A Social Saturday Thank You Note

The If We Were Having Coffee linkfest at Just Gene’O is going very well. Before I get started visiting and sharing links over there, I need to give Suzie81 credit for giving me the idea of turning the first coffee post at the new blog into a linkup.

Suzie did an awesome linkup last week. I joined in and then did my own Social Saturday thing in which I went to her thread after it closed and shared everyone who participated with at least one of my social media accounts. A few days later, I caught a conversation on my Twitter feed that Suzie was having with another blogger about the coffee posts, which she also writes.

I decided to roll both things into one and do it this weekend at Just Gene’O. I meant to credit Suzie in one of the announcements or in the coffee post itself, but I’ve had such a crazy week and have been in such a hurry to get this done today, it kept slipping my mind.

Thanks, Suzie, for giving me this fabulous idea! I wish I’d seen your social media meet and greet the day you posted it. You’re right about developing links between your blogs and other social media; I’m doing much the same thing, and at some point I’ll put links all my accounts in a post.

Zero to Sixty: The 6-Month Blogiversary Story

When I rolled out of bed on October 26, 2013, I had no social media presence whatsoever. Just an email account. That’s not to say I was a n00b. I’d been studying the blogosphere for more than 10 years at that point. I had an online life in the early 2000’s, and I enjoyed it, but eventually I walked away. I am one of the lucky few who have experienced the joy removing oneself from the Internet, which is all but impossible today. I am reincarnated, in a way. I managed to engineer a fresh start.

I joined Facebook on Oct. 27. @parttimemonster and @quaintjeremy helped me, and we built a network of about 100 followers for me in 3 days.

Of course, it did not just occur to me on Oct. 27 to get into the social media. We’d been planning since spring. We thought very carefully about my entrance. By the time I joined Facebook, we’d tested various approaches to blogging and decided to go with WordPress.

On Nov. 2, Diana started blogging. I’m not sure why that day. I remember a conversation in which I counseled her to wait a little longer. I was designing two blogs and figuring out how WordPress tags work at that point. The next thing I knew, she was posting, and sharing to her Facebook timeline. So I stepped it up.

It’s crazy when I look back on it now. Twelve days after I joined Facebook, I was running two blogs. In the interim, all kinds of crazy creative things happened. Emails that read like memos were exchanged. Meetings happened. There were late-nite phone calls and early morning phone calls. It was a wild, crazy two weeks. And here we are, six months later.

I had no idea the implementation part of it happened in 12 days until I looked at the timestamps. In my memory, those 12 days feel like six weeks.

I built Sourcerer and The Writing Catalog under the radar. I didn’t even use my name on WordPress until the day they went live. And for those few days, while I was getting things together, Diana was blogging.

We came here with a Facebook following of about 400 people – mostly Diana’s and Jeremy’s friends. Those, and whatever we could get from news feeds by smart tagging and posting at the right time of day were all we could count on. So I decided to make the debut of these blogs an event. I wrote 4 posts ahead of time, then spent Nov. 6 talking to people offline about it and overselling it without letting on that I was about to debut two blogs. Here are the four posts:

  • I posted a teaser packaged as a Ribbon Cutting announcement at The Writing Catalog at 9 a.m. and shared it to my Facebook timeline (we had no fan pages at that point).
  • At 2:30 I published my first real post at The Writing Catalog.
  • Half an hour later, I posted Sourcerer‘s introductory post. Aside from a handful of people, no one knew it was coming until I published it.
  • At 7 p.m., I posted a Thank You for everyone who’d visited that day and helped us figure out how we wanted to go about setting up our blogs.

I was hoping for 30 or 40 page views and 20+ visitors that day. We actually managed over 100 views and several dozen visitors on all three of the blogs. For the most part, we’ve grown steadily since then. Part Time Monster has more than 900 followers and its traffic is fairly consistent. Sourcerer has more than 500 followers, and our traffic is more erratic, but we have a lot of good days.

The Writing Catalog is closing in on 350 followers, and it doesn’t get the attention the other two do, but that’s only because I don’t have time to do as much blogging there as I do here. Interestingly, Sourcerer has generated almost as many page views as the Monster. PTM is only about 1,000 views ahead as of today, and only started pulling away in the last month or so.

Thanks to everyone for visiting, reading, and commenting here. I’m proud of the quality and consistency we’ve managed to maintain here so far. If the next six months goes as quickly as the last six, we’ll be celebrating a year before we know it. And the more we blog, the better at it we get.

Mid-Week Update and Feminist Friday Thoughts

First of all, thanks to regular contributors @quaintjeremy and @hohmeisw for keeping Sourcerer so well-supplied with posts lately. If it weren’t for you guys, there’s no way I would have made it to the halfway point of the A to Z Challenge with The Writing Catalog. I’ve discovered lots of good blogs through A to Z, and you can find many of them on my April A to Z page.

I need to take a break from the Feminist Friday discussions this week. I think the next thing that I, personally need to write about is either improving sex education or defining education itself for future discussion. Both of those are problematic topics that require a lot of thought and careful use of language. I don’t want to rush a post on either one just to have it for Friday, and I may be too tied up with work to moderate that discussion adequately.

If anyone else wants to write a Feminist Friday post, I’ll be happy read it and consider it for a reblog it or a link with a short response, and equally happy to participate in a discussion on your thread. I do plan to keep these discussions going, and I encourage everyone who’s been participating to keep finding ways to talk about gender inequality.

I’ve finally set up a series of structured Twitter lists. I haven’t added people to them yet because I need to make sure they’re right before I start adding people; but if you follow me on Twitter, I’ll be adding you to a list or two over the next month so that I can keep up with you more easily.

My priority for the next couple of weeks is to get the A to Z Challenge finished up; once I do that, you’ll see more posting from me here and at the Monster. In the meantime, we’ll have plenty from Jeremy and Will, and I’ll be around on the discussion threads, as always.