Today marks my 3rd anniversary in the political blogosphere – the first year and a half or so started out as a bit of a bumpy ride, but it’s smoothed out a lot in the last year and a half.
Here’s the post I wrote on my 2nd blogiversary, which explains why I started blogging, how I started out, what my first post was, and what I had done up to that point to increase readership.
Since I wrote that post, my readership has increased greatly – in fact, as I noted back in June when my Sitemeter ticked over 300,000, most of those visits had come within the last year (from June 2005-June 2006). That’s something I’m very proud of, and I have you guys and gals – along with the support of a few bloggers who gave me some great advice last year (most noteably, the fearless La Shawn Barber, to whom I am very grateful) – to thank for it.
Blogging is hard work, and it’s rare you have a blogger out there who is successful right off the bat. Unless you already have an established name prior to blogging, it’s more than likely going to be years before you see the kind of readership you really want. And unless you’re someone who gets routinely (almost daily) linked to by the bigs, you’re going to have to have to work even harder to gain readership. It’s tough, and it may seem unfair sometimes, but that’s just how it is. You can write what you feel is the post of the year on any given issue, track it back to several blogs, and not get one link back. But the blogger who gets frequently linked writes a two-liner on the same issue, and gets a link from the bigs. It’s frustrating (and it’s happened to almost all of us), but blogging is like most endeavors in that you really have to work at it in order to succeed – and like those other endeavors, success rarely happens overnight. Do your best to not let the minor setbacks frustrate you.
I wrote this in my last blogiversary post and it still holds true today:
It wasn’t until June of this year that I finally decided that this [blogging] was something I wanted to continue to do, because whether I had 20 readers or 20,000, I was blogging about what I felt was important and if only 20 people found it important, that was ok too. That’s one of the things you learn over time when you blog: if you blog based only on what you think others want to read rather than what you think is important, you might as well get out of it.
If you’re a blogger, please always, always remember that.
I don’t get the hundreds of thousands of hits that Instapundit or Malkin get daily, but I’m happy with the traffic I get everyday, and hope it grows. But if it doesn’t, I’ll still be here regardless, blogging about what I’m passionate about. I love doing this, and can see myself doing this for a very long time to come. Maybe one day, I can do something like this from home full time, so I can make the blog even better.
Thanks to everyone who has made this blog a daily visit in their travels around the blogosphere. Your support means a lot to me – more than my usually wordy self can express