Short Stories, Irish literature, Classics, Modern Fiction, Contemporary Literary Fiction, The Japanese Novel, Post Colonial Asian Fiction, The Legacy of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and quality Historical Novels are Among my Interests

Sunday, December 30, 2012

My 2012 Blogging Year

2012 was a very good blogging year for me. I met lots of new people and discovered lots of new to me great writers.  I ended the year with 2569 Twitter followers and 725 GFC followers.   There are now 1369 posts on The Reading Life.  Traffic increased from 31,000 hits a month in Jan 2012 to over 100,000 in December.   Since my blog began in July 2009 I have had 1,221,494 page views.   The countries that are home to my most frequent visitors are the U.S.A, then the Philippines, then India, and then England.   The readership of my blog is becoming increasingly Asian.

The five most viewed posts in 2012 were all on older short stories from authors of the Philippines.   The most searched for author on my blog was R. K. Narayan (I was very proud to see my blog was endorsed by The Economic Times of India for my posts on Narayan) followed by Katherine Mansfield.

I have read blog posts in which people say they do not care about their blog statistics at all.  They say they write just for themselves and a few friends. One poster even scoffed at those who check their blog stats regularly.    More power to them but it is my goal to grow my readership without degrading my content.   I hope to have well over a million visits in 2013 and by the time my Project 196 ends in Sept of 2017 I hope to have five million hits a year, at least.  This is all very achievable even if my growth in readership slows  down.

My blog was dominated by the various Reading Life Projects, mostly centering around short stories.   The biggest transformation  that happened on my blog came about through a ten day event on Emerging Irish Women Writers.  Through that I began to establish contacts with lots of contemporary writers.   Some of the emerging writers I have posted on, now broadened to cover anyone anywhere, are already starting to take their place on the world stage, others will in time.   This has helped me understand and appreciate the creative process more than I had been able to prior to this

I also in 2012 for the first time began to publish short stories.   So far I have published 25 stories and I have ten in the queue to be published soon.  I also had a number of guests posts on Irish  short stories.  If anything has priority on my blog it is the Irish short story.

Free Books and other topics.

I like free books!   I pretty much only e-read.  There are no libraries where I live.  Many of the contemporary books I have posted on  have been given  to me by the authors or the publishers. I am offered enough free books so the offer of another book is not enough to induce me to post a "pushed" review.    Free books have  caused many blogs to actually close down as  bloggers feels overwhelmed, of course a book blogger wants free books but many think they have to post on every book they get and they end up feeling overwhelmed or they post on junk books and they somehow lose their passion for blogging.   I am offered many more books that I could ever read or post on.  Once I agree to post on a book I will but it might take months.   I do look at everything I am sent.

I do not post comments on as many book blogs as I once did.  Many of the blogs I used to follow have closed down.   When I did my event Irish Short Story Week Year Two I sent out invitations to all 15 who posted for the event in 2011 but five of  their blogs were either gone or had no posts in months.  I still follow about 300 book blogs and I try to comment when I can.  I do not see anything wrong, as some do, with writing a comment on a blog post simply saying you enjoyed the post.  We have all felt the pain of spending a lot of time on a post only to get no comments.  It makes you feel you are writing into a void.

My biggest thanks are to those who have taken the trouble to leave a comment on my posts, those who have done guests posts and those who honored me by allowing me to publish their short stories.  I also give my thanks to my quite brilliant cousin in Texas for her wonderful efforts to improve my prose.


Suko said...

Wow! You've had an incredible year of blogging! Best of luck reaching your future goals, Mel.

Rosaria Williams said...

Congratulations are in order!

Unknown said...

The figures speak for themselves. More power to you, Mel! Keep it up :)

Bellezza ( said...

I can't say that I've read many Irish short stories, or short stories at all for that matter. Although I do have a collection by Raymond Carver (Haruki Murakami's favorite American author) and I also have a collection by Emma Donaghue. Isn't she Irish? I think so, and I'll let you know more after I read her collection called Astray.

Vasilly said...

What a wonderful year you've had! I hope 2013 is everything you want it to be. :-)

Susan said...

You've had a wonderful year in blogging, Mel, and are finding ways to increase what you blog about and are interested in. I'm glad, you are really enjoying it, and that's what counts. I hope 2013 finds you well and reading lots, and publishing more authors. Happy 2013, Mel!

Nancy said...

Hi, Mel. I know I haven't been posting a lot of comments on blogs myself lately. As I have said in a post, I've been out of the loop for quite a while for various reasons. I know I have a lot to catch up on your posts. Let me just say what an awesome job you are doing, blogging passionately about things you love and enjoy, which is why I've always admired you as a blogger. Thanks. Here's wishing you'll have a wonderful 2013!

Caroline said...

You are doing so well! Congratulations, Mel. It's well deserved.
I wish you increased visitors, inspired comments and a lot of great books and stories to disocver next year.