Reblogging vs Original Posts

Amazing! From my post calendar it looks like I have posted for the last six days in a row. One more post tomorrow and it will be a full week. I can hardly believe it. Well I can. I sadly know that most of those were reblogs and very few were original posts. Needless to say, although I am going to say it anyway, I have finally, after only five months or so, discovered that  reblog button sitting tantalisingly there at the top of my browser. And I just had to press it didn’t I.

So, I was wondering whether there was some sort of Golden Ratio of original posts to reblogs that exists. Mad idea, I know. I don’t want to allow myself to just keep taking the easy option, reblogging other people’s posts. However, sometimes there is just that perfect post, you know the one, that one right there that you wished more than anything you had written. A work of pure genius, or at the very least, damn funny. Either that or one that provides such vital information that you genuinely believe you cannot deprive your followers of it. In this case of course it is your duty to help it proliferate.

The original purpose of this blog was to encourage me to write more. To help me improve my writing and possibly, and that is a big possibly, launch it into the world, sharing it with others. To share my thoughts, scary. Well, that is still the goal, but until that I reach that point I will try to find a happy medium between reblogs and original posts. Hey, what do you know, an original post today.

The Liebster Award

liebster-blog-award1

I have been nominated for another award that I have great pleasure in accepting. This time it is a different one, the Liebster Award. I was very kindly nominated by Kevin, over at http://creativemysteries.net/

The Rules for The Liebster Blog Award are as follows:

List 11 random facts about you.

Answer the questions that were asked of you.

Nominate 11 other blogs for the Liebster Blog Award and link to their blogs.

Notify the bloggers of their award.

Ask the award winners 11 questions to answer once they accept the award.

So, Eleven Random Facts About Me.

  1. I have blue eyes.
  2. When I was younger I gave up my job to play guitar in a band (unsuccessfully, obviously).
  3. I hate the heat and even find the UK too hot most of the time.
  4. I enjoy reading – no surprise to most of you.
  5. I love espresso.
  6. If forced to pick a favourite author it would probably be Evelyn Waugh.
  7. I tend to overanalyse the things that people say, coming up with all sorts of, probably incorrect, sub text.
  8. I get frustrated by the frequency of simple spelling mistakes and grammatical errors in print books these days.
  9. I live alone with my books and some friendly tropical fish.
  10. I am rubbish at golf
  11. I am very selfish with my time and particularly resent it when others say, ‘You aren’t doing anything, you are only reading’.

My Answers to the Questions I was Asked

  1. Do you have a favorite memory? – Holidays spent in Cornwall as a child
  2. Who or what inspires you? – Excellence inspires me, so, many people out there that are good at what they do inspire me
  3. Finish the sentence: When things get rough, I like to… – sit down and make a plan, be logical and find a solution, if there is one
  4. If you could meet anyone in the world who would it be? Why? – A difficult question but probably Richard Feynman, a true genius and a very interesting man – otherwise George Harrison or John Lennon
  5. What’s your definition of friendship? – when you can go without seeing a friend for a long period of time but always know they will be there for you, and when you do see them again, nothing has changed, it is as if you haven’t been apart
  6. What’s your favorite creative art? Why? (writing, painting, drama, sketching, etc.) – Writing
  7. Spontaneity or planner? – I am a planner most of the time
  8. Word processing or handwriting? – It depends on my mood, generally word processing though
  9. Are you more of a risk-taker or prefer staying in a comfort zone? – I am definitely not a risk taker
  10. Are you a visual, auditory, kinesthetic, or tactile learner? – Probably visual
  11. Would you rather be extremely happy or simply content? – Naturally I would prefer to be extremely happy, but this often requires periods of intense sadness to contrast the happiness, otherwise how you feel would just be normal. If I needed to have those periods of sadness, I would rather just be content, much as I am now

Eleven Questions for my Nominees

  1. What is your favourite book?
  2. Do you play an instrument? If so, which one?
  3. What is your ideal holiday?
  4. Which author would you most like to meet (they do not need to be currently alive)?
  5. What is your favourite genre to write in?
  6. What is your least favourite book?
  7. Do you have siblings, if so which?
  8. PC or Mac?
  9. Do you eat meat?
  10. What is your favourite sport?
  11. Do you have a day job?

The Nominees

I had a list of eleven nominees this morning, with one extra in reserve, and so far today two of them have received awards already. I have therefore flouted the rules and only nominated ten bloggers. I feel like such a rebel – your own conscience will have to determine whether you feel you can do the same.

Sarah Cradit http://sarahcradit.wordpress.com/

Lindaghill http://lindaghillfiction.wordpress.com/

William Louison http://williamlouisonpoetry.wordpress.com

http://coffeemugsandinkstains.wordpress.com/

http://realiction.wordpress.com/

Amanda Allen http://amandaaallen.com/

http://createdbyrcw.wordpress.com/

http://lindaghill.wordpress.com/

Robynn Gabel http://dupler.org/

http://thedancingwriterblog.wordpress.com/

Congratulations to all of my nominees. I hope that they will all accept this award. Thanks again to Kevin for nominating me and I hope I have discharged all of my duties fully with regard to my acceptance of this award.

Strange WordPress Behaviour

Ever think that you are being got at by technology? Sometimes I feel that WordPress is doing some strange things, behaving weirdly. For some time I have been getting comments from a blog that I have not signed up for and do not really want. Odd. Then I have been sitting here thinking that this person, or that person, hasn’t posted for a while. I go and check their blog and find that they have been posting and I have just not been receiving emails when they do post. I investigate further and find that for some reason I am no longer following them. How can this be. I have not unfollowed anyone that I have started following. So unless multiple people are somehow blocking me or stopping me from following them, which is certainly possible, but since I have now refollowed them ok, seems unlikely, then something very strange is going on.

In addition, a couple of weeks ago my twitter account became disconnected from my blog. For no apparent reason.

If it seems like I have only just started following you, when in truth it has been a while, I apologise. I didn’t unfollow you, please believe me.

Is it just me or has anyone else experienced odd behaviour from WordPress? Please comment and set my mind at rest that is not just some spiteful trick that WordPress is playing on me personally?

 

Real World or Online World?

Writing my first post since receiving the honour of appearing as Ionia’s blogger of the week I find myself suffering from a touch of nerves. Expectations have been raised. Am I up to the challenge? Well I suppose we will find out, but please bear with me if I stumble a little.

I have been pondering the amount of time that I spend online lately.

There seem to have been a number of recent posts, including another of Ionia’s exceptional posts (I do read other bloggers too, by the way) regarding how easy it is to find ourselves addicted to certain aspects of our online lives. Many of us that blog find ourselves waiting for likes and comments, or constantly checking our stats, then over analysing them. Why did that great post I wrote only get a few visits whereas the garbage, throwaway post, that was surely of no interest to anyone else, got loads of visits, likes and comments? Have I got any more followers?

Sometimes I feel like I am getting sucked in to the online world, drawn into the labyrinth without the benefit of Ariadne’s thread. I find myself spending more and more time each day looking at other peoples blogs, thinking about what I can post next. But, I love it. It is so great to meet other people and to get to know them through their posts, or if you are very lucky by trading comments. I sometimes wonder is there any way back out, but then do I actually want to escape?

The only problem with this is that I spend less time each day reading or writing. There has a been a noticeable decline in the number of books that I am reading, and in the speed at which I get through them.

Is it possible to be half in and half out or do we need to be either in or out? I think that we can successfully negotiate the online world, just visiting, but always returning to the real world. I will have to be strong and try to limit my excursions into the online world.

What about you? Real World? Online World? Or a bit of both?

The Fifty First Post

When I published my previous post, Another Title (and Scrivener), I noticed that it was my fiftieth post. That feels like quite a landmark to me. I started this blog in August 2009. Up until Jan 2013 I had made a pretty feeble 20 posts in 3 years and 4 months. Since then I have made 30 posts in two and a bit months. This is a lot better and I am positive, at least hopeful, that it will last. I have been enjoying writing these blog posts. Whether anyone enjoys reading them I am less clear on, but I do get the occasional like, so I suppose they must be of some interest!

I figured that my next major goal would be one hundred posts and then one hundred followers. So I checked my followers and found, to my surprise that they had already exceeded the one hundred goal. That one had kind of slipped by me. It feels great that so many people have, rightly or wrongly, decided to receive email updates of my posts. This fills me with joy, and not a little surprise. So thanks to everyone that reads my posts and especially those that follow my blog. I will try to keep posting and find some interesting topics to write about.

As for now I am still working hard on getting through Proust’s ‘The Captive’ and ‘The Fugitive’, along with brief forays into E.M. Forster’s ‘Aspects of the Novel’. I am going to have to start on a few easier to read books after I have finished the ‘In Search of Lost Time’ series (or cycle), otherwise I will not meet my 2103 Goodreads reading goal. I am currently quite a few books behind schedule. I am sure that ultimately I will complete it though. Still nine and a half months to go I suppose.

Blog Stats

Why is it that there seems to be little relation between when I make a post and when the most views of my blog appear to take place? Are the stats updated in real time, every hour, at a certain time of day? I suppose that others only read blogs at particular times of the day, but in our online community there are people in a multitude of time zones that would, I expect, negate that effect.

I also find it a little disconcerting when I write what I think is an interesting post and nobody seems to look at it, then I write some inane piece of crap and I get lots of likes. Perhaps my idea of what is a good post doesn’t match other peoples. I admit that sometimes I think I have posted something decent and it is well visited, so this is not always the case. I suppose that it is all about perception. People’s perceptions differ. What may be interesting to me may not be to others.

Do bloggers out there analyse their own stats and see what keywords get the most views and whether there are any temporal patterns to be observed? From the views of my blog, and I freely admit that the sample size is very low, it seems that on Wednesdays and Thursdays there are fewer views than on most other days. Is this kind of analysis, especially with the very low number of views that I currently have of any real use?

What do others think? Is it a useful exercise, or is it something better left until I have a greater number of followers and views? If so, how does one get more followers. I suppose the only answer is to write more interesting posts and post regularly. Maybe commenting on others blogs more would be a good idea. Better use of tags also.

I will have to ponder these questions more, although ultimately it doesn’t really matter, I am enjoying my blogging experience thus far, and that is what truly matters.