This blog was my first foray into the writing world, and I set it up by chance a 2008 while studying a degree in finance and investment management. I needed some inspiration to keep me researching the stock market, and this became that inspiration. I would post all my research and analysis on the companies listed on the stock markets.
The most successful and followed part of my blog was 'Gray's Stocks to Watch', where I posted the names of the stocks and shares that were of most interest to me, when the prices were of most interest to me, along with blog posts in which I explained my reasoning.
Over the three year period I ran the blog, I added 65 stocks to Gray's Stocks to Watch, 52 of which showed profits, leading to a cumulative return for the period of 397.5%. *Details can be found at the bottom of the page.
In terms of viewership numbers, at its peak, I regularly received 2,000 to 5,000 unique reads per post (through Stockopedia, where I was a top contributor, some posts combined viewership was over 10,000).
I also had research posted directly onto the websites of a good number of companies who had values ranging in the multi-hundreds of millions of pounds. And through Stockopedia my articles were streamed on Bloomberg's news feed, along with Google News UK, News Now, and Yahoo finance amongst others.
In 2010, my blog was rated for a short period by Alexia as being in the top 50,000 sites in the UK, a feat I am most proud of considering I only posted at most two to three times a week.
However, due to a mixture of injury and a desire to follow a different career path I was forced to close the blog down. But I am most proud of the level of leadership this blog achieved, and without its success I would likely never have began a career as a writer of fiction.
*Gray's Stocks to Watch results
2008 (Last three months only)
FTSE Allshare = -11.05%
Grays Stocks to Watch = 11.85%
Return over market = 22.9%
FTSE Allshare = 24.96%
Grays Stocks to Watch = 98.64%
Return over market = 73.68%
FTSE Allshare = 13.57%
Grays Stocks to Watch = 111.37%
Return over market = 97.8%
Combined three year total of 397.5% against the FTSE All Shares 26.2%, yielding a return over the market of 371.3%. This means if £100,000 had been invested in September 2008, over the three-year period it would have increased to £497,540, while if a market tracker had been invested in, it would only have been worth £126,200. That is a return of £397,540 versus a return of £26,200 for the market tracker.
Number of writing competitions entered: 26
Number of winning entries: 3
Number of times shortlisted (exc winning entries): 2
Number of literary agents and publications reached out to: 20
Number of acceptances: 0