The downside of a life online: burden, burnout and mental health

Before I delve into what is perhaps the most personal blog post I have ever shared here, I wanted to take a minute to thank the wonderfully honest Joe Harkness (of Bird Therapy) who’s recent post, The Vicious Cycle of the Vanity Metric, has helped me come to terms with (and put into words) many…

Another ‘wild’ year in retrospect

2018 has been a year of ups and downs; although, thankfully, mostly ups. The year marked by a great deal of personal and professional opportunities, myriad wonderful wild encounters and a whole host of new experiences. As is customary on this blog, I thought I would dedicate some time to knocking up something which vaguely…

How to write a nature blog, by Newton Wildsmith

So you want to start a blog. A nature blog, no less. Hats off to you for taking some steps closer to creating one. There is always room on the web for another voice for the natural world. This article is all about how to blog about nature. What format and style to choose, the…

The benefits of ‘curtain twitching’

We all have days when everything feels like just a little bit too much: like myriad tasks are mounting up uncontrollably while motivation [and self-worth] are cascading downwards. Slumps and spells of low creativity as we bemoan mounting pressures but do little to combat them due to persistent, nagging and quite frankly, irritating, doubts. Yes,…

Autumn in Suburbia, by Frances Jones

I was returning home from work along the scenic route, having been tempted by the sunshine to prolong my journey. I followed the path along the river, which was a busy, but pleasant, highway with cyclists, runners and pedestrians, some pausing and taking a slower pace than they might otherwise in cooler weather. The trees…

Freethinkers, echo chambers and the cult of personality in conservation

Just as it is in politics, the cult of personality is alive and well in the environmental field. Just as the charisma, views, values and outlooks of notable politicians – Trump, Corbyn, Merkel – shapes our political ideologies, so do the same features mould and sculpt our views on environmental issues. Influencing everything from our…

The drawbacks of Environmental Blogging

Bloggers in the present day are everywhere: voluntary journalists covering, in often exquisite detail, everything from hair and beauty to politics and, of course, the environment. There are so many now, in fact, that most people (myself included) will visit a blog on a daily basis, to ascertain new information, form opinions, kill time and…

Can nature blogging make a difference?

I have written before about the virtues of blogging from a personal perspective and the ample benefits it brings in terms of personal development, networking and general enjoyment. As such, it will come as no surprise to learn that I thoroughly enjoy blogging and, in turn, derive great pleasure from reading the virtual musings of…

BBC Wildlife Blogger of the Week

This week, I was kindly awarded the honour of Blogger of the Week by BBC Wildlife Magazine for my recent piece regarding my local patch: the Half-Penny Wood. This is the second time I have been lucky enough to be featured by the publication – the last being back in 2015 – and I really…

The good news keeps on coming

After a pretty tedious day of rain, menial work and more rain, I was delighted to receive two loads of good news this evening. The first coming from my University who kindly informed me that I received 71% for my final taught Masters module. This grade taking me to within striking distance of an overall distinction should my…

A quick life update

I have been rather quiet on this blog recently, at least by my usual vocal standards. I can assure you that this is because I have been incredibly busy – with work, writing and university – and not because my interest has waned. For those who follow this blog loyally (to my surprise, there are…

6 Reasons I Spend Time In Nature

I spend the majority of my free time outdoors: birding, writing, taking pictures, recording, watching and, occasionally, ambling absent any particular aim. For me, the wilds that lie beyond my front door are a second home. On in which I can be myself, think, muse and hide away from the tedium of modern life. From…