Blaugust: Free Ideas Lockbox!

Here we go, fashionably late to Blaugust Reborn 2018.

  • August 1st – August 7th – Topic Brainstorming Week – posts about ideas for topics that the participants can then mine for the rest of the month.

So a fun tip for all the WordPress blogs out there:

You can pull up a random post from way back when, simply by adding /?random to the blog link.

For example, https://whyigame.wordpress.com/?random will likely link you back to one of my rants written during my more prolific days.

This discovery has quite thrown me down the reading rabbit hole as now I’m starting to reread all my old posts (boy, I sure had a lot more ideas in those days) and then running around to someone else’s WordPress blog and sampling some ?random posts of theirs too.

Now there is no excuse for not being able to riff off someone’s else blog posts, because you can rummage in their back bin of history to vehemently disagree with their opinion of seven years ago.

treasurechest

Much like a lockbox, you may end up clicking and opening a bunch of crap first, but persist and you might get lucky and discover an ideas treasure trove that inspires a blog post of your own.

What is old is new once again.

And hey, it’s free and kinda addictive.

Blogger users are, sadly, out of luck on this one. It appears to take a lot more arcane coding beyond my comprehension to do the same thing on Blogspot. But hey, y’all have the best blogroll out there.

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2014 Annual Report

Dear Readers of This Blog,

I would like to thank you for many things, such as your unflagging attention to my ramblings, your comments that reinforce that I am not just typing to myself in the dark, but primarily, for dethroning the “Halp, How do I find my way to Blue Mountain in The Secret World?” joke post that has -finally- dropped out of the Top 5 most popular posts section in the annual report.

Took it three years. Wow.

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The Louvre Museum has 8.5 million visitors per year. This blog was viewed about 88,000 times in 2014. If it were an exhibit at the Louvre Museum, it would take about 4 days for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

For comparison, here’s the 2012 Annual Report and the 2013 Annual Report.

Honestly, there are even fewer surprises to me this time around.

I’m still thrilled to see there’s been growth in pageviews, though it’s probably slowing and plateauing from having established one’s little foothold into the teeny corner of the interwebs that are interested in the subjects I write about, and will likely slow even further this coming year.

I’m almost deadly certain that much of that growth has to do with just a few key posts *coughguidescough* that I occasionally get the urge to write, if only to vent some frustration and then suddenly realize that “YES, there are people who do look these things up and appreciate the summaries, tips and advice.”

2014 is essentially the year I try to harness this phenomenon for good.

Reddit becomes my top referrer, from a mere two posts – one pushing the Marionette AoE guide, and the other introducing the Movement/Combat guide, both of which stay pretty popular.

The biggest surprise was the chance Missing Worlds Media facebook link in May, that sent 2.5 Things City of Heroes Did Wrong to top at least one category – most commented on, and that became my second biggest referrer.

Bhagpuss continues to draw GW2 fans from his site over to mine, for which I’m very thankful… (or maybe it’s just him clicking his own sidebar, given that he’s my top commenter… twice over. 🙂 He has more misspelled accounts that are also cleared to comment here!)

The other highly popular posts all chanced to hit various popular search keywords, imo.

I happened to type up my thoughts to the Path of Exile expansion just when others were searching for info regarding it, I suppose.

“MMOs are dead” is apparently a super-popular phrase to google, along with “GW2 endgame.” Hoorah for contradiction in terms.

I feel moderately guilty about the Dry Top post, since it’s not a complete guide, just some rambling at the midway point of Dry Top when T4 was as high as it got. There’s a T6 one on Reddit somewhere, I believe. *googles* Here, summary and chat codes.

What’s new this year is that they’ve switched search terms, which I suppose are much harder to tease out these days, with a graphical display of one’s posting rate.

I apparently post on many Wednesdays. (It’s probably due to guilt when I realize that I haven’t posted in forever, better churn out something nao!)

Total number of posts has stayed relatively constant through the years – I try to do an average of one post every 3-4 days. Some weeks I lie fallow, and then I make up for it with “too many things to say” days where I post twice.

I’d say that it would be nice if I learned how to spread these things out a little more, but I also know it’s just not gonna happen. Quite a bit of my stuff is time-dependent and it wouldn’t really make much sense to schedule it for a day later or two. I will just trust my regular readers know how to use feed readers.

I -would- like to try a month long writing streak akin to Nanowrimo or Blaugust some day, but will 2015 be the year I find the time to do so?

Reply hazy. Guess we’ll see.

Here’s to 2015 and another fun year of blogging!

2013 Annual Report

Wahey!

It’s back!

WordPress’ friendly blog stats summary of the year that is now history. All conveniently packaged up to share with readers.

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

Madison Square Garden can seat 20,000 people for a concert. This blog was viewed about 64,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Madison Square Garden, it would take about 3 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

And this time, I get to have a past year to compare it to.

Views

The blog has doubled its views in its second year, which is still kind of thrilling, even if the cynic in me says that’s probably mostly bots hitting old pages.

And they tell me that my writing has staying power! (Or I used up all my interesting topics in the first year or that’s probably still just bots.)

But the eternal optimist in me would like to thank my HUMAN readers who put up with my ramblings and appreciate at least a few of the posts that turn up now and again.

It’s a dartboard, y’know? Write and toss up enough posts and hopefully some will stick.

# of Posts and Pictures

Those have remained fairly consistent. I’m personally quite happy with that. Part of my rationale for starting the blog in the first place was to prove to myself that I could commit to a long term project and not get distracted by new shinies and then get lazy and slack off.

I’m on partial break for now, but I do hope to get back up to steam soon and get less lazy about including pictures in my posts again.

Let’s not call it a New Year’s Resolution, but more of a re-commitment, after I’ve taken stock of where I am this season and reorganized my life some.

(Chinese New Year is fast following in the western New Year’s footsteps this year and that is traditionally a period of mass cleanup and reorganizing BEFOREhand, since it is considered bad to sweep good luck out the door during the festive season. And it’s occurred to me that there’s a LOT of things around the house in desperate need of a cleanup from storerooms to wardrobes to terrabytes of data on computer hard disks. Argh.)

Popular Posts

To absolutely no one’s surprise – not mine anyway – the evil evil Liadri topped the stats as the most popular post of last year.

I remember watching that bar climb on the stats and shoot up to a way higher outlier than pretty much all of my other posts, confirming once again that if you are all about pageview whoring – write guides. Lots and lots of guides. Be a Dulfy, and monetize the heck out of your adverts, because there are a lot of people who a) Google up the answers before even getting started or b) get stuck on games and then Google.

Me, I’m more about writing what I feel like writing, in that moment and context. So yeah, expect guides only as and when I feel they’re appropriate (usually when I’m bursting to make a point or just want to share a particular strategy that worked after lots of effort on my part.)

Also completely unsurprising was the fact that the next two most popular posts were PSAs. Short, sweet, simple and as to the point as the usually longwinded me can make them.

“Here’s the answer to whatever you were googling for.”

Of course, me being me, they also do double duty as subjective criticism for “HEY DEVELOPERS, LOOK HOW NOT AT ALL OBVIOUS THIS IS.”

No, really, people are still looking for directions to the Blue Mountains a year later.

And those voting baskets… yeah. Put ’em on top of a floating airship in the sky with nary a label or signpost, except on a minimap that is better at showing stuff in two dimensions only.

Search Terms

Most are not excessively surprising.

Bookworm Adventures is surprisingly more popular than I thought. (It’s a good game though. And it’s a good post – in my not-so-impartial opinion – where I get to play with words. Lots and lots of words.)

I should really write more about the last, hmm?

(They must have been SO disappointed….

Searchers, don’t worry, besides one teeny safe for work cutscene in The Secret World, I believe the Grand Theft Auto, Dragon Age and Mass Effect universes hold out more hope. Mebbe Skyrim or Baldur’s Gate with mods? If you’re willing to go without the latter word of the pair, I recommend the hottest couple in GW2, Marjory and Kasmeer, and flex your imagination and fanfiction writing skills!)

Referrers and Commenters

You now know who you are.

I love all of you guys. In a totally platonic way.

Please keep it up. Make it a competition and beat each other, even. 😛

(Fer example, I know off the top of my mind that there’s at least two more reader-commenters whose names begin with R and one more whose name -sounds- like it should begin with R, that I appreciate too. And everybody else who I’m brain-blocked on at the moment. But y’all lost to the most prolific! Noooo…)

They’re the only way I can tell a human cared to read my drivel, rather than let my cynic tell me it’s bots.

If not for you, my valued readers…

…I’d still write…

…but I wouldn’t POST.

And that makes all the difference.

Thank you, one and all.

Here’s to another good year.

(After some house-cleaning. Aaaaargh.)

2012 Annual Report

Following in Rakuno’s footsteps, it seems WordPress helpfully provided a fun formatted annual report with which to share stats with our readers.

For a lazy person, this is a godsend.

I have apparently posted an extremely evil number of pictures. I wish I could claim it was done on purpose.

The popular posts are extremely unsurprising. They simply just appear to have used popular search keywords that people use to find answers.

Which most of them would not find here. Whoops. Except for the Secret World PSA post which was half in jest, and still exceedingly popular.

Seriously, people, is it that hard to find the vendor? Or the map exit? If any TSW devs ever see this, please take note of how non-obvious it seems to be.

Or are we just trained to Google up the answer to anything and everything.

People want the answers to quests. Armor galleries. Builds.

A cheatbook or spoilers for MMOs, in other words. Sighs.

Sorry to disappoint you, all you get here is longwinded opinions, commentary and pretty pictures. Do stay for the pretty pictures. 🙂

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog:

Click here to see the complete report.