400 blog posts: that’s incredible! That means approximately 400,000 words I’ve written over the last ten years! That’s a lot of words, so let’s look at what all that means.
During the first three years, I didn’t have a weekly commitment to writing a post, but in 2018, I became more regular. Also, I didn’t include photos then either. From the very beginning, I created a spreadsheet to keep track of the topics for the year and an extra sheet for possible future topics. I also have recorded the number of visitors and views for the month and the monthly average—as a tech person, I’ve always loved statistics.
Over the years, my topics varied from book business topics like marketing or any of my six books or audiobook or three cookbooks. I love to write about our travels and the unique experiences I have had. I also like to write about life and its happenings. One of my favorite life topics is pets, especially my dear cat Jesse and people love to read about him.
I self-published my first book, This Tumbleweed Landed, and studied all I could about self-publishing. In my research, I found blogs mentioned repeatedly, so I thought I should jump in. So, on May 6, 2014, I started with, “Meet Larada Today!” That year I wrote sporadically six times, jumping from the end of May to August to October, November and December. I wrote two posts in May, then one in each of those four months. Not too consistent. All posts talked about my book and book publication. That’s what I thought I should write about to get more followers interested in the same topics as me.
I wrote more consistently—sixteen blog posts which ended up being about once a month. Again, most topics addressed book issues, but my personal life seeped in. I featured my new book, When Will Papa Get Home? and the first of my three cookbooks, From Grannie’s Kitchen Cookbook, Volume 1, which I had published the previous year.
My most popular post was “From Grannie’s Kitchen Cookbook” with 24 views.
I reverted to 2014’s pace and only wrote six posts. I let the first of the year escape and started in May, then dropped off until November. Then I wrote the rest of my posts in November and December. Here’s where my topic choice changed drastically—these posts talk about my life mostly with a couple of writing ideas. Because of my inconsistency, I didn’t write about the next cookbook I published the previous year, From Grannie’s Kitchen Cookbook, Volume 2.
My most popular post was “Are A Lot of People Bibliophobic Today?” with 107 views, a noted increase!
Something happened and had more of a commitment to writing regularly. I wrote twenty-two posts which average out to be a little less than every other week, but the topic changed again. The first part of the year I wrote about my writing business mostly, but the last part I wrote about our trip to England and Ireland. For the trip section, I described each travel day in a separate post, so that encouraged me to write weekly to cover the trip. I neglected to write about my third cookbook, From Grannie’s Kitchen Cookbook, Volume 3, that was published the previous year.
My most popular post was “Day 3–4 Kissing a Stone and on to Killarney” with 171 views, growing more so!
I continued the England and Ireland trip’s daily description and started a system that year of writing weekly. This year I wrote fifty-four posts—my best year so far! So I expanded my topics coming up with regular yearly topics like Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, July 4, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s. I also added a major topic that has become a focus: square dancing! I added so much about square dancing because I was interviewing Marshall Flippo in preparation to write his biography.
My most popular post was “Day 3-4 Kissing a Stone and on to Killarney” with 811 views, what an increase! Funny that this was the top post for two years!
I had my largest year so far of writing blog posts—sixty-six posts! A couple of life events caused this increase. I continued interviewing Marshall, but he died this year. I wrote about that. Also, this year we went on a British Isles cruise, so I had lots of travel stories to share. During the holidays, I wrote two posts weekly as well.
My most popular post was “Why Knit?” with 1939 views. What an increase about a topic I love!
The pandemic hit and I wrote sixty-four posts. During the first part of the year, I shared about our trip to Costa Rica. Then I used my blog to deal with my feelings during the pandemic but those posts were delayed about a month because of another trip, our trip to Spain. We came home March 8, 2020 and the virus exploded there on the March 9. I spent the rest of the year’s blog mostly on the pandemic and, these posts inspired my last book, Coronavirus Reflections: Bitter or Better? which I published in 2021. in 2020, I published the Flippo book: Just Another Square Dance Caller: Authorized Biography of Marshall Flippo. I sent up a monthly schedule to write something interesting about Flippo, his biography or something about his life. I continued that practice in 2021 and part of 2022 but not as consistently.
My most popular post was “Extreme Costa Rica: Mawamba and Our Animal Adventure” with 1811 views. The number stayed high!
I joined a Blog Challenge in November to blog daily! What a feat that was! I ended up writing eighty posts that year, my best year so far! I learned a lot from the challenge because part of my commitment was to visit other bloggers in the challenge, so I incorporated several features I saw on other blogs. I prepared for the challenge by creating a spreadsheet for promoting my books and poetry.
My most popular post was “Haunted by a Favorite Poem of Mine” with 827 views, a decrease and I wonder why?
Finally, I had the rhythm and regular weekly habit of writing my blog post down. This year I wrote fifty-seven posts. I had to write about the war in Ukraine and my feelings about it. On April 4, 2022, I broke out with shingles on the right side of my forehead, eyelid, cheek and my scalp which altered my writing life totally, except for my blog. I consistently did my weekly blog post throughout 2022, as I dealt with neuralgia which is unbelievable nerve pain. I continued writing about Flippo, the usual holidays and haikus slipped into many posts. In the fall, we did two cruises, but I only wrote about the first one. Lin and I came home in early December from the second one with COVID which hampered my writing again. But again, I wrote my weekly blog post.
My most popular post was “Looking Back—Hot August Nights 2022” with 2312 views. The best! And about my favorite square and round dance festival!
So far this year, I have written thirty blog posts. I tried a couple of different focuses this year. In March for Women’s History Month, I wrote about women in my life. What a joy that was! I interviewed a 94-year-old friend, and it has been one of the most popular posts this year (412 views). Then in April, I focused on National Poetry Month, highlighting my poetry and some of my favorite poets. You can see one of my poetry blog posts has the most popular views for the year. In May, we went to Scotland, so once again, I focused on the stories from that trip, grouping three days together in one post.
My most popular post is “Another Instance for Poetry: Square Dance!” with 596 views, a major decrease!
So, these 400,000 words in my 400 blog posts, in book language, equal 5-6 full-length books! That’s an amazing figure for sure. Each week, I look forward to sitting in front of my computer and sharing my thoughts with you! That’s why I do it!
A question for you—have you read them all?
News, News, News!
Listen to my twenty-three minute interview on Masterfesto Media Podcast with Isabel Elias about my book Coronavirus Reflections: Bitter or Better?: https://open.spotify.com/episode/6uRX60sDFWbejTg7rZAiLn
Get your free 50-minute audio recording of Flippo! Click here for easy access!