I want to take this time to officially wave goodbye to 2015 with the presentation of our WordPress Annual Report. I’m so excited about how we did and most grateful to all the people who helped us to achieve our goals. Last year I didn’t dare share my data! Yea, it was that embarrassing. But that’s good because it means this blog has shown tremendous growth and I hope to exceed its numbers at the conclusion of 2016. Until then, here’s an excerpt of how we did:
“The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 16,000 times in 2015. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 6 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.
Where They Came From:
138 countries in all!
Most visitors came from The United States. United Kingdom & Canada were not far behind.
The busiest day of the year was November 25th with 140 views. The most popular post that day was If Your Blog Was a Resume
I decided not to publish the entire report for personal reasons but I hope you are inspired by our sneak peek. Thank you for spending this time with me and I’ll see you soon.
Peace & Love
I did not intend on writing another post this year. I am preparing for travel this week and getting into major promotion mode for the third installment of The Stella Trilogy. That is until I checked my email and thought, what better way to end the year than to be nominated for your 10th Blog Award?
The funny thing is that I was contemplating whether or not to go on and participate in Blog Awards in 2016. Rarely if ever do I obey the rules and they do take up a bit of time. However, when Kenyc (Ken-niece) McCoy of Soprano Musings nominated me for The Sunshine Blog Award, I remembered how timely these things always are and that maybe I can keep them going for a little while longer but we will have to see. Blog Awards do tend to keep me aware of where I stand with my followers which I think is very important. If nothing else, it is always such great timing when fellow bloggers nominate us (Us as in “The PBS Blog” so yes, that includes you). Just when I wonder what to write about next, if the posts are worth it, or if anyone is really paying attention, it is at these moments when someone comes through with a Blog Award. I take it as a personal reminder that it is not all in vain.
So I just want to give a big thank you to Kenyc for nominating this blog for The Sunshine Blog Award!
7 Facts About Myself:
I feel like I’ve been through this sooo many times that this time around I decided to go a little more in depth about some facts about me:
- I don’t celebrate holidays and ask to respectfully be excluded from any happy holiday wishes
- Though my career of choice require I do a lot of public speaking, I am actually very introverted at heart.
- I am very passionate about the state of Black America, its history, and culture
- I have been known to behave beyond my age so its no surprise that my husband is nine years older than I am
- I won my first poetry award when I was a freshman in High School and wrote plays performed by my High School for three years
- People who don’t know me tend to think that I am mean. That’s because I can be forthcoming in my verbal delivery. Though it is never my intent to be offensive, I will never sugar coat the truth and try my best to keep it real with everyone, giving to each the same measure of respect
- I would really like to visit Germany one day!
The winds are picking up steam, the clouds are filled to the brim, and another year is gone. North Louisiana is bracing itself for what is to be a major storm. Why does the moment feel symbolic right now? I tried to write earlier on this topic but it wasn’t until the skies growled that I felt compelled to try it now. The air is cooling as we speak while my nose attempts one final sniff of what is left of 2015. I love the rain, and how thoughtful of it to show up now; in the midst of my thoughts concerning change.
When I look over this blog, I suppose the biggest evolution for me has been the evolution of my writing and the changes taking place in my career in general. When The PBS Blog was born August of 2014, I did not set out to enhance my writing in such significant ways. Thinking back I’m sure I was subconsciously aware of the connection between blogging and writing but I did not specifically set out to do many of the things I’ve done. Surely, I did not anticipate giving Indie Author Tips, Author Interviews, or Book Reviews. I think that’s what makes anything new so exciting, the surprise factor of it all. Not knowing what’s going to happen next. This is what Blogging has been for me in 2015, the evolution of my writing in general.
I thought about how to present this post. Should I give links to the best of the best like last years poetry wrap up? Should I bore you with random pats on the back concerning things I’ve done the years past? Nay, I decided to just keep this simple. What do I look forward to in 2016?
Well, that just depends on what there is in store. What I’ve learned about life in general is never to overexcite anything because you do not know what the next day will be like. We can want things and we can be given those wants but it doesn’t mean they will come in the fashion in which we desire them. For that I have learned never to rush time; just let it roll in nice and gently, like rain drops sliding down the vibrant green petal of a rose. Like tiny crystals all fragile and delicate, and yet brave enough to trust the fragility of a tree leaf to hold them. A collection of bodies all too weak to do anything but uplift each other. So, for Blogging Year 2016 I’m just going to continue riding the tide of the unknown and see where it takes me. I hope that you will come along with me and that we can continue to grow together. At some point I’ll sit down to outline some specific goals but for now I’ll take it one blog post at a time. Before you know it I’ll be drafting the post to close out 2016 and hopefully I’ll have you here to share those memories with me.
“Being good to myself allows me to be good to others. I can’t neglect myself and expect to be of service to anyone.”
I saw this quote on twitter a couple weeks ago and its sooo true. Always remember to be good to yourself so you can be a light to others. Sometimes you just have to be a little bit selfish and it’s nothing to feel guilty about. A little neglect ain’t never hurt nobody lol. If you neglect yourself however, you can never be there to help others. How you care for your own needs and tend to the perpetual refreshening of your own mind will determine if you have what it takes to spark a revolution in others. In the words of Maya Angelou, “be careful when a naked person offers you a shirt”. How can you love me if you don’t love yourself first? Growth is the key and love is always the drive.
OK, you may want to sit down for this one.
A couple weeks ago (or was it last week?? LOL), whenever it was, I had a blogger to comment on a post I wrote asking me to go into more detail concerning photos in a blog post. I never consider myself a “blogging pro” or “advice giver” so her question made me feel very positive about the post as feedback often does. Here’s her question and my response:
Q. Can you share more about your thought that sometimes pictures can take away from a post?
Sure. Pictures are a great way to compliment a blog post but photos in blog posts is about strategy and not just decoration. If the pictures don’t tie in well with the article it can take away from the written content and become a distraction. Photos chosen should have the potential to reveal something about the post even if there were no words because images set the tone for the post itself. Sometimes I decide not to include pics because I want the focus on the words and a photo in this sense can just be distracting. All in all bad image choices can have a great impact on how people see our blogs.
This morning I did not intend on writing this post, but after scrolling through the reader I experienced something that validates just how important photos are in a blog post. I scared myself away from my own post.
Yesterday, I wrote a post that included a picture of Flavor Flave. When I scrolled through the reader this morning I was shocked to see that photo front and center on my timeline associated with that blog post (go ahead, take a look). I startled myself because I would not have chosen for that picture to be the one used to feature the post. As I opened with “We all have our favorites…” needless to say Flavor Flave was not a good look. I do not nor have I ever been a fan. I do not take back my thoughts in the article and using the photo in the post did look good when I drafted it because it represents what I was speaking about, but it did not mix well with my opening statements or as an advertisement for the post in the reader.
Did I say advertise? Yes. It may not seem important at the time, but photos in blog posts tend to act as promotional items for our blogs before people actually click to see what the post is about. I wouldn’t say to stress out about it, but whether or not people are clicking to tune into our blogs have a lot to do with the way that people think in general and we all know by now (c’mon, say it with me) “Pictures are worth a thousand words”. Just keep in mind that the first picture used in the post will more than likely be the photo that stands front and center as representative of your post. My little experiment proved, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that image choices is not just about what looks good, but it is also about strategy because the photography tends to set the mood for the article itself. The photos you use in your post can have the potential to downgrade the quality of the article if it does not blend well with the written content.
Experiment: Conduct your own experiment. Write a blog post and use an image, any image. Go back to the reader and see which one shows up! If your not too chicken to risks a few likes and views, this can help you to see how the pictures in the post shows up when people are actually scrolling through the reader.