This post is the 500th I’ve created for A Stamp A Day since starting the blog on July 1, 2016! The majority of the posts have been quite lengthy, making this a significant part of each day. I research and compile the articles each day in addition to my full-time job as a school administrator/teacher. I also try to find time to read and to work on my stamp collection (lately, it’s usually the latter that gets neglected if I need more time to complete an ASAD article). This month, I am also participating in National Novel Writing Month, committed to writing at least 1,667 words each day in November.
On a good day, it can still be a challenge to put together the geopolitical histories of the various stamp-issuing entities (mostly sourced from Wikipedia) and add in whatever philatelic information I can find. Sometimes, it’s difficult to find much information at all on a particular entity’s postal history or stamp output. A major source for that is Stuart Rossiter and John Flower. Macdonald‘s Stamp Atlas, a version of which is hosted by the Sandafayre auction website. That information is often fleshed-out with other websites and blogs, if I have the time. Lately, much of my time is spent finding and adding appropriate (public domain) images to use in addition to the standard map, flag and coat of arms I try to include.
I continue to maintain my one-stamp-per-day policy when dealing with issuing entities, but have started to occasionally add images of other stamps as appropriate. All of the stamps on this blog are scans of images in my own collection except for the rare occasion when I’ve purchased a stamp on a certain theme (next week’s Thanksgiving holiday, for example) and it hasn’t arrived by the time I want to publish the article. When the stamp does arrive (or I find an upgrade in condition), I update the original article.
I find the posts that are biographical in nature or that commemorate a certain event or holiday are the easiest to compile. I do it a bit backwards by searching day-by-day on Wikipedia’s on-this-day pages trying to find interesting events and then searching to see if I have a stamp that matches. If I do own an appropriate stamp, often the condition is embarrassingly poor. Depending on the topic, I may go ahead and use stamps with short (or missing perforations), semi-heavy cancellations or other faults. When my budget allows, I am trying to go back and replace those with stamps in better condition.
I’ve started to systematically go through my United States stamps and then looking up important dates associated with those; I will eventually do the same with other issuers where I have a significant number of stamps so that I can continue making a monthly schedule of planned articles.
I am nearing the end of the stamp issuer articles. Tomorrow will see Venezuela profiled and then there are only eleven additional entities that I currently have in my collection. The post about Zimbabwe will be published right before American Thanksgiving — two weeks from today. I haven’t found a holiday or historical event that I can write about on either November 25 or 26 but the 27th is the birth anniversary of Jimi Hendrix and I do have a stamp portraying him. I believe that I may just pull random stamps from my collection to write about each day when there isn’t an event to commemorate.
I also may start taking a few breaks from the blog. I haven’t missed a single day since it began (twice, I believe, I posted two articles on the same day). It wasn’t much of a problem before my laptop stopped working last month but I am currently using a borrowed PC at my work as I plan to order a new laptop from the United States sometime next month (those sold in Thailand are fairly low-quality and imported electronics are extremely overpriced). Lately, I’ve been compiling two (and more!) articles on Fridays in order to prepare for one to be published on my weekly day off of Sunday.
Next week, I will spend a few days in Bangkok visiting the Royal Crematorium before it is dismantled. I may decide to simply post a stamp without any commentary at all. I’ll search my collection this weekend to see if I have any “on holiday” stamps that I wouldn’t mind using. Time will tell….
I don’t want to fall out of the habit of maintaining A Stamp A Day on a daily basis. My other blogs have been neglected more often than not since I started this one. If I don’t post something each day, I may have to think of a different name (which would involve re-doing my stamp “revisions” in the header!).
I thank all those who have read this blog at any point or have continued to follow A Stamp A Day through 500 straight posts over the past 16 months and nine days. I hope that I have provided some information and entertainment along the way. Cheers!