouts were higher and more consistent. I write with Examiner too just to add to it all, but they have some weird rules. For instance, you lose all of your earning unless you write an article for them once a month, and you will not even be promoted on their official feed unless you write more frequently than that. At least at Hubpages or on our own blogs we can still go away for a few weeks. About a month ago I told my mom I wanted to quit Examiner for that reason, but I do not want to give up my potential earnings on past articles just because I went a month or two without writing there. They also will not let you delete your article from their site, so this is one plus Hubpages has over them. We still have a lot more control here.


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

SweetiePie, thanks for sharing that about HPAds versus Adsense. It looks like you are doing quite a bit better than I am in this regard.

I can understand your reluctance to lose out on past earnings on Examiner, and it does seem very inconvenient that you can't take your articles with you when you leave there. I agree that in this respect Hubpages are much better. While many things have gotten much harder on HP over the years, there is also much to be thankful for.


vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 4 years ago from Nashville Tn.

I've been here for 2 yrs, worked very hard and still hoping to make ,monthly pay-out. I love my friends here on HP and enjoy writing. I've learned so much here - with still a ton more to learn.

I've been told I should consider putting all my articles on "Singing" into an ebook series and get them published. I've thought about it but frankly don't know how to get started. I've had CD's published, but music is different than writting. Any tips for me?

Thanks so much. Appreciate you and your hubs!


mary615 profile image

mary615 4 years ago from Florida

I wish I had "found" you sooner. Where have you been??? I would liked to have read your works. I have to go back and read some so I'll know who Bow is??? I'm guessing he's a chimp??

Good luck to you, Mary


vox vocis profile image

vox vocis 4 years ago

I agree with your last reply to my comment :) I'll check out your article directory. Good luck with it! I'm swimming in this ocean and still don't know where I'm headed to, but as long as I feel I'm headed somewhere, it's okay!


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

VocalCoach, an ebook and also a paperback version of a collection of your articles about singing sounds like a very good idea. You can start by opening an account with Createspace and with Kindle direct. There is also Smashwords, for non-Amazon sales.

You can probably do all that by yourself and the benefit is that you keep all the royalties. If you did want a publisher, instead, please consider Inverted-A Press. We would do the work, and you would get an eight percent royalty on list price.

On a different topic, have you seen my solicitation for singers for the Debt Collector songs? I have a complete musical, composed by Daniel Carter and written by me, that is in need of demos. Do you think any of your students might be interested in singing some of the songs?

http://m.pinterest.com/ayakatz/songs-from-the-debt...


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Thanks, Mary. Yes, Bow is a chimpanzee. Here is a hub about his early development:

http://aya-katz.hubpages.com/hub/Bows-Development

Here is a hub about standards of proof for ape language studies:

http://hubpages.com/education/What-Constitutes-Pro...

If you would like to read a blog about day-to-day life with Bow, try this:

http://notesfromthepens.blogspot.com/


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Vox vocis, if you do register with PubWages, send me a separate email to let me know it is you, especially if you are using a different moniker than vox vocis. Too many spam bots have been registering, and I just automatically delete anyone I haven't received an email from.


kartika damon profile image

kartika damon 4 years ago from Fairfield, Iowa

Aya, I realize I have really been out of the loop. I need to get educated on what is going on here. Thanks for responding and offering clarity.


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Kartika, you're welcome. I'm always happy to share my insights, however limited they may be.


vox vocis profile image

vox vocis 4 years ago

Okay, thanks for mentioning this :) The article about Mary Dolan is awesome BTW! What's your linking policy there? I wasn't able to find it.


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

You can have unlimited links as long as they are not misleading and are to safe sites that do not violate Google policies. You are allowed to link to your own sites and to use your articles as legitimate backlinks. Just don't label the link one thing and have it go to something completely different.

Thanks, I'm so glad you liked the Mary Dolan pub!


Kangaroo_Jase profile image

Kangaroo_Jase 4 years ago from Melbourne, Australia

Aya,

I have just recently hit 2 years here on HubPages myself. A Very Big congratulations to your four years here. I found it very interesting on how you got your start here.

Thanks for an interesting hub.


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Thanks, Kangaroo Jase! And congratulations to you on hitting the two year mark!


Vinaya Ghimire profile image

Vinaya Ghimire 4 years ago from Nepal

In few weeks time, I will be one year old on hubpages. It is very inspiring to read your hubpages experiences.


georgescifo profile image

georgescifo 4 years ago from India

Congrats for this great achievement!!


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA

4 years! Wow! I think HubPages is a great springboard. I have learned so much! Can I ask you if you published on Amazon or just sold your books there? Thanks for this article. Good to know!


shalini sharan profile image

shalini sharan 4 years ago from Delhi

this is so interesting, to read your experience makes me feel so good, thank you for sharing it :)


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 4 years ago from United States

Congratulations! Many happy returns.


jainismus profile image

jainismus 4 years ago from Pune, India

Congratulations. Expecting more Hubs from you in short period.


Millionaire Tips profile image

Millionaire Tips 4 years ago from USA

Congratulations. Thank you for sharing your insights here. It is unfortunate that you can't make a living wage here on HubPages. I will definitely look into self publishing as well.


weezyschannel profile image

weezyschannel 4 years ago from Central USA

Have a question. I have another websit and was thinking of amazon. If i publish there do they own my content then and i muat remove from my site?

I have lost well over a dollar a day since the last 3 months and I have given up here as well. I am struggling to make 50 cents a day when I was almost up to 2 dollars

For me that was an accomplishme nt and that does not mean a lot someone else but to me made it at least seem like what I did was worth my time and I put a lot into the most of my work like a lot of you guys do.


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Thanks for your comment and questions, WeezyChannel.

Hubpages do not own our content -- we do. You are free to remove any hub you have published, and after it de-indexes, you can re-publish it elsewhere. There is a rule against duplicate content, but the source of the rule is Google. Google penalizes us for publishing the same exact article on two different sites, so that is why you should let it de-index before republishing.

Two dollars a day is nothing to sneeze at, and it could have grown in time into more. Unfortunately, things are not going well here at HP at the moment, and it is not our fault.

I hope you are successful wherever you choose to publish.


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Thanks, Vinaya Ghimire for your comment. I have seen your articles, enjoyed them and shared some of them on Pinterest. Congrats on your almost one year mark!


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Thanks, Georgescifo!


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Thanks, Victoria Lynn. To answer your question, my novels and the books by other people that I edit are published under my own imprint, Inverted-A Press. Here is the website of Inverted-A:

http://www.inverteda.com/

Inverted-A Press uses the services of CreateSpace for printing and distributing the books, but we design our own covers and do our own typesetting and use our own ISBN numbers.

When I first was learning the ropes, I did publish three children's books under the CreateSpace imprint.


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Thanks, Shalini Sharan!


Ardie profile image

Ardie 4 years ago from Neverland

Congrats Aya! I remember you were one of the first Hubbers I read when I started 3 years ago =)


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Thanks, Tom Rubenoff!


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Thanks, Ardie! It's an honor to have been one of the first Hubbers you read. Congrats on your three years at HP!


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Thanks, Jainismus. It's nice that you are expecting more hubs from me in short order, but I do a lot of my writing on PubWages these days. Here is a pub from yesterday:

http://www.pubwages.com/15/music-to-listen-to-whil...


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Millionaire Tips, thanks. I definitely recommend self-publishing.


weezyschannel profile image

weezyschannel 4 years ago from Central USA

Hi aya! Wow...sorry about earlier reply..was using my phone and talk texting, that's why it was a little off on the spelling! You are probably thinking, "wow, no wonder she doesn't do well.!"

Anyway, I have a website with information on it and was wondering about adding it to Amazon and publishing it, but then can I still have my information on the website?

thank you


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Weezyschannel, there is no rule to say that you cannot have the same text in a printed book and also on the web, if you own it. So, yes, you can publish the same text with CreateSpace and/or Kindle and put it on Amazon and still keep it on the web. Whether you want to do it that way is a different question.

For instance, my novel, Vacuum County, used to be published on the web in its entirety, but now I've cut it down to generous reading samples, in the hopes of motivating a purchase.


glassvisage profile image

glassvisage 4 years ago from Northern California

Aya, I feel I've neglected you recently and I'm sorry I haven't checked in recently! I was just thinking today that I needed to drop by :) I hope all is well!


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 4 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Hi, Glassvisage! So good to see you here again.

All is well. I have been very busy publishing new books, both my own and those of others, and there are a few more slated to appear this year.

How have you been doing? I haven't seen you much on Hubpages. Do you also have a new focus?


mary615 profile image

mary615 3 years ago from Florida

Hi. I am following your blog and enjoying reading all about your Chimp, etc. I must admit making money on HP is not easy. In order to make any money, I think you have to write a lot of great Hubs over time.

I am just now trying to learn to blog on Blogger.


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 3 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Hi, Mary. Thanks for reading and commenting and following my blog.

I think that it has changed a lot since I first started writing online. De-indexing hubs that only get intermittent or seasonal traffic was a policy implemented long after Panda, for instance, that really reduced the value of publishing a hub on Hubpages in terms of both traffic and income.


mary615 profile image

mary615 3 years ago from Florida

I've only written two blogs on Blogspot. I have a problem giving a blog an address. I'm not the smartest tool in the shed for sure. It has taken me two years to learn how to navigate HP.

I'll continue to follow you here and your blog.


vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 3 years ago from Nashville Tn.

aya - I can hardly believe it's been almost a year ago that I commented on this hub and you so generously gave me info about publishing an ebook on my hubs about singing. I apologize - where did the time go?

I'd like to talk with you further about this. Also I will click on the link you provided taking me to your musical. I also want to take a look at your inverteda website. Let's talk soon :) ~ Audrey


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 3 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Audrey, so good to hear from you again! I look forward to further communication.


go-barbara-go profile image

go-barbara-go 3 years ago

Hi Aya,

This is one of the reasons why I find it hard to leave Hubpages. It's only through HP that I can see chain of comments generously shared, thoroughly discussed, so junior writers like us learn a lot.

Thank you for this article. It's amazing that even if writers in Hubpages say it straight that Hubpages is not a good avenue for money-making, but there is always that something in their declaration or statement, rather, that is telling us to stay.


Aya Katz profile image

Aya Katz 3 years ago from The Ozarks Author

Thanks, Barbara. It's one of the reasons I have not deleted all my hubs.

But once they are de-indexed, I do move them.

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