The occasion caught me by surprise, though delightfully so. WordPress sends me weekly blog statistics along with other notifications including a recent Happy Anniversary message. It is now a year since I set up this blog, a project originally intended as a placeholder for stories destined for publication on social media. I never planned to publish my own musings until one day, I did. Eighty-nine blogs later my original prediction that The Blog Is Dead, in my case, has proved to be wrong.
Named Take Note the blog was to include reflections on music and politics. I continue to probe both these themes but have now added photography, biography, celebration, humour, theology, religion, and special events to the mix. It has been suggested that I concentrate more narrowly on a few topics. The truth is I just can’t do that. Tried . . . and failed.
This blog’s 89 posts have been viewed 9,341 times by 5,289 visitors (many visit multiple times – some read individual posts months after the original publication). I promote on both Facebook, Twitter, and occasionally Flickr. Thursday is the most popular day for views and visits, especially for the 44 persons who follow the blog. In and through 81,757 words, a digital community continues to grow with the number of comments, likes, and emails steadily increasing.
The most popular posts include:
Ellie Johnson – An Appreciation – 402 views
Let Down Again – 390
I Am Not Cool – 154
By far, the most popular post is my celebration of Dean Robert Willis and the ministry of the Garden Congregation – 943
What are my favourite posts?
Identifying as male I did my best to celebrate the work of an amazing social justice initiative for women.
As my primary retirement activity, photography deserves prominence and, wait for it, focus!
What is in development right now?
I want to update folks on the Ellie Johnson book project which continues to move forward well. I also have a piece on Aquamation coming together.
What do I want you to read, right now?
You will be hearing much about pilgrimage in the next few months. Watch this space.
The question really is, why do I blog?
I find life interesting and enjoy sharing my enthusiasm. There is no shortage of themes which interest me personally and many of my readers. I am interested in the stories of persons, places and passions which inspire, delight or challenge me. Where and when appropriate, I share material disregarded by professional media. I have always appreciated the motto of the Christian Science Monitor which describes itself as an international news organization that helps you see news events as starting points for constructive conversations. I make no claim whatsoever to achieve what The Monitor, The Guardian or more locally The Tyee produce. While motivated and enthusiastic, I am an amateur.
In this my shortest blog to date, Blog 90 (remember John Henry Newman’s Tract 90) I am so grateful that many of you loyal readers (and those who landed here totally by accident) read, comment, like, follow and I seem to enjoy what I produce. In these early retirement years this work gives me so much satisfaction, no less in knowing that others find enjoyment, humour, and inspiration in what I share. As a student of creative writing decades ago at the University of Western Ontario, Professor John Smallbridge once told me, “There is no reason you cannot publish.” And now, at least online, I have.