Top 10 Gen Y Blogs: December 2009


  • Thanks to everyone who continues to make this list possible every other month. There were a ton of you that submitted ballots this time around, and I’m confident everyone will find someone new to add to their readers.
  • It could stop there if you want, but I urge you to get to know one another (and introduce yourself to me if we haven’t met), collaborate on projects, explore commonalities, challenge one another, and make some new friends.
  • After you digest the list I’d love for you to stop by the comments section and have a dialogue with me (and others) on blogs you’d like us to consider for future lists (and why), some of the blogs you’re glad to see make this list, who surprised you, what you think of the newcomers to the list, etc. (You can also speculate and offer suggestions on what you think the new format will be in 2010.)
  • Feel free to grab the Gen Y Top Blog Badge from Flickr and add it to your blog (with or without a link back to here.

Oh, and Um, Yeah, there’s some good stuff month…

Also Receiving Votes:
LAF, The Dating Jungle, Free Pursuits, Bossy Girls, Nicole is Better, McKinney Oates Cereal, Alex Mann, Politcoholic, Under 30 CEO, Social Pollination, Wage Slave Rebel, Greg Rollett, Twenty or Something, Communications Catalyst, Exile Lifestyle, I Will Teach You to Be Rich, Justice for All, The 9 to 5 Alternative, The Writer Babe Series, Ben Casnocha, Entry Level Living, Epic Self

On the Bubble:
Modite – This blog provides career & life conversations for a new generation of workers.

Corn on the Job – Rich’s blog consists of wisdom for job seekers and a wealth of his opinions acquired through his experiences, including human resources and corporate recruiting.

Life in Translation – Jamie’s insight pertaining to moving abroad, figuring out life, and the insanely torrential topic that is love.

Brazen Careerist – Penelope’s blog is about career advice, and her of course.

The Lost Jacket – A blog based out of Boston, MA (authored by Stuart Foster & Carla Blumenthal) focused on social media, public relations, marketing and brand management for businesses.

The Spinks Blog – This is where David attempts to wittily discuss the most recent trends, ideas, tips and questions on how businesses use social media

Derek Shanahan – DShan’s personal blog where he talks about a lot of things including: love, community, trust, and technology.


The Top 10 Gen Y Blogs for December 2009

10.) The Curbside Marketer – Jackie kickin’ it and stirring up conversation about social media, marketing, and life in the business world.

Tough for me to write about Jackie because I’m biased, but I sat next to him in an office for 5 months, and I know he’s brilliant. (Especially at making powerpoints. Hi Jackie!) He does two things really well that consistently keep me reading his blog:

First, he’s great at connecting ideas where most people wouldn’t recognize similarities. And second, he does an awesome job expanding on current events with his own insights and how it’s applicable to marketing. I really liked this particular post, and his analogous Friday’s are always a welcome reprieve from going stir crazy awaiting the weekend.


10.) Thrilling Heroics – Blog that encourages young professionals and entrepreneurs to pursue an unorthodox, exciting lifestyle and career, strive for excellence, and make a positive difference in the world!

If you want to get out of the cubicle and on the beach, if you want to experience ‘Lifestyle Design,’ Cody’s blog is a good place to start. He might be living a dream, but it took a lot of hard work to get there. Thrilling Heroics will give you a little insight into how you make your own dreams come true.

For example, this post is chock full of all the tools you’d need to live location independent. I’ll take Cody’s word for it that he’s pulling beautiful women, but his he does explain in depth how he finances his lifestyle and what a typical day looks like. The only thing I don’t understand is why you’d live in Thailand and not Texas if you could live anywhere in the world.


9.) The Rest is Still Unwritten – Tech News and Random Ramblings from a 20-something year old bachelor.

What do Ryan Reynolds, Bill Simmons and David Stehle have in common? You guessed it. Mancrushes. All 3 of them. Maybe it’s because David’s a cool guy. I doubt it’s the reason that 95% of the commenters on his blog are women.

No, I think the reason I enjoy David’s writing is because it’s raw. And that’s who I am, completely unfiltered. And yet I turn it off when I enter the “real world” or when I share with you on this blog. So do you. But David writes like nobody is reading, which inevitably let him write push the edge. I want to be that free. Don’t you?


8.) Location 180 – Most of the topics written here are about some combination of Sean’s passions: travel and entrepreneurship.

What I love about Sean’s blog is that he’s sharing his journey with us, and he writes in such a way that it feels like we’re along for the ride. And not just sitting shot gun (especially since he just sold his car), but actually witnessing his everyday life and decisions from his eyes.

Another thing I really appreciate about Sean is that his path isn’t defined by those around him. He defines his own success, and he doesn’t let deterrents slow him down. Case in point: “21 Things I Have Learned From Unemployment


7.) Ophelia’s Webb – Musings and Ramblings from a no-so-average girl next door bumbling around the gorgeous metropolis that is Portland, Maine.

Aside from her Blog Crushes, which are a superb way to highlight young bloggers, Elisa (her name isn’t Ophelia) also has a knack for taking seemingly small, every day encounters that we might take for granted and writing about them in a way that maybe you haven’t thought about.

Whether that means evaluating the beauty of vulnerability and relinquishing power or finding happiness in the middle, her hodge podge of assessments are always thought, and usually a bit introspective.


6.) Small Hands, Big Ideas – Musings and Inspiration on Technology, Career and Generation Y

Grace has graced us (get it? I’m clever) on this list four consecutive times now, and I have a sneaking suspicion that her ability to consistently find herself on this list has a lot to do with the consistency she displays on her blog.

Which isn’t to say she won’t surprise you with a new approach sometimes. As I know I’ve mentioned before I really appreciate her ability to mix up her posts and cover a wide variety of topics, infuse some of herself in there, and deliver insightful nuggets like this one.


5.) Life’s Like a Box of Chocolates – Stories and advice from the variety of things Sam’s discovered in her box of chocolates.

Poignant. That’s how I’d describe Sam’s writing. Like other writers on this list she really opens up and bares her soul to her readers, and a result we’re forced to learn about ourselves simultaneously while Sam examines her own life.

I can forgive her for her reality TV affliction when I read how she poetically navigates everyday conflicts like selfishness, and I don’t think I’m the only one who gets a lot of value from her [Sam] antics posts. Top all that off with the fact that she’s an absolute sweetheart and never fails to brighten a busy day with a quick hello via gchat.


4.) Sydney: Unfiltered – A raw take on Syd’s life. One she describes as: unpredictable, frightening, and wildly exciting

Sydney’s altered her brand a bit and while I don’t think she’s nearly as unfiltered as a Jamie Varon or a David Stehle, I think she’s really grown as a writer since stepping away from just PR and encompassing a lot more aspects of her personal life. Not to mention rejuvenated herself (and her blogging) I believe.

Not only is she getting the opportunity to speak at SXSW, which she riffs on here, but also her love life (which I kinda get to help with sometimes), and a savvy and personal look into growing up and being a working woman (and all that entails) in big city Chicago.


3.) Life Without Pants – The blog about everything and nothing: Without restrictions, without cause. The latest on Gen-Y, technology, philosophy, and more!

Three consecutive weeks at #1, and I suspect he thought he’d fall further than this after some people voiced their displeasure of late. But this is a testament to both Matt’s content and his ability to market himself and genuinely connect with people. (And that’s part of being a top blog, no? Rallying your community?)

Whether it’s useful tips Matt’s acquired from his own experiences or just the fact that he’s always on the grind Matt’s certainly earned my respect.


2.) OwlSparks – Daily short posts (oh, erm, not anymore) on philosophy, marketing, social media, personal branding, love, friendship, questions, discussions and all that stuff.

Carlos debuted at #3 on this list in August, and since then he’s switched from daily short posts to some less frequent longer posts, he’s ruffled some feathers, and most importantly… he’s probably made you think. About yourself, your beliefs, societal norms, foolish paradigms and much more.

I don’t always agree with Carlos, but wouldn’t your rather read something that challenges you to ask questions and dig a little deeper than nodding along and going, “Yeah I can dig that.”


1.) Life After College – Jenny’s mission is to provide simple, practical tips that help you focus on the BIG picture of your life…not just the details. Find tips and resources for life, work, money, happiness, productivity, personal growth and more.

Admittedly, I’ve been anticipating Jenny’s ascension to the top for few months now. I suspect it was only a matter of time. Quickly becoming famous (in our insular world) for her nifty templates/guides, Jenny does so much more. For one, though I haven’t met her I can assure you she’s real (just read the post).

I don’t know if it’s because she gets to hang around smart people at Google all day, but sometimes it just feels like Jenny knows something I don’t (aside from what a red velvet cupcake tastes like). For about 3 seconds it makes me want to live vicariously through her until I read that I should Stop Audition for Other People’s Lives.” Told you she was smart. Like Sydney, she manages to mix in a few dating posts. But most importantly, she takes great pride in convincing the most charismatic bloggers in the world to guest post for her. (What? My fingers are tired. I deserved that plug!)

Congrats Jenny! And to everyone who made the final Top 10 Gen Y Blog List of the Year (and in this format)! I’m off to call Jenny and congratulate her, seriously. You – scroll down to the comments section and let me know how awesome these write-ups were.


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Top 10 Gen Y Blogs: December Edition —

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  • RYAN (I have no idea what your middle name is) STEPHENS! Thank you for such a great write-up. I credit the ascension to the number one spot entirely to your guest post on dating. Now if only I could report that I’d actually gotten some action from it 😉

    But really, back to being serious: thank you so much to everyone for voting, reading and to my fellow bloggers – for writing such great content.

    I am honored, humbled and honestly feel like any one of the blogs on the ballot could be in the top spot. Thank you all for being such wonderful inspiration and support, every single day.

    [3 (that’s emoticon code for cupcake love),

    P.S. Awesome write-ups, Ryan! 😉
    .-= Jenny Blake´s last blog ..Learn to Love Feedback: It’s Your Career Currency =-.


  • I’m being compared to Ryan Reynolds and Bill Simmons? Aww shucks, Ryan. You know how to make a girl (er boy) swoon.

    Seriously though, happy to make the cut. Your Top 10 Gen-Y Blogs list always gives me some new blogs to check out. Thanks to those that voted for me and congrats to everyone who grabbed a spot on the list!

    Of course a special congrats to the #1 blog. Jenny Blake takes the (cup) cake. Very happy for her and so well deserved. Her blog gives my brain an intellectual orgasm. She just knows how to word things that hit the spot every time.
    .-= David´s last blog ..More Cool Tech Gadgets – FREE Giveaway! =-.


  • Congratulations to Jenny and the rest of those in the top 10!

    Bang up job on the write ups Mr. Stephens. I’ve certainly already made some new connections from this list and looking forward to catching up with those I haven’t as of yet.

    I’m shocked and thrilled to be part of the “on the bubble” list with some amazing writers. Was glad to just be involved on the nominations list, so this was certainly a fun surprise.
    .-= Rich DeMatteo´s last blog ..Santa is ballin’ =-.


  • Congrats to all those who made it on the top ten ąnd those on “the bubble”. Looking forward on reading, following these interesting blogs. I’m always looking for some new mind-fuel blogs. Thanks Ryan


  • Thanks again for the nomination in this Ryan. And kind write-up. You know, living in Thailand where the cost of living is probably 1/10th that of Texas is part of the trick! I’ve not been out to Texas yet actually, but looking forward to SXSW in Austin if I can make it out there this year.
    .-= Cody McKibben´s last blog ..Nomadic Matt Shares About the Mobile Lifestyle and How to Earn a Location Independent Income =-.


  • All I’m gonna say is: I have Skype calls with Jenny all the time. Yeah, the #1 and #2, talk about awesome calls.
    .-= Carlos Miceli´s last blog ..To Hell With Personal Branding =-.


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  • #3?!? – I demand a recount! 🙂

    Super well deserved Jenny. If there was anyone to knock me off the #1 spot. I couldn’t be happier for it to be you. Since I got started into the blogging scene, you were always someone I emulated and admired. You have the uncanny ability to tackle some difficult, or what would seem difficult to digest topics and make them relevant and applicable to your entire audience. Not only that, you always offer a tangible takeaway – something for your readers to walk away with and put into action in their own lives. That’s the mark of a truly inspired and excellent writer. It’s been a pleasure getting to know you, and now we really have to jump on a commute-home call soon to talk about everything that’s happened as of late – including you demoralizing me on Ryan’s top 10 list 🙂

    Such an excellent list as always Ryan. An honor to be included or even mentioned with all of these folks. Cheers!


  • A king is dethroned! Good run at the top, Matt, and congrats Jenny for moving into the top spot!

    Ryan, I know this list takes a lot of effort to put together, so thanks for providing an awesome resource for us to find new blogs to check out!

    I was just happy receiving votes in the first place, so I’m particularly psyched to break the top 10! Thanks to anyone who voted for The Curb.
    .-= Jackie Adkins´s last blog ..Stop, Consolidate and Listen =-.


  • great list. lots of new adds to my reader. thank you for compiling this every month.


  • Thanks Ryan (and everyone)! Honored to be listed in the same sentence as Jamie and David – though I will say, I think I’m a different kind of unfiltered (not so much about naughty bits but definitely an Unfiltered look at ::myself::), so that’s awesome. That whole scene is a work in progress – thank you for recognizing the shift. 🙂

    Congrats Jenny on an EPIC WIN! So excited to see how far everybody’s come this year and I know you’ve been a big help to me especially – so GO YOU!

    Good work kids – can’t wait to see what 2010 brings!
    .-= Sydney´s last blog ..Independence: Unfiltered. =-.


  • Another fantastic list! Congrats all! Thanks to everyone who voted for me, I’m honored to be #5 🙂 Ryan: Thank you for the amazing writeup! I’m so touched, you made my day!
    .-= Sam Karol´s last blog ..If I Am Not For Myself, Who Will Be For Me? =-.


  • Loving This contest! I think it encourages great work from great writers, and gives some even more added incentive to produce great content. I would love to one day join the list, and I love the work of each of the people that are on here.


  • I feel like I always read this (or get to it last) damn Mountain time zone when I get into the office later than everyone else 😉

    First of all, thank you! I remember very clearly the first time I ‘graced’ your prolific list! I’m so grateful to still be on it, moving around the list and amongst so many talented writers and bloggers.

    I love seeing everyone on this list. I’m still learning and finding new content and I know this isn’t easy to compile, Ryan. So thank you. I’m excited to see what you have in store and what the future might hold for this. Haters will always hate. Either way, I think it’s a great way to come together, learn something new, meet new people and give credit, where credit is due!
    .-= Grace Boyle´s last blog ..From the Guys, Guest Post: Our Attraction to Feminine Masculinity =-.


  • Wow, the last couple of times this list has come out I’ve stared at it in some sort of weird disbelief wondering how I’d end up even listed, let alone in the top 10. Especially with such an amazing group of peers. Thank you to everyone, I truly am humbled to be included in any way again. 🙂
    .-= Elisa´s last blog ..Called Out =-.


  • Ryan – thanks for taking the time to pull this together regularly and continue to point us to great people and the solid blogging they do. And I know it takes a bit of time to pull together. There are a lot of hyperlinks in that post!

    To my fellow “Also Receiving Votes” peeps, I’m honored to be in your company. Looking forward to seeing many of you move on up and kick some of those other blogs out of their respective places On the Bubble and in the Top 10.
    .-= David Mullen´s last blog ..2 Advertising Tools PR Pros Should Have =-.


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