New Year

When I started blogging in October, I did it for my own pleasure. I saw it as an absorbing way to think out loud about classical music, flex my writing muscles, and pass on information that isn’t exactly newsworthy, but worth something. I really like doing it, and hope you like reading it.

Even though I set out to write for myself, I’ve become increasingly fascinated by the number of readers drawn to each post. I can see this number, which most can’t, and you might be surprised by what’s attracted the most attention.

The most number of readers hit my shortest entry, Ode to autumn, which basically consisted of a picture of my backyard. I’m flattered that 869 people (at last count) took the time to eyeball my Eastern redbud tree. There isn’t even a hot button keyword in there to attract anyone’s attention. I’m puzzled.

I’ve heard of bloggers sticking in random, meaningless phrases such as “Brad Pitt” to increase their hit counts, (that is, the number of people who click on their blog.) This might explain the popularity of a happiness meme I posted which included the name “Gauis Baltar.” Nearly 500 readers clicked on this post. I suspect that, like me, they’re eagerly awaiting the new season of Battlestar Galactica. Geeks.

More than 800 people read my praise of Bernard Holland’s exquisite bit of writing about pianist Angela Hewitt, which makes me and *Brad Pitt* think that shorter posts are best.

By far, the most controversial issues on my blog so far have been those which explore the interface between “high” and “low” culture. Several readers weighed in on the spectacle of NBC TV’s “Clash of the Choirs.” Most expressed mixed feelings about the musical value of the show and its slick, commercialized packaging.

Thank you to those who’ve read the personal essays I’ve posted.

I encourage you to read other blogs, such as pianist Jeremy Denk’s wildly imaginative “think denk.” If you have a comment about WXXI, Rochester’s classical music service, Ruth Phinney keeps a blog where you can chat with other radio listeners. I’m also enjoying Julie Levy’s tips for parents, David Dey’s comments on social action, TV news director Julie Philipps’ interesting posts, and music host Mark Grube’s blog, which is thoughtful, well-crafted, and even poetic at times.

Thank you for reading. I hope you’ll continue in 2008.