We all desire to have feedback in our lives, whether its for work or for pleasure. We crave it at work, for without feedback, constructive or otherwise, how would we know that we were doing a good job, a mediocre job, or a bad job. Same applies for stuff that we do for pleasure.
Like blogging and/or writing.
Out of the two items listed, blogging to me, seems to be the toughest item to get any kind of feedback on. With writing, its a little bit easier, because you can see tangible results from what you write, be it increased traffic to the blog that you write, the e-zines that your stuff appears in or increased sales of your product.
Blogging on the other hand, its very hard to see any kind of tangible results beyond an uptick in traffic to your blog, and the only way you can see that is if you have some kind of widget that feeds your mania for stats (like I have with Sitemeter). Other than that, how do you know that you're actually doing a good job with your blog?
Fortunately, if you're a stats junkie like me, that "Stats" link that Blogger threw up on the dashboard is blessing in disguise. I don't pay attention to most of what it gives me for information, because frankly, it puts me to sleep. What I do pay attention to is the top ten list of most popular posts that it generates. Why? Well, to be honest with everyone, while I've had about 18K visitors to my blog, I really have no idea where the majority came from in order to arrive here from my blog, or even why they came here. But I am curious as to what they read when they do get here.
I'm so curious about what they read, that I put up a nifty little widget that shows the four most popular posts at any given time for the month. However, what I'm about to show everyone, is the ten most popular posts of all time (May 2009 thru today) of Cedar's Mountain, complete with link (save one) and a short explanation for each one.
10} Connecticut Barbie, post date 1/23/11, 35 page views: This was basically an e-mail that I got some eight years ago from an ex-friend of mine. Barbie has always generated a lot of humor over the past five decades (even a song by the band Aqua) and this particular e-mail was typical of the regionalized flavor of it.
9} Thou Art A Hypocrite, post date 9/20/2010, 37 page views: This was one of the few national political posts that I wrote, and it had to deal with the hypocrisy of the Democratic party and the national media over the Tea Party movement that was sweeping the country back then.
8} Read What I See, post date 7/11/2011, 49 page views: This was basically a multi-book review of some of the books that I bought earlier this year with the gift cards that I received for my b'day.
7} I Can Conversate With You, post date 4/14/2009, 52 page views: This post was basically about how I experienced twice, a rare occurrence in the blog world, which was having a normal conversation with two of my fellow bloggers, one that took place here and one that took place at theirs. Interesting factoid about this post is that someone tried to spam it last week.
6} Life Is Tough, But It's Tougher When You're Stupid, post date 11/14/2010, 60 page views: More bad e-mail humor. You know, it doesn't really surprise me that two of my most popular posts were based on very old e-mails. Go figure.
5} Won't You Please Paint Me With The Widest Brush You Got?, post date 7/26/10, 61 page views: This post was in response to someone who called me a racist and that I suffered from white anger on Facebook because I happen to think that the Huffington Post wasn't a real news site.
4} Diatribe About The Hazards Of Being A Pedestrian, post date 4/24/2010, 71 page views: I walk a lot, and this was a rare Saturday post about me almost getting taken out by pickup truck that chose to make a right on red (which is very legal and very abused in Connecticut) while I had the right of way in the crosswalk.
3} All Points Bulletin, post date 2/14/2010, 455 page views: This post, in my opinion, is one of my absolute favorites. It features a song from Hee-Haw, and poignant lyrics from Bruce Hornsby, Al Stewart and Planet P, and what I feel is the best piece of flash fiction that I've ever written. For the life of me, I still have no idea on why this post has had so many views to stay consistently in my top five posts of all time.
2}Pictorial Post, post date 1/9/2011; 1,252 page views: For the life of me, I have absolutely no clue as to why this is here. All it is, is one of my famous short posts announcing a new post at my picture blog. Even the comments were turned off on the post. It also was my first and only attempt at writing a 55 word post for fellow blogger G-Man's perpetual meme.
1} I Done Do'od It! My 200th Post, post date 1/2/2009; 1,305 page views: Again, I have no concrete proof (only circumstantial and conjecture) as to why this one shot up to number one, because up until this year, this post wasn't even in the top ten. I originally had three chat room friends contribute something to this post. However, after deciding to completely and permanently vacate the chat room scene, I chose to purge the original content and rewrite the post. I still have the original post printed and stashed, but for all intents and purposes, this post is no more.