Blogger Question

Bloggers, here is a question for you:

Do you ask questions at the very end of your blog posts?

Always? Or only when you genuinely want to know the answer?

When I started blogging years ago, I never asked anyone any questions.

I blogged mostly for myself and even when I started blogging for the sense of community and knowing that other people read it, I still didn’t do it. I didn’t need to do it. Because without even asking them the people who wanted to say something would still leave their comment.

But then the blogging community boomed. There are more blogs in the blogosphere than ever. “Reader engagement” has become the main goal. ” You are none without your readers” has become a cautionary tale. “Build Your Tribe” has become a money-making marketing mantra. And I am not even going to touch the constant “reminder” to build a mailing list dished out by every single blogging guru I know.

One of the tricks, I mean methods, they teach is to ask the question at the very end of a blog post. To engage the reader to leave a comment. You know, to build a community, as they say. So a few years into my blogging journey, I started doing just that.

Not only had I been writing a post and ending it with comments, I even went as far as going back and adding questions at the end on the old posts too. Just in case anyone went back that far to read them and somehow inclined to connect with me to comment but not sure how to start because I didn’t ask them any questions to initiate the conversation.

Spoiler alert: hundreds of crafted questions later. None ever answered any. But I still follow the formula. Writing a post and ending it with a question.

Even if the questions are not well written, well placed, well asked, it’s always well-intended. 

Until one day I woke up during this pandemic (of course, it must be during a pandemic because when else would my brain have the time to think about all these things) and decided to stop asking a question on every single blog post. Not only that, me being the Virgo that I am, I went and wiped most of the questions I posted in my old blog posts.

And let me tell you I have asked some fucking cringe-worthy questions. I have asked people which fish market they go to buy their seafood on at least ten different posts. No wonder none left any comments. 

If you ask me why I did it — as in why I wiped the questions at the tail end of my posts — I can’t really say why. Or whether it was even the right decision for my blog. The only thing that I can come up with right now, while I am typing this, that might not even be the right reason, is I feel like not asking the question at the end of the blog post, unless I really want to know the answer, give back a bit of authenticity to the original act of blogging. Gosh, I am clearly rambling.

Do you think it’s important to ask a question at the end of a blog post?

— see what I did there??
Film Camera MjuII Kodak Ultramax 400 Sky Bird

5 AM Thoughts at 3.30 AM

My 5 AM thoughts visited me again today, only that it came at 3.30 AM.

It has been three days in a row that I haven’t been sleeping peacefully, but today it was much worse since I could not go back to sleep anymore.

I refuse to self-diagnose myself with insomnia. Self-diagnosing when it comes to health is a trait that has become second nature among my extended family. Hence my conscious effort to stir away from it. Even at 3.30 AM.

I think I just overstimulated myself yesterday; both mind and body. The brain has been forced to work since 8 AM yesterday, and it didn’t stop even until I went to bed. From office work, blog posts, personal errands and reading heavy stuff until I fell asleep.

Meanwhile, I also let myself binge-eat yesterday using the period excuse. From sugary drinks, spicy chips to late-night garlic rice.

As a result, the heated stomach and buzzing brain refused to let my tire-soul rest.


I thought about how it has been a while since I share my coffee-diary entries here. How I forever chase the golden-light in life, both literally and figuratively. Both topics are unrelated.

I wondered whether I would have developed a deeper and layered understanding of a language if I was not raised to be multilingual. Since even until now, I struggle to express myself a bit more in-depth. In any language. Not only that, I have passed an embarrassing number of reading materials, just because it’s too hard for me to digest.

I felt like there is a version of me who I want to be (the one who reads daily, who cooks often, who goes on hikes on the weekend and who runs a marathon) and there is the current me that is not there yet. This year is about closing the gap between those two MEs, or at least minimize the gap.

My thought then went to the unwrapped gifts in the living room. It’s for a party that I have been invited to, by someone I wouldn’t invite to mine. Funny, isn’t it? Someone can be your VIP, but it doesn’t always mean vice versa. If you think I was being mean, hey at least I got them a gift 🤷🏽.

I wrote a reminder to finish reading Patti Smith this month – preferably this weekend if I am good. And to visit a new-to-me neighborhood cafe before we move out from here. Also, to get a tarot journal.


– ❥K

Best Days

What Was The Best Day of Your Life?

What was the best day of your life?

The question popped out on my phone. Sent by Jik. It got me thinking. The thing is, I have many.

The days I spent with my cousins, driving around Jakarta to buy the best road-side food.

The weekend I went to Malaka with my Uni friends and made more friends by the time we went back to Singapore.

Our three weeks honeymoon in Japan.

The weekend I went to Goa to attend my cousin’s wedding.

The first time I saw the Autumn colours IRL.

The many moments I shared with Cheryl when we worked together.

The day I went to the theme park as a kid with just my parents. I was wearing a red dress, and they let me do water rafting. It was so fun. I felt so happy and excited, and a bit of a grown-up.

The day I got a salary hike.

The day I got approval to move to Australia.

The day I stood in front of the sixteen floors National Library in Singapore.

The day I noticed Vi entering the classroom wearing her purple pyjamas.

The days I spent in Phi Phi Island, wearing a bikini for the first time and learning to be confident in it.

The day I bought my first MacBook.

Birthdays.

The hours I spent in the bookstores. And the hours I spent in Spellbox.

The night of the New Year’s Eve when I met Fafa.

The drunken night walk with my cousins in Copenhagen.

The day I ate MSG ridden fried-rice in a Chinese restaurant in Italy after not having rice for more than a week for the first time in my life.

Japan days.

My first snowfall day.

The days where Fafa kindness was the only support I had.

The weekend in Uluru.

The hours Jik and I spent in coffee shops in Hong Kong.

The time with LOL memories.

Quality times I spent with Amma and the moments of hugging her.

The day my Amma complimented me on my cousin’s engagement day.

Drinking Karak Chai in Dubai.

The nights I sat on the beach.

The hours I spent in the kitchen with my workmates – having lunch or just taking breaks.

The days I spent with Erwin and Vivi, rediscovering Jakarta.

The days and nights I spent with Thu just messing around while trying to figure out life.

My days in Singapore.

First dates. Second dates.

The days where I do very little but don’t feel guilty at all. The days when I do so much and feel a sense of accomplishment.

My post-grad days.

Sleepover nights.

My wedding days.

The day I realised I had all the support I needed in life.

The afternoon in Brisbane when we took an hour Uber-ride to eat good Indo food.

The day I discovered Serial podcast while travelling in Europe, which led into the true-crime rabbit hole.

The day I took Shinkansen for the first time, the second time and every single time after that.

The day I set up my blogs excitedly.

My last working day in Singapore.

Those are some of my best days—the ones I would love to redo. I realised now that most of them involve being surrounded by my loved ones, travelling and discovering myself. Here is to creating space in my life for more of those kinds of days.

1000 Posts Later

I counted today (as an accountant it has been ingrained in me to count for fun), between this blog and Kulture Kween, I have written over 1000 posts.

As a late-bloom-blogger I have contemplated when to stop blogging as I have always believed that it’s not a forever thing. At least not for me. And one day in 2010s, I made a pact with my tired-of-blogging self that I am allowed to stop blogging once I passed the 1000 posts mark.

1000 posts seems like a significant enough number for me to refer to myself as a blogger.

After all, doesn’t it take 10000 hours to master something? 1000 posts means I have written for half of those hours. Does this means I am allowed to feel accomplished in blogging?

You would think that too, wouldn’t you?

I am feeling nothing as such.

First of all, I have called myself a blogger since I published a one-paragraph post in 2007 titled The Girl Behind The Blog. Here is a snippet of it:

I am the girl with her glasses and scrunchie, who sits on the corner of a coffee shop with a MacBook and a cup of tea, looking all busy but yawns now and then. This blog is my view of our shared world, my thoughts and myself. It’s filled with stories about friendships, experiences, dating, mistakes, family and, of course, love. It’s a goal in progress for me, to practice and be a better (and ultimately well-known) writer.

Zero originality. But it’s at least something. Also, I have so long stopped wearing scrunchies. Thank God for that!

Secondly, I feel far from accomplished. One thousand posts might seem a lot. But a 1000 posts with the majority of it being half-assed posts doesn’t seem all that great —especially when compared to the bloggers who I admire.

Maybe then I told myself, I should strive from another 1000 posts (this time no half-ass-ing) before calling it a day or a decade.

Film Camera MjuII Kodak Colorplus 400 Mirror Selfie 2020 Meletos

2020 The Year I…

…Rang in the new year in Japan for the third time in a row. We had sushi and sake as the first meal of the year.

…Went to Bali for a weekend getaway. Now reflecting back, I am grateful we had the chance to travel outside of Australia this year.

…Started a new job in a new company.

…Practice with Miko, the first (second-hand) film camera I scored on eBay at the end of last year.

…Celebrated my friend’s, Liz, 30th birthday with a stay-cation in Mornington Peninsula.

…Self-isolated.

…Joined a witch coven.

…Bought my first ever indie tarot deck created by a female artist, then the second, then the third.

…Studied for CPA.

…Started liking black-coffee which no doubt is heavily influenced by Fafa.

…Finally enjoyed a good sandwich. It’s from Tivoli bakery on Toorak road which was introduced to me by Liz.

…Lived in lock-down for the most part of the year.

…Had a lengthy period of sadness from the combination of Covid and seasonal depression.

…Which made me pick up running.

…and cooking.

…and journal-ed as if my life depends on it.

…Got a tarot deck and oracle deck for birthday gifts from Fafa and Jik respectively.

…Had plenty of tarot readings.

…Deepen my tarot practice.

…Started a tarot blog then stopped because I thought I didn’t have that much to talk about in relation to tarot.

…Facetimed with my parents every single day from March onwards.

…Started this blog, a personal blog, but proceed to discuss mostly about tarot.

…Paid for a Google Photos account.

…Found out that Chiron has entered my chart since March and will stay there until the beginning of next year. Eek!!

…Finally read The Alchemist and generally read more books than last year.

…Stayed in a Mornington Peninsula airbnb.

…and in a Meletos winery in Yarra Valley.

…and in the farmhouse in Echuca where I took a boat trip along the famous Murray River.

…Went to an art gallery in Bendigo to celebrate our date-anniversary.

Japan Train Station Film Photography

A Personal Blog Might Be The Answer

I have been ignoring the notion of keeping two blogs simultaneously for the longest time. I pushed the idea almost immediately when it sprouted in my mind. Tbh, I think the idea could have never been my own, as it’s just beyond me why people would keep two blogs at the same time.

Abandoning one and starting a new one — with a new look, new niche, new topic of interest or new name? — sign me up. I am here for it. And I have done that plenty in the past (RIP Tr4velGeek, ForeignGeek, NomadWitch, JoyMagick, TarotKween, DaysofW, and QuarantineBuddy).

But never keeping two blogs at the same time.

I didn’t see the point because I could write whatever I wanted in my one blog. Until it was pointed out to me, by a “blogging guru” if I want my blog to grow, it’s best not. Because you know, niche and all. So I weeded out the KultureKween blog, removing anything that is not within the cultural niche.

A year ago, I asked a tarot reader to read about my blog. It was the first reading of many on the same topic (yes, I am obsessed enough with my blog to get multiple reading for it).

I don’t remember much of her answer, most probably because I couldn’t resonate with it. But there was a part where I complained to her that felt like I can’t write about other things other than culture, how that thought crippled me, and I ended up not writing at all.

Sometimes a trip to a beach is just that, you know, a trip to the beach. I want to be able to write about it on my blog without constantly trying to tie the experience from a cultural angle”. I mumbled to her.

She pulled out a card and suggested the obvious:

“Why not keep another blog on the side?”

I peeked over the card, The Temperance.

At that time, I had just started learning tarot reading and Temperance was (and at times still) a card that I have a hard time understanding. Balance was the only thing that came into mind.

Maybe” I answered her noncommittally, because the truth was I came to her because I was tired — feeling dragged by the current blog. Therefore, having another blog, a second blog, seemed like going in the opposite direction of what I wished for: to draw joy from my passion.

Fast forward to a few months ago (read Covid Diary: 6 Months), when I sat on the bathroom floor, feeling panicky for not keeping a diary to record my life during the early stage of Covid.

The midnight mild anxiety attack stemmed from reading people’s Covid diaries. I felt a pang of jealously.  Not of their experiences — but because they recorded their thoughts meticulously.

Dawn O’Porter even managed to write and publish a contemporary memoir about the pandemic, titled Life in Pieces, during this pandemic!

The next day, 8 August 2020, I paid $4.99 to Apple and jumped into the Dayone app. I spent the next week painstakingly copying the drafts I have kept in Evernote there. From then onward, I restarted diarising my life. Sometimes it is just a one-worded entry. Other times it goes on to a length of a blog post.

Though I didn’t notice it immediately, keeping a diary has been another anchor for my mental health well-being during Covid. Keeping a journal and updating it regularly pushes me to observe and write more. Soon after, I read Buy Yourself the Fucking Lilies and was inspired to write morning pages daily. 

These were the things that restarted my passion for writing anything and everything I wanted. It’s not in a noncohesive morning pages kind of way, but more like it might not be great, but still shareable kind of way.

That’s why I started Kovfefed. Well, it was Kovfefed.wordpress.com at first. I told myself I don’t need to pay for yet another blog if I can commit to writing on it daily for a full month.

That was two months ago today.

Kovfefed.wordpress.com turned into just Kovfefed sometime in between when WordPress offered 50% off of their paid plans. I subscribed to the cheapest one so that I can upload more photos. I also changed the Libre theme (which layout I loved the most) to Seedlet (which has the pagination at the bottom). It’s not the best, but that’s the only free one. One day, if I commit to daily writing for a more extended period of time, I will treat myself to Gema, the sexiest theme on WordPress.

Meanwhile, I also managed to dump all unrelated-to-culture posts which I removed from KultureKween to Kovfefed. These posts ranged from the time I started my first blog when I moved to Singapore 13 years ago to the current happenings.

I filled the archive with my tarot notes, obsessive thoughts about blogging, jobless rants, travel photos, shareable morning pages, random musings and snippets from my diary. Some just with a one-word and picture or even just a title (for now. I plan to fill it later).

Unlike Kulture Kween where I feel like I have the obligation (and I say that as a term of endearment) to write about culture-related posts, Kovfefed is more like my blank canvas. A fun, creative outlet. 

My goal for KultureKween is to learn about culture by sharing it with others in writing. My goal for Kovfefed is to write and to practice my writing. And I can write whatever I want. Things I like, things I hate, and everything in between. That has been liberating.

And now, the actual point I wanted to make when I started writing this post 15 minutes ago, I can’t believe it took me this long to realize that having a personal blog is one of the best things I could have done for myself. If you are stuck with a writers’ block, consider that it might not be you, but it’s what you are writing about. And maybe a personal blog is the fix that your mind seeks.

NaMeWriMo

Yesterday, I found out about NaMeWriMo (no, not NaNoWriMo — the Me is for Memoir), and no convincing was needed because I decided on the spot, without much research, that I am going to do it. I am declaring it here so you can hold me accountable for it.

I have done daily writing before—even daily blogging (Blogtember circa 2014). But I have never published a memoir piece every day for a month. I know it’s going to be challenging. The writing and even more so the digging through the memory bank and sorting it through a cohesive thought process parts.

But I also know it’ll be rewarding if I commit to it. And it will support me to progress on my writing journey, which is great. I signed up for Write Your Memoir Month on Creative Non-Fiction to get the daily prompts and some inspo.

I am not sure I will stick with these prompts throughout the month, but hey, it will help direct me if and when I am stuck with memoir writer’s block.

I am very excited about doing this NaMeWriMo for the first time. I feel so grown-up, so writer-ey. Wish me luck!

Three Card Tarot Spread for Writers

After searching and failing to find the daily Three Card Tarot Spread that I can relate to, in a few books and tons of website on the internet, I decided to create my own version. I am the Kween of my life after all!

My daily three card spread, which can be used by writers and blog, is a simple 1, 2 and 3 which represent the theme of the day, the main focus for the day and the daily writing prompt.

Nomad Witch

I decided to get a new blog name for my 10 years of blogging and 4 years of Foreign Geek.

It was not a well-thought decision, per se. I haven’t even registered any of the social media, but I feel like it could be what I need to lift me from this blogging rut I have experienced for almost a month. I am not going to delete Foreign Geek.

It’s my brand, and who knows how long will this witchy infatuation last, but if it does, I might rebrand the whole Foreign Geek to Nomad witch.

Maybe this is me growing up. Maybe this is me being more real. Maybe this is me finding my second/another true voice. Maybe this is just a summer flight or, in my case, winter madness.

Whatever it’s, let me try this. I might like it. I might not, but let me know about it. And once I am done.

For now, I am just doing what I love doing.

Adventuring.

I also want to shout out to Call Your Girlfriend podcast. Of all the podcasts ads I listen to, their was the one that got my attention and inspired me to start Nomad Witch on Squarespace. So thanks to them.

Good night and blessed be.