Two years ago today, I created A French Guy in London. Happy birthday blog! It’s still going strong – meaning I haven’t got bored of it yet. I started the blog at a time when I worked closely with bloggers, and got into a habit of reading them regularly.
Many of them were remarkably boring, vain, poorly written and full of blatant, clearly paid-for product placements. There are few things more lame than a site documenting every event of one’s dull life, spammed with links to every company willing to cough up a few quid.
I thought, I can do better than this shit. So I tried. Don’t get me wrong, there is plenty of vanity involved in this project, and some sponsored content as well. But this is all me: the inescapable sense of self-importance which accompanies first person writing, the strong views on most things, the random posts and thoughts.
I never sell out my opinion. My travel and London posts are not just photo albums for my own pleasure, nor a sidenotes to let my mum know I’m not dead. They are pieces of advice, so readers can hopefully draw on my experiences and have a good time.
My opinion posts on serious topics are not merely self-imposed therapy to rant out my frustration at the world’s stupidity. Though mainly. I also write to encourage discussion, maybe in the hope to even change minds.
I know many friends and family in France keep up with AFGIL – I can see you guys on my analytics tracking, hello! While I love the life I’ve chosen here, unfortunately I don’t get the opportunity to catch up with you as much as I’d like. This is me letting you what’s up, in case you’re wondering.
But of course, the main reason I do this is for me. I’ve always been a pretty rational, analytical person. It’s a flattering but sticky label. Most of my job also involves a lot of data analysis and diagnosis, and at times little room for much else.
This is my blank canvas. It’s perhaps the only untouchable space where I enjoy full creative control. Photography, fiction, argumentative pieces and my best attempts at satire can be all found here. Not all of it’s good, but at least it’s mine. There are also some really quite personal things here. A small part of this blog is hidden, so only I can read it.
Finally, while there is plenty to enjoy about life in the capital, it ain’t always cheap and accessible. This blog has opened a few doors for me through free tickets, private invites and even the odd payment. That’s pretty sweet, too.
Anyway, that’s why I’ve been keeping up with this bizarre habit for the past couple of years. And long may it continue.