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Sunday, 19 August 2012

Celebrating My Second Blogiversary - Thankful Thursday

August 21st is my second Blogiversary!   It has been a great two years and has far exceeded my expectations.

I am relishing the blog experience of telling my family history stories to a wider audience (instead of boring my family), discovering this different style of writing, coming up with a title and content that appeals - and making new contacts with fellow enthusiasts.

When I started, my main concern was "Is anyone finding this and more importantly actually reading it?" A few arms were twisted with friends and relations to sign up as my first followers. But let's face it, although we enjoy writing,  recognition from others is a great motivator, and I must admit to being an avid reader of comments received  and of my page views.

My initial target was one posting per week.  I thought I would soon run out of material, but the prompts from www.geneabloggers.com and inspiration from other bloggers has been so stimulating,  Retirement helps! 

What hasn't worked?

  • Some postings I know were written more for my own satisfaction and evoked little interest e.g. my Stop Press series.  With my reviews of WDYTYA (UK).  I failed.   Response was, apart from the first episode, virtually nil.  Having started, I persevered through the whole series, but I must admit even I was flagging in coming up with comments  - so perhaps it is not surprising that others felt much the same.

What have been the milestones in my second blogging year?

  • Making contact  with two distant (third) cousins) Stuart and Bonnie who have been a wonderful  source of photographs, stories and inspiration for more posts on my Danson and Rawcliffe families.
    Florence [Rawcliffe] Mason and Charles Urstadt - New Jersey, 1919.  
  • Finding new information on my father's Weston and Matthews families, an area of my family history which has taken rather a back seat uptil now.
  • Testing my brain power with two very enjoyable A-Z challenges, which brought me more followers, particularly in Australia.

  • On a more serious note, writing  about research tools as I followed the series  Beyond the Internet on Family History Across the Seas and Amy''s  52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy.
  • Discovering the importance of Personal Memories -  recording my own memories had never struck me  until I started following various prompts.  These have proved  great fun to write e.g.  Hair Days,   and evoked interest from readers.
  • Participating in Sepia Saturday which give bloggers an opportunity to share their family history through photographs. I am amazed at the ingenious interpretations of the weekly themes,   and the supportive comments from fellow contributors.  Posts such as  A Village Gala Day  and Riding's In the Blood  resulted in my highest number of page views.
Gala Day, c.1950 at Staining,. near Blackpool, Lancashire
I am front row on the left.
  • Having one of my suggestions taken up by www.geneabloggers.com as a daily prompt i.e. Travel Tuesday.
  • Being contacted by a history teacher who is researching the men who fought in the King's Own Royal Lancaster Regiment during the First World War. He had found my blog and the postings on my grandfather William Danson who was awarded the Military Medal for "conspicuous gallantry and determined devotion to duty in action at Givency on 9th April 1918. 

William Danson and Alice English, my grandparents.

  • Being approached by Thomas at Historic Newspapers to write some reviews   in return for giving a link to his website which sells original newspapers as gifts.  I was delighted to accept this opportunity to look through and write about   old newspapers.
My  brain is still buzzing - so I look forward to my third year at an all absorbing hobby.   
Thank you to everyone for their support.    Do keep watching!


  1. Susan,

    Thank you for what you have given to us, your readers. Your blog posts have been illuminating and educative.

    Blogiversary wishes from one of your Susie followers

  2. Oops -predictive text at work. Susie should read as Aussie .

  3. Hi Susan - we must have started out blogging at the same time. Happy Blogiversary - I enjoy your posts (and love Sepia Saturday too). Look forward to the next one :-) Jo

  4. Happy 2nd Blogiversary! I will be coming up on my 3rd blogiversary in a few months --- and I still fuss and fume about will anybody find this and if so will they read it --- and even a bigger fussing, will they like it. Writers are a strange lot.

    BTW, I really like your blog.

  5. Congrats on celebrating two years, Susan!!

  6. Congratulations Susan! Isn't blogging wonderful and you've had such great successes. I'm not sure whether the comments are such a good indication of people's enjoyment, though they do make a big difference to how we enjoy our blogging. I'm looking forward to reading through your next year's posts.

  7. Susan, just re-read that comment. What I meant to say was the volume of comments isn't an indicator of whether people are enjoying your posts. Rest assured that we are!

  8. Thank you to everyone for their good wishes. Enjoy reading more!


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