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Posts Tagged ‘blog stats’

It is upon us: it’s been almost one year since The NDM burst onto the internet with her children’s bottoms a-blazin’. Yes, it’s my blog-a-versary! By rights, I should be writing this in my birthday suit except, well, I don’t want to frighten the kids unnecessarily. 

So how did this happen? How did I find myself one year and 281 posts into my blogging career? 

Let’s start at the very beginning. It’s a very good place to start (apparently). Friends JS and Mr C gave me the idea for the blog as I lay, a broken woman, amongst the ruins of Mr Justice’s Star Wars-themed sixth birthday. Basically, like all good pushers, they got to me when I was vulnerable… Before I knew it, I had signed up with WordPress and found myself staring at a blank text box. 

But what will I say? I thought to myself. Who will read it? And where on earth will I find the time to do this?

But the time was found, albeit in units smaller than a three year old’s appetite, and I persuaded a few friends to read it (I think the words “I know where you live…” were involved). As for the words? Well, all I can think of is that line from The War of the Worlds: “And still, they come…”.

And then the ego kicked in. I stopped being [insert real name] and became (drum roll) “The NDM!”. I became unhealthily obsessed with my blog stats and dreamt of being discovered by a literary agent who would write me a cheque for three billion-zillion-trillion dollars On. The. Spot because I was that fucking great. And I started wondering how I might “monetize my blog” without selling out – which is kind of a contradiction in terms, if you think about it. Mmmm…. selling out….

And most certainly, being courted by all those cyrillic spammers on your blog can really go to a girl’s head. They were all “кухонная шлюха бедра грома кувшина мамы” and I’m all *swoon* and before I knew it I was buying stuff by the truck-load on bigdick.com.ru and trying to encourage the local school to sell Viagra or Acai Berries as part of their next charity drive. As I said in no uncertain terms to the school council: “Yo’ bitches won’t catch a class act like Yuri from Big’n’Busty Babushkas slangin’ Freddo Frogs. We got to get where the money’s at, peoplesss!”

Okay, so that hasn’t happened quite yet. But it might if I continued on my current trajectory…

So yes, I’m stepping back a bit. I’m winding it down, if only to stop pushing myself so hard and start enjoying my patch o’ internet turf. 

From this day forth, The NDM will now be posting on THREE BIG DAYS… Monday!… Wednesday!… Friday!… (AEST) which is the blogging equivalent of commercial TV’s “now at a special new time”. You know, when they move your favourite show to 11:30pm when even the VHS player is dead asleep. 

Or another way of looking at it is “The NDM: Now 40% shit-free!”

Anyway, thanks for being part of The NDM experience so far. You know who you are. And remember, I really do know where most of you live…

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I think I know now what it must have been like for Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Sartre. Simone would have been plugging away at an early draft of “The Second Sex” and Jean-Paul would have been muttering loudly in the kitchen something about existentialism being a humanism. And she would have got really annoyed and told him to go make himself useful in the shed. 

It’s just the same in our home these days. Just as I have been claiming “Blogging Time” on the weekends, my husband is now claiming “Box Ted Time”. He walks around with a notebook all day, chuckling to himself, scribbling things down, looking askance at cardboard packaging for inspiration. 

For the record, I’ve tried to be nice and supportive about it. I kindly offered my husband a slice of the NDM Pie by giving him a weekend edition slot for his Box Ted cartoons. 

“I can’t believe you’re going to make people wait so long between Box Teds,” was his immediate response. 

“Hey, whose blog is this?” I asked. “What’s the main course on the menu, huh? Who are people really coming to see? Huh? Huh? You’re the ‘Joanie loves Chachi’ to my ‘Happy Days’. You’re the Fonz’s adopted son in the series finale and I’m the Fonz. BEFORE the leather-jacket-on-water-skis episode. BEFORE!”

“You’re right,” my husband replied after some thought and a little time for me to calm down. “A Box Ted will last people a week. Whereas mere words…”

And then he made a gesture as if brushing away so much meaningless fluff…

The next day after this little exchange of words, I made the mistake of telling him someone actually came to my blog via the search terms “ted talking cupboard”. And worse still, I shared with him the blog stats from our surprise weekend post (“Box Ted Rides Again“). Turns out there were 52 hits within an hour of it being posted but ONLY BECAUSE “alphainventions” picked the post up in its tractor beam for a while and shoved it in front of a whole lot of Unwilling Eyes. Not the same as my dedicated readership-of-three lovingly typing in my URL and clicking REFRESH all day. Not. The. Same. 

“Pah!” said my husband. “Let the numbers speak for themselves!” 

“Hey, I’ve been thinking…” I said, trying to keep it together. “Why don’t you just get your own blog?” 

“Oh, I haven’t got time to do all the administration and deal with all that technical back-end stuff,” he said, dismissively. “I’m an Artist, you know…”

“You draw squares!” I exclaimed. “Squares! And… and…  your handwriting is nowhere as neat as mine!” 

“But those simple squares say so much to so many people,” he replied. “And True Art is not about being neat, it’s about expression…” 

And he brushed away a tear from his eye. 

“Listen,” I stormed. “The next time you do a Box Ted Cartoon, can you please make it that Box Ted’s head has grown so incredibly massive that it’s too big for the frame! I made you and I can unmake you!”

Okay, so perhaps de Beauvoir and Sartre’s domestics were a little different from that. For one thing, they would have been in French. And arguably, they were both working on things far more historically significant than inside-out-tshirt designs and drawings of a talking cupboard. And most certainly, I can’t see myself ever getting a passing mention in a Lloyd Cole song like old Simone, no matter how many votes for Hottest Mommy Blogger in the Blogger’s Choice 09 awards I get (which so far is 12. Can’t help notice that nobody’s voting for Ted, huh. HUH?)

In any case, all pettiness aside, The NDM is proud to announce that every weekend a new Box Ted will be posted for your viewing pleasure. Just nobody go repeatedly clicking on REFRESH okay? I mean, I’ve got to live with the guy.

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The other day, I was expressing some mild frustration at my flatlining readership figures by ranting and raving (somewhat like a rabid monkey), when my aunt Care Bear – a much nobler creature than I – gently interrupted me by saying “But isn’t the whole point of your blog to have a creative outlet and not just take part in some online popularity contest?” 

“Um, yes, it’s about the joy of writing, most certainly,” I replied. “But… but… but I want to be everyone’s favourite, too!!!!”

There. I went and said it.

The truth was that those rabid monkey blogs (which rate higher than mine on technorati) got me so het up with all their simian gags and bad spelling, and yet people can’t get enough of them. And don’t get me started about the chunk of cheese that has more than 5000 followers on “twitter” and god knows how many people logging onto its blog site every day. Granted, it’s a very talented chunk of cheese. But still! It’s cheese, people.

Anyway, it’s no point comparing myself to them. They’re in a different league from me altogether. But what was it about my blog that stopped the readership figures from growing? Was it that my readership quickly tired of me, left and then got replaced by three new people? Or was it that my readership-of-three flatly refused to share me with anyone else (“NDM, my precioussssssss, we don’t like those other bad tricksy readerssssss”)? Or was it just that I kept rehashing my jokes (such as the Gollum one)?

Whatever the reason, I was determined to do something about it. Since coming up with fresh or interesting material just seems like too much hard work, I started signing up to things that all the Big Time bloggers use, such as “Technorati” and “FeedBurner”. And pretty soon there I was, activating FeedBurner’s email subscription service and then merrily subscribing to my own blog to see if the thing worked. And lo! Half a day later, I had the utter thrill of receiving an email update from myself (the resulting frisson was a little like flushing the toilet before you rise) and felt that, surely, my star was now going to rise and those subscriptions would come rolling in. 

HOWEVER, the next time I went to FeedBurner, this is what it told me:

feedburner

Zero subscriptions? Not even my own? Hang on a minute… Could it be that, even though I tricksily used another email address and everything, FeedBurner knew it was really just me in disguise and therefore won’t count it as a real subscription? OR could it be that I actually have hundreds – perhaps thousands – of subscribers and FeedBurners has been instructed to hide them from from me?

And who, you may be asking, would instruct such a thing? Well, let’s just say I think that the folk from Google might have been on the phone to FeedBurner, since Google recently bought FeedBurner and now FeedBurner is Google’s bitch. And let’s face it, Google are all too aware of what a sad sorry little person I am. Not only do they know that I have – one more than one occasion – googled the term “Google” because I had nothing else meaningful to do with my life (as previously confessed in another post), but that I regularly google such terms as:

“bacon bra”

blow job Big Brother

dark chocolate Incas

do the boys ever sing in the Venga Boys?

esther head trapped bleak house

excessive itchy bottom at night only

moo milk man milk

stalker pathological obsession

“Today Tonight” shocking expose house slum

thing at the bottom of the fridge

“you wouldn’t shit in your neighbour’s hat”

So knowing all of this and guessing what I might be capable of, Google probably thinks the only course of action is to break my spirit and stop me from blogging. It’s the only way I can explain why FeedBurner would show that I have no subscribers.

But I’m not going to let Google win. Oh no, not I. You see Google might be a mighty search engine and all but I, too, am a force to be reckoned with. I have access to such tools as “The Secret” website (which I had to find using google, unfortunately) and Photoshop and thus am able to change FeedBurner’s so-called Feedstat graphics into a positive affirmation, helping me utilise the Law of Attraction and “empowering me to live a life of joy”:

feedstats1

So it has been photoshopped and so it shall come to pass…

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Not many people can claim this but I have myself a little human jukebox who goes around playing “The Best of the Not Drowning Mother”. You see, I’ve been reading out (somewhat edited) versions of my posts to Mr Justice, who loves to walk around quoting what he considers to be “the funny bits” such as “I’m angry just writing about it” or “It’s hard to shout at a man with his head down the toilet”. And every time he quotes something, he laughs like a little mentalist. God I love that boy. 

The flip-side of sharing my blog with Mr Justice is that he’s also my biggest critic. Since he has one of the finest legal minds of his generation, he’s a stickler for the Absolute Truth and for the Real Sequence of Events. He doesn’t quite understand that Mummy needs to have some creative licence and perhaps condense a number of conversations into one, change the location of an event or maybe not mention EVERYTHING about the beach holiday, such as the “unreasonably angry crab” he and Daddy caught when fishing in the rain wearing garbage bags and how they made up a song about the crab that goes “Crab, crab crab crab, crab, crab crab crab, crab, crab crab crab. Crab!”. (There, Mr J, I’ve made mention of it – can you call off your legal hounds now?). 

However, when we’re not arguing about what constitutes The Truth, we have a shared passion for the Blog Stats link- or Blog Crack link, as I refer to it when Mr Justice isn’t around. With the click of a mouse, we can see how many people have visited my blog and which links they clicked on. Mr Justice likes to point out the low points on the graph. “Oh, mummy. You only got 26 that day. But that’s okay….” And then I get all huffy and defensive and say look, that was probably Grand Final Saturday and who has time to read blogs on Saturdays anyway, even on those Saturdays that you’re not being forced to go to a Grand Final BBQ, huh? Huh??

We also love to look at the search terms that led people to stumble through my blog door – which I hasten to add are totally anonymous and give no indication of whether the searcher hung around in my blog for a while or clicked the hell out of there.

Amongst the notables are “boy with a gigantic thumb”, the grammatically incorrect “if someone drowns does their shoes fall”, the baffling “up from drowning, mother” and a whole heap that are wanting to read up about the “sock market crash”. Either there’s a “T” missing in sock or they are bona fide punsters like yours truly. 

Then there are the disquieting ones, which I choose not to share with Mr J, such as “drowning in squares sheet”, “mutant ninja turtles child drownings” (huh?) and “”bum itch that won’t go away” (One word, my friend: Combantrin).

And then there’s the little pang of guilt I get when I see that people have come to me in their search for blogs about cross-dressing, Erectile Dysfunction or “funeral for a child”. I feel embarrassed that my flippant little blogsite would have been a waste of download for those searching souls. And each time I vow I’ll try and tag responsibly in the future and avoid using eminently searchable terms as “peeing lesbians”, “teeny-weeny man-tool” or “lactating asian babes” – but whoops, there they are in my blog again. And yes, you bet I’ll be editing out this whole paragraph when I read this aloud to Mr Justice. 

But truly, I’m very flattered (and grateful) when anybody – anybody! – visits my humble blog, whatever their method of getting here. And I love the comments – the commentators are my supporting cast and deserve a curtain call of their own (but not too much praise, else they start their own blogs and stop reading mine).

However, my greatest achievement as a blogger is this: earlier this week, Mr Justice went back to school after two weeks’ break and was asked to write a ‘recap’ of his holiday. But did he write about the fishing trip or the “unreasonably angry crab” or the seventeen playdates I organised or the trip to the zoo or – most significantly –  the fact that he finally got to see “Wall*E”?

No, siree. Instead, he wrote the following:

My mum read me her blog. Of course her blogs always have something funny.

To know I went head to head with an animated Disney character that has captured my son’s imagination for months (months!) before he even saw the film, and came out on top… ain’t that something?

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