Ten years of Down the Road

Today marks ten years of this blog.

Down the Road, v. 1.0

I’ll spare you the usual blogiversary gushing and just say that I love doing this. It’s my favorite hobby. I can’t imagine not doing it.

I started this blog to scratch my itch to write. I had written professionally early in my career, but ten years ago my work had long since evolved away from trading words for pay. I missed the process of expressing myself.

But I didn’t know what I wanted this blog to be. My first post was essentially a sermon. I tried a little diary-style blogging, and I wrote articles about old TV shows. I’ve left the proselytizing and most of those other topics behind. I kept one element that has characterized this blog from the beginning: stories from my life.

Masthead banner from Down the Road, v. 2.0

What I could never have predicted, however, is that this blog led directly to my love of photography. I’ve collected old film cameras since I was 8, and even put film through a couple of them to see what would happen. But when I started reviewing cameras from my collection on this blog, you photographers found my work and offered encouragement and constructive criticism. Bit by bit, in no small part thanks to you, I came to care more about photography than the cameras, and now I’m a devoted amateur photographer interested in doing better and better work.

Masthead banner from Down the Road, v. 3.0

And so now this is a photography blog with the occasional story from my life thrown in. Will it stay that way? Who knows. Probably for as long as you keep enjoying it.

It turns out that’s the whole point of blogging: interacting with you. What writer wants to send his words into the ether, never to be recognized, never to be praised, never to be cursed? (Well, hopefully seldom cursed.)

I have a lot more to say about ten years of blogging, and about writing and blogging in general. I’ll share those thoughts in several upcoming posts.


35 responses to “Ten years of Down the Road”

  1. Dan Cluley Avatar
    Dan Cluley

    Creating anything this consistently is work. Doing it for a full decade is impressive.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Thanks so much Dan! It’s been an adventure.

  2. J P Cavanaugh Avatar

    Congratulations! I forget just when I started reading, but I’m still here. I credit you and this blog as having the most influence on my starting my own about 18 months ago, so thanks for that.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Thanks Jim! And you’re welcome!

  3. Dick Davis Avatar

    Thank you for your diligence in providing me with early morning enjoyment. I’ve followed you daily for a couple of years and appreciate your insight and openess. I’m not sure what brought me to your blog in the first place. It could have been something about roads or it could have been photography but your stories of life have provided a link to between each of the facets you cover. With transparency you share your sadness and your joy and has given an insight to who you really are. Keep up the fine work, and continue to be eclectic in your musings and reports. Happy Tenth Blogiversary.
    Dick Davis

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Dick, thank you. Eclectic-R-us, to be sure. Glad you’re still enjoying it!

  4. conspicari Avatar

    Really enjoy your blog posts, here’s to the next ten years.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Thank you!

  5. Andy Umbo Avatar
    Andy Umbo

    Congrats, I only found you when I moved to Indy a few years ago, but love the local history and film camera stuff! Seems like the perfect combo!

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Hard to believe I’ve made a reasonably successful blog out of walking around, taking pictures, and writing about it! Thanks for being such a frequent commenter.

  6. dan james Avatar

    Jim, congrats on the first ten years. I’ve been following maybe a couple and have noticed your content becoming more honed on photography and cameras, which personally I’ve enjoyed.

    Plus like others have said, your consistency and commitment in writing (and photographing!) was a big influence in me starting my own photo blog just over a year ago.


    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Dan, wow, I didn’t know my blog influenced you to start yours! You have a great blog, full of interesting stuff. I look forward to your posts.

      1. dan james Avatar

        Yeh, every time I read a post of yours about a camera, I thought “I really must get my own blog up and running”, until one day I did!

  7. DougD Avatar

    Well done on 10. I am in awe of your consistency, I just write sporadically elsewhere. Will need to go back and check out more of the archives.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Please do; they get so lonely!

  8. Jason Shafer Avatar
    Jason Shafer

    Congratulations on 10 years – that is a big feat by any measure!

    While I don’t comment consistently, keep them coming!

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Thanks so much Jason!

  9. davidvanilla Avatar

    You have done it so well. Kudos, and avanti!

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      :-) Thank you so much David!

  10. roykarlsvik Avatar

    Congrats on your ten years writing your fine blog, Jim.
    It’s a very fine one for sure, and really a well of great snaps and good reading. Keep it expanding just the way you feel, as you are the one in complete charge of things over here :)

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Thanks Roy! You keep reading and I’ll keep writing!

  11. N.S. Palmer Avatar

    Congratulations, Jim! I have enjoyed reading your blog all these years, and even more have I enjoyed your friendship and counsel. May your next 10 years be even more fulfilling!

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Thanks so much Scott! You’re a charter reader! Thanks for sticking with me all ten years.

  12. Christopher Smith Avatar
    Christopher Smith

    Congrats on Ten years Jim I think I been around about 4 or 5 of them but have read most of you back catalog over the years, Cheers and here’s to the next 10.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Thanks Christoper! You’ve been one of my most frequent commenters and I appreciate it.

  13. bodegabayf2 Avatar

    I was a reader long before I commented. Always an interesting read. Happy 10th!

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Thank you very much John for your encouragement and your support! You’ve helped me be a better photographer.

  14. Tamara Smith Avatar
    Tamara Smith

    I forget how I was lead to your blog but it was to read about the history of Trader’s Point.

    I love your perceptive and insightful way of writing. I’m captivated by your stories of roads that were, your descriptions of your travels abroad, and your accounting of personal growth. I’m not into the technical aspects of photography but always enjoy the photos you post.

    Congratulations and happy blogiversary! Hope you keep on writing for another 10 years at least.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Why thank you for delurking to say all of these nice things! I’m glad you’re along for the ride.

  15. Photography Journal Blog Avatar

    Congratulations :)

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Thank you!

  16. kidmc2014 Avatar

    I meant to respond sooner.
    Belated congratulations on this blog.
    I’ve been enjoying the photos for the past few months, I don’t know anything about photography, and I’ve cursed as far as having had some really ugly pictures taken of me, so I typically tune out any technical verbiage, because cameras don’t seem to like me, so why bother?
    What I started to say, before the wail, was that even though I know next to nothing about photography, I like your photos.
    I wanted to say, if I haven’t already thanked you for the terrific blog about The CBS Late Night Movie. THANKS JIM!
    That subject is very dear to me, being both a member of “The TV Generation” and a former “Latch Key Kid” of the late 1960’s and most of the 1970’s
    I learned quite a bit from the both the blog and other websites with information contributed by other viewers.
    That great theme and it’s title and composer/arranger in particular.
    All of it was informative and melancholy at the same time.
    Living in the past is what I do best these days, that’s what brings on my bouts of yesterday’s blues, but hey! somebody has to remember…
    I think I knew some time ago, that I was going to be like Old Sol in “Soylent Green” (1973)

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Hey, I’m glad you appreciated the CBS Late Movie post! It is one of the most-visited posts on my blog. And thanks for sticking around after you found it!

  17. Denny Gibson Avatar

    Congratulations, Jim. I like some of your posts a lot, a lot of your posts a little, and I appreciate them all. There’s an awful lot of good stuff here.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Thanks so much Denny!

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