Monday, February 21, 2011

My Online Journey and Beyond : The ExtraBLOGanza Contest

My Online Journey and Beyond ...

If I ask myself right now where is Journey of No FERA headed to in 2011? Before anything else, I would like to quote a popular Filipino saying: "Ang hindi lumingon sa pinanggalingan ay di makakarating sa paroroonan". (Those who do not look back to their origins will never reach their destination.)

Here's the reason why I started my blog...

I started my blog Journey of No FERA for one purpose - and that was to join online blog contests.

Before this blog was ever born, first and foremost, I consider myself a contestant.

Many of the contests I joined and won before were not online contests. I joined photo contests, writing contests in newspapers and magazines, and my biggest win came from an assemblage art contest held 2 years ago.

For me, joining contests is my passion.

Then one day, after winning big in that art contest, I tried looking for more interesting contests through the internet. There, I stumbled upon a blog on contests and found out that there are many contests online, including blog contests.

I never knew what blogging is all about yet, I wanted to try it out. Who knows? I might gain something from the experience.

My first try on blog contests was not posted on this site. I made a separate blog for a contest sponsored by Animax. Most of the contestants who joined were either high school or college students, but they were very creative when it came to blogging. After not winning this contest, I got a taste of what blogging is all about.

How blogging affected my life

Not winning the said blog contest slammed me with a great realization... that I have a lot more to learn.

The winning bloggers were a lot younger but they were able to creatively write, draw, use Photoshop, make their own video, and design their blogs so well, my own work couldn't compare.

This strengthened my resolve to learn and master things I never knew before.

Thus, I started Journey of No FERA.

Then on, with this blog, I slowly learned the following...

1) I learned to enhance my photos. From what I have seen from other people's blogs, great photos make lasting impressions.

I enhanced this shot of Manila Bay using an ordinary point-and-shoot digital camera by emphasizing the orange color tones.

2) I learned how to make digital art and design. The younger ones who joined had attractive banners and digital art. Wanting to know how it's done, I practiced Photoshop some more to come up with something decent.

designed my current banner using my photo, a silhouette of myself, plus text and graphics

designed a caricature of me in a previous design / blog contest

3) I learned how to make video. This was actually a challenge for me. I can't find anyone who I can star whenever I want to make a video. And so, brushing aside the 'hiya' in me, I took the role for the sake of a presentable contest entry.

embedded this video for the previous a blog contest on alternative power

Through creating blog posts for contest entries, I learned that blogs are not just about writing... Blogging is a total multimedia experience.

Soon enough I was able to win some of the blog contests I encountered along the way. It was a sign that great things happen for those who persevere.

But the most important aspects blogging taught me were...

4) I learned to be more tolerant.
Not all times, blogging was pleasant. There were times I get nasty comments on my blog contest entries from anonymous netizens. I was affected at first, but after a while, I managed to be head-strong and accepted that these things do happen.

5) I learned to be true to myself. As a blogger-contestant, I wanted to write in a way that could please everyone, specially the judges. But after blogging for some time, I realized that I can't. Now, what matters is that I enjoy what I do - blogging and join more contests.

6) I learned the value of sharing. After joining blog contests that require feedback from commenters, I realized that much is needed to attract people to my blog. And to do that, I must also post something relevant and interesting for all to read. And so, aside from posting my contest entries, I also 'share' what I know by posting attractive contests I encountered on the net. If netizens online who joined contests asked for my vote or comment, I wouldn't mind giving them a hand.

7) I appreciated the value of my readers/followers. It's a rewarding experience for me to actually have someone who reads my posts. That is why if a commenter says something on my blog, I reply as soon as possible.

8) I learned that blogging allows me to meet new people and make more friends online.

Here are some of the people I got to meet personally thanks to blogging.

This was the first time I won in a blog/design contest. I got to meet a fellow blogger winner and the marketing staff of LG Philippines.

Last November 2010, my blog entry won the Muzikademy blog contest. Awarding me my prize is actress, model & athlete, Ms. Janice Hung

Got to meet other bloggers with the same passion as I have in Jayson Biadog's winners place meet-up last November, 2010.

Thanks to blogging, I met fellow bloggers who share the same interest in joining contests. It gave me a chance to go to new places, meet up with new acquaintances, and experience that in the online world, I am not alone.

Now I know blogging is also a social experience.

My blogging goals this 2011

Blogging and meeting new friends online is one great experience for me, aside from winning contests. I am looking forward to having another bloggers meet-up, soon hopefully. So my blogging goals this year is to find ways to interact with more bloggers online some more, in addition to joining more contests.

How to achieve my 2011 goals

To achieve my goals, I plan to do the following:

1) join more blog contests

2) actively participate in discussion or respond to fellow bloggers' posts and comments on my blog, or other blog posts I commented in.

3) continue to refrain from reacting negatively to adverse situations or nasty comments.

4) put more widgets on my blog that allows more effective socializing like twitter.

5) find some time to attend gatherings or meet-ups with other bloggers.

Hopefully, with this simple plan, I will be able to achieve my 2011 blogging goals.

From here on I believe Journey of No FERA is on its way to a whole new level of experience, both in the Creative and the Social aspect. This is because I know that blogging didn't just affect my life. Blogging is now a part of my life.

This is my entry to The ExtraBLOGanza Contest 2011. This contest was made possible through the following sponsors:

  • - offers a wide range of branded nursing scrubs and lab coats
  • Straw Hat Luffy (also the name of my favorite anime character as of the moment) - Anime, Games, Sports and Gizmos
  • Make Money Online Philippines | Winziph
  • Web Design Philippines
  • Scolex Portal
  • PCSO Lotto Results
  • NLE Results - Nursing board exam results
  • LET Results - Teachers' board exam results
  • Talent Search News
  • Computer Basics Tutorial

  • To know more and/or participate, visit The ExtraBLOGanza Contest 2011 blog post. Deadline of this contest is on February 28, 2011. ExtraBLOGanza Contest

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