Yesterday was the fourth anniversary of the first blog post on ARHtistic License. I like to reflect on the blog’s progress around its birthday and at the end of the year.
One year ago, ARHtistic License had 465 followers. As of this writing, it’s grown to 683, an increase of 27.5%, a modest gain (I was hoping for more like 50%; I can dream, can’t I?).
There are two ways to determine what content is most popular: views and likes.
My ten most popular articles of 2019 so far, based on the number of views:
- NaPoWriMo2019 #13 (252)
- *Jan van Eyck’s The Crucifixion and the Last Judgment: Painted by a Committee (235)
- *How to Make a Meme on a Mac (154)
- *Escaping the Khmer Rouge: Review of Beautiful Hero by Jennifer H. Lau (144)
- *How to Practice the Piano: Doh! Dohnányi (136)
- Phoenix Folk Dance Festival (102)
- #DC383: Ratoon (92)
- *10 Best Zentangle Sites on the Web (86)
- #DC385: Valentangle (72)
- *Review of The Accidental Tourist, or Why I’d Rather Read the Book Than See the Movie (70)
The titles marked with an * are articles from prior years that still get lots of views currently.
I know why some of these articles got lots of views:
- The NaPoWriMo one is a poem I wrote that was featured on the official National Poetry Writing Month website, so lots of NaPoWriMo participants read it. It’s not necessarily the best poem I wrote that month, but I read all the featured poems (a new one every day in April), too.
- People like help with technical stuff; I think that’s why my how-to on memes gets read so often.
- Beautiful Hero won 1st Place in Writer’s Digest‘s Self-Published E-Book Award in 2018. I think people searched for reviews of it.
- I think all pianists find Dohnányi’s exercises challenging. Misery loves company.
- I posted a link to the article about the Phoenix Folk Dance Festival on the Phoenix International Folk Dancers Facebook page.
- The titles that start with #DC were my entries in a Zentangle challenge (the Diva Challenge, which seems to have stopped, to my sadness). It was a very popular challenge, and all the participants checked out all the entries. Tangle enthusiasts love finding new sources, so I think that’s why so many people read the 10 best Zentangle sites article.
- I love that so many people read the Jan van Eyck article. I have no idea why that one gets read almost every day, while others of my articles about the old masters don’t get nearly as much interest.
My top ten articles in the past year, based on number of likes:
- Wordless Wednesday/ Flower of the Day: Assorted Vincas (24)
- NaPoWriMo2019 #13 (23)
- Wordless Wednesday: Painted Rocks by the Neighborhood Ice Cream Parlor (23)
- Wordless Wednesday/ Flower of the Day/ #ALP: Red Bird of Paradise (23)
- Creative Juice #111 (22)
- Flower of the Day: African Daisies (21)
- My Favorite Art Blogs (21)
- OctPoWriMo Day 8: Married Forty-Five Years (21)
- Wordless Wednesday/ Flower of the Day: Red Bird of Paradise (20)
- Wordless Wednesday/ Flower of the Day: Hibiscus (20)
I think I know why these posts got the most likes:
- Wordless Wednesday and Flower of the Day are two popular photography challenges. Photographers, like zentanglers, support each other by checking out their entries.
- NaPoWriMo (April) and OctPoWriMo (October) are poetry challenges. Like photographers and zentanglers, poets like to see what their colleagues are doing.
- Creative Juice is a feature that appears every Friday on ARHtistic License. It’s a list of a dozen articles I found on the web that I found inspiring or creative. It has a loyal following.
- People who surf the internet like to find websites that match their interests. I think that’s why readers liked the art blog roundup.
Nevertheless, I am disappointed that I can’t get 100 likes on my posts. I think it has to do with the fact that in order to “like” or comment on a WordPress blog, you must have a Gravatar; in order to get a Gravatar, you must sign up for a WordPress account and give up personal information like your email address. It sounds like a big deal, but it’s not. It’s free.
It breaks my heart that my #1 most viewed post so far this year only got 24 likes. Does that mean that more than 90% of my readers HATED my poem? I already confessed that it’s not one of my best, but if even 40% liked it, that would be 100 likes right there.
I am so jealous of bloggers who regularly get hundreds of likes on their posts.
Every year I whine and consider quitting.
Then I try to do some things differently and plug on.
Please, if you enjoy reading a blog post and there’s a “like” button, click it. It will make the blogger’s day. It will serve as vindication for the hours she spent on the post. It will put a smile in her heart.
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