I’ve been writing this blog for well over a year now, and it feels time for a retrospective. I didn’t want to do it in January because every other blogger was doing that, and I’ve never been one to follow the crowd. Besides, with the spring thaw, it finally feels like a new season and a safe time to look back.
I started this blog in late January 2013 to keep my creativity alive through a record-cold winter and as a way to escape the mental and physical cage such cold presents. But I also began it because I wanted a more personal outlet for my writing – one where I was freer to express myself and describe some of the weird things that happen. My day job (of science writing) and my night job (of novel writing) don’t always allow for that.
I did not start this blog to make friends (although that is a nice side-effect) or to inspire legions. If that were the case, I’d have more than 76 followers and 3,000 views. Actually, I do have a rather devoted following among my Facebook friends, which is where I get most of my feedback and conversations about the stories. For that I am grateful and appreciative. It’s always nice to know someone is paying attention! Between Facebook and my blog followers, each story has the potential to reach 240 people.
Although most of my readers are from the U.S., I’m amazed by the foreigners who find this blog. Word Press (my blog hosting platform) offers a statistics page where bloggers can see the countries of origin that have visited their site and which stories are popular. Every few weeks my son puts up with reports like, “Someone from Serbia visited my blog today.” He just rolls his eyes. But the tally is impressive: Portugal, United Arab Emirates, Brazil, New Zealand, Sweden, Germany, Australia, the Philippines, India, Lithuania, Ireland, etc.
The most popular posts have been:
Living for the Dead, where I wrote about former friend Matt Link after going to a presentation about him. I think its popularity is because his father and stepmother shared the story on Facebook, and they have a large following.
Cold as a Cage, was my first entry, which I shared widely by email and Facebook to publicize the start of my blog.
Minnesota Nice Meets Hollywood, which was based on a church sermon that I shared with my fellow-church-goers through Facebook.
Why I’m Giving up Bottled Water, is popular perhaps because many others are considering doing the same thing, and they found my story through web searches.
Old Wood: A Love Story, Part 1 and Part 2, which told the story of some local folks who were on the television series Ax Men last year. Every time the show aired, people did a slew of web searches for their names, and my blog popped up.
I intend to continue Marie’s Meanderings for the time being. It’s fun and it doesn’t take much time. I hope you are enjoying it, too. Please feel free to comment. Since I am so famous and important now (smirk), it might take me a day or two to reply, but I am paying attention.