In a truly amazing stroke of timing, Darren Rowse of Problogger wrote a post titled Take the 7 Link Challenge on the 7-month anniversary of the day I officially joined social media for work (the day I activated my Twitter account). After reading Phil Buckley’s 7 Posts You May Have Missed, I decided that today would be a good day for a retrospective on my own blogging adventures thus far. 7′s supposed to be a lucky number, right?
1. Your First Post: West Wind Wines: A Taste of Blue Ridge Culture was as much a way to introduce my readers to me as to West Wind Farms. It’s one of my longest and most prosaic posts, engaging in some of my creative writing class chops that I had recently finish honing. The fact that I snuck in some personal information as I profiled the winery (I think) made this a proper introduction of me to the blogosphere. I led with my passion, and that’s as good a way as any, right?
2. The Post You Enjoyed Writing The Most: The 2010 Texas – Virginia Wine Summit Part 4: Eye on the Future was an absolute blast for me on multiple levels. I got to research the Virginia wine industry in great depth, which led me to learn a whole lot about it I never really knew. The facts I presented, I thought, made a great case for Virginia to be the next great wine region. I also got to collaborate with one of my favorite wine bloggers, Ben Simons of Vinotology, who represented Texas in the great debate.
3. A Post Which Had a Great Discussion: The Occasional Risk of Buying Local was my first experience with bad publicity. I didn’t think it through too well when I ripped a local producer for a Rosé that I sought out. There were two things wrong with what I did: I didn’t research the wine and I hadn’t established my reputation. I got a prompt response from the winemaker who, though he didn’t exactly defend the wine, did take issue with how I described it. I forget who it was who said it, but they were right (and I wish I’d known that in retrospect): we’re writing about someone’s craft of love, and we should be diplomatic even if we dislike it. Lesson learned (sort of). I repeated some of my mistakes when ripping another wine a few weeks later, though I was much more diplomatic about it.
4. A Post on Someone Else’s Blog that You Wish You’d Written: The Dude’s Guide to Wine Series by Josh Wade of DrinkNectar is a no-brainer. It’s by far the most fun I’ve ever had reading a post, and I keep going back to giggle at the none-too-subtle innuendo. Not only that, but it truly is a phenomenal guide for men who might otherwise be intimidated by wine especially in the context of a date with an intimidating woman.
5. A Post with a Title You Are Proud Of: How NASCAR Drivers do Cabernet Franc demonstrates the rare ability I have to be both clever and concise. Usually my titles are close to a dozen words long as I simply cannot express myself adequately any less verbosely. I’m not entirely sure why, but this blog title always struck me as a favorite. It’s punchy, it’s snarky, it only took 6 letters, and it (I believe) incites a question in the potential reader’s mind: “How DOES a NASCAR driver do Cabernet Franc, exactly?” I had fun, at least. I also think of it fondly because it inspired me to visit Childress Vineyards, my new favorite North Carolina winery. Go there and try the Meritage (the Cab Franc is sold out!).
6. A Post You Wish More People Had Read: DIY Ethics in Punk and the Wine Blog Movement combined my two favorite passions: wine and music. Best of all, I got a guest blogger, Matt Mauldin of Wineheimer, a veteran of both the punk music scene and the wine industry, who offered incredibly targeted insight into my concerns. I also got to vent about the past, present, and future exploitation of my favorite music movement, the much maligned emo genre with Matt to straighten me out on the specifics. Really, I wish that anyone who has ever taken an interest in my blog had read it. Unfortunately, I’m afraid I got way too many TL;DR responses.
7. Your Most Visited Post Ever: The Best Boxed Wine You’ll Ever Buy (No, Seriously!) has received, by far, the most attention of any of my posts, and it’s largely because of Google. It’s a bit of a sucker search, though, because the wine I reviewed was technically not a boxed wine but a Tetrapak. Because of the continued response and interest, however, I decided to conduct my boxed wine experiment, and now I’m receiving at least a third of my traffic each day from people searching for info about boxed wine. Consider that a lesson on studying your keywords and building around them, eh?
If any of my wine blogger mates decide to do this as well, comment here or link me up… I would love to read your personal take on this theme!