Movin’ Out

 🎇 Day 365 – December 31, 2018 🎉 🎆

Transition – VJ’s Weekly Challenge / Reflect – Manic Monday 3-Way Prompt / Bridges – Pic and a Word / Revenge – FOWC / Segue – RDP / Traditions – WODC / Goodbye December – December Photo a Day / Extra Time – December Squares

365 Challenge, accepted and completed.  The first two felt a tad anti-climactic to be honest.  This year feels a bit different.  The first two years, I really kept focus on the parameters I set for myself.  Looking back at the stats, not including facebook friends who really padded them, in 2011 I ended the year with 3 likes (not a misprint), 36 comments (mostly my mom), and 8 followers. In 2012, I still had a link to Facebook, and I finished with 1181 likes, 317 comments and 22 Followers (those who were exclusively from WP.)  For 2011 and 12, the number of views and visitors are difficult to figure as a large majority came through Facebook.  They were pretty much my family and a close friend or two. I won’t get into the nitty gritty, but it was a good thing that I wasn’t doing it for any other reason except as a personal goal.  Now this year, I changed my url, I ditched Facebook, before WP did, and I set out to just do it for me,  and not for those who knew me.  In January I ended the month with 11 new follows, 399 Views, 213 visitors and 135 likes.  In February the month ended with 3 new follows, 251 views, 159 visitors and 68 likes. I won’t bore you with the month to month, so I will skip to December.  This month, as of today, I have 398 followers (c’mon only 2 more please?), 3291 views, 1371 visitors and 1033 likes.  I am not sharing this info with you to brag, bolster, impress.  Quite the contrary.  I know the majority of you have built an amazing network, and I am blown away by your dedication and commitment to your sites.  I shared this with you because of my total followers,  to the best of my knowledge, there isn’t anyone who I know personally.  All of you, for whatever reason,  decided to join along because you liked something you saw or read.  You had no obligation and did so willingly. And even more impressive you stayed.  For me it it has never been about numbers or stats.  Yes I look at them, who doesn’t. But it doesn’t drive me.  What means more are the posts I read daily, the comments made and the exchanges we share.  In this day and age, where social media rules the roost and the number of friends is not just a stat it’s a status symbol, it is invigorating knowing that the comments we make are authentic, unprovoked, and sincere.  This is what has become most dear to me.  2018, for me, was awful.  You would never know it because this was/is my safe place.  It is where I could go when I needed to get away or reground myself.  While I can’t wait to kick 2018 out on its proverbial ass and start with a blank slate with 2019, I will not forget how much you all have meant to me.  The photos above are the 12 “most popular” for their month. I am still not sure what the New Year holds, but I am excited about the adventures (of yours) I will get to read about and the continuation of what was/is the start of a beautiful friendship.  Happy New Year to each and every one of you.  May 2019 be full of peace, love and happiness!

Music response for the Manic Monday 3-Way Prompt – Reflect

(I was stuck between Cats and the Cradle and this one.  Both are very relevant to me today. But I didn’t want to cry all over my keyboard, so I went with this one)

40 Replies to “Movin’ Out”

  1. Welcome to 2019! May this be a year to render all others a distant 2nd. 😉

    I’m impressed with the number of comments your posts receive, despite your trials with attracting followers and views. Well done!

    However, I notice that you post a large number of tags and categories for your posts, large being more than 15 total tags and categories combined. If you keep this number at 15 or fewer (for example, 2 categories and 13 tags), then WordPress will list your post in the Discover pages and also on the tag and category listings for each tag and category. More than 15 tags on a post and it will not receive a listing on any of these pages. The vast majority of my new visitors come through these links and, thus, the majority of my new followers.

    It is also through the Discover, Tags and Categories links on WordPress that WP editors find the posts and blogs they regularly feature in Discover. The number of visits a feature link generates is phenomenal.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you much Patrick. I really try to keep under 15, but I had always thought it was like 15 and 15 max! I have such a hard time prioritizing what tags/categories I should use! Any tips on that? Happy 2019 to you as well! After last year, I am all too ready to put it in the rear view mirror.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. <grin> I’m not necessarily the best coach here, because I tend to break “rules”, especially with categories. 😉 And there are several resources online that offer better info than I can, including WordPress’ own support pages. However, a couple notes:

        1> Categories: think of these as structural, organizational. Something like a table of contents. Every post should fall within a chapter heading. Generally, most resources suggest one or at most two categories per post.

        I use 3 categories for every post. One to define the camera I used for the photo, a second for the genre of photography, and a third for the genre of writing accompanying the photograph. That’s at least one more category than ideal.

        2> Tags… think of these as index entries… something you’d find at the end of a non-fiction book to help you locate particular kinds of information in the book. Be careful about being too specific with tags, “Seize the Day” and “Carpe Diem”, for example… pick one and stay with it.

        3> Which tags and categories will work best for you? Hard to say. When I first stared blogging, I browsed a lot, and tried to figure out which tags and categories seemed to be most popular with readers and bloggers.

        There were some surprising results. I take a lot of photographs of beautiful things, and write a lot about things like “finding the beauty in all things” so I used to use “beauty” as a tag all the time. As a result, I have a lot of followers, likes and comments from “beauty and lifestyle” bloggers, even though I never write or photograph for that genre. 😉

        There are definitely times when I’d love to post more than 15 tags and categories, but it can be very useful to be brutally honest with oneself about what a post is really all about, and limit your tags to those which get at the heart of that.

        Hope that helps!

        And, yeah, I kicked 2018 to the curb — hard. Bring on 2019!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Thanks! I remember I had that problem with and t’s 6 or 7 months ago. At that point I don’t think I was really worried about exposure. I know for Friday Follies I have only 1 cat and 2 tags I use every week and that is it. Probably explains why they are viewed more. I try to trim them back, but I think because I do so many prompts and challenges in one post, it is hard for me to decide which ones need to go. It is a new year, so I could streamline it even more and try and break that habit. Again thank you for the info. I don’t know what you mean by not being a good coach, I thought that was excellent advice! 😁

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Yep. It can be hard. You could go through your category structure and set all the more tag-like ones as sub-categories of a new category you call “DON’T USE THESE!” Then, only use categories which don’t appear in that category. 😉

            Liked by 1 person

          2. So like I have a category for Prompts and Challenges and under that I have all of the prompts and challenges I use. Since I have that should I just check the main P&C and not the subs? (hope that makes sense)


          3. Yeah, I think I understand what you mean.

            Most of the prompts and challenges ask for you to *tag* the post rather than categorize it, so, yeah, that would be a great place to reduce the number of categories. EG:

            Category: Prompts & Challenges
            Tag: #picandawordchallenge

            That is, leave defining what *kind* of a prompt/challenge it is to the tags.

            You might also consider responding to fewer challenges in a single post. SEO and WordPress categories/tags work better when content and keywords are focused, when there’s a narrowly defined purpose to the post. If you can find a way to bring all those challenges together within a single theme, that’s great. Its pretty cool when people take two or three challenges and weave a narrative or intellectual thread through all of them. Many more than that, though, and it becomes difficult to maintain focus on one or two themes.

            Liked by 1 person

          4. I get it. I like the challenge though, but I do tend to stretch some. Actually one of my resolutions for posting this year was to limit prompts every day. It’s a hard habit to break, but I know I’d be better off. There are a few I really look forward to, and others I just add in. So I see what you mean.

            Liked by 1 person

  2. Great song choice! I too left FB a few years ago – too much drama and nonsense esp from family members. I thought I had been following your blog (since I’ve been on it many times), but apparently not. So here goes 🙂 Best wishes for a better 2019.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! And I couldn’t agree with you more about family. Its them or the people you see most of the time, as well. Just killed me. You’d sit there, shake your head and think really? Why can’t you just say that in person instead of broadcast it. PS YOU ARE #400!!!!!~ Thank you 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Absolutely everything about this post fills the MM3W!
    Fantastic post! I love that you grew into your own, made it your own, found own voice, through the process. FB friends and family? Those were and still are the worst of my support! Out of the 100’s, like 5 follow me. The wankers! Lol. I guarantee you all the others are the exact ones who’ve pushed me for years to write a book, blog…write write write. They exasperate me, though…..there is a certain gratification in doing it and growing on my own, finding my own support and readers in the world. Bravo and Happy New Year!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know exactly how you feel. I actually just completely disappeared from FB, et al. In all honesty I have never been back on, to even see what’s up. Don’t get me wrong, there are times where I have to battle not to, but I’ve not let that battle beat me. I just love how much stress I don’t have and actually how much happier I am. I also prefer that I don’t have family follow me. I don’t really have any place except here where I can express myself in my own voice without trying to edit so as not to upset anything. It is my safe place. And ps we have that agreement, less you forget, about your book!! I am still collecting info and based on the one post you wrote about upcoming posts and really “opening up” I think I may actually be able to piece it together! 😘💕

      Liked by 1 person

      1. FB just became such a mess. Everything posted became either a nonstop stream of spam, drama, or rant fest. I just couldn’t take it anymore. I pop in during coffee, see if any of the kids have posted pics of the grandbabies and my memories, which often yields grist for them writing mill. I don’t post or read others mess any longer.
        I completely agree with not really wanting family to follow and for the exact reasons you stated. My mom does and I’m sure some of my upcoming posts will make her uncomfortable to say the least. I hope I don’t disappoint you. I may not be that interesting. Though heartbreaking, crazy, tragic, uplifting, hilarious and random, it may indeed prove to be a simple human story. 😊
        Wishing you a Happy New Year. May the year ahead be blessed with joy overflowing!💕

        Liked by 1 person

        1. You shouldn’t worry about disappointing. There are no expectations so it’s not possible. The content is one thing but the way it is written is so captivating. I am sure whatever you are going to share will be done in the way you need to express it, and if people are expecting something else or are disappointing, well they don’t have to read or follow you. Those aren’t the people you want around anyway. And I know, based on all I have read, that you say what needs to be said, the way you need to say it. There is a reason you need to express it, and I believe whole heartedly that you don’t write with the intent to shock. So trust yourself and remember that there are 100’s who do really care and will support you no matter what! 💕💕

          Liked by 1 person

  4. Well done for reaching your 365 goal! Hope those extra two followers come along soon.
    I’m sorry 2018 had too many lows that outweighed the highs. I’ve enjoyed your posts and I’m glad I tagged along. All the very best for 2019, may good health, happiness and contentment be yours. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am so happy you did too! I really enjoy the conversations! I’m not too concerned about the two. If it happens it happens, if not I don’t think I’ll really notice anyway. I don’t know how all of you who have over 500+ do it. It’s a nice feeling, but I really don’t want followers who just follow for the sake of it. I just want them to like what I write because if they don’t what is the purpose. I read as many posts on reader that I can. So I really don’t want to include blogs that I don’t find interesting or relevant. I also tend to drop blogs I follow if they a) don’t post after 3 months b) write on poor taste c) use other resources and copy them d) use shock to capture attention e) use it exclusively for monetary purposes to sell, solicit, or profit f) or use the platform in a way that provokes or bullies.
      I am pretty sure you weren’t looking for a response like that but I got on a row and I guess I needed to clear it out of my head. Thank you for listening 💕 and not unfollowing 😳

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I don’t have as many followers as you. I blogged for a long while and had hardly any. Started doing the entering the WP challenges and gradually built up. I agree with you, I’m very fussy about the ones I follow. Sometimes I find interesting ones but I just don’t click with the writer and I think that’s the most important part, you have to like the writer. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I try. It’s crazy looking back. I do miss them, although right about now I am so ready for them to all leave again 😳😂 You question yourself every day if you did the right things. But to get where they have gotten, it couldn’t t be that bad. I am just ready for a new year. 18 was not kind on many levels, so I am all ready for it to move out!

          Liked by 1 person

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