Wow! I’ll be honest, the first year of this blog dragged very slowly for me. By the time I hit my first anniversary I felt I had accomplished a herculean task.
This second year? It blew right by.
I don’t know. Maybe that means I wasn’t pushing myself and my work lacked sincere effort. I definitely sweat a whole lot less when I look at the blank page at the beginning of each new story! But on the other hand, a lot of the pieces I am proudest of came out in this second year.
Two years might not sound very short, but frankly I am amazed at how quickly writing has become just an ordinary part of my day-to-day. I write. It’s simply what I do.
And I’ve been doing a lot of it! This year I made 118 posts and added 19 short stories and 52 essays. Last year saw 27 short stories, so it would seem that I’ve started making them considerably longer! I hadn’t realized I was doing that, and don’t really have any opinions whether that is a good or a bad thing, I just thought it was an interesting observation.
I wrote 196,000 words this year, compared to 220,000 last year (so maybe the stories aren’t getting longer?), though this doesn’t tell the entire story. Because in addition to this story blog, I also added a second spiritually themed one, where I wrote an additional 124,000 words, though obviously those words are not in a story format. But again, this isn’t the complete picture, because I also started working on my novel With the Beast, and in total wrote 42,500 words of my first draft (we won’t even count the 36,000-word outline that preceded working on that draft!).
If you lump all of those together, I have 362,500 words to show for this year, 582,500 once combined with last year. One more year like this and I’ll be knocking at the door of that coveted one-million-words mark!
Followers rose up to 176, almost exactly doubling the 87 from last year. 17 new countries have discovered my blog, bringing that total up to 64. Once again, I’m amazed at those numbers. I do a big, fat nothing to try and grow my following, and that anyone reads this at all is mind-blowing to me.
Last anniversary I kicked things off by starting work on my novel and beginning an entirely new blog. This year is not going to be so dramatic. I’ll still be continuing with my three regular series (Show, Don’t Tell; Story of the Storyteller; Writer’s Toolkit), and I’ll still be continuing work on my novel.
I will do a couple little things to commemorate this new year, though. For starters, I am going to now include snippets of the latest work in my novel as part of my monthly reports on it. Starting tomorrow you can get a more direct feel for how its style and tone.
Secondly, I am going to extend a special invitation to all of my readers. Recently I started working with a “writing buddy” that I met here on WordPress. We’ve been reviewing one another’s work and its been a very positive experience, both for the constructive feedback provided and for the simple pleasure of getting to know a fellow human. For a while now I’ve wanted to get to know my readers better, and even to help them out with whatever I can. I’ll be extending an offer for just that tomorrow, and I hope you’ll be willing to give it a look.
And Thank You)
As I thought of how to express my thanks, I looked at what I wrote at this blog’s last anniversary and couldn’t think of a better way to say it. All these words still hold completely true for me.
So once again I want to thank you all for your support. Perhaps just coming and reading doesn’t seem like much, but really it is. These aren’t just stories to me, they are the way I process and express my own self. Everyone wants to be heard, and you have listened to me.
Thank you for that.