“Happy 1st Birthday to The Grey Wayfarer!!!” – The Rabyd Skald

Happy Tyr’s Day

One year ago today, I laid down my first post on this blog. It seems like a lifetime ago in some respects.  That first post was fairly simple as I chronicled briefly my history with blogging in general and then introduced the main concepts behind The Grey Wayfarer.  After that, I created my initial list of posts that would appear and proceeded the next week to get the ball rolling.

Oddly enough most of those post types remain.  The only one that is gone is The Grey Wayfarer (a fantasy serial) that I killed because I think it might be the seed for a novel.  The Rabyd Skald, Odin’s Eye, Of Wolves and Ravens, A Skald’s Life and The Pagan Pulpit have remained regular weekly features from day one until today. They have become the trunk of the tree that is the blog known as The Grey Wayfarer.  They also have definitely fulfilled their objectives.

From that first post is the following paragraph:

Now, one final word on the nature of these posts and the blog as a whole.  This is a new blog, and while it has at its roots the substance of the old blogs and its trunk is hopefully all the aspects of what makes good writing, it is its own tree, so to speak. Where its main branches, tributaries, and twigs end up is anyone’s best guess. I have come to the belief that the best blogs are a good blend of organization (pruning) and organic growth (freedom). You never know down which branch the best flowers and fruits will be discovered.  A balance of reasonable inquiry and creative discovery is what I am going for here.

I would say that it has grown into a solid sapling and its future may yet to be seen but I am very proud of this little blog right now. It has also given my life a little structure and substance.  Something that was a goal right from the start.  Another paragraph from that first post:

The problem has been for me that without blogging my life seems very much adrift. I am struggling with school and even though my marriage seems better, I seem to be losing track of what I ultimately want for me and my marriage as well as other things. My struggles with faith have come to a standstill and several emotional issues are just not being resolved.   I am not writing about these things and so I am not making progress. Blogging has been my personal therapy for a long time and without it, I am not sure what I am doing with my life. #True Story

I can now say that I have the start of a good moral compass in the virtues, with attached principles to follow.  Out of these has been created goals and a bucket list. I am no longer adrift.  I can also say that my struggles with faith and spirituality have made significant progress.  Getting past all the gobblygook and instead focusing on virtue has been a great move for me.  I guess I have made progress on my emotional issues, but the struggles with lost love, betrayal, and purpose remain. But I can at least focus on them by writing about them and every time some insight or progress is made so The Grey Wayfarer has lived up to its name.

Some milestones and facts for the past year;

  1. Almost 5000 views – For a first-year blog it is not my best, but certainly not my worst.
  2. Almost 2500 visits which means that people spend a little time here looking at more than one post, so that is cool.
  3. Almost 500 likes.  It sounds like a whole bunch of almosts but it indicates people enjoy the content so I will keep plugging along.
  4. Most of my traffic is from the United States but there are honorable mentions to Australia, Canada, India, The United Kingdom, and Ireland.  72 countries in total.  Definitely an international blog.
  5. The most typed in search phrase that got me found, I find interesting – ‘ed raby blog’  – Given that this blog was forged into existence because I shut down my old blogs; so then, if someone didn’t know from my Facebook page about the new blog, they would have used this search to find me and I find that very interesting.  But I never lost a Facebook follower in the last year, but I have gained about 14 of them.  So this might be people shooting in the dark.  Old friends or enemies.
  6. Some of my most popular posts have been things that were very recent. I had a lot of traffic for my year ago retrospect posts in August. particularly the post on my breakup with Miss Salty.  That month actually had a lot of traffic and it seems that people might just still be taking an interest in my personal life. I don’t know whether to laugh or cry about it.
  7. My traffic feed comes from two major sources – Facebook (my page) and the WordPress reader.
  8. As of today: I have 82 followers from WordPress and 64 on Facebook.  Some duplicates there.  I am linked to my Twitter feed but I don’t really use it. Considering I started at 1 with myself, it has been a good year.

This will be the only post today.  I know Space Tramp normally falls on today, but this day is marked for one thing – celebrating the birthday of this blog one year ago. May it have many more.

I will double up on Thursday with Space Tramp and Rogue Wizard to make up for the single post today.  My plans include keeping the streak of consecutive days posting going for as long as possible.  The first year was only the beginning.

So join me in wishing this blog a happy first birthday.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

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