Following the lead of my fellow bloggers, 2017 can’t be put to bed without a quick look back. This was my fifth year of blogging on WordPress after initially starting out on tumblr. Eventually running out of media storage space on my free account, this year I made the leap to a premium (paid) account and moved my blog from free hosting to a URL of its own. Guylty.net has been going since June – and feels more like a proper commitment now than a non-binding free URL… For you, nothing should have changed, though. In terms of views, guylty.net has more or less continued as always. After a dip last year, visitor numbers are up again (15k), and the blog received almost 80k views in total over the last 12 months. I’ll spare you a month-by-month analysis, but just to say that I am really pleased that the top ten most-viewed posts this year do not contain a single round-up.
The most-viewed posts
That sounds ungrateful – the round-ups bring a lot of traffic to my blog, and I am happy that they provide a regular source of entertainment for my readers. But even though they mean a good bit of work for me, I somehow value my ‘proprietary’ posts more, i.e. the posts in which I am creating my own content, where I am expressing opinions or writing reviews. Blogging is not a competition for me, and I am not interested in collecting likes and followers. But to see the fruits of my *own* labour appreciated, always provides the biggest gratification. So, for the record, the top three most-viewed posts reflect that – although interestingly the most-viewed post was firmly OT: In June I wrote my Observations on the SD with #DavidTennant. Maybe it helped that I hashtagged Tennant, but 1095 views were the top number this year. Sadly not about the actual focus of this blog, Richard Armitage.
However, the runner-up in this category, reflects the theme of my blog – and my desire to have interesting discussions about our favourite topic. In part 11 of my RA Challenge, I asked for Something I wish hadn’t happened. My answer had the potential to open a whole crate of cans of worms, but the large number of views (808) combined with the large number of comments (128), tells me that these are topics that fans want to read about and engage with – after all, there is always a fascination when it comes to pondering what RA *really* thinks about and wants from his fans…
This blog is not really a news blog – I only very rarely break the news of a new interview or trailer or project that RA is involved in. The fanbases on Twitter and tumblr are much faster than me, and in blogworld we thankfully have Servetus and Perry to rely on for up-to-date news. But when it just so happens that I am quick in reporting news, it brings a lot of views. This year at #3 – a post on B-Roll from B-Station.
The personal favourites
I love any kind of writing. It’s my job and my hobby alike. But when it comes to my favourite posts, it’s always those that involve creative expression. For instance when I am spoofing a tabloid article.
Or when I am shrining. Much to my surprise, I made 14 shrines this year.
I have a vague recollection that one of my new year’s resolutions for 2017 was “1 shrine per week”… sheeeeesh…
Or when I write an *ooof*. Only one such this year. Sad. *ooof*: Daniel Just Got More Dangerous
Or when I get to add up final figures of our auction drives: Wrapping up #CelebRAtionWithPurpose. This year’s charity auctions on the occasion of Richard’s birthday generated a final donation of £ 1,450 ($ 1,950). Donating the money via JustiGiving to Young Minds, we made it onto the JustGiving fundraising leaderboard. And I suspect that we also “pinged” onto Richard’s phone, if we are to believe his Christmas message. In fact, I think he may have referred to us when he wrote “you have raised a lot of money, personal donations, groups who have organized auctions and donated the proceedings [sic]”. His appreciation is just the bonus – what makes me happiest is that a) this is a community effort and b) we are doing good by doing what we like best – fangirling together.
And in RL…
2017 was a good year with many stand-out moments. I loved the holidays in Crete and the short weekend in Hamburg. London continued to fascinate me on several business trips and a weekend break with my son. I spent a wonderful day on the beach for a photo shoot with a rock musician, watched many amazing plays in the Westend, saw my son graduate from school and start in a prestigious college, received thoughtful and precious presents from friends, got big into sewing, enjoyed a new level of financial stability, bonded with my daughter over our shared interest in feminist issues, became more confident in my job, spent two tension-free weeks with my mum, was thrilled to be allowed to accompany my daughter and son to a Kasabian concert, decorated the most beautiful Christmas tree ever, and have felt predominantly happy and secure in my life. The bad stuff… was just small fry.
So, as we come to the year’s end, I once again like to focus on the positive, despite a world that has seemed to veer dangerously close to political and societal instability. There is much I am grateful for. This blog – and the interaction with my fellow-fans – is included in that. I am grateful for the comments and attention I receive from you, for your generous support of my fundraising efforts, for the personal messages and gifts I have received from you, the friendships that have developed over our shared weakness for an actor, the creative inspiration sparked by Richard’s work and our discussion of it, the daily distraction that the blog provides. My wish for 2018 is that it may continue.
The customary end-of-year message for Richard
with another year drawing to a close I’d like to thank you once again for sharing your work with us, and congratulate you on your successes. A great year for fans (and you?), with your work present on the big and small screens, as well as on our ears, in the abstract shape of your audiobooks. I was able to see all of the work you released this year – admittedly sometimes through dark channels – and as ever, your performances were excellent. I loved your intense Norman knight scowling in the beautiful landscape of my adopted country (Ireland), I was confused by “dreamy” Dr White, enjoyed DIY dad Tom Cahalan, and worried for Daniel Miller in his deep cover operation. Wish he had spoken more German (my native language), though! 😉 Your work always stands out, and your choice of projects is a challenge that I have come to appreciate. Something new every time.
Wishing you that you continue to find such diverse roles to hone your outstanding talent – and wishing for your fans (and myself) that we may be able to see you on stage again, soon. Have a wonderful New Year’s eve surrounded by your family and/or friends, and a successful new year!
Lots of love,