Saturday, June 18, 2016

Another Milestone!

Illustration by Shayna Pond (2016) for JLS
Please cite artist and blog if you reuse.
I didn't have much opportunity to write for the blog this week as I had a big show this week opening a local blues/jazz festival. I'm reading Under the Greenwood Tree and a couple of other Hardy-related titles right now but I don't have anything specific upon which to report yet.

In the meantime, the flurry of activity at the end of our discussion of Desperate Remedies pushed the all-time page views up over 15,000 since March.

I want to celebrate these little victories while acknowledging that these big bumps in views happen when the good folks at the Thomas Hardy Facebook page share one of my posts (in this case DR Part 7) with their nearly 200K followers. That post was viewed more than 3,500 times, while the majority of my organically supported posts (such as my recent review of Arthur Mee's Dorset) are usually viewed by somewhere between 50 and 80 people.

Call me simple but the fact that somewhere between 50 and 80 people take the time out of their day to exercise their enthusiasm for Thomas Hardy's writing by reading this blog thrills me. I've found pockets of wonderfully sociable Hardy readers at the Thomas Hardy Fans FB page and Goodreads who have given me lots of support and feedback and it means a lot to me. Thanks to all of you - friends, family, strangers alike - who stop in to follow along.

I'd like to give a final shout-out to my wife, Shayna, who has graced this blog with several outstanding illustrations, including the one attached to this post. She made that one for me for a one-of-a-kind t-shirt [editor's note: said t-shirt and the illustration which adorns it was a wedding anniversary gift] which should arrive later this month. I'm going to make the shout-out extra loud because I groused at her literally this moment for asking me about another obligation I had made freely but had yet to fulfill. And then she brought me some iced tea. She's wonderful and I am still a project under improvement.

Thanks, y'all.

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