Early Birthday Gift: Promotion to Freshly Pressed

“Along the journey you never know where the road might surprisingly lead or where you might suddenly find yourself” (Tom Vander Well).

It’s been three days since I saw one of my favorite blog posts featured on the Freshly Pressed Section of WordPress’ homepage, yet the elation is still as intense as when I first learned about it. This explains why I am blogging about it now in a hope for a cure to come.

I’ve been using blogging as a coping mechanism for whatever that is since I learned to do it, especially when I feel like my tires are submerged in the deep of either trouble or joy. At this point, I need to blog to get a little detachment from this elation—the cure I was talking about.

So for those who’ve congratulated me and, at the same time, asked what’s with this freshly pressed thing when I posted it on facebook, allow me to share with you the story of why I am still elated.

Almost two years ago, I started “playing” on WordPress because the then two most popular social networking sites were already added to the blocked websites of the office. My wandering mind couldn’t stand the boredom so I tried looking for a new site to use and play with. It was there that I found wordpress.com. The first post, “My Rambling Fingers”, I made talked positively about what I felt towards the office’s decision to block Facebook and Friendster. Then it went on like this was the perfect venue for my blabbermouth to do its job and for killing time.

After making less than 15 posts or entries by the first quarter of 201o to the blog name “A Tunnel For My Murmurs”, I observed that I only get very few views for this kind of endeavor. But, when I started reading the Freshly Pressed (FP) Entries about travel stories almost everyday on the same quarter, I was inspired to try my luck on it. It was there that I decided to turn this blog over a new leaf. That is, to become a travel blog where my primary purpose is to promote the beauty of the Philippines. The very moment I changed the name of this blog into “Stories Of My Wandering Feet & Mind”, now “Stories Of The Wandering Feet & Mind”, made all the difference.

The few views I used to see on my site statistics gradually increased meeting my expectations but far less than what I perceived as “standards” for getting freshly pressed. After a few months of infantile thinking that I could make it on FP and realizing that I was overdoing the effort, I decided to just simply share my travel stories. The audience, in the form of views, otherwise became secondary. I just kept on writing and sharing the pictures I thought are beautiful. Nothing more, nothing less.

Life is really full of surprises. That became so true to me when I received an email last 02 September 2011 from the Editor of WordPress stating that my post, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, was promoted to Freshly Pressed.  I yelled. I screamed. I shouted for joy upon reading it!  But there’s more to it than just being on the homepage as I still have to deal with the aftereffect up to this moment like I said.

Freshly Pressed, according to what I read from WordPress (WP), is WP’s way of highlighting posts that they think others will like where each weekday, WP select ten new blog posts for the Freshly Pressed section of the WordPress.com homepage. The select posts represent how WordPress can be used to entertain, enlighten, or inspire.

“Freshly Pressed injects you with a visceral blowback that wafts you throughout the day—and all you can do in the midst of the float is wonder if it will ever happen to you again—and what magic you might have to conjure to capture lightning a second time, a third time, a fourth…in the bottle of your blog” Urban Semiotic.

Getting promoted to Freshly Pressed truly is a major traffic win both for WordPress.com and for the blog of a particular featured post. The sudden growth of my blog which is quantified by the kind of traffic it gets (i.e. the abnormal flow of views, comments, and subscribers) is simply exhilarating. I actually got six (6) thousand views for just three days—which is, relatively speaking, something a regular blogger will gain for about four years of blogging. That’s one real, big deal I tell you.

Let us not also forget the opportunity this blog post, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, may give for Philippine Tourism, specifically the Manila Ocean Park. Isn’t that something to be proud of?

The last thing is, there are only few Filipinos who make it to Freshly Pressed (FP). It’s interesting to note that there are actually 24 million bloggers in WordPress Universe as of July 2011 per wikipedia’s. So far, the only other Filipino Blogger that I caught getting featured on FP is my favorite radio personality, Chico Garcia, of Monster Radio RX 93.1. I once thought that I need to bag what he accomplished first to gain a Freshly Pressed badge. But the experience of being Freshly Pressed taught me that I just need to be me to get it. “The rest is all hard work and grindstones and luck and kismet and wishes upon falling stars—and sometimes you get what you want and it’s just what you need” Urban Semiotic.

I know I’ve probably said this a million times but I just can’t stop writing it here again: Thank you very much!

That goes out to WordPress, fellow bloggers, and non-bloggers who supported me on this endeavor. I hope you’ll push on supporting Stories of The Wandering Feet & Mind. I promise I will work out harder for what I do best here.

I’m a bit detached now. I think.

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26 Comments Add yours

  1. aRVee says:

    Congrats again Sony. It must be very overwhelming. Have a great evening!


  2. Sony Fugaban says:

    Daghan kaayong salamat, aRvee!


    1. aRVee says:

      Walay sapayan Sony… Walang anuman… You’re welcome.. De nada…


    1. Sony Fugaban says:

      Yeah! Thanks, cocomino!


  3. ElizOF says:

    Congratulations! 😉


  4. john tugano says:

    Hi bro..when is your b-day? hehehe
    I always have the feeling that you’ll make it there,with the kind of posts you are sharing to millions of people on the web..I never doubted it…Great that I’m one of your friends at least I also have the right to be elated..hehehe..We’re proud of you Bro…

    Advance happy b-day..=)


    1. Sony Fugaban says:

      September 27. Naks! Talagang lumulukso ang puso ko – literally and figuratively – sa sinabi mo, bro. Pero sa totoo lang, ikaw talaga ang akala kong makikita ko one day sa homepage na yan. Still, I will not stop believing na makikita kita, sampu ng mga Filipino Bloggers na naging kaibigan natin dito, … so “kayo” na ito … sa homepage na iyan. Break a leg and let’s keep sharing whatever we can share here.

      Thanks sa greetings at sa pagsuporta, bro! Until then …


  5. Congratulations. Your are a very talented man whose adventures seems to be endless. That post was totally awesome. The pictures I had to look at several times. Well deserved. Keep the world inspired with your posts.


    1. Sony Fugaban says:

      Salamat higala! I’d like you to know that you are one of my, what I consider, mentors in the blogosphere.


  6. Great post, Sony! Congrats again on being Freshly Pressed. And HAPPY BIRTHDAY! to you. 🙂


  7. markpere2010 says:

    WOW! Ang swerte nyo naman po. I wasn’t featured in “Freshly Pressed” though, as you read, sa “Blogs of the Day” po ako nasama. Too bad they don’t give away badges!


    1. Sony Fugaban says:

      A figurative badge will do. Hehe …


  8. Kim says:

    Congrats — an incredible honor. I hope to say the same some day.


    1. Sony Fugaban says:

      A million thanks, Kim! Life is full surprises and possibilities.


  9. nelson RN says:

    That was really cool, Sony! You really deserve to be in FP!


  10. Congratulations on being freshly pressed, v well deserved! And thanks for mentioning belgradestreets


  11. Congrats, and thanks for mentioning Main Street Musings Blog! It’s nice to be connected with your happy news!


  12. rommel says:

    OH W O.o W!!! We totally shared the same FP experience! The blogging, blogging reasons, the aiming for FP, the feeling during and the assessment afterwards.


    So who were the filipinos that had been FP’ed?

    Tita Buds
    Chico Garcia

    We should have a club. Bwahahaha.


  13. Congrats on being Freshly Pressed – and thank you for including my blog on your related links blog. I’ve been a big fan of FP long before my blog was picked. In fact, I always secretly hoped they would pick me one day. But that’s why I love FP – it chooses unassuming blog posts written by unassuming bloggers who aren’t necessarily trying to do anything except share their thoughts. And for once in my day, no one’s trying to sell me anything. Keep up the great work!


  14. Enigma says:

    Congrats and thanks for the ping back!


  15. Congratulations, Sony, on your success!! And, so, that is the secret. Keep it simple. Be yourself. I’ll keep that in mind, though it’s something that we hear most every day, isn’t it? Thank you truly for listing me in your related articles section. Assuming you read my article, you know I haven’t gotten there (freshly pressed) yet myself, and that’s okay. I enjoy writing what I write. It’s more life therapy than anything else and helps me ‘get things out.’ Of course, I always hope it helps someone else along as well, or gives them something to think about. That seems to have always been my goal. After a year now of blogging, I’ve been looking back to see what I’ve done and will try to ‘simplify’ as I move forward. Thank you for this enlightening post!


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