Posted by & filed under cricket, Indian abroad, Media.

“When you sit down to write, there is only one important person in your life. This is someone you will never meet, called a reader”, Former Guardian science editor, letters editor, arts editor and literary editor Tim Radford.

Why-I-write1

This is the blog’s 100’th post. I thought this would be a good time to share with you (the reader and the only important person) some stats about the blog, its readership and the motivation behind my writing. I also wanted to use my 100’th post to revisit why I do this in the first place and to express my gratitude to those who have stopped by and spent any of the precious minutes in their day on this blog.

Site stats

I have written over 1,55,000 words in 99 posts on the blog. Over 35,000 people have viewed these posts. This is extremely gratifying and inspiring. Thanks one and all!

The five posts that have been viewed by the most people are my recent analysis and takes on immigration reform’s impact on H-1B visa holders, my critique of Harsha Bhogle and rants on the IPL ownership and commentators. The least read post was a summary of the Packers’ offseason needs. I have noticed that not many people care about what I think of the Packers :).

Image courtesy Tumblr.com and Creative Commons license.

Image courtesy Tumblr.com and Creative Commons license.

My best month of traffic was April 2013 and my worst month of traffic was August 2012. Just over 50% of my blog’s traffic is from the US while about 30% is from India. Over 50% of the US traffic is from the area they call the Bay Area. I get about 40% of my traffic thru Facebook and twitter referrals while another 40% get to the blog via search results.

While I am a much bigger fan of Twitter than Facebook, the latter is exponentially more influential in getting people to my blog. A Facebook Like on the blog or a Facebook post that refers to a post on my blog or my blog in general is worth about 10 more readers than an RT on Twitter or a +1 on Google+ or Thumbs-up on LinkedIn. This is a testament to the size and reach of Facebook which is why I send out periodic “spam” requesting Likes on Facebook if you do like something I wrote. I have also noticed how certain folks like @gradwolf or @thecricketcouch are serial influencers and a post they like and RT or recommend brings in 2x-3x more traffic than usual. To those two and other influencers on my social network timelines that I forgot to mention, thank you very much!

These site analytics play a huge role in keeping me on my path to achieving one of this blog’s primary goals – To be more effective and persuasive with each passing post. I only write here about things that I feel strongly and passionately about. I only write here about things I know are true and verified. If I have a hunch, I call it so and try to back it up with as much circumstantial evidence as possible. I truly strive to remember all this before hitting the Publish button each time. My belief and faith in this process gets a fillip every time I see an increase in readership or recommendations and a correction every time I see fair criticism, mistakes in my writing or a downward trend in the readership. This is the cycle of my blogging and this is why your feedback as the reader is so essential. A like or RT by you the reader truly means a lot. A mistake you point out or an exaggeration you identify is essential in moulding me and this blog. Reader participation and reader feedback thru email, comments, whatsapp or social networks is the beautiful and glorious offshoot of the day, time and interface I write in. 20 years ago, no opinionated film critic could tell how many people read his/her takedown of ‘Jurassic Park’. Today I can play a poor man’s Nate Silver and identify what Android users in a certain Zip code think of my post on Basharat Peer.

So please continue to read. Flag anything you disagree with or feel is worth criticizing. Recommend me or a post to friends and family if you like what you read! You – the reader mean
the most to me and help me keep it that way and help me add more readers.

Goals of the blog

I want to be a full-time writer. I want to be paid to write. I want to report and be a journalist. I want to write everyday and many times each day. I want to expose hypocrisy in the media and in cricket. I want to write analytically about things that affect the Indian diaspora. I want to lend a voice to the Indian emigrant who is forgotten as part of immigration reform. I want to write about being a vegetarian. I want to lend a voice to the cricket fan who pays his dues and gets shafted by the commentators on TV, journalists on websites and by the folks who manage stadiums. I don’t want sport, media or religion to be taken too seriously. Sometimes, I want them to be taken even more seriously. I want to make you laugh. And I also want to make you angry. I want to inspire and hopefully influence.

Image courtesy Creative Commons license.

Image courtesy Creative Commons license.

Bill Simmons made it okay to write about sports like a fan. Ezra Klein made wonkery useful and cool. Subash Jayaraman taught me that location should not be an excuse to not follow cricket with the same passion that I did as part of the Chennai TamBrahm mafia. Gawker and Deadspin remind me everyday that no one is beyond reproach and that politeness is not a particularly favorable attribute for a journalist. Clay Travis proved you could write whatever was fun to you and still make a living doing so. I want to be all of them or like them or a small fraction of them.

These are the goals of this blog. And I plan to keep marching towards them. Over the course of the next 100 posts, you will see posts very similar to what I have written so far plus

Many shorter posts (<500-600 words) that do not delve deep but relate to the topic du jour.

A lot more podcasts and audio interviews on the blog as well as on Itunes. .

In the immediate future, I have a great interview with someone who almost everyone who reads my blog will be interested in, being posted in the next 24 hours.

Please continue to read, keep me honest and above all thanks for reading! At the end of the day, that is why I write!

5 Responses to “My 100’th post : Why I write”

  1. Sury Ganesan

    My advice would be to keep an eye on how these analytics you have presented here relate or translate to that of a writer who gets paid to write. That might help put focus on a line item on why you want to be a full-time writer and why you want to write.

    Reply
    • shyamuw

      @sury thanks for the comment! Do you know of any one who can mentor me thru that process by sharing experience and data on the same ?

      Reply

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