Finish Line: Freedom and Success

Now I am off the hook!

365 days later here we are. On March 25, 2012 I started my post-a-day journey. And I managed to actually post at least one new item each day – some days even two! Quality did vary. Word totals did vary. Sometimes what I posted was actually worth reading, and sometimes what I posted was a verbal embarrassment.

I did learn the following in that time:

  • Less is more. Keeping my posts shorter often resulted in more visitors. 
  • Writing is easy – writing well is hard!
  • I write well – but I could write better if I took the time
  • I am not fun to read – in fact I am mostly dense. Not a good blogger trait.
  • I shouldn’t quit my day job to become a full time writer!

When I started posting I had visions of 100-200 views per day. I worked hard to build up an audience following the WordPress tips and tricks for driving views and engagement. I visited other sites, followed other sites, commented, liked, browsed, and whatever else I needed to do to get people dropping by and “clicking”.

It was initially addictive watching the views creep up from 5 per day to 10 per day until I was getting close to 150 views per day at my peak of audience success. It is a lot of work to keep that interest up, and the views flowing through. I would spend at least an hour each day doing my blogging rounds and making sure I left a footprint to lure others back to see what I was writing and posting. Heady and exciting stuff – I felt like I had an audience.

July was the high-point in this blogging experiment for views, and was taking even more time.   Yet it seemed worth it for the feedback and interplay and sense of achievement. Then I went on vacation for two weeks in August to an “internet free zone.”  I was still posting every day – but I couldn’t browse and visit and poke and tickle other bloggers. My views and visit fell off the cliff.

The reality was I had no real audience, what I had achieved from March to July was an illusion of success. The bloggers I visited where mostly playing the same game I was playing – driving the numbers by leaving virtual bread-crumbs to lure others back to my site. My words were not the lure – it was my statistic they desired. When I stopped visiting them – they forgot I even existed. POP – blogger bubble burst.

When I resumed my blogging house-calls and blogging rounds my numbers bounced back in September. And that took the wind out of my sails.  Cause well you see that confirmed people were not reading me because I was enjoyable to read, or memorable. They mostly visited out of guilt, and need. (Yes I know some of you are reading me because you enjoy my posts – Thank You!)

SO now I am all done with that….relief!

Now what?

I will still post and still visit the blogs I most enjoy – you know who you are as I still visit you now and then and leave a “like” or some words in passing. Not very often cause well there are other things that take my time. What I may try and do are more themed posts on certain days of the week. Like Saturday Haiku inspired by Haiku Heights. Maybe Monday Ramble, and Wednesday write about food/nutrition. Surprisingly one of my more popular posts is about the Acid/Alkaline Food Myth. Go figure!

I will also go back over my over 400 posts and re-read and weed them. I have done that a bit in the past month – and that is hard work! I wrote a lot of drivel and so going back now is pages and pages of work! Maybe I should just delete it all and start over again! That was a joke by the way – see even my humour is dense.

Oh and an aside why start on March 25 as my year of daily-blogging adventure?

March 25th in the Christian calendar is the traditional date for the Feast of the Annunciation. The Feast of the Annunciation marks the visit of the Angel Gabriel to Mary to announce the conception and eventual birth of Christ.  Gabriel appears and says to Mary, ‘Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with thee”  to which Mary responds to “Let it be done to me according to thy word”

Since conception is the beginning of creation – in some Christian countries March 25 was then seen as a New Year, and the official New Year would begin on that date. Enjoying small symbols I began my blog on an old school New Year’s day that was tied to an angelic “revelation.”  The Annunciation in turn then leads to the Feast of the Visitation (which in retrospect sets up the entire wanting blogging views/visits thing I wrote about earlier…symbols sometimes create reality!)

Now my blog certainly wasn’t ever that revealing, but it certainly had its moments of revelation!

Thank you for reading and visiting over the past year. Tomorrow a new year begins – and my journey continues. See ya around the blog-o-sphere!


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20 responses to “Finish Line: Freedom and Success

  1. Congratulations on your “one year anniversary” (and thanks for the ping back) and your self revelations. Here’s to another year!! Cheers mate! :-D

  2. Well done & congratulations on your full year of posts, many of which I’ve enjoyed reading. Don’t go away (-:

    • I won’t go away! Thank you for the encouragement – always nice to hear my words are read and enjoyed. All writing is a lonely art written by one and intended for many.

  3. I find that when I do not visit other bloggers my numbers go way down, but I no longer have time to bring my stats up, so like you am going to follow those I enjoy. I find too that my shorter posts get more hits, and when I ask questions I get more responses. I do not think your writing is dense—

  4. Steven, I know how this works, quite well. The days I do not visit or post anything, I get 36 views. The days I return visits, etc., I get lots more. I stopped paying attention a while ago and now just read the blogs I want to, hit like when I like something, and comment if something really moves me. Anything else is just too much work!

    • Indeed it is a lot of work! If I was actually trying to generate income from this I might do the work. If I do nothing – no visits elsewhere – I drop to under 12 views/day.
      If I visit and link – I can keep my views around 40/day…and that is where I have been for the last 2 months. 40 views per day and around 18 visitors each day. Nothing earth-shaking but at least it is consistent and that is good enough :)
      Thanks Susan for being one of my dependable and regular visitors. You and Audra are the number 1 and 2 comment makers on my blog – and I really appreciate the feedback you leave me!

    • Oh and if I get a little edgy and topical I do get more “search views” – so my mildly critical Earth Day re-post of yesterday received over 80 views and 42 visitors and 3 reblogs. And I didn’t even have to do my blogging rounds :)

  5. Congratulations on a whole year! Here’s hoping the next one is even better

  6. Dearest Mr Merlin my loveable Wizard of Words.You were one of my very first blogs I decided to follow because I LOVE YOUR WRITING. Don’t insult me by putting yourself down. Write for yourself and screw the numbers. I have to live by that too. I read what I want and enjoy the ride.– wackiness and all.
    Seriously– I enjoy your blog and look forward to reading more!

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