NO FREAKING WAY.
NO seriously, y’all know I have no willpower, I just can’t believe I actually stuck to my resolution of keeping this blog for a year. Case in point? my blogiversary was really February 4th so um yeah, commitments and deadlines are not really my thang.
I NEVER keep my resolutions, my diets don’t last longer than 2 days, I can’t close a really good book even if it’s 2am on a work night, and I never push myself to run just one more minute. In fact I haven’t been able to make myself work out since my wedding 1.5 years ago.
Anyways, back on topic. THE BLOG! The blog world! You! I love it all, blogging has been a blast, even though recent 60 hour work weeks have derailed any regular posting (the monthly post numbers on my archives list on the side bar <—— are so sad), I plan to keep it up, sporadically for now and hopefully full swing again in the future. Not putting any deadlines on myself though ;)
I’ve been ruminating on what to cover in this post for a while (*ahem* maybe since my actual blogiversay in February *shameface*) and I knew I wanted to cover three things:
- My blog stats
- Favorite posts/ annual wrap up
- GIVEAWAY *throws celebration confetti* (details at the end, international contestants welcome)
So let’s head backstage, folks *sweeping aside blog curtain* and chat about my stats!
I didn’t set any goals and tried not to have any expectations for blog stats, followers, etc. I knew it would just be a let down if I worried too much about them. Also I don’t really know how to read them. Sorry but the WordPress dashboard, page views v.s. individual visitor, Stat Counter, charts, graphs, # of clicks…etc. etc. etc. all baffle me a little bit.
If I’m reading my Google Reader stats right I was pleasantly surprised to see a nice round number for my followers. When I took this screencap back in February it was at 101, what a perfect number to celebrate a One Year Blog Birthday with over 100 followers! Did I read this right? Is that what this means:
Now it’s at 123 subscribers, so HELLO ALL 123 of you! *big grin and wave!* I don’t think I “know” half of you since I definitely don’t get that many comments, but thanks so much for following me! I don’t know if anyone follows me any other way, through other feeds, or email, or what have you, but I’m sure you’re out there *joking creepy voice* So hi to you too!
I myself subscribe to 67 blogs and am looking to add more! A lot of people, especially my 20-something-bloggers and DC peeps have started posting less so I’d love to add some new ones! Obvi I’m guilty of that myself, and we’re probably all facing some of the same variables: work, going back to school, new serious relationships, growing up in general, and also the shiny-exciting-newness of blogging did wear off a bit for me, maybe it has for others too.
My most read posts are a mix between ones that are most googled, or from other, very popular people linking to me:
– The Numba One most read post also comes with The Most Drama. I woke up one morning to find my inbox filled with new comments to approve and when looking at my dashboard I’d had over FIVE THOUSAND page views. I knew Something Big had happened. And that was skater Rob Dyrdek of MTV’s Rob & Big fame tweeting a link to a post I wrote about his show. Man were some people mad! And I had written the post totally in jest! The sad thing about it all is that I have a huge crush on him, he’s adorable and super funny, I just want to put him in my pocket and pet him.
– My most googled posts are for Michael Grant’s YA fantasy/horror GONE series. I get the most hits on my reviews for the first two books in the series: Gone review and Hunger review. If you check those out you’ll see lots of little teenyboppers still like to comment on them, they’re so cute ;)
– Also everyone just LOVES an emo picture I found for a post in which I was feeling particularly…well…emo! Every week it comes up at the top of the list for most viewed posts, I’m assuming from google image searches.
– I also get a lot of hits from the lovely Jessica of Read React Review from a meme she hosted and linked to me on for our Top 16 Favorite Romances in honor of Kathleen Windsor. I’m really glad people find me through that, since obviously it’s very representative of this blog!
Now I won’t be an ungrateful brat, but it woulda been nice to have a round number of followers (hint hint y’all). Just kidding! But really, I can’t belive I’ve written 2,624 tweets. Especially since I usually get in trouble for it at home, it goes something like this:
Hubby: “Since you’re watching the TV show you want (usually any trashy reality TV show), can I have the computer?”
Moi: “No I’m talking to my friends on twitter about the how scary Franken-Heidi’s new face is and how Bethenny should punch Jill with her huge new ring!”
Hubby: “Well why don’t you give me the computer and then talk to me in person about the show?”
Moi: *distracted typing about how Kenny is way hotter than Wes* “Nice try, but no.”
Hubs: “Ok then, I insist” *serious face*
Moi: *huffy sigh* “Fine!”
And now, moving on to the main stage *closing blog stats backstage curtain* of some of the highlights of my blogging year!
Without a doubt the biggest highlight of the past year in my blogging life was meeting the fabulous people behind the blogs I love, turning internet friends into real life friends! The Event Of The Year was surely attending the Romance Writers of America conference, held right here in my backyard of downtown DC last summer. My wrap up post on the literacy signing the first day covers the tons of books I bought (ok it only felt like tons in my shoulder bag and in my credit card bill but still) and the wonderful authors I met! The second day (recap here) was way more social with a big blogger and author dinner that turned into me staying late for drinks afterwards even though I split my skirt, had work the next day, and I promised hubby I’d be home early.
I met bloggers I’d been following for months from all over, California, Canada, NYC, Jersey, you name it, some of my faves were there, and I met lots of new-to-me bloggers too! I’ve kept in touch with a lot of these ladies, in fact I’m looking forward to spending this coming weekend with Kati of Katidom, Katiebabs, and Smexy Mandi. Can’t wait to see y’all soon!
Outside of the book blogging world the 20-something and DC bloggers were an awesome group to get to know too. Thanks to Super Blogger Lilu we had lots of great get togethers over the past year here in our fair nation’s capital, I don’t even know where to begin to link to for all our happy hours, but trust me, fun times were had and it was great connecting with a bunch of my peers that I never would have met otherwise!
Granted I still HAVE YET to meet another 20something who reads romance novels, but I’m not giving up yet. (Some of them did confess to reading erotica YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE [not that there’s anything wrong with that]) Just having this blog at all is so awesome that I can FINALLY talk to others about my reading obsession, previously it was strictly a solitary hobby for me.
Also this is the first time I’ve ever kept track of my reading, so I was super excited to write my End of Year post and see that I read 156 books last year! Although I also tracked all the bookstores and libraries I find my books here in DC (and I’m very proud of the map I made) I still wish I kept more detailed stats about my reading. I whipped up this book sources list in like 15 minutes in a Word document just from memory for only 6 months worth of books, but for my next annual wrap up I really hope to have better stats next year in terms of year book was published, genre/sub-genre, etc. (yes it’s dangerous for me to hint there may be another year of lusty blogging in the works, i have NO idea if i’ll keep it up!)
One thing I can put down in writing that I’m 100% sure I’ll stick to is my previous post saying that I will NOT be using an e-reader of any kind any time soon. Still have minus-zero interest, even though I can get into trouble with physical books by accidentally burning them, I’m not ready to give them up anytime soon!
In my personal life I celebrated many milestones, including our one year wedding anniversay, becoming better at dealing with crazy candidates at work, and buying our first home! It’s been a whirlwind and while sometimes I wish I could go back to my low-rent apartment with no responsibilities and just take a nap, at least I can always escape in a good book!
*wiping sweat off brow* Phew y’all! Now you see why it took me so long to write this post? There was a lot I wanted to cover!
For any new Lusty Reader readers I hope I gave you enough links to get a feel for things around this here lusty reading den!
And now for the grand finale *trumpets blare from orchestra pit as stage lights brighten* THE GIVEAWAY!
To enter my blog-birthday giveaway leave a comment on this post before midnight EST Wednesday May 5th stating when you found my blog: today? last month? last year? last minute? No favoritism will be given to those who loved me longer I swear, you’ll just get secret brownie-bloggie-points ;)
One lucky commenter will win a $25 gift certificate to Amazon.com!
Open to national and international contestants (assuming i can do amazon.ca, amazon.co.uk, amazon.de etc.), winner will be selected in a random drawing and posted on May 6th, I am in no way shape or form affiliated with amazon, no duplicate entries. <otherusualrulesenteredhere>
So THANK YOU ALL for visiting, commenting, finding me through emo image searches, and making it so fun for me to actually have kept up this blog. Trust me there is NO WAY I would have kept doing it without you. Even you lurkers (that i’m assuming i have). Blogging has opened up a whole new world of conversations, friends, technology, and books I never knew were out there, and it’s been a blast so far!