It’s 9.43am on January 13th, 2015, and for the first time in almost two years, the top post on my blog is not ‘How to use the USB cable to transfer photos from the Samsung Galaxy SII….’ [etc]. And I’m rapt!
That particular post has brought a grand total of 63,882 visitors to my blog, and well over 100 comments. It also catapulted me back into teaching/training, so I am grateful, very grateful, but I’m glad it’s on the way out.
The reason that post is on the way out is because the technological niche it served is getting out of date. In a word, the Samsung Galaxy SII phone has been superseded by newer phones, and users have upgraded away from the SII.
But why does this make me happy? Don’t I like having so many people coming to the blog? Isn’t it a great way to get my name out there?
Well, last things first – no, the people coming to read that particular, how-to post are not interested in my other posts on bushfires, or climate change, or… heavens forbid, science fiction. The search engine brings them in [thank you Google]. They read. They may leave a comment. And then they go. Which is exactly what I would do if I were simply looking for information.
That said, a few visitors may read one of my other how-to posts, or even one of my more general posts, but in terms of generating visibility, I don’t think that how-to post has done much to increase the awareness of my presence online.
Which brings me to the middle question : don’t I like having people come to the blog? The simple answer is YES! I have loved each any every person who left a comment about the Samsung Galaxy SII post. But… those lovely people have been like ships passing in the night; they didn’t stay.
And finally, the first question last : why am I happy that my single most popular post is on the way out?
That question is a little harder to answer. Part of it is a strange sort of jealousy. I began this blog because the pundits said I had to promote myself in order to promote my book[s]. As I did not, and still do not, like Facebook, or Twitter, a quiet blog was the obvious solution.
Of course, being the contrary little person that I am, I then spent far less time writing about my fiction than I did writing about my other passions. But that was okay. Those passions defined me, and the blog was supposed to be about me as well as my work.
But then I wrote an odd little post that harked back to my technical writing days. I expected it to die a quiet death within 24 hours, but instead it exploded …and kept on exploding for almost two years.
This was not why I had started my blog! This was something that belong to my past. Why was it coming back to haunt me?
I’m not religious, but sometimes I really do feel as if fate is trying to rub my nose in things, and this time it seemed that fate was trying to tell me I needed a day job, as a trainer.
This past year has seen my ponderous ship turn in mid-stream and head off down the teaching path again. I haven’t been wildly successful, but I have had some very satisfying personal successes. Unfortunately, those successes came at the cost of my creative writing. To put it bluntly, this last year has been a terrible year for my writing.
I did have a couple of stabs at writing during the year, but mostly my creativity just fizzled, until recently. I have been writing again since just before Christmas and I feel 20 years younger, and at least 50 years happier!
Even if this rush of creativity fizzles out once I start teaching again, at least I’ll know I’ve accomplished a couple of things :
1. I’ll know that I still have that ‘something’ in me that comes up with ideas, and is in love with words,
2. And I’ll know that I finished the first part of Innerscape exactly on my 62nd birthday this time. [I missed publishing Vokhtah on my 60th birthday by three days].
Innerscape Part One is not published, but I did send it off to one of my wonderful Alpha Readers [also on my birthday], so it is a milestone. Where Part One will go from here is a mystery. At a whisker under 50,000 words, it’s too short for a novel but way too long for a novella, so… -shrug-
For a while there I toyed with the idea of publishing Part One in serial form, but then I realised that people reading it would want to keep on reading it, and the rest of the story is still a long, long way from finished. It simply wouldn’t be fair to publish the start of something that could take me years to complete.
So this point in time is not an end-point, it’s just a milestone. But it’s a milestone that makes me happy, and the decline of the Samsung Galaxy SII post feels like a small, reluctant nod from fate.
I think 2015 is going to be a good year. 🙂