2014 – Year in Review

It’s become a tradition on the blog that I post something of an annual review at the close of the year. Here is 2012, and here is 2013, for your viewing pleasure.

I talk about numbers and post popularity, and traffic patterns. After a brief bout of insanity, I decided that I have no real desire to monetize, so some might wonder why I track traffic. The reason is that, even though I don’t want to make money here, I do want to know that I serve some purpose. Even if the purpose is entirely my own. I want to be able to see that the blog has some real-world impact.

I know for a fact that my own writing has improved, and keeps improving year after year. I’m also way faster and better at research. So, from a purely selfish point of view, blogging has been really beneficial. These are skills I use every day as an independent contractor, both for my clients and myself.

From the very beginning, we’ve had the recurring theme of trying to move out of Los Angeles. Re-reading the 2012 and 2013 annual reviews really hammered home what a big fucking deal that was. I’ve worked so long to get out of LA and now that we’ve done that, the majority of my time and energy is focused on making a living in Portland. I don’t think I’ve slowed down to appreciate the fact that we did it.

In 2013 we had 76,000 views, up from 32,000. This year we had 79,000, meaning that we had much slower growth this year than we did last year, which I attribute both to my attempts to monetize in 2013, and my post-move lack of focus.

After spending so long wanting to leave LA, I admit that my posts have felt a little anchorless since we got here, although they shouldn’t. The other stated goal of the 5 year plan outlined in 2012 was to make a living, which is not a brass ring I can see myself ever adequately grasping. There will always be another challenge.

Not that the blog’s purpose was to document the achievement of these goals, just that it was something I got to have 100% creative control over while in pursuit of them. This blog has only ever had one stated purpose, and that’s to publish at least 5 days a week, 52 weeks a year. To that end, we’ve stayed true, except for December 2 and 3 this year, when our old host company Lunarpages broke our site for no reason and didn’t fix it. Which is why they are no longer our host.

Anyway, on to the numbers.

Our 5 most popular posts in 2014 were:

1. Female Masturbation Techniques, from Jan. 2010, maintaining it’s #1 spot for the second year in a row

2. Prices of Organic Food at Three Major Supermarkets, from Feb. 2013, also maintaining it’s #2 spot from last year.

3. Good News, Your Dick is the Least Important Part of You from Oct. 2014, is the most popular post written this year.

4. How to Set Samsung S-Note to Sync with Evernote on a Galaxy Note 3 (T-Mobile), a tutorial from March, 2014.

5. Writing Erotica for Fun and Profit Part Two, my June 2014 follow-up interview with erotica writer Brock Wilder.

My most popular months were January, June, and October, and my least popular months were May, August, and December.

In terms of users and demographics, this year looks very much like last year, so I won’t bore you with those details again.

For next year, I want to write more commentary, as I personally find it extremely rewarding, and I want to find a way to put my erotica reviews in a separate section, since it seems like my readers are either here for the blog, or for the reviews, but not typically both; and the reviews tend to crowd the front page since there are so many of them. In fact, I have several I haven’t written for this very reason.

On a personal level, I want to make more progress professionally in terms of having a steady income stream and feeling more secure about myself as a professional. I’ve written about it elsewhere in greater detail, but the move to Portland was a huge hit to my professional life and I need to build that back up again. Our MO seems to be that we have just enough scratch to get through the next month at any given time, and while I’m grateful for that, I need stability in 2015.

I’m also really missing activism and organizing. Working for a union and being involved in various campaigns and committees was really exhausting, and progress was slow or non-existent, but I’m starting to feel the purposelessness of not having a cause. The things I care about seem either to only need money (Planned Parenthood), or not belong to me (trans rights). As a person of color, I’m marginally affected by the specter of an increasingly brutal and lawless police force, but as a light-skinned middle class person of color, I’m really not that much more affected than you average white lady. Basically, I’m trying to find somewhere I can physically be in addition to sitting behind this screen typing credos out into the ether. How to do that, is yet to be seen.