How NOT to Write a Blog

starsbiscuit

Posted : June 27’th 2013

When I started this blog, it had no very defined purpose.  I thought I might write about writing, and maybe drop in a little tidbit here and there – about some of the books I’d written.  The publication results, carefully logged inside of the statistics database, and accounting for more than a year of operation – have been very informative.

The blog became a catch all bag of stories, hodge-podge and randomized to the extreme.  This intentional lack of planning acted as a honey pot, collecting some very good information in the logs. Occasionally, some poor soul stumbled by,  intent upon taking a look at a page I’d written.  Most usually, this person had drifted onto my site by way of Google, and occasionally by the indexes of Yahoo.  Typically once, but sometimes twice a week, I was accustomed to seeing visitor’s  traces appear in the log.  By the way, the log keeps no PII (personal info) … but instead just a date stamp and pages visited.  As far as I know.

The striking thing about the information i found in the logs … was that visitors never clicked a second link in the blog.  A look at the statistics proved this phenomenon to be pretty universal, relative to the folks I noticed visiting my blog space.

It seems in retrospect, a self-fulfilling sort of thing.  My blog is hodge-podge, with not very much of any one thing.  A lot of it is “in the moment” stuff that may have seemed relevant at one instant of time, and interesting enough to make a note about – but of little interest to the wandering nomads of internet search engines.

As I began to realize this phenomenon was a show stopper for visitors, I started to split some of my doings off from the potpourri I’d created on WordPress site number one.  I started dumping some of the artsy-craftsy stuff over onto Ronscheckelhoff.tumblr.com, and some of the techie stuff onto a second WordPress site (Codekradle.wordpress.com).

What I’ve done here may be convenient for me, because I can write without consideration for what is likely to attract visitors to the site.  If I want to blog into the void, that’s fine.    But, it’s a poor way to write a blog if the expectation is that others are to be induced to visit it.   It looks like a blogger should pick one or more idea-specific blog purposes, and build a single blog site for each venue of interest.  Intuitively, if visitors come looking for “xyz stuff” – then providing more “xyz stuff” may keep them around to look at  additional material.  Otherwise, they’ll sail off after a single click.  Duly noted.

Wonder why I selected the graphic?  I guess I was too lazy to make a pic more closely related to the theme of the article.  I created Starsky’s Biscuit for the hell of it, yesterday, and uploaded to tumblr.  Anyway, a plain page is just too ordinary.  I like primitive things, but primitive can be interesting.  Headerless pages are just boring.

If you want to make a biscuit, I’ll tell you how Starsky’s biscuit was made. For the biscuit itself, I used Xara. For the texturing, I used a very old version of Gimp and its “artistic canvas” effects script.  Go have at it!

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