Every so often, I jump into the archives to see what is and isn't working here at Writers In the Storm. I look closely at the posts that are getting more attention to determine whether we should ask the contributor to continue with a series on a topic or whether there might be a tie-in with a current post. I look to see which posts successfully keep the top spots, year after year. (For example, only a few of the posts below happened in the last 18 months - most are older.)
It's always an interesting journey for me through the blog stats, and it seems like the list always offers me something I needed RIGHT NOW, such as Margie's post on hugs in the top spot below.
Perhaps that will happen for you today as well.
I removed the posts that get a bump by being included on top blogs or curated lists, and also any pages. But below is a list of the fourteen WITS articles that performed the best this year. I even left the numbers in, just in case those contributors wander on by (so they can bask in their amazingness).
|Fresh Writing Sells: Make Hugs Carry Power - Margie Lawson||6,944|
|Sexual Tension: It's All In Your Head - Susan Squires||6,388|
|Should Your Story Have a Happy Ending? - James Preston||6,124|
|10 Character Traits of an Espionage Hero - Piper Bayard||5,772|
|The Benefits of Writing a Novel "Just for Fun" - Janice Hardy||5,639|
|Evaluating Sexual Tension on the Sentence Level - Angela Quarles||5,624|
|7 Unstoppable YA Plot Ideas to Make your Novel Fabulous - Kris Maze||4,668|
|What Type of Secret Does Your Character Keep? - Angela Ackerman||4,629|
|Book Cover 101: How Much Should a Cover Cost? - Melinda VanLone||3,651|
|Five Tips for Writing Tears that Carry Power - Margie Lawson||3,188|
|Using The 12 Stages of Physical Intimacy To Build Tension In Your Fiction - Jenny Hansen||3,027|
|Why We Love (and Resent) Alpha Males - Laurie Schnebly Campbell||2,932|
|The Ultimate Writers’ Guide to Twitter Pitch Contests - Carly Watters, Literary Agent||2,892|
|4 Easy Edits That Make Your Story Flow Better - Julie Glover||2,644|
Except for two outliers -- Janice Hardy's writing life post and Melinda VanLone's article on book covers -- all of these posts are about writing craft.
Another interesting observation is that each post also covers most of the SMART goal spectrum. That means the topics and information in the post are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and anchored within a Time Frame. Basically, these posts offer tips that you can immediately practice and apply to your own work in progress.
I'm just a happy little blogger, but I'm pretty sure that last point is why these posts are "evergreen." After you poke around in the links above, I hope you'll let me know what you decide.
I always like posts that make me think about my writing in a new way, teach me something completely new (I'm thinking about Melinda VanLone's book cover posts), or that help me stretch a bit as a writer to develop new skills. I also like posts that get people to share tips in the comments, since there's nothing I like better than an active comment section.
My question to you... What types of posts are your favorite(s), and what new topics would you love to see covered here at WITS? Which of the 14 above is your favorite? Please let me know down in the comments!
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By day, Jenny Hansen provides corporate communications and LinkedIn advice for professional services firms. By night she writes humor, memoir, women’s fiction, and short stories. After 20 years as a corporate trainer, she’s delighted to sit down while she works.
When she’s not at her personal blog, More Cowbell, Jenny can be found on Facebook at JennyHansenAuthor or at Writers In The Storm.
Copyright © 2023 Writers In The Storm - All Rights Reserved
I always love Margie! This next year is all about editing for me, so I'll be reviewing all my Margie notes!
I need to review mine again too. My recent immersion showed me that I'd forgotten a bit more than I was happy with, so it's time for a review. Her posts are a great place to start. A search in the sidebar can find them all fast. 🙂
Jenny, thank you very much! It's no hyperbole to say that it's an honor to be on the list with such excellent bloggers.
Tony Gwynn reportedly said that every time he hit a home run he thought, "Is that the last one? Can I do it again?"
No pressure for the next one, oh, no. Yikes.
All kidding aside -- thank you very much.
I was pretty excited to see your name on that list, James. Share with your friends, so they can see your awesomeness. And congratulations!
This analysis is so helpful, Jenny. I'm going to study the list as I think of my blog topic for January!
I can't wait to see what you come up with! January 3rd. 🙂
I loved the cover post! I would love to see a few somethings on Kindle Vella and formatting options including the new updates to Vellum which went live today.
You will be happy to know we can give you part of your wish list RIGHT NOW. Here's John Peregine's post on Kindle Vella, and there's a great comment below it outlining the "rules." 🙂
How do I thank, thee, let me count the ways! Thank you, Jenny, for sharing these again. There are older posts here that I somehow missed. Having slapped my past self, I'm busy reading. I took notes from Susan Squires and reread James Preston's post just because it warmed my heart. That's just the beginning...
Awwwwww! Susan Squires' post is really old, and really good. She wrote another one with her writer husband Harry Squires called "Talking Back to Your Brain" that was SO USEFUL for me. It taught me how to ask my writing subconscious questions so it could answer.
Example, I have a scene that's been giving me trouble where my heroine and antagonist have to have a really important verbal sparring match - it marks the turning point in the book, and it had to be entertaining AND move the plot forward.
All my options were blah. But I asked - what is important enough for them to fight about? I also asked - what is less important, but entertaining? I took a two-hour nap and woke up with the answer. That scene is rollicking now.
My favorites by far are the craft related posts. I learn so much from them (especially Margie's). I've also been enjoying Piper's spy craft posts. I look forward to the day when one of my posts makes the annual list!
I like craft posts too, and how-to's about stuff I don't know. And I love getting a window into "spy stuff" from Piper. I don't always make the list either, Bob, but I hope we BOTH make it next year. 🙂
What an honor to be on the list! Understanding what YA is and isn't must resonate with writers.
Thank you Jenny, for putting this together for today. In my nano fever yesterday, I completed over 8k words! This may be the year I make it over the 50k finish line.
I personally enjoy the essays that encourage. But I always learn a ton from craft and publishing posts. I appreciate all the knowledge here and it still amazes me how writers are giving back to the writing community.
I was pretty excited to see you there, Kris. But I am WAY MORE excited that you had an amazing insanely awesome Writing Sunday!! Congratulations!!!!!! I am at 48K-ish and feeling the end in sight tooooooo.
I love posts which make me look at how I can improve my writing.
Me too, Denise. Those writing craft posts make me soooo happy.
WOW. What an honor! Thanks for sharing the posts and your wonderful insights! (Those will help me write at least decent posts in 2022. ~grin~)
I know!! I was so excited when I saw this list. (And you ALWAYS write great posts. 🙂 )