Sunday, October 11, 2009

The Lazy Sunday Service: The first hurdle

Well I’ve managed to reach the three month milestone and to post something each day (apparently over 90 percent of blogs become dormant within three months). Whether what’s been posted has been worth reading is a different matter. I’ve been tracking viewing statistics using Google Analytics, and while I’m aware it’s not measuring those people using readers, daily visits have been pretty much the same from the first week to this! I guess it’s somewhat reassuring that it’s remaining relatively static, although it would be nice if it was on an upward trajectory; when it starts to plummet I’ll start to worry. Thanks to those that commented, given advice and encouragement.

My posts this week
Review of Satan's Lambs by Lynn Hightower
Freakin' Loser
Review of The Killing of Strangers by Jerry Holt
Thursday Teaser: Unseen Academicals by Terry Pratchett
Saturday Snippet: Disco for the Departed by Colin Cotterill

It seems approprite that on a flight from Ireland to Ohio I'll be reading Les Roberts' The Irish Sports Pages concerning the Irish mafia in Cleveland. I've also got Michael Koryta's Tonight I Say Goodbye in reserve, along with a first draft of my own book with Martin Dodge, Code/Space: Software and Everyday Life, and a full draft of one of my PhD student's thesis. That should stave off any possibility of running out of something to read, even if there's a major delay.

Sorry for the lack of 'posts I enjoyed this week'. I barely kept on top of reading all blogs I subscribe to this week and I didn't keep a record of the posts I enjoyed. It's got to late Saturday night and I've run out of time to go back through my reader to re-find posts (and I'm on a slow GPRS connection that takes forever because the mobile broadband seems to have dropped off as it does every now and then) and I'll have left for the airport early this morning (hopefully the scheduling on this post has worked!). More from the far side of the pond tomorrow, hopefully.


Maxine said...

I think the pattern of a relatively static blog readership is fairly usual. It is certainly the case for me, I've been blogging since late 2005. Occasionally one gets a post picked up by a service like Digg or Boing Boing and you see a huge spike. But these spikes (according to conventional wisdom) don't translate into sustained additional traffic.
There are certainly many ways people optimise their blogs to search engines and put lots of effort into generating traffic (eg skewing what they blog about). I don't know how successful these efforts are likely to be - but for my part I just blog about whatever I want without bothering about traffic. Otherwise it becomes more like work and less of a relaxing hobby. It is nice to get readers of course but I think that the really big-traffic blogs (that aren't already attached to an organisation) are on topics like technology, web, etc. Books - probably not so many massive-traffic book blogs.

Anyway, I very much like your blog - I'm very pleased to have discovered it, and I shall carry on reading it (though in RSS though, so I probably don't show up in your stats ;-) ).

Uriah Robinson said...

I agree with Maxine once you start to worry about volume of traffic the fun goes out of blogging and it becomes like another job.

By the way even after over three years blogging I still don't know what a RSS feed is and why it won't show up on the stats.

Anonymous said...

I agree with both Maxine and Uriah - focusing too much on traffic takes all of the enjoyment out of blogging. I know that, for myself, I don't watch how many hits I get, etc., I blog because I enjoy it and I read the blogs that cover topics that interest me - not necessarily topics that get high traffic.

I very much enjoy your blog, by the way; it's one of those I read all the time : )

Rob Kitchin said...

Thanks for the comments. I've got as far as Chicago and am waiting for the connecting flight to Columbus. It's just gone midnight Irish time. I'm not too worried about traffic, but I do find it interesting that it's the same after three months as it was after one week! The only major difference seems to be a shift from mainly UK readers to mainly US readers. If this was a blog chasing traffic I'd be doing a lot more than simply posting and I'd change the focus and the name. I've no plans at the minute other than to keep posting the same kind of stuff.