Another blogoversary. I’m going to resist the temptation to analyse the last 12 months. Instead all I’ll say is that last weekend, I finally fulfilled a year-long ambition.
It was worth getting the second visa just for this:
Three years of blogging, 188 posts (that’s a nice number, isn’t it?) and 25049 hits. I’m hoping for exactly three more hits in the next 35 minutes so that by the end of today I’ll be on 25052, a palindrome, which is a very very nice sort of number indeed.
Since my blogoversary falls on Halloween, here’s a creepy video in keeping with the spooky theme of the day. It’s Thrill the World Melbourne, which took place yesterday. It looks great, doesn’t it? Man, that’s a complicated dance. I know some people who took part this year. I practiced with them a little in the run up to the event. Hopefully next year I’ll be able to join in. It’ll definitely take me the full 12 months to master the steps!
Once again it’s NaNoWriMo eve which means I’ve been blogging for precisely two years.
It’s interesting for me to look back on my first ever post and to remember how determined I was to succeed, how much was at stake. Completing NaNoWriMo 2008 meant that my decision to ditch seven years of study to pursue a career in writing was somehow justified. Reading that post again now, I can see that I was writing it just for me, not really expecting any one else to read it (hardly anyone did). In the beginning, the blog was just a way for me to chart my NaNoWriMo progress. I remember the cold feeling I got in my stomach the first time someone left a comment. Who had been reading my blog? Did they disagree with what I had written? Now I absolutely love it when people comment on my posts. I’m disappointed when they don’t. And I check my stats regularly, always hoping to beat the previous day’s hits.
It’s funny, the posts that I like the best are not necesarily the ones that draw the most traffic. By far my most popular post, alarmingly, is How to Poison Someone. My Interview with Daisuke Takahashi is also frequently viewed, but I suspect that that is because there was an ice-skater by that name competing in the Winter Olympics. I do like all my Interview with a Star posts though, and also the posts about various book festival events. (I’ve also written about some Edinburgh International Book Festival events at Suite101.)
The posts that have generated the most comments are the ones that don’t really have much to do with writing, St Ives and Cyberpunk for example. Posts that I liked that I wish had been more popular / commented on are Notes from the Continent and Carry a Poem.
After all this analyisng of post popularity I guess I’m going to have to think about how I approach blogging over the next year. I guess my strongest posts are the anecdotal ones, the less popular ones are the ones where I’ve tried to give writing advice. I’ll try to bear that in mind when writing future posts.
As for NaNoWriMo, that is just as much on my mind now as it was this time last year and also two years ago. What I learned last year was that the “reckless approach” absolutely does not work. Only thorough planning will get you to the 50 000 word mark by the end of November. This year my mum is going take part in NaNoWriMo so I felt that I should do it too to support her. Unfortunately I have left the thorough planning to the last minute. Luckily we got that hour back today; I know how to put it to good use.
I was sure “blogoversary” was a real word but I’ve just checked on dictionary.com and it’s not listed there, although “blogosphere” is. Anyway, today is My Writing Life’s blogoversary and once again I am preparing to take part in NaNoWriMo, which kicks off tomorrow. In marked contrast to 31st October 2008, however, my cupboard is bare and I’m freezing sitting at my desk. I’ve been too lazy to go food shoping and I’m trying not to run up a huge gas bill so I haven’t turned the heating on. Other differences between then and now: I haven’t planned my novel at all, although there are three scenes in my head that I will write tomorrow, hopefully hitting the required 1 667 words; I am working full time now so I really will have to squeeze the writing into an evening slot; I’m in Scotland this year (I was in Spain last year) so I won’t be able to sit on a balcony enjoying the sun while dreaming up adventures for my characters.
All in all I feel like I have taken a rather reckless approach to NaNoWriMo 2009. It might just work for me though; we’ll see if I have a novel out of it in a month’s time.