The Pet Blogger Challenge, 2012 Edition

Last year, I found the Pet Blogger Challenge after the linky list had closed, but did it anyway. This year I’m more on the ball, but that says little. Here goes the 2012 version!

1. Provide a link to your post from last year’s Pet Blogger Challenge so we can refresh our memories.

Here you go!

2. What do you consider the most important goals you set out in last year’s post?

I wanted more readers, and to exchange links. I never expected to be asked to guest post or be included on a list of top posts, both which happened last year!

3. Have you made progress toward those goals, or have your goals changed over the past year?

I definitely have more readers, but far fewer than I’d like. The readers I have are very loyal and supportive and I feel I’ve built a little community for myself… but my numbers really are quite tiny.

4. Has your opinion of blogging on a schedule or as the spirit moves you changed? Which are you doing now? Do you still worry about lost traffic, momentum, etc?

I have become even more aware of how important blogging regularly is, but that doesn’t mean I do it. 😦 I think once or twice a week should be the minimum, and there have been months where I put up two posts. That doesn’t engender readership.

5. Are you generating income from your blog? Has this changed since last year?

Nope and nope.

If you are generating income, how (e.g. sponsor ads, affiliate relationships, spokesperson opportunities)?If not currently, do you hope to in the future — and how?

I think I’ve given up on that one.

6. Have your likes and dislikes about blogging changed since last year?

Last year I wasn’t reading other blogs, as I hadn’t found them yet. For a while I very much enjoyed  reading, commenting, and building relationships. Then I found how easy it was to get overwhelmed and your blog folder spiral out of control. Deleting other people’s posts without reading them makes me feel guilty, and leaving them to be read “eventually” makes me feel pressured… This is a hobby, not a job, and it’s a delicate balance between being fun and being a burden.

7. Overall, are you pleased with the progress you made in 2011?

I love the new friends I have made, and hope to meet some of these people in real life one day!

8. How do you see your blog changing/growing in 2012?

If I can get into a better writing groove, maybe I can get more readers… or maybe I’ll just plug along and hope to be consistently entertaining for the loyal coterie of readers I have.

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About one person's view

I'm the mother of three girls, three cats, and a dog. All need constant attention, but only the dog likes to go for long walks!
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17 Responses to The Pet Blogger Challenge, 2012 Edition

  1. Kristine says:

    I am so glad you participated again!

    I hear you on number six, it’s why I officially divorced from my Google Reader last February. Reading was becomming a huge job and I just felt guilty all the time for not reading every single post all the way through. I wasn’t enjoying myself any more. So I quit cold-turkey and now I subscribe to most of the blogs I read via email. If I don’t have time, I just delete the emails and I never have to think about them again. Other blogs I will read by clicking on links in other people’s comment sections. It’s become fun again and not just another thing on my to-do list.

    Hopefully you are able to find more time to write in the coming year. If not, that’s okay too. It’s a dog blog, not an academic journal. It’s supposed to be full of whimsy!

  2. Jodi Stone says:

    I have a hard time balancing the writing and the reading. Since I am committed to the writing, it is the reading that falls by the wayside. I subscribe to most blogs by e-mail, but some days that can be very overwhelming when I sign in and have 20 new posts to read, so I have been utilizing the google reader. With one click I can read any of the blog posts I might have missed and mark them all as read. I find it has really helped me and I have to cut myself some slack if I can’t read them all the second they are published.

    Keep up the good work!

  3. I think you and I might be in the same little rowboat re: readership! I’ve sometimes tried to introduce more blogs into my GR but it isn’t always successful. Sometimes I lose interest. Sometimes they’re not interested. So there you are. Enjoyment of the blog is key though. Otherwise why do it, right? It’s not like someone’s paying us to keep it up HAHA. I’ve used this term for myself and a couple of other blogs I follow and I think you fit the bill too – we’re boutique blogs! 🙂

    Although you don’t post often, I do read your posts. I’ve even gone into your archives. That’s how much I enjoy your observations!

    Happy consistent blogging in 2012 – if that’s what you want to do! 😉

  4. How disappointing that the Linky was closed and I missed your post last year! I too spend a lot of time wrestling with my Reader – I hate that feeling when the posts are multiplying and I feel like I’m choking. To help with the guilt of not being able to read as much as I’d like, I’ve set up some folders. Feeds from the people that read and comment on my blog regularly go in one folder. The blogs I just love to read go in another folder. And then there’s the “if I get to it, these are interesting” folder. I do my best to keep up with the first group, and if I have to delete the other posts without reading them … well, it’s kind of like eggs on a chicken farm … there will be more appearing before you know it.

    Thanks for participating in the challenge again this year and have a great 2012.

  5. Jen says:

    One thing that I have learned over the past 2 years is that blogging can be so overwhelming and then it get frustrating. This year I am going to do my best to try and not get so overwhelmed. That has already proven to be difficult!

  6. Pup Fan says:

    I do something similar to Amy’s system – I still use Google Reader, but I’ve tried to break things down into smaller groups to direct my reading. It’s a challenge though – as I discover more blogs, it’s hard to keep up! I always do enjoy reading your posts, however, and I’ll be here whether they’re daily or annually. 😉

  7. Flo says:

    I’m glad I’ve found this blog! It’s already taken me off to other places and reading other posts that I hadn’t seen before. 🙂 Your readership is up by one!

  8. Edie says:

    Thanks for taking part this year, Lori. For some reason I thought we’d communicated about the Challenge last year… but maybe we communicated about your being too late. Anyway, I hear you about trying to keep up with other bloggers to the detriment of devoting enough time to your own blog. I always enjoy your posts –even if I don’t comment –and am glad you’re keeping at it.

  9. thatjenk says:

    You may have inspired me to posthumously participate in the Challenge! … Well, we’ll see. As I speed-read to try to catch up, my blogging catch-up list seems to be getting longer and longer. Now I really know what you mean about overwhelming maintenance!

  10. Pamela says:

    I was surprised to see that concerns about your readership dominated this challenge’s post. I would have expected you to be more distressed by your lack of time. It seems you have an awful lot going on to be able to manage a blog too.

    As for numbers, they can be a curse, can’t they? I’ve come to realize that the engagement I have with my readers is much more important than having thousands of readers each day. My pea brain can’t concentrate on too much at once. I like having just enough people around that I don’t feel like I’m spitting into the wind and so I can still get to know everyone a little bit.

    BTW, the secret to increasing your numbers in a month is to write some silly list post that gets picked up on StumbleUpon and sees thousands of hits in two days.

    Of course, none of those people stick around. And when a few days have passed, numbers that used to look good to you seem paltry in comparison. There’s no way to win when you start chasing numbers.

  11. Mel Freer says:

    So glad you got a chance to participate in the pet blogger challenge! I am leaning towards the “Nope and nope” answer regarding income generation. Your answer to Question #6 was so close to what I have been feeling these days. Overwhelmed by the number I should be reading and then feeling guilty because I don’t get to them. It should be fun and not a chore.

    I am glad you have more readers and I hope for even more for you in 2012. I like your blog. It’s why I subscribed. I mostly read your posts on my phone while on the train or bus, so I don’t always remember to comment when I get back home (I have a very ancient Blackberry and it doesn’t seem to let me comment on blogs.), but I do read them and love them.

    Hope school is going well for you too!

  12. The Hook says:

    Keep fighting the good fight, my dog loving friend!
    I find scrolling through the Freshly Pressed WordPress page – and leaving comments – can bring ina ton of new traffic. If you’re lucky!

  13. Tegan says:

    Ah, good to see a conversation about the ‘pressure’ of Google Reader. I normally will read (or skim) everything that comes up, but if I don’t have time to read it (and it looks interesting), I put it in a text document for me to look at later. I eventually do – sometimes months later – but at least it’s out of Google Reader and off my mind.

    If a blog starts to bore me, I have no qualms of unsubscribing in Google Reader. They’re still on my blog’s BlogRoll, and I’ll occasionally check in.

    My problem is that when I go away for a week/two weeks they accumulate rapidly, and then I am very much swimming in posts. Still, I use the same method, and normally I can get through them in a couple of days.

    Nice to stop by on the Challenge hop, and happy blogging in 2012.

    • I was off the blogosphere for over four weeks; when I cam back, I had over 300 posts waiting, which is simply undoable. I still haven’t got back into my previous habits and am just falling further behind. 😦

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