The Manhattan Project--2016 A to Z Theme

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog...

Monday, September 13, 2010

Blog Boggled: Where Does Tossing It Out Go Next?

            Blogging, as many of you have found out, can take a tremendous amount of time.  On September 20th,  I will have been blogging daily for one year.  The complete year of daily posting had become challenge that I wanted to fulfill, but I have come to realize that continuing this schedule would take up much time that could be devoted to the writing that I need to be doing. 

             My current plan is to reduce my blogging schedule to 3 posts per week.  Many of you have been doing this all along, while others have gone from daily posting to just a few days like I am planning to do.  Now I am asking for your advice.

             If I were to reduce my number of weekly posts, then I would have to eliminate certain features.  For the next 3 weeks I will have a poll at the top of my page.  I hope all of you will give me your input so I can decide with blog features I should keep. 

             When I look at my tracking and my comments, I can see that my Sunday posts are the least popular.   Mondays over all are the most highly frequented posts.   Tuesday has seemed to have picked up since I started the Tossing It Out Tuesday series.  The response for Wednesday features normally drops.  The Debate Day topic has often done well.  Then there is a drop in visits on Friday and again on Saturday.

          Another possible alternative would be to repeat older posts on certain days since many of those had low or maybe no readership.  I could also do wordless days with just a picture or days when I'd offer a short prompt or a quote.  Have any of these worked for you and do you like to see blogs that use these?

          In your opinion, what is the best day for reading blogs?   What number of weekly blog posts do you think is best?   If one reduces blogging to less days, do you think it is better not to limit oneself to a limited number of topics or themes?   Do you think posting less days would hurt Tossing It Out?

          Please answer the survey I am offering at the top of the page.    Thanks!

39 comments:

  1. Well done on beign able to keep up with a daily blogging schedule for a year. It's pretty cool that your 1st year blog-iversary coincides with Alex's blogfest too :D

    Personally, monday is the best time to blog, since I've had the weekend to trawl the internet and visit book stores (it doesn't count as procrastination from dissertation work on a weekend, so there's less guilt, hehe), so I've got some fresh ideas. However, it's also the time when my RSS feed clogs up with the weekend's worth of posts, so I tend to pick and choose and I read and comment on. As a reader, Monday would need to be A-grade material so it doesn't get filtered through (though there's no worry of that with you, tossingitout is pretty much synonomous with quality posting :D)

    Good luck changing your schedule :)

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  2. Sounds like some serious contemplation is gonig on here. Congratulations on the anniversary.

    I think you're on the right track in asking readers to vote on their favourite features, but I also think you need to consider the days you get the most hits and which posts get the most comments.

    Best of luck in the future with your blog.

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  3. You are thinking way to deep for me this morning :(

    I like the debates and I guess, not with the norm, your Sunday posts. But my favorite thing here is YOUR voice.

    In short, you lead and I'll follow :D
    Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

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  4. I think that often the amount of traffic you receive has more to do with the day of the week than the actual topic covered.

    Blogging every day for a year is an amazing feat. Congrats Lee!

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  5. Lose the Bible studies is what I say :))))

    I believe Mondays and Thursdays are days when most blogs have highest numbers of visitors, while Saturdays are usually deserted like a wasteland. And what Matt says above is true - Mondays and Thursdays bring the highest visit because most people have more time to read blogs at their work places, and so much for the topics we discuss :)

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  6. and NOT so much for the topics we discuss :))

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  7. If I had my way Lee I would have you blogging every day as that is one of my things in life that is constant and I know I am going to read something interesting, But it's your blog and you must do what you think best, I have gone the other way from doing just a few times a week to every day,Congrats on your anniversary hope it's the first of many,
    If you are to cut down you will be sorely missed by many.
    Have a lovely day.
    Yvonne.

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  8. Hi Lee .. blogging three times a week makes sense - because it is impossible to comment on every post.

    Congratulations on getting to one year .. especially with the variety of your topics ..

    All the best with the decision/s ... Hilary

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  9. I post every other day, usually slipping in one extra to make it four a week. This gives those who don't blog every day a chance to catch a post they may have missed. Visuals sound like a great idea, Lee!

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  10. Mondays and Thursdays are my main Blog days. I have had to get really rigid to make sure I am spending the write amount or time on WIP.

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  11. Jamie -- Thank you for those kind sentiments. A blogfest does seem like a good way to celebrate and the looking back over TV show history might have some parallels with my blogging history. You're right about Monday blogging I think.

    Cassandrajade-- I think it's probably good for every blogger to evaluate what they are doing at least once a year. I like polls--this is my first--I may have to try more in the future.

    Jules -- Thank you for the kind words. The Sunday posts may gain the least response but they seem to gain some of my most heartfelt comments and it's good for me as I contemplate on the topics.

    Matthew -- Thanks for the kudos. I think you are actually correct. I see Mon, Tues, and Thurs as the days when there seems to be the most blog activity.

    Dezmond --Actually I've considered setting up a second blog for only Bible Studies.
    I've see confirmation of what is being said about Monday and Thursday being the best in the results of my own stats. Big drop on Saturdays and Sundays.

    Yvonne -- Thank you for always being such loyal follower and an encouraging promoter. If I could figure out how to blog daily and still have time to do more other things then I would do it. Unfortunately, my blog hopping and commenting would probably have to be curtailed.
    I've got a blogging quandary on my hands right now.

    Hilary -- Thanks for your support. I agree that the three day schedule probably makes the most sense.

    Alex -- You're schedule seems to be working well. When I think about the wordless picture posts, I think it seems like a cop out in a way, but it does maintain a presence.

    Pam-- Your vote agrees with the norm and the statistics. But you are right about getting serious about the real work we hope to achieve--priorities!

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  12. I don't have a digital camera nor anyway to put pics on the computer except when I get the 35 MM developed on a disk, so haven't used photos. But there are times I have used quotes because of the message in them that I want to expose my readers to. It works well. It is easier sometimes than writing an entire piece.

    I like to see good quotes that offer real meaty instruction or challenges. I have a few blogs I follow regularly who use a lot of quotes from biblical writers and theologians and use them well.

    I don't think there is a best day for reading blogs. I know I see a drop on both Saturday and Sunday on my blog, but I read blogs everyday. I spend some time each day so I don't have a day that is better, of course even being unemployed I don't mean to imply all I do is read blogs.

    I don't know if it would be better to reduce to topic or themes if you reduce your number of posts. I think you have to blog what you like and want to blog - it is your blog. If you have anything like a vision, mission, goals, or purpose for your blog, just stay true to that. The readers who like you will remain and read each new updated post.

    I don't think posting less days will hurt your blog. I have in my blogroll several of my favorites who may not post but every week or couple of weeks or even longer. When I see a new update or new post, I read it. I don't follow because the posts are daily, I follow because I like the blogger and the blog.

    I can't answer the survey because I didn't ever pay attention to the day of the week or the topic. I read everyday and if something "sparked" me I commented. I didn't read because of the topic, I read because of you, which is why I will keep reading.

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  13. I think weekend readership is low across the board and if you are giving up days, those make the most sense right off.

    And I think your writing day does well because so many of us here in the blogosphere are writers.

    I don't do the same strict schedule you do, any any other weekdays can be hit and miss depending on my topic, but I will throw this out for your consideration. I think most bloggers that do every other day hit Monday, Wednesday, Friday, so I personally have a much harder time hitting all the blogs in my blog rolls those days. I just have to skip a few. Tuesday, Thursday, it's much easier to hit them all because there is less competition. You may want to try something like a Monday, Tuesday, Thursday (maybe run a 'rerun' on Saturday)

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  14. I had to stop posting daily, as it was too much for me and too much to expect people to comment when there's days I don't blog.
    And I've found Mondays are the busiest!

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  15. Part 1 Of 2:

    Howdy, McBUDDY! ~
    I voted on your poll. I went with the subjects for Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.

    My own belief about it is that you ought to drop the entire "topic schedule" concept altogether and just blog about whatever subject strikes your fancy on any given day. Why restrict yourself to certain subjects at certain times? I see no advantage in that.

    Also, as you already know, for a couple of different reasons, I am pleased that you will be reducing your output. For one thing, it will give you more time to do what you really ought to be doing: serious writing. (Anyone who wants to get an idea of what this man is really capable of writing should visit his blog bit titled "NOTHING" which he posted back in April!)

    Another reason I'm glad to see you reduce your blogging output is because it will give what you do post a chance to really sink in and be appreciated. It just seems to me that when one posts something new every single day, what's here today is gone tomorrow (dog-piled on immediately by new blog bits). Why put a lot of thought and work into a blog bit if you're just going to bury it immediately with a bunch of new stuffs?

    And this is particularly true when it comes to the Debate Day topics. If you have offered up a truly weighty subject, then it needs to be front and center for at least a few days, giving commenters a chance to revisit it and allow for some back and forth exchanges of ideas to take place.

    Last Thursday's Debate Day topic was a perfect example. One woman posted something that I felt was only semi-accurate, and I would have presented some information that I felt she might have benefited from if I thought the post would have remained front and center for awhile. But knowing it would be replaced in less than 24 hours (and that she probably wouldn't return to it to see my remarks directed toward her), I didn't put everything into my comment that I could have.

    Continued Below...

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  16. Part 2 Of 2:

    Actually, I have noticed that in leaving comments on your posts, very rarely do any of your "Followers" direct any comments to each other; everything is directed to you, r-LEE-b. Although I get far fewer comments on my blogs than you do, I like the fact that sometimes some of my "Followers" carry on conversations amongst themselves in my comment sections which don't always involve me. I think if a blog bit remains front and center for more than just 24 hours, it has a better chance of really brewing into extended discussions (some not just between blogger and reader but between reader and reader). And it would be nice if rather than a topic being thrown out there and a bunch of persons throwing their own opinion at it one time and then moving on, it could inspire genuine dialogue which in turn might actually convince one or another reader to alter their previously held opinion about something.

    True, people can always go back and post comments on an older blog bit, but it doesn't seem to happen. Once a newer blog bit appears at the top of the page, yesterday's news might as well be last decade's news. This is one reason why I prefer to let a blog bit have the spotlight for at least a few days if not for a week or two. Let it sit for awhile and see what it might attract to itself over time.

    Anyway, Lee, my McBuddy, the main thing is to have fun with it, and I'm sure that whatever changes you decide to make will be the right thing for you. I especially like the Debate Day stuffs and when you reminisce about events and people from your own life. Although your 'Monday Blogging And Writing Topics' is currently leading in your poll, you already know that I find this the most overworked subject in Blogland. I wish people would just write more and write ABOUT writing less. (The primary reason I "Follow" so few blogs is because so many of the blogs are essentially just women writing about writing. Gosh, that gets sooo old!)

    And, LEE, I think your idea about starting up a separate blog just for Bible studies is a good one. Although I haven't been a big "Follower" of your Sunday posts, I know that promoting greater Bible understanding is important to you, and so I don't think you should discontinue that, even though it does seem to be the least popular facet of your blog. My friend BR'ER MARC has a separate blog devoted solely to the Bible, and I think that's an idea you ought to seriously consider as well.

    Congratulations on achieving your goal of blogging every day for a year. (Well, I know you'll make it 'cause yer already almost there.) And please know that regardless of what changes you make to 'Tossing It Out', I will continue to be a regular reader, Brother!

    ~ Stephen the D-FensDogg

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  17. Part 1 Of 2:
    [Well, here we go again!
    There's a bug in the system, and I do not think it's on my end.]

    Howdy, McBUDDY! ~
    I voted on your poll. I went with the subjects for Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.

    My own belief about it is that you ought to drop the entire "topic schedule" concept altogether and just blog about whatever subject strikes your fancy on any given day. Why restrict yourself to certain subjects at certain times? I see no advantage in that.

    Also, as you already know, for a couple of different reasons, I am pleased that you will be reducing your output. For one thing, it will give you more time to do what you really ought to be doing: serious writing. (Anyone who wants to get an idea of what this man is really capable of writing should visit his blog bit titled "NOTHING" which he posted back in April!)

    Another reason I'm glad to see you reduce your blogging output is because it will give what you do post a chance to really sink in and be appreciated. It just seems to me that when one posts something new every single day, what's here today is gone tomorrow (dog-piled on immediately by new blog bits). Why put a lot of thought and work into a blog bit if you're just going to bury it immediately with a bunch of new stuffs?

    And this is particularly true when it comes to the Debate Day topics. If you have offered up a truly weighty subject, then it needs to be front and center for at least a few days, giving commenters a chance to revisit it and allow for some back and forth exchanges of ideas to take place.

    Last Thursday's Debate Day topic was a perfect example. One woman posted something that I felt was only semi-accurate, and I would have presented some information that I felt she might have benefited from if I thought the post would have remained front and center for awhile. But knowing it would be replaced in less than 24 hours (and that she probably wouldn't return to it to see my remarks directed toward her), I didn't put everything into my comment that I could have.

    Continued Below…

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  18. Unless something special is going on, I stick to Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I've found that as long as people can depend on you to post on those days, they will come.

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  19. Gregg-- I don't take a lot of pictures, though I do have a digital camera. I often avoid any visuals on my site although it's an oft recommended tactic to use. I read blogs much like you describe, but I do understand the constraints that many people are under when it comes to blogging. I do like a schedule since people are usually creatures of habit. So I want readers to know what to expect and when--kind of like knowing where to look for your favorite comic strip in the newspaper or when to turn on the TV to see your favorite program. Thanks for you informative comment.

    Hart -- You are naming the days that I am most leaning toward and my stats have confirmed the logic of this. Since there are so many writers writing about writing though, I sometimes wonder if I'm adding that much that is new or do writers just like to read basically the same info told in different ways by different writers.

    L. Diane -- You have a lot of other things going on as well to keep you busy without adding blogging to the mix. I think there is pretty general agreement about Mondays.

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  20. Comment from Stephen T McCarthy which disappeared into blogspace. Part 2 appears above:



    Part 1 Of 2:

    Howdy, McBUDDY! ~
    I voted on your poll. I went with the subjects for Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.

    My own belief about it is that you ought to drop the entire "topic schedule" concept altogether and just blog about whatever subject strikes your fancy on any given day. Why restrict yourself to certain subjects at certain times? I see no advantage in that.

    Also, as you already know, for a couple of different reasons, I am pleased that you will be reducing your output. For one thing, it will give you more time to do what you really ought to be doing: serious writing. (Anyone who wants to get an idea of what this man is really capable of writing should visit his blog bit titled "NOTHING" which he posted back in April!)

    Another reason I'm glad to see you reduce your blogging output is because it will give what you do post a chance to really sink in and be appreciated. It just seems to me that when one posts something new every single day, what's here today is gone tomorrow (dog-piled on immediately by new blog bits). Why put a lot of thought and work into a blog bit if you're just going to bury it immediately with a bunch of new stuffs?

    And this is particularly true when it comes to the Debate Day topics. If you have offered up a truly weighty subject, then it needs to be front and center for at least a few days, giving commenters a chance to revisit it and allow for some back and forth exchanges of ideas to take place.

    Last Thursday's Debate Day topic was a perfect example. One woman posted something that I felt was only semi-accurate, and I would have presented some information that I felt she might have benefited from if I thought the post would have remained front and center for awhile. But knowing it would be replaced in less than 24 hours (and that she probably wouldn't return to it to see my remarks directed toward her), I didn't put everything into my comment that I could have.

    Continued Below...

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  21. StMc -- Thank you for another content driven comment. Wow! And hopefully I fixed it -- don't let Blogger frustrate you too much but I know it can get pretty cantankerous at times.

    The topic schedule really doesn't hinder me from just blogging about what I want to -- it just organizes it better and provides expectation for the reader. I never let it totally confine me--remember all my music bits a couple months ago?

    You are partly right about the problem of posts being lost in the onslaught of daily posts. But what you are reffering to I think has something to do with the comment issue that you and I and others have discussed at times. There is not much discussion going on because many (maybe most) commenters just zero in for one comment, don't subscribe by email or at least come back, so that replies and referential comments are never seen. This is the unfortunate truth about much of blogging.

    I think you are unique in having a circle of other folks that regularly comment and banter with you and each other. I could cite other blogs that might have a post for several days and get 100 or more comments that are short, sometimes somewhat pointless, and not conversational with anyone else. I think you know that I really try to stimulate and encourage discussion. It doesn't happen much on many blogs that I've seen.

    I've got a lot of options to consider, but my main consideration has to be my real life time. Blog time can be fun, but until it starts paying my bills it's just in the league of a hobby or an ego trip.

    Thanks for the time you spent on this comment.

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  22. Maria-- Thanks for adding your voice. I know many bloggers use this schedule because it does seem logical.

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  23. LEE ~
    Yeah, I can't really argue with anything you've said. And you're also right that the exchanges that take place between my readers occurs very rarely on other blogs (and is even pretty rare on mine).

    I wish there was more of that - more sense of community; more relationship building; more meaningful comments submitted.

    I think something that contributes to the problem is the general view that prevails in Blogland that one ought to "Follow" as many blogs as humanly possible and then some, and that one ought to acquire as many "Followers" as possible. I prefer quality to quantity myself. I would be more content if half of the persons signed up to "Follow" my blogs Un-Followed them, but the half that remained REALLY DID read my blog bits regularly and left substantive comments (substantive, not superficial). Aww, I'm dreamin', friend.

    Anyway, I've been at it for a few years now and the whole blogging experience has become stale and unsatisfying for me. I'm now in the process of trying to wrap it up and call it a day. But I'll continue to drop by your place on a regular basis.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

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  24. StMc -- My question to you is: How extensively have you searched through "blogland" for those types of bloggers that you are looking for? To a great extent I think you have to cultivate this type of blog and to do so you have to be drawing upon a similar minded pool of bloggers. Some examples I have found are the God blogs that are addressed to atheists. There are some with arguments--sometimes very extensive and complex--from both sides that go on for weeks with many people joining in a conversation like you describe. I find these blogs to be often repetive and circular, but there is very active discussion going on. I've also seen some philosophy blogs that pose problems and scenarios that lead to very intelligent discussions that get very involved.

    Due to the interests that I explored from the outset, I have fallen into this community that I am in and led some of them to your blog. As with any blog building you have to reach out to the blogs and bloggers that seem to fit your needs and build up from there. I do believe that what you are looking for is out there, you're just not in it yet.

    Don't give up yet! You have too much to offer.

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  25. I think 2-3 posts per week on a regular schedule. I've been thinking of going to two posts a week. And maybe having a guest post on Wednesdays. Not sure. I spend too much time blogging, and need to cut back.

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  26. Hi Lee,

    I've enjoyed all of your posts, but I certainly understand where you are coming from.

    If I have to choose - Wednesday, Thursday and Friday have been my favorite formats.

    Now, to your questions:

    What number of weekly blog posts do you think is best? If you have to narrow it down - 3 to 5.

    If one reduces blogging to less days, do you think it is better not to limit oneself to a limited number of topics or themes? That's a tough call, but if you enjoy writing a variety of topics, I say go for it. You could also do one topic with continuing parts.

    Do you think posting less days would hurt Tossing It Out? Not necessarily as long as you stick to a pattern or inform your readers. Personally, I've not done that but I know if I did, I would have more readers on a continuous basis.

    Hope that helps.

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  27. I have found that my blogging has dropped dramatically the past year or so..my blog started as a record of my youngest child's last year in high school and now I just blog about whatever comes to mind or if I have had a nice hike. I have fallen so far behind in reading blogs but I am trying to catch up slowly but surely. I find Sundays are the best day for me to catch up on others blogs.

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  28. The CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishing did an analysis once about the most active days for blogging and it turned out that Mon-Wed are the most popular. This is regardless of the blog content. He even worked out the most active TIMES! Impressive.

    I used to post daily on my faith blog but it became too much when I picked up my writing blog. I now post 3 times a week on each (so that's still 6 posts a week in all...and I'm struggling again. Not sure what to do.

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  29. I'm brand new to your blog so I don't feel qualified to say.....I do know that people are often busy on some days....and types of posts tend to generate a lot of comments.

    I've gone from posting every day to a scaled back agenda. However, I'm not regular. Sometimes I can whip up a post and do it most days, then again, I will go for a few days without a post.

    I do try to keep up reading them, though. I try not to skip more than one day anymore. Then, catching up takes too much time.....

    I've recently thought about old posts. Does anyone else do that? Seems like a good idea to me, especially early posts before we had many followers....

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  30. I really enjoy your posts. But I also understand about how much time blogging implies. That's why I don't post but just once a week... lol

    The idea of posting 3 times a week seems convenient, and the possibility of repeating old posts has worked out for other bloggers, as I have seen.

    Doris

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  31. I answered the poll :)

    Posting 2 or 3 times a week works for me. I can't imagine how much time it would take if I tried posting daily. I think you'll find you enjoy the new schedule!

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  32. Carol -- Yeah you and me both may be spending too much time on blogging.

    Paula -- Your suggestions and thoughts are good, although stats point to Monday getting the best response. If commenting weren't the issue 5 to seven days of posting would not be that difficult. Maintenance of community relationships is the part that really takes time.

    Cheryl -- Sundays can be good days for me, but generally it seems that everyone's readership falls on those days. Guess you and I need to read more blogs on Sundays!

    Lynda -- Hooray for Blog Science! I'd like to read some real accurate studies about what works best and what is the weakest blogging approach.

    Words Crafter -- I've seen others put up reruns as posts. I have many old posts that were hardly read by anyone and have no comments.

    Doris -- There are many that go the 1 post per week route. That would be pretty comfortable.

    Jemi -- I like the example you set with posting and commenting. You seem to have pretty good balance.

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  33. r-LEE-b ~
    I can't answer your question. It's too hard.
    All I know is that blogspot.com bores me and I'm tired of blogging. I can barely get myself to compose a new blog bit even when I already have the idea in mind and half of the words, too.

    In the beginning it was kind of fun to be able to write something and see it displayed for the whole world a few minutes later. But now it's "Been there; done that - Same ol', same ol'."

    I know that I can compose a new blog bit, and regardless of how good or mediocre it is, I will get half a dozen comments (mostly from the same commenters who always comment), and then there it will sit until I compose the next blog bit and get six new comments from the same group of "Followers". I'm not bitter about it or anything like that; that's just the way it works.

    It's just time for me to find new ways to spend my time. Maybe I'll go camping more often. ...Or blow up my inflatable girlfriend. Or BOTH - take my inflatable girlfriend camping with me! Yeah, that's the ticket!
    :o)

    ~ Stephen
    "As a dog returns to his own vomit,
    so a fool repeats his folly."
    ~ Proverbs 26:11

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  34. Since I am new to your blog, I'm not sure about the topics, but, can certainly understand why you would want to cut back to 3 days a week. Posting daily for a year is an incredible accomplishment! Congrats! I don't think that I could do it, even if I didn't have an inconvenient day job, two websites to maintain, and wasn't in the middle of writing a cookbook, not to mention a life! Just do what's right for you. Best of luck with your decision.

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  35. StMc -- Well, camping's not too bad as long as they got clean bathrooms with showers. And comofortable beds. And a good place to eat. But wait, I guess that's not camping is it? But you really need to show your inflatable girlfriend a high class time. Hope you don't stop completely cause you write some of my favorite stuffs, but you gotta do what's right for you and all those other cliches.

    Marguerite -- Yeah, and I'm not sure daily posting is all that much of a necessity anyway. Thanks for adding your thoughts. Now if you could just send me some jambalya.

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  36. Lee,

    I noticed that weekends are slow...mondays seem to have the highest traffic. This is usual...but then not always. Sometimes it depends on what I am posting about, and what others are saying on their blogs about my posts!

    Sig

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  37. Sig -- I'm pretty sure I'll stay with Mondays since that would probably be my highest day regardless of content. It usually helps if somebody is blogging about your site--even if it's something bad, which never happens, but you know,if it did.

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  38. I only started reading your blog a couple of weeks ago, so I really can't answer the poll. I know it's hard to blog every day, sometimes I go 6 months without posting because for me it's hard to think of things to write about. One thing I do like about your blog is that there is always a new post to read, I have to congratulate you for that!

    Maybe you get less traffic on the weekends is because people are reading your blog at work? (i.e. Mon-Fri)

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  39. Hi Arlee,
    I love reading blogs in the morning with my coffee. This week has been so busy and because of a crazy squirrel, I've really missed reading them!

    I like to post at least twice a week, I am hoping to get back to that this fall and winter. And I really don't think that it matters what you post about. You should determine that on your mood.

    I don't believe it would hurt your blog if you posted less. I would read it no matter what as I am sure everyone else would too!
    Love Di ♥

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