BlogTalk: My Blog’s Vital (And Not So Vital) Statistics


Recently WordPress was kind enough to alert me to the fact I’d published 1,000 posts on What Cathy Read Next since its inception in November 2016.  Woohoo! This prompted me to have a little delve into the other statistics available on WordPress…

Posts with the most views: My review of After The Party by Cressida Connolly (1,466 views) followed by my review of Three Things About Elsie by Joanna Cannon (496 views)

WWWWednesdaysMost popular day for views: Wednesdays (that will be down to the WWW Wednesday meme hosted by the fabulous Sam at Taking on a World of Words)

Average comments per post: From 1.6 in 2016 to 6 in 2019 (Don’t you all like to chat…)

Most faithful follower: Jill at Jill’s Book Café (since 1st December 2016).  Thank you, Jill!

Chatterbox (Most number of comments left, excluding myself): The lovely Nicki at The Secret Library with 66 comments

Strange but true search terms:

– is the word is murder a true story                         (Er, no)
– what is the third things about elsie                        (Sorry, no spoilers here)
– “feel his ankle” + fiction                                            (No idea either)
– is alex dahl author married                                     (This is a book blog, not Tinder)
– personal message to stressed blond woman        (???)

Views from far flung places (countries that generated 1 view):

Aruba             Liberia                        Gambia
Benin              Botswana                   Reunion
Cape Verde    Vanuatu                      St Kitts & Nevis

What fascinating or curious facts do your blog’s statistics reveal?


Blogging & Reading Goals 2018: End of Year Report

Set Goals

As the old year comes to a close, it’s time to look back at the reading and blogging goals I set for 2018 and see how I did…or didn’t.

Reading Goals

Reading challenges:

TBR Challenge 20182018 TBR Pile Challenge (hosted by RoofBeamReader) – Read all twelve books on my list

FAIL – I only managed to read four books from my list of twelve but I hoping to do better next year.  You can read my 2019 sign-up post here.  

2018 HF Reading Challenge_Graphic2018 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge (hosted by Passages to the Past) – I’m aiming for Prehistoric level which means reading 50+ books

PASS – As a lot of  the books I read are historical fiction, I’ll have to admit this wasn’t really that much of a challenge.  For this reason I’ve decided to pass on this one in 2019.

Buchan of the MonthBuchan of the Month – Read the twelve books I’ve identified and, I hope, participate in some discussion with other bloggers about our reviews

PASS – It would be pretty bad to fail at one of your own reading challenges, wouldn’t it?  My review of this year’s final Buchan of the Month – Sick Heart River – was published earlier today.   There are plenty of Buchan books (fiction and non-fiction) available to be read/re-read, and I’ll be posting my reading list for 2019 in the next few days. 

The Classics ClubClassics Club – I want/need to make more progress on this in order to complete my list by the end of December 2018

PASS/FAIL – This is a fail in the sense that I didn’t manage to complete my list by my original deadline of 31st December but that was a pretty ambitious (OK, crazy) deadline I set myself.  I realised part way through this year there was no way it was going to happen and amended the deadline to 31st December 2021.  I think that’s do-able with my new plan to add a book from the list to my reading schedule each month. 

NetGalley Challenge 2018NetGalley & Edelweiss Challenge 2018 (hosted by Bookish Things & More) – I’m going for Silver level once again which means reading and reviewing 25 books on NetGalley

PASS – A bit like the historical fiction challenge mentioned above, I was able to achieve this fairly easily (I managed over 40) and I’ve retained my 80% plus feedback ratio.  So this is another one I’ve decided to pass on in 2019.

When Are You Reading Challenge 2018When Are You Reading? Challenge 2018 (hosted by Taking on a World of Words) –This challenge involves reading a book predominantly set in each of twelve specified time periods

PASS – Reading twelve historical fiction books is not difficult for me but finding a match for each of the time periods can be surprisingly tricky.  However, I managed to complete the challenge and I’ve signed up for 2019 as well.  Read my sign-up post and provisional reading list here.

What's In A Name 2018What’s In A Name 2018 (hosted by The Worm Hole) – The challenge is to read a book with a title that matches each of six categories.  Easy, you say.  In fact, not as easy as you’d think.

PASS (Provisional) – This one is still in the balance because I’m currently reading the book I need to fit the final category:  ‘A fruit or vegetable’ (Bitter Orange by Claire Fuller).  However, I should finish it later today, although my review probably won’t be published until tomorrow.

Goodreads – I plan to set a target of 156 books (same as 2017)

PASS – Goodreads tells me I’ve read 190 books this year but that includes some DNFs.  My own tally is 188 (including Bitter Orange, mentioned above).  The target of 156 (i.e. three books per week) is about right for me so I’ll go with the same target for 2019.  I don’t exactly need a target but I do like to keep track of the books I read and I always enjoy looking at the Your Year in Books breakdown from Goodreads.

Author review requests:

Reduce my review turnaround time to two months or under (currently three or four)

FAIL – I’m still way behind on reading and reviewing the books sent to me by authors.  (There are twenty-three in the pile currently, the oldest dating from October 2017.) To avoid adding to the issue (and my guilt), I decided to stop accepting new review requests in August 2018, except from authors I’ve worked with before.  My plan for 2019 is to try to read at least one book from my author review pile each month – two, if I can manage it. 


  • Maintain my 80% feedback ratio
  • Attain my 100 Reviews badge
  • Get an auto approval

PASS – I’m going to judge this a pass because I’ve maintained my 80% plus feedback ratio and I attained my 100 reviews badge a few months ago.  The auto approval is out of my control really but I’m hoping if I can get back to reviewing books on my NetGalley shelf closer to publication it might happen in 2019.  

Blogging Goals

  • Continue to take part in Top Ten Tuesday, WWW Wednesdays and Throwback Thursday
  • Start my own meme
  • Update my blog’s theme and graphics
  • Create a blog page(s) devoted to John Buchan
  • Create a blog page to index author Q&As I’ve carried out
  • Take blog tour breaks in February and December

PASS/FAIL – This is another mixture because I have participated most weeks in Top Ten Tuesday and WWW Wednesday but have been a bit remiss with Throwback Thursday.  I’m still searching for a good idea for my own meme but it’s hard because there are so many great ones out there already.  A big fail on updating my blog theme and graphics and on creating the new pages.  Something for the New Year, I think.  I’ve been much better at disciplining myself not to hop on every blog tour I get invited to join (especially if it involves posting a review) and I’ve taken month long blog tour breaks during the year.

Personal Goals

Start a proofreading course

FAIL – This seemed like a good idea but, having researched the time commitment involved, I’m going to park this one for the time being. 

If you had blogging and/or reading goals for 2018, how did you get on?  Will you be setting goals for 2019?  Happy New Year everyone!

Christmas 4