Penny Swift dot com – My Home on the Internet
Welcome to Penny Swift dot com. If you understand how the internet works, and you choose to use it as a marketing tool, then it’s a no-brainer not to use your name as your URL. Of course, if there are lots of people with the same name as yours then it may not be possible, but it’s certainly worth a try.
I started dabbling with websites in the last century – in the mid-1990s! That was before WordPress and a few other companies offered web software that now makes it possible for anybody to create professional websites without any lengthy training. On a whim I did a search for www.pennyswift.com and was mortified to find that the URL belonged to another Penny Swift who wasn’t even born with the name (like me!), but had married a Swift. To make it worse, she had no interest whatsoever in the Swift name – which I, like many Swifts in my family tree, hold dear to my heart. I kept my eye on the URL for a year or two, and when Penny Swift (a US-based estate agent who had married a Swift) lost interest in it, and it became available in 2011, I made it mine.
What is Penny Swift dot com about?
First of all, this is not a web site about me, even though it is a medium that I use to share experiences and personal discoveries; and I also use it as kind of ever-changing portfolio of the work that I do and am available to do – primarily in the field of writing.
Having grown up on newspapers before graduating to high street magazines, then printed books, and latterly internet publishing, on an ongoing basis I write about writing, blogging, creating web sites, and I choose to share some excellent ideas on how to make money using these and other skills. I will also be writing about books and ebooks, and discussing some of the pros and cons of different methods of publishing these. I write about entrepreneurs, not only from South Africa, but from all over the world, and people who are an inspiration. Because most of the books I have written are about home improvement, building, decorating and landscaping, there’s a bit about all of this too – and a section where I share my favourite meals and recipes. There is also a section on this site about genealogy where I focus partly on generic issues, but I also explore stories about my own family and ancestors (not just Swifts).
Up Close and Personal
What makes this website different to the other web sites I contribute to, is that all the advice is mine, and it is based on personal experience. This said, it doesn’t make the other sites impersonal. For instance:
- On SANS 10400 I share my experience and knowledge about legalities related to building to the best of my ability. This site has grown exponentially, and currently gets as many as 90,000 unique page views in a month. It is also in the top ten SA Top Sites most weeks. In addition it contains information relating to owner building (the topic of my most successful book Owner Building in South Africa), and I discuss my own disasters as well as my successes and give advice to those wanting to owner build, as well as those who are already in the process of owner building.
- The Argus Report is just a fledgling web site, but one that I am pinning lots of hope on. Named after the hundred-eyed mythological Greek giant, Argus Panoptes (also called Argos), I am determined that The Argus Report will soon take on its own mythological form. It has an international appeal with a focus on news that will initially be primarily health based.
- Pools Professor is a relatively recently launched project, quite a bit older than The Argus Report, and one that also moves away from the South African platform into an international arena. This grew from my book on Swimming Pools and Spas, unfortunately long out of print, as well as production of a bi-annual magazine, NSPI Swimming Pools & Spas for seven years.
- CraftingDIY, another dot com site and aimed at a wide international audience, was prompted by a fascination with arts and crafts, as well as years of experience writing for the South African Your Family magazine, with its strong focus on artists and crafters. A showcase for artists and crafters, as well as an on-line encyclopedia of how-to do a wide range of arts and crafts, it is growing all the time. Artists and crafters are welcome to promote themselves on the site – FREE!
- On Happy Plants (which is still very much a project in progress and an experiment in the making), I aim to focus on the successes and failures in my own herb and veggie gardens over the years.
Apart from these web sites, I contribute to many others, some regularly. The topics I cover are vast and varied, and have lead me to research areas I previously knew precious little about. So you can expect some surprises here too!
Come right in, settle down at your computer, and if you want me to help you with anything that encompasses my expertise, I’ll do my best. This is my home on the internet, and you’re all welcome.