Greetings this beautiful Friday morning in Prescott, AZ,
March has been a busy month. This post will act as a month end record both for photography, and WOTY. My Word of the Year is CURATE. The purpose is for me to curate and create order, functionality, education, and beauty out of my life.
LAST ON CARD PHOTOS
My walk with Puppy Girl on March 30 after a rain. The clouds were so beautiful. It’s hard to capture the magnificence of nature.
March Weather in Prescott
We had a smattering of both snow and rain and a ton of wind.
Creating order in photos alone is a big task. It’s boring to write about, and yet it pulls me. This week Google informed me that 80% of primary Gmail account is full. Did you know that if you eliminate the new photos from June, 2021 forward on the Google Photos app on you iPhone, it deletes them from all your phone and iCloud files? I can’t even see them to delete them on my computer. It only costs $20 per year to have all the storage I’d ever need, and I’m debating with myself over $20. Is that crazy? I did not ask Google to back up all my photo files.
Books I Ordered for April’s Reading
- How to Read Like a Professor by Thomas Foster recommended by Yvette Prior
- Tina Lost in a Crowd by Miriam Hurdle (Showers of Blessing) finished and left a review on Amazon.
- A Life in Parts by Bryan Cranston
- Lady by the River – a collection of short stories by Yvette Prior and friends
Curating for Better Blogging
As part of the curating process, the curator puts their organizational efforts to good use. For me, that is blogging. March had the least number of views this year, 600 less than the high in January. I didn’t feel the pain. It’s most likely because I did not try to blog every day with challenges like Bloganuary and Squares in Feb. As much as I love Squares, blogging every day wears me out, and trying it for two months in a row is more than I can do and still have a life. March Story Chat kept Yvette and me super busy, but so did my other regular challenge posts.
Better doesn’t necessarily mean more posts or more likes or visitors. I think it means more enjoyment and more engagement. Who cares if you get more RV dealer, or toilet paper sales blog likes!
One of Yvette’s commenters on Story Chat got lost in spam. The two of them chatted and she urged me to look through my spam files to find his comments. I did – all 701 of them, and he was somewhere in the middle. She asked if there was another spammer who liked her post. I hadn’t bothered to check, but at her insistence, I reported him as spam and deleted him. She worried that he had her email address. I don’ know if that happens when you answer a comment.
Result: I also closed comments after 30 days on Always Write. So if there is a post you like from the past, just write your comment on a recent post unless you are a spammer.
More March Pictures for Thursday Doors and Monday Windows
Some sad March doors in Urban Prescott on Granite Street were very close to where the wonderful murals were that my friend Monica and I saw. What a contrast to the beautiful pillared bank doors with smartly clad windows.
According to Hugh Roberts and many blogging experts, titles make the biggest difference in how many visitors your posts get. If you host a challenge, your title needs to include the Challenge Name in the title plus a description. “How Do You Make Green Coffee? was my top March post that was not one of my challenges. It was a post for Natalie’s Coffee Share which gave me an opportunity to post photos from our main March trip: MIM – Musical Instrument Museum. It also met the Six-Word Challenge by Debbie from Travel with Intent.
More Musical Instrument Magic
I wonder what happened to those extra 400 January visitors, though. That will be part of my curating process. Are they spam or friends that lost interest? How much effort should I put into finding out? Or should I ride off into the night with the Einstein of my life without a care in the world?
I celebrated 10 years of blogging in March.
Quick Analysis of 10 Years
- In 10 years I’ve published 1,482 posts and have 39 drafts.
- I’ve had a few private photography lessons from some of the greatest bloggers on the planet, Cee Neuner and Leanne Cole.
- My biggest years in terms of the number of posts published were: 2013, 2016, and 2021, with last year being the highest by about 100 posts.
- The number of likes in 2021 was about three times as many as in 2013 when I was new yet super enthusiastic but was still struggling to find my focus.
- Last year was amazing because I had started a series of interviews about people who hosted and participated in challenges in 2020. It built in 2021. I’ve always loved challenges but had never studied them.
- When I started hosting three challenges, my blog gained the structure and the outward focus it missed in my early years.
- Terri Webster Schrandt (Sunday Stills), Cee Neuner, Miriam Hurdle and I are discussing a possible meet-up in the Portland, Oregon area in August or September to visit the dahlia fields which are open from August 1st into October, weather permitting. If you haven’t seen pictures on Cee’s site of the dahlias, it’s worth the click on her name to go search for them.
- My posts have gotten longer going from an average of 533 words in 2012, to averaging 500 words per post for the first five years. In 2022 I averaged 848 this year bringing my last 5.25-year average to 720 words per post.
- I landed a book deal because of my blog in 2014, Images of America Woodlake. Proceeds from book sales all go to the Woodlake High School Foundation.
- I’ve made some forever friends over the years – too many to even list. I still think about some of my first friends that no longer keep in touch and hope they are well and happy.
- I met four bloggers in real life over the first five years of blogging along with one spouse, parents, sisters, nieces, cousins, friends, and a daughter and her husband. (From my three-week trip to Australia to meet Leanne Cole and Carol, (the Eternal Traveller.) You probably know those relationships have lasted and are forever friends.
- I’ve met four bloggers in the last five years. Thanks to zoom, I’ve talked to so many of you. Cee Neuner organized a successful weekly Zoom blog meet-up that went on for a year until we all got distracted by real-life after COVID let up.
- This week I discovered several people who publish a weekly chat, and I saw comments from so many of my friends on my new friend’s posts. Reading comments on a blog is like mingling at a party. You never know who is going to be there, and seeing friends I know where I did not expect them puts a big smile on my face. If I put a like on one of your comments on someone else’s post, don’t get offended. It’s my way to smile at you and wave hello without trying to barge into the conversation.
- In real life a blogging party looks like my first AZ Blogger meetup. We all felt like we had known each other for years. And then their friends started becoming our friends, too.
March Click (not clique) Leaders on Always Write
Challenges That Inspired This Post
#TheChangingSeasons, #MonthlyPhotoChallenge, WOTY, What’s on Your Bookshelf, Six-Word Saturday, Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #192 Earth, Natalie’s Weekend Coffee Share, If We Were Having Coffee, A Chai and a Chat #179, #Thursday Doors, Monday Windows, FOTD, Last on the Card
Now It’s Your Turn
Do you have an accountability post for March? The challenges I listed above are good ways to highlight them and are reasons to write them. You’ll be glad you did. Happy blogging. No Fooling!