Letter from the Editor October 2018: What to do with a passion project?

photo credit: Caroline Wyatt

Hello Cocktails Lovers,

 

I’ve been writing this blog for over ten years now.  It’s certainly grown both in terms of numbers and content.  Over recent years, I’ve started adding some interesting regular features like:

Eco-bar, which gives shout outs to bars and brands doing better for the environment.

Drink-Tech, which explores how technology is changing the drinkscape.

Out of Office, which highlights my favorite bars found travelling.

Cheese+Cocktail, which offers up the perfect cheese to pair with a classic cocktail.

Modern Day Guide to Mocktails, which explores this non-alcoholic category.

Made in France, which highlights local spirits and products.

Recommended Reading, which offers a list of current cocktail articles to check out.

I now have a radio show/podcast, Paris Cocktail Talk, as well as an iOS app, Paris Cocktails, which helps you find the best cocktail bars in the city. I also send a weekly newsletter to share with readers my top favorite five Paris food and drink events for the upcoming week.

52 Martinis is a passion project. That means I started it because I was passionate about cocktails and it was a lot of fun.  That also means, it’s not monetized. There are many reasons I don’t want to put ads or affiliate links up on the blog. But the main reason is, I want full control and no one telling me what I should or shouldn’t share. I want it to be sincere and personal. It just feels good to me to have something that’s not just about making a buck in a cheesy, salesy way.  

On the other hand, the bigger the 52M empire grows, the more time it takes to devote to it. Of course, as a non-monetized blog, I don’t have to answer to anyone. That means, I can take a few days, a few weeks, or (as has happened in the past a couple of times) even a few months off the writing. But, that also leaves me wondering if it’s better to monetize or drop other aspects of the 52M world.

I’ve been thinking about the blog a lot lately, the work required and how to approach it. I’ve felt like it needs a bit of freshness (thus the new series) and even questioned my voice.  Do I keep it purely professional? Do I give people peeks into my personal life? Do I make it super easy to take in with just a picture and a couple of lines on a bar? So many questions. I know i’m overthinking it…

When I started this site, there was nothing out there on Paris Cocktails.  Now that cocktails have gone mainstream, is my work here done? Is there still a place for 52 Martinis in the Parisian drinkscape? Do I need a new direction?

52 Martinis has become part of who I am, and how I’m recognized. So, i’m going to spend the next few months exploring those thoughts further. I’m going to put in my best for the series and keep it going.  I’m going to brainstorm more thoughts on if new directions are needed. And, i’m going to come to some final decisions by the end of the year.

Why am I sharing all that with you? Because 52 Martinis only exists because of and for the readers. So, I’m asking my readers to let me know what you think. What directions do you want to see the site take? What’s useful to you? Get in touch. Let me know. Because ultimately, 52 Martinis is only worthwhile if it’s useful to its readers.

Cheers!

Forest

About Forest Collins 320 Articles
Cocktail Expert Forest Collins is the creator of 52martinis, an online guide to the best cocktail bars in Paris and other small batch spirits news from France. We've also recently launched an app so you can keep all that bar info in your pocket!