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Hub Pages Two Year Progress Report - Adventures in Blogging and Beyond

Updated on April 21, 2015

Beware the Mad Mongrel

One of my first feeble attempts at photography here on Hub Pages.  Although I think my hubbing skills have gotten better, my photography remains feeble.
One of my first feeble attempts at photography here on Hub Pages. Although I think my hubbing skills have gotten better, my photography remains feeble. | Source

April 22, 2013, a date which will die indifferently, is the day I launched the Mel Carriere brand on Hub Pages. I had been tinkering with another account here under my real name prior to that, but I really didn't know what I was doing, I had no goals or objectives in mind, and I eventually let that first profile die a natural death. I believe that account was recently suspended for disuse, but there was no weeping or hand wringing at that particular funeral. Nevertheless, it represented my first tentative baby steps into the world of blogging.

I discovered Hub Pages in an ad I came across while searching through a local job site while sitting in a coffee shop. The announcement was highly exaggerated and very tempting, making it sound as if a writer could start raking in the bucks immediately. I submitted an application and was thrilled when I got approved, perhaps thinking I had been accepted into an exclusive writing elite.

I have discovered since then that while there are plenty of world class writers and poets here on Hub Pages, pretty much anybody and everybody with a rudimentary grasp of the English language can get an account. I also painfully discovered two years ago to the day that there is no immediate money to be made here. Developing income on Hub Pages is a painstaking process that requires inexhaustible patience, and while I have enjoyed a few paydays now it is nowhere near the steady, consistent revenue stream that I would someday like it to be. There is still a lot of work to be done, and I have written this two year summary to report upon the steps I have taken so far, what I have learned in my first two years, and to speculate upon how I think Hub Pages will fit into my writing future.

Fortunately I have a computer genius son who is great with Photoshop and willing to help me rise above me limitations as a photo editor.
Fortunately I have a computer genius son who is great with Photoshop and willing to help me rise above me limitations as a photo editor. | Source

A Writing Epiphany

My first significant blogging brainstorm occurred when I realized I could create my own writing niche based upon my experiences as a letter carrier for The United States Postal Service. I first used Mel Carriere as my nom de plume in a novel I wrote several years ago, and decided to resuscitate the mysterious masked mailman; the former poet laureate of the now defunct Republic of Colapzistan, as my blogging identity. I figured there weren't that many people out there writing articles about Postal topics and with a little work I could gain a captive audience among my coworkers across the country.

It turns out I was right, but it took a lot of work to cultivate this audience. I started out sitting down with a copy of The Postal Record, the monthly magazine for The National Association of Letter Carriers Union, from which I pulled a few notable names and searched for them on Facebook. It took me a while to gain the trust of my fellow letter carriers; particularly because "Mel Carriere" cannot be found in any employee database that many highly placed Union members have access to. All the same, with a great deal of effort and diligence they eventually accepted the reasons behind my anonymity and embraced me into the fold. I now have over a thousand Facebook friends, most of whom are letter carriers, and the natural suspicion I was regarded with in the beginning has disappeared.

So having decided to blog about letter carrier issues on my Hub Pages account, I made my first awkward scribblings, which I can liken to the earliest crude efforts at crayon writing made by a kindergarten student. I had no idea about the power of images or other multimedia in blogging. I also did not understand the importance of breaking up my writing into short, digestible blocks of text. Therefore, my earliest hubs were fairly plain, threadbare, and tedious, but I had started along the path and little by little my nebulous strategy and style began to gain from.

Thousands of aspiring and perspiring Postal City Carrier Assistants (CCAs) have stumbled across this picture barking at them from the top of my most productive hub.
Thousands of aspiring and perspiring Postal City Carrier Assistants (CCAs) have stumbled across this picture barking at them from the top of my most productive hub. | Source

Coming of Age?

It is interesting going back through my list of almost 60 hubs to see how my work has evolved and perhaps matured over the last two years. Heck - 60 hubs is a month's output for some of you; but hubbing, holding a full time job, and writing extensively on other writing platforms at the same time is burning the candle at both ends and sticking a wick in the middle as well.

My hubs maintained a mostly Postal flavor in the beginning, and I had my own unique title style using only words that began with the letter "M." For example, the name of one of my first hubs was "Mel's Most Misbehaved Mutts." Of course this was sheer idiocy from a search engine perspective, but entirely satisfying to the poetic portion of my writing brain. After about two and a half months I dropped the all M requirement in my titles, but I continue to engage in SEO blasphemy whenever and wherever I write. If I can't have fun doing this, if I am forced to straightjacket my writing into a sterile, lifeless SEO mold, then I will just get another much more profitable part time job working the coffee crank at a Starbucks or punching the cash register at the 7-11. A minimum wage part time job will certainly pay more, no matter how proficient I get at tapping into the secret, arcane knowledge of appeasing the search engine gods.

Even though I wasn't trying, I nonetheless stumbled upon some search engine gems along the road. While obsessively perusing my hub stats, which I do at least once a day, I realized about four months into this endeavor that one of my hubs containing the key word CCA, which stands for City Carrier Assistant (a type of entry level Postal Letter Carrier), was doing pretty well getting search engine hits. Therefore, very early in my Hub Pages experiment I started writing hubs containing this search term in the title, and well more than half my traffic comes from the five or six hubs I have composed on the subject. Another fruitful keyword for me has been "204b," a category of Postal Supervisor in which capacity I once served. But for the most part I am still banging my head against the inspirational shower wall searching for additional proprietary keywords I can corner the blogging market on. Until I get better at SEO, for the time being about half of my traffic still comes from social media hits; Facebook by far being the largest source, with Twitter coming in a distant second.

Unlike the Mr. Zip kiss you see here, this mailman can never be accused of sugar coating his writing.
Unlike the Mr. Zip kiss you see here, this mailman can never be accused of sugar coating his writing. | Source

Frustration, Flight, and the Return of the Prodigal Son

One thing I admire about Hub Pages is that it does not censor information about its rivals, or even criticism about itself. It graciously publishes articles about competing writing platforms and other types of money making websites that could siphon off the efforts of its writers. Thanks to Hub Pages I have dabbled with Bloggmutt, Fivver, and some painfully tedious site where the user rates business phone calls for a penny a pop. For a while I also became a transcriber, again in response to an HP article, but because this just tired out my typing fingers and returned too little bang for the buck I eventually gave it up to focus more on writing. The point is, I learned about all of these money making enterprises from Internet savvy writers sharing hubs.

It was also on Hub Pages that I was turned on to Bubblews, a site that does ruthlessly censor negative information about itself. For a time Bubblews was stealing away a large percentage of Hub Pages users; indeed I encountered many of my hubbing friends over there. This is certainly because in the glory days of Bubblews it was very easy for new writers to make money, much more money than the average Hub Pages newbie was able to earn.

Hypnotized by the allure of easy cash, I too was drawn to the gold bricked streets of the Bubbleland utopia. My Hub Pages posts were earning but a trickle of money, so I threw most of my efforts toward the rival site, where with some diligent commenting and liking of the posts of other bubblers I was able to earn some relatively substantial bubble bucks. But the voice of reason in my head that had been temporarily muffled by the enchantment of false riches told me that Hub Pages was better, that Hub Pages would stand the test of time, and for this reason I kept up my activity here, albeit in greatly reduced fashion.

A few months ago the bubble did indeed burst. Bubblews quit paying users for views, and because I just did not have the hours in the day to sufficiently comment and like other user's posts, which was really the only way to make money from that point forward, I withdrew quietly from Bubblews and came sneaking back to Hub Pages in the middle of the night like a repentant, prodigal son.

Take a tour of San Diego on Mel's Twisted Tour Bus.
Take a tour of San Diego on Mel's Twisted Tour Bus. | Source

Brighter Horizons

I can't remember exactly when it was, I don't think there was a particular moment or day that I could put my finger on, but at some point my tired, hopeless, topped out Hub Stats began to take a significant upward swing. Although I had been at the point of making a clean break from this writing venue and focusing my limited time elsewhere, the trickle of money I had been making picked up significantly enough to encourage me to keep me writing here. Don't get me wrong; it's still a trickle, but it's a trickle that promises a larger flow to come with a bit of diligent drilling.

During this time I also began to gradually branch out my writing from purely postal propositions into other fields. I have now written several hubs about politics, one with a religious flavor, an article about birds, a piece I can only describe as inspirational advice for writers, and two short stories. These haven't gathered many views outside of fellow Hub Pages authors, but they are fun to write and I hope they eventually serve as a springboard toward a broader audience for the mad mail blogger Mel Carriere.

One of the few photos I've doctored myself.  Here CCA bootcamp instructor Mel gets in the face of one of the green recruits, played by my son who is not, thank goodness, a Postal employee yet.
One of the few photos I've doctored myself. Here CCA bootcamp instructor Mel gets in the face of one of the green recruits, played by my son who is not, thank goodness, a Postal employee yet. | Source

Blogging and Beyond

Before coming to Hub Pages I had never heard about Google Ad Sense, and it had also never occurred to me that a writer could monetize his or her own website and actually earn a little pocket cash doing it. But once again, through the power of Hub Pages articles and contact with other Hub Pages users I was motivated to launch my own blogs, which I am slowly cultivating as a potential revenue stream as well.

My first blog attempt was "The Postal Provocateur," launched on Word Press in February of 2014. Although I applied for a program called Word Ads there, after 9 months of futile waiting I was never accepted. In search of greener pastures, green of course meaning money, I decided to crank up an old, unused Google blog I owned that was sitting in my writer's broom closet gathering dust. Such was the birth of the current "Postal Tsunami," (melcarriere.blogspot.com) which seems to be giving encouraging early results. Unlike what had occurred with the stingy ad Gods on Word Press, after about three weeks of applying I was accepted by Google for Ad Sense, and have made a bit of cash there that gives me teasing hints of picking up now that the site is bringing in a growing number of residual views.

Encouraged by my early returns on the Tsunami, I launched two more Blogspot blogs, these being The Truth Bomb (thetruthbomb.blogspot.com) and Birds by Mel (birdsbymel.blogspot.com). The Truth Bomb is my voice of political, philosophical expression, whereas Birds By Mel is a verbal outlet for my bird watching hobby. Both of these blogs were almost immediately accepted for Ad Sense and I hope to eventually turn them into money makers.

Apart from opening my eyes to the potential of blogging, I really think that more than anything else Hub Pages has helped me to hone my writing skills. The neuronal wiring that connects the writing part of our brains with our typing fingers becomes moldy and rusty with disuse, but the liquid moving through these pipes has a remarkable cleansing effect that actually increases the volume and speed of the flow when the valve is opened consistently. As such, I was satisfied that my skills improved enough through Hub Pages to pick up the pen to try my hand at novel writing again. I am about a third of the way through a mailman novel entitled "The Crucifixion Age," and I am having an awful lot of fun with it.

My parting words to you, inscribed into the concrete of a Southern California garden.
My parting words to you, inscribed into the concrete of a Southern California garden. | Source

Parting Words

When I first joined Hub Pages I thought I would be like Tom Hanks in Castaway, living on my own isolated writer's island where it would be just me, the coconut trees and my pet volleyball Wilson searching the horizon in vain for a passing ship. But then I discovered that there were other inhabitants on this island too, all of them castaways like me from one walk of life or another, and all searching that same empty, cruel ocean for a tempting flicker of writing hope.

I can't say enough about how much I enjoy interacting with the people here. Even if Hub Pages crashes and burns tomorrow I am still going to continue following quite a few of these lovely, intelligent people through the various social media sites that we share. Hub Pages demonstrates that the world is a very tiny place and there is no isolated coconut pincushion of a rock on Earth where a writer can hide in complete solitude, even if for whatever misguided reason that writer chooses to.

Although many of my writing friends here on Hub Pages have now turned away from the site, either in frustration that they aren't making the money they would like, or out of frustration that they aren't making the money they used to, I believe I will stick it out and enjoy the ride for a while. For one thing, I wasn't part of those "pre-Panda" glory days in which certain writers had to haul their Hub Pages loot to the bank in a Brink's truck. My earnings have never been much more than a trickle, but it's a damn intoxicating little trickle and if I keep my ears open to that still, small voice of inspiration, and maybe get a little help from my friends, I am pretty sure that eventually I will figure out a way to tap the glorious mother lode it springs from without putting my imagination in storage.

Rate your own Journey

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    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Hey Reynold, they pay you when you have accumulated $50 in your account. Although they sometimes do have to be prompted, they are honest about paying. You have to wait until you have accumulated 50 dollars, however. Thanks for stopping by.

    • Reynold Jay profile image

      Reynold Jay 2 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      I did fid the payment history and see that I am linked to Pay Pal. Do they send the money every month or what? Yep nearly $25 may be there. Not sure.

    • Reynold Jay profile image

      Reynold Jay 2 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      Hi Mel (again)! I see Nadine mentioning not getting any funds. For a long time I could see a dollar a month pouring in and then I wonder when or how do they ever send it? I am just dumb on that end of it. There should be $20 or so somewhere. I need someone to steer me to collecting the money!!!! HELP!

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Keep trying bdegiulio, sooner or later your hubs will hit search engine gold. I'm still not making much, but I have had incremental increases that are encouraging. Thanks for reading.

    • bdegiulio profile image

      Bill De Giulio 2 years ago from Massachusetts

      Very interesting Mel. HP's certainly requires patience. I am coming up on four years and still searching for the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. I actually still love the site and will continue to write here money or not. A great read, thanks for sharing for journey.

    • Reynold Jay profile image

      Reynold Jay 2 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      Hi Mel-- I don't believe I ever received a penny for the HUBS articles. I really never cared and it never amounted to more than a dollar a month. Pitiful. Like you having a few writer associates was great and I ended up co writing a book with a Hubber , Amara, called Eternal Defilement. I have written ten novels and do a tiny bit of $$$ with those. I dropped out of Hubbing until this week as I spent all my time working on The Wurtherinton Diary fantasy illustrated children's series. http://biccomix.com/seedsfromheaven.htm

      Released the first four books on a schedule that began last month. In all around 100 books in the series. ( I got carried away) . In that you make money at all here is a credit to your writing skills. For me, I write from the heart. $$$ matter little.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Nadine May for the lovely words. I am up to 74 posts now, but I am realizing that Hub Pages pays better than my personal blog, although still not much, so I'm trying to redirect my energy here. It's not enough to make a dent in the budget yet, but it is gradually creeping upward. I'm glad you are going to stick it out here. I appreciate you dropping in.

    • Nadine May profile image

      Nadine May 2 years ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      Thank you for your lovely post and the sharing you did. I realized that I have now also been at hub-pages for two years with 94 posts! Like you I only make a trickle here but it is a slowly increasing trickle so I'm sticking it out. I never at the start knew we could earn from writing here anyway. I was drawn to hubpages in order to promote my novels. Only after four months, when I managed to get my google adsense, did I see the cents appearing. Today I make more money with my print-on-demand designs on products with Zazzle and several other shopping websites, but it all takes time. Time away from writing. My aim is to post two hubs a month and visit hubpages in order to read and comment on other writer friends like you. So far I have been able to keep that up. I had to smile when I read your Bubblews adventure. I was there as well. At least I got one payment of $50.- from them but yes the quality and the topic of the posts were never all that inspiring, so I never went back. Simply no time. I have written several articles on Wikinut, but again my design work takes most of my time these days, but I enjoy it. Like many others I'm here to stay!

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Sheila. I am glad you found some value in this. The money is not great yet but is showing signs of improving. Even without the money the people I have met here are great.

    • SheilaPornan profile image

      Sheila Pornan 2 years ago from Manila, Philippines

      Thank you for sharing your HP experience! Such an encouragement.

      It made me assess my own HP journey & it gave great pointers, too! I'm new to writing and this is very informative. Looking forward to reading more of your hubs!

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you sir for the nice compliment. It does get difficult to work full time out in the sun and write, but I have learned to take notes wherever inspiration strikes so I can use it later. I appreciate you dropping in.

    • B Brian Hill profile image

      B Brian Hill 2 years ago

      I love your writing style. I think that your determination to write despite having to hold a job is admirable, and the reason that your writing has improved so much after just 60 hubs!

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Just be patient and understand Jennifer that it is a crop that has to cultivated slowly and carefully before you reap a harvest. There are a handful of hub pages superstars that seem to tap the gold mine right away, but most of us slave away for a long time before it pays dividends, if ever. It can be done, however. Thanks for reading.

    • Jennifer Mugrage profile image

      Jennifer Mugrage 2 years ago from Columbus, Ohio

      I'm new to Hubpages, also hoping to make trickle of money, and this Hub was immensely informative and helpful. Thanks.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Bubblews was okay for a while too Stella but had unrealistic expectations about what they could pay their users, which seems to be the downfall of a lot of these sites. Thanks for reading!

    • ladyguitarpicker profile image

      stella vadakin 2 years ago from 3460NW 50 St Bell, Fl32619

      Hi Mel, This was interesting to read and see how you tried other sites. I made pretty good money on epinions and wish they would of stayed in business, but everything good comes to an end. Have a great day, Stella

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      It is a great place to hone your writing craft florypaula. Thanks for reading.

    • florypaula profile image

      Paula 2 years ago

      Interesting journey. I find my experience here to be positive so far and I only hope for it to get better as time passes.

      Have a nice day :)

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you for reading and good luck to you as,well.

    • tranthanhlam profile image

      Tran Thanh Lam 2 years ago from Ho Chi Minh city, Vietnam

      great story. good luck to your future writing and hubpages.

    • profile image

      Pat Mills 2 years ago from East Chicago, Indiana

      Yes, Mel, I am. The new reviews come directly here - and have since last fall. I write shorter pieces for Bubblews, mostly musically-related. I also repost my old Epinions pieces there, since reposting is not permitted here. You are right about pieces that get little pay. That's the way of internet writing these days.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      "Little" seems to be the adjective most applicable to all these sites, Mills P. Bubblews just woke up to reality, that's all. Are you writing your movie reviews here now? Thanks for reading.

    • profile image

      Pat Mills 2 years ago from East Chicago, Indiana

      Belated congrats on your milestone from another Bubblews survivor. I still write short pieces for them, though, and getting a little bit of pay (and I do mean little).

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      This is a great place to hone your craft. Thanks for reading.

    • profile image

      mikeydcarroll67 2 years ago

      I definitely see that there is a lot of progress that comes when it comes down to writing. I think that it is a definite benefit!

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you sir. I wasn't here in the glory days of HP so I missed out on the Bonanza. Seems like all these writing sites start off paying well and then gradually ease off. I appreciate the nice words and the share.

    • sunilkunnoth2012 profile image

      Sunil Kumar Kunnoth 2 years ago from Calicut (Kozhikode, South India)

      Now rather than the money and traffic, what HP gives us mainly is this type of friendship. We get connected to a lot of writers and our overall knowledge on different topics improves. HP is not as attractive as it used to be a few years ago. When I joined in the year 2012 and later in 2013, it was a fantastic platform where we could earn some decent money as well traffic. Things are but not in a fine state now. The traffic and earnings are very low nowadays and literally affects our confidence. As you said some of the writers already left HP and a lot of good writers also trying to leave it soon. But I wish to remain here for a lot of reasons. Though I have a Blogger account, it is never attended seriously and obviously the hits are low. This hub is so informative and carries your confidence and energy as a good writer. Don't lose confidence and keep on writing. Let's hope things will turn to a positive end sooner or later. All the best. Voted up and shared.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Glenis for the great comment. It is difficult to make money here, although a few seem to have mastered it and I would love to know their secrets. I have an Amazon Associates account and so far have not made a penny from it on my own blog, and very little here on HP. I appreciate you dropping in.

    • Glenis Rix profile image

      GlenR 2 years ago from UK

      An interesting, informative, and very well-written hub. I am new to hubbing but have been writing a blog for some time. The Adsense ads have not been particularly lucrative and I think that it will be years before I have accrued enough to receive a payment. I have found that the best money-earner so far has been a publication on Amazon's KDP - the advantage of which is that it pays royalties on downloads each month. Like you, I enjoy writing for it's own sake and am not expecting to make much money. I think that generally speaking Google, Amazon (and dare I say, HubPages) are doing very well out of their writers, since few of us will ever reach the threshold at which we receive a payment from them).

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you NateB11, I think we have all walked down the same road and we still have a long road to walk. Thanks for reading!

    • NateB11 profile image

      Nathan Bernardo 2 years ago from California, United States of America

      Your HP journey is an interesting story and similar to my own, I could relate to a lot of it.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Every word we write in favor of our feathered friends is a small victory for them, Deb. And when we are having fun at the same time it is a double blessing. Thanks for reading.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 2 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Oh, the times they are a-changin'! Glad to hear that you are having fun. In the scheme of things, isn't that all that REALLY matters? All I want is to be heard regarding my feathered friends. It is nice to have people think about what the birds need, and then do it.

    • Kristen Howe profile image

      Kristen Howe 2 years ago from Northeast Ohio

      My pleasure Mel. I agree. In about 3 months, it'll be my 1 year anniversary on HP.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Kristen Howe I am glad you got a chuckle out of it. I've had a lot of fun here and learned a lot, and I hope the next two years are equally enjoyable and educational.

    • Kristen Howe profile image

      Kristen Howe 2 years ago from Northeast Ohio

      Mel, this was a great humorous hub from your 2 year experience at HP. Thanks for making me laugh and smile, this morning. Your photos were funny, too. Voted up for funny!

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Two years is not that long Molly, I think there are a few hubbers with 8 years under their belts, and it takes that kind of patience to have some success. Thanks for reading!

    • Molly Layton profile image

      Molly Layton 2 years ago from Alberta

      This is an interesting hub! Your story is wonderful, and your lessons are powerful. It's great you've lasted so long here.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Perhaps your studying techniques will eventually prove profitable, Glenis Rix. Many hubs are not overnight successes, but start to pick up Internet traffic unexpectedly after several months. I will have to check out more of your work on the bard. Thanks for reading.

    • Glenis Rix profile image

      GlenR 2 years ago from UK

      A very interesting and informative hub. I'm new to hubpages so haven't yet formed a view about it - your insights are helpful. At the moment I find writing hubs about Shakespeare is a great way of revising for an impending examination.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Lady Lorelei. It seems like there is always something new and interesting out there on the horizon. Many of these sites are strictly fly by night, whereas Hub Pages seems to have had a degree of staying power. I appreciate you dropping in.

    • Lady Lorelei profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 2 years ago from Canada

      It has been a rough year for online publishing platforms and I am certainly seeing a change in how the internet now looks in that arena. Many writers have branched off with their own sites so there are actually more but smaller writer platforms online than previously. It will be interesting to see how the next couple years plays out. There is definitely a reduction in the amount of spam sites out there which is nice to see.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Very kind of you Sheila, it means a lot. I think if we approach this thing like a long term investment it could eventually pay off for both of us. I appreciate you reading, and I appreciate having you as one of my writing friends too!

    • sgbrown profile image

      Sheila Brown 2 years ago from Southern Oklahoma

      First of all my friend, your photography skills are much more than feeble! I love your pictures, especially those on your birding blog! Your writing is wonderful, I always enjoy your posts and love your sense of humor. I too have tucked my tail and snuck back to HubPages from Bubblews. Although I do still write there some, I try to focus on my 3 blogs and here. Making any significant money as a writer will probably always elude me, but as long as we enjoy what we do, it will at least be somewhat fulfilling. I wish you the best of luck with all your writing endeavors and am very glad to have you as one of my writing friends!

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      It takes a while to get accepted for revenue lyoness, and even afterwatd it requires diligent effort to earn. Thanks for reading!

    • lyoness913 profile image

      Summer LeBlanc 2 years ago from H-Town

      Thank you so much for writing this. I feel encouraged by your article. I was an epinionator for 12 years, and I too was drawn to the allure of Bubblews and enjoyed a few fairly nice paydays. I don't even remember how I ran into hubpages (and it was only 22 days ago, ha!) but I can't even get advertisement revenue yet. :/ I really appreciate you sharing your story and giving some hope :) Thanks!

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      I am not exactly a veteran Glory James and I have a lot to learn. One thing I have learned is that one has to have patience here. Don't give up if you don't get immediate results. Thanks for reading!

    • Glory James profile image

      Glory James 2 years ago from Charleston, SC

      Thanks for sharing your hubpages experience! As a new hubber, your insight as a veteran hubber is much appreciated as I navigate my way through the platform. Hope you will be with us for many years to come, and wish you much success. Happy Hubbing!

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Ann you are always so kind and if I can make one person smile it hasn't all been a waste, has it. Hub Pages is not perfect, but I think it is professionally managed and tolerant of all sorts of ideas. Don't worry, you are not the first not to get the joke with my name right off the bat. No need to blush. Thanks for reading!

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 2 years ago from SW England

      Such an entertaining read, as always, Mel. I realised within the first minute or so of reading this, that your hub name is a version of 'Mail Carrier' - am I slow, or what? I'm blushing.

      Love your turn of phrase; you always get me smiling.

      Like you, I love the camaraderie on hubpages. It's good to get mostly friendly, positive feedback and earn the odd pennies (sorry, dimes).

      Glad you've had some success further afield; may that continue. Also glad to hear that you intend to stay here; I for one enjoy your humour and your style. Long may it continue.

      Thanks for a great read and for the smiles this Monday evening, Mel.

      Ann

      PS - Nearly forgot - congrats on the two years.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      What a strange coincidence - My real name is Nell! LOL. Anyhow, while I patiently await my return on investment to come to fruition at least I can pass the time chatting with lovely people like you, Mel or Nell. Thanks for reading!

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      Nell Rose 2 years ago from England

      Hiya Mel, my namesake...lol! yep my real name is Mel! this was fascinating, and congrats on two years, it does take ages to earn a steady amount on here, sometimes I get paid other times, well, you can guess! we all do it differently and even though you found a niche' I tend to write about all and sundry so to speak, but its all make or break, anyway have a great weekend, nell

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you FatBoyThin I appreciate your kind comments. Glad you enjoyed it.

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      Colin Garrow 2 years ago from Kinneff, Scotland

      Interesting, witty and highly entertaining piece, Mel. Great Hub.

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Akriti. All the best to you as well.

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      Akriti Mattu 2 years ago from Shimla, India

      So good to read about your journey/experience on HubPages. I wish you all the very best for all your future endeavours. Also, i look forward to kep reading your work :)

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      We all have an interesting journey Jamie. Evolving is a perfect word. Thanks for reading.

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      You have a knack for writing and great photography kimbesa, both of which will serve you well here. Unfortunately it is not easy to make money here as it was in the glory days of Bubblews, but with patience it will pay off for both of us. Thanks for reading!

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      Jamie Lee Hamann 2 years ago from Reno NV

      Hubpages has introduced me to a whole new world where I can share my writing (even if poetry) within a community of writers that are learning and evolving like myself. I enjoyed reading about your journey. Jamie

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      kimbesa 2 years ago from USA

      Enjoyed reading your backstory, Mel! I'm in the weeds with my stuff right now, and I'm encouraged by your experiences. Thanks!

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you daisydayz. Sounds like you are doing better than I am. On the other hand, some people who joined at about the same time as me still haven't cashed out yet, so I think I am doing about average. I think it depends on how much time one can devote, with some Internet savvy thrown in of course. Thanks for reading!

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Were, you there too Dana Tate? Arvind seduced us with false riches and here we are again, sneaking through the kitchen door in the middle of the night. Thanks for reading!

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      Chantele Cross-Jones 2 years ago from Cardiff

      I never thought I would be able to make a full time income here, I knew what the site was like before I started so I think I had a realistic outlook, and to that end I haven't been disappointed! I put in a lot of work in my first year here, raking up over 100 articles, and now I just let it 'trickle' as you say. I make payout most months (and a number payout at christmas time!) so I shan't be leaving any time soon. I actually opened a second account with help of the hubby to focus on a niche topic instead, and that one is growing after I decided to dedicate a few months to that account this year, if I can get both passively earning by christmas I will be more than happy! it may not be enough money to give up the day job, but an extra £35 a month at least pays some bills!!

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      Dana Tate 2 years ago from LOS ANGELES

      You r too funny. I cracked up over your admission to sneaking back to hub pages like the prodigal son after bubblews unfortunate decline. You have joined the club of many.

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you let'stalkabouteduc. I appreciate you stopping by to read.

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      McKenna Meyers 2 years ago from Bend, OR

      Thanks for sharing your experiences with this newbie!

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Lawrence, best of luck to you.

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      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Mel

      Thanks for the encouragement. I love the fact that people here write with passion for their material.

      In my regular job I used to take a book to work for the 'down time' but now I've no time to read the book as there are so many first class hubs to read!

      I also appreciate the record you've put down here so that others following can see 'the lay of the land'

      Keep at it and you'll achieve your goals

      Blessings

      Lawrence

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Chris Willman. I am not where I want to be yet but with patience and some creative tweaking I may be able to get there. It will be interesting what I have to report the next two years.

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Lawrence. This place requires persistence and patience.

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      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      This is a really good 'roadmap' for the likes of myself. Thank you for it

      Lawrence

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      Krzysztof Willman 2 years ago from Parlin, New Jersey

      This was a highly enjoyable read from top to bottom. Your journey has had its ups and downs, but the enlightening aspects of it were truly captivating to a relative newbie like myself. I too hope to branch out and develop my own blogs, but I still have a lot to learn about establishing an engaging niche along with proper use of keywords and SEO. You didn't give up and that's encouraging to hear. Lovely hub, voted up.

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Linda, the support of great people like you has made the experience an enjoyable one indeed.

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      Linda Crampton 2 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Congratulations on your anniversary, Mel. As always, I enjoyed reading your hub. Your description of your writing history was interesting.

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      That first one takes a while Catherine and then they get here a little more regularly. Thanks for reading!

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      Catherine Giordano 2 years ago from Orlando Florida

      I enjoyed reading about your journey and I congratulate you on your successes. Like you, I came for the streets pave with gold, but stayed for the love of writing. It's been 10 months for me, and I will make my first payout this month.

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Virginia. As there are a multitude of fields to write about, such there are a multitude of different kinds of writers, motivated by different things. Please browse away. I hope you find something to your liking.

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      Virginia Allain 2 years ago from Central Florida

      It always interests me to see what motivates other writers. I'm off to browse some of your hubs.

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Yeah I know you weren't fishing, I just call em like I see em. After reading so many top 10 this and how to that your stuff is refreshing.

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      Larry Rankin 2 years ago from Oklahoma

      Mel: I was not fishing for a compliment. I was referring to people like you and Billybuc, and FlourishAnyway, and the like who do such a wonderful job here.

      Ps, I'll take the compliment though:-)

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Yes Larry Rankin there are a few well kept secrets here on Hub Pages and you are one of them. Your stories about Melvin and Hitler with the bird calls were like a drink of cool water after three days trudging across the Sahara. Thanks for reading!

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Nadine May. It is a twisting, turning journey for all of us and we never get to our destnation among the path we expect, but that's part of the fun.

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Bill, you are the rock upon which the Hub Pages community is built and I am delighted we have become friends and flattered you read my rather lengthy articles.

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you chuckandus. I am glad you liked the captions, somwtimes I like messing around those but I think people don't notice.

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Jodah for the constant encouragement. This forum gives us a soapbox and makes us all rockstars for a day among our peers. I appreciate you dropping in.

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      Larry Rankin 2 years ago from Oklahoma

      I really enjoyed this. You did a wonderful job of chronicling your evolution as a blogger.

      I too value my relationships here, and for as much as people want to criticize the writing quality here, I have found many writers of the highest quality.

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      Nadine May 2 years ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      Your post was a great read. I signed up for hubpages in order to promote my novels by writing through the characters from my novels. At least that was my idea. Then only did I discover that you can earn money from writing articles! So far I have not yet received any payment, but I'm sure over a longer period some payments will come through. Thanks for sharing your experiences.

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Well congratulations on the two years. I'm glad you stuck it out and I'm glad you will remain. I love your articles and I'm very happy we became online friends.

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      Nichol marie 2 years ago from The Country-Side

      Love reading your journey through hubpages mel, and photos are funny love the caption about your son.

      Have a great day!!!!

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      John Hansen 2 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Very enjoyable read here Mel, congratulations on your two year anniversary here as Mel Carriere. I always enjoy what you write and your style. Like you I only make a trickle here but it is a slowly increasing trickle so I'm sticking in here and I don't write here for the money anyway. It is the wonderful community and the opportunity of having somewhere to practice the art of writing and get feedback from others. Thanks for sharing your journey.

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Ron I think the key is persistence. This is a very fickle, unpredictable business and sometimes a writer just wants to give up, but the love of writing keeps us going to fight another day. Thanks for reading!

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      Ronald E Franklin 2 years ago from Mechanicsburg, PA

      Mel, it's really interesting reading about your journey on HP. I'm impressed at how you cultivated your fellow postal workers and won their confidence. This is good encouragement to stick with it here on HP.

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you sandeep for the nice words. I hope your hubbing experience is a positive one.

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Svetlana for those very nice words. I keep saying too that I am going to submit to more magazines, and submit my finished novel, but writing administration Is not my thing. I have to get it together. I appreciate you dropping by!

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      Sandeep Rathore 2 years ago from New Delhi

      I've really loved reading this hub, especially the tone in which it was written. Voting it up!

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      Lana ZK 2 years ago from California

      I enjoyed this hub immensely. Your writing style and wit are always impeccable. And you've only been here for 2 years. Overall, it's very impressive what you've been able to achieve here in such a short time. Great job, voted up!

      My experience on HP is different from yours. I haven't found my writing niche here, perhaps because my interests are too diverse, or because my brain refuses to learn SEO techniques. In fact, I was going to write a hub on my 5-year journey on this site, to better understand what I'm doing right, and what I'm doing dead wrong. You've definitely given me food for thought.

      Like you, what I appreciate most about this place is the opportunity to keep writing, and to continue improving my skills. I'm constantly learning something new about the process, and although there's a lot of useful advice out there, haven't found my magic HP formula yet. That's OK with me though. My only real concern is that whenever I write a new piece, I immediately publish it on HP instead of, maybe, with some persistence, publishing it on more reputable or potentially rewarding platforms.

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      Mel Carriere 2 years ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Pawpawwrites. Hub Pages is definitely a work in progress. I know there are secrets to success here, but I have yet to stumble upon them. It would be nice to have to avoid trial and error experimentation, but hubbers are naturally jealously proprietary about their trade secrets. I appreciate you dropping in.

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      Jim 2 years ago from Kansas

      I found it very interesting to read what has worked for you, and what didn't. Keep us posted on your successes. Good luck with your future endeavors.