Blog stats and do they really matter? I need convincing.


I have a confession to make… I don’t check my blog statistics. Do you? Why? What do you learn from them?

I suppose if I’d digested all of the information in those blogging stat guides correctly I wouldn’t be making this statement now. I would probably be analysing them like crazy and would know just what I needed to do to increase  my blog traffic. But, do I want to increase my blog traffic?

Here’s the thing – I blog for pleasure and not followers, likes or blog traffic.

I'm a romantic blogger and blog for the enjoyment of it.

I’m a romantic blogger and blog for the enjoyment of it.


I suppose we all do to a degree – otherwise why else would we impose blog writing and the internal, and physical pressures that come with running a blog, on our already busy and knackered selves?

There will be those of you that may conclude that my above statement, about blogging for the love of it, is a cop – out. Perhaps it is. But, I do know that since I cancelled my subscription to Statcounter a sense of calm and acceptance has descended upon me. I kid you not, I was positively becoming obsessive with statistics.

If I gained new followers I was naturally elated and if I lost them, as you do, I was deflated. My worth as a writer was in danger of only being measured in terms of my blog traffic. Should blogging really be as superficial as that?

So sad was I that I would even check my stats in the middle of the night, if I awoke for the toilet.

That’s pretty bad, isn’t it? And what useful information did I glean from this bleary – eyed analysis of my blogging attempts. Nothing, nada! Sometimes folk visited and sometimes they didn’t. Sometimes they would stay for a while  and sometimes they took a  mere nano-second to decide me and my blog were not for them. Some hardy folk returned for more, time and time again. I never did quite figure out what they were reading though.

And I could see which part of the world they visited from.

That gave me a few  oh my gosh, they’re reading from there! moments.

I tried to get more blogger savvy.

I tried to get more blogger savvy.


I would try to make my posts more world-wide friendly. But, I’m a Yorkshire woman living in Yorkshireland and maybe, just maybe, that is why folk visited in the first place? We all like to read about other people’s lives, don’t we? They’d seen Sean Bean on tha telly and thought Ey up it’s the female equivalent of him.

They finally left when they realised that even Sean Bean was nowhere in sight. It was just me and some mouldy Yorkshire pudding. I don’t even own a flat cap, it’s a beanie: and my dog is a greyhound, not a whippet!

Blog stats are not strict blog stats.

Blog stats are not strict blog stats.


Then I moaned about blog stats in a post on here

and was reliably informed that blog stats are predominantly made up of Twitter followers anyhow.

So how can they be called blog stats? It beats me. Not everyone on Twitter is fool – hardy enough to blog… right?

Blog stats are too much like doing maths and my romantic and arty – farty soul is somewhat scared by figures, sums and stats.

And whereas most folks follower figures increase, mine have a habit of dropping. I’m not sure by how many exactly, because I don’t keep a check on them; but, I do suspect some folk have abandoned my ship of lately.

I don’t take it personally though.( I just sit in a cold, dark, corner and quietly cry to myself. It does me good. There’s no need to feel guilty about leaving me.)

I mean do you have time to sit and read blog posts all day? I certainly don’t. We all have to be selective with who we follow, what posts we read and how often we comment… right?

It’s quite easy to drive yourself demented with the number of blogs out there in the blogosphere.

It's quite easy to fall apart at the blogging seams.

It’s quite easy to fall apart at the blogging seams.


And then there’s the guilt!

You’re a selfish little blogger because you haven’t returned the favours, of all of the followers that follow you and take the time and the trouble to comment on your posts. Good luck on that one if you have in excess of 1000 followers. You don’t need to sleep or have a life do you?

And we all write short posts… ahem, well sort of shortish! Why? Because we know that some poor sod is out there frantically scanning your post, so they can like at the end – without feeling the guilt of just hitting the like button. Because, you may just get found out and ousted as someone who just likes the post – without actually reading it.

Does this sound familiar?

Some folk have got wise to this and have removed the like button. If you’ve read and enjoyed, stay a while longer and comment, appears to be their philosophy.

Is this you? Do you have a like button, or are you testing whether we actually read your posts? I can’t say I blame you.

And then ( I’ve nearly done now) there’s Twitter.

If I get another tweet telling me that I can buy more Twitter followers – I will explode.

I believe in doing things on my own merit. If folk follow me on Twitter it’s not because I have bought them; it’s because for some unknown reason they have decided to follow me. ( They clearly don’t know me.) Well, none of us actually know many of our followers, do we?

And, because Twitter = blog followers, my followers are not bought either. I didn’t buy one and get one free.

So, to all the Twitter  follower  – sellers – type – people… leave me alone. If I ever decide to go commercial I will contact you.

Am I stupid, or what? (Quite possibly.)

I have no doubt there will be some of you who disagree with my philosophy. I’m guessing that you’re more competitive and a better business person than I am, or ever will be. And you will probably make your living blogging.

If you can spare a moment, share your views with us.

I for one am open-minded and you might just show me that I need to get with the stats and where the action is.

Convince me!

But, for now I will stay with my small and intimate blog. I’m one of life’s plodders. I don’t get anyway fast, as I’m too busy gawping at things. But, if my poxy, ( worthless/ god damn awful) blog and quite frankly – crazy posts can help someone along the way, then that’ll do me just fine.

The fire is lit and the coffee is on.

The fire is lit and the coffee is on.

Thanks for dropping by here, it’s always appreciated.

If you fancy losing a day to reading great blog posts and watching some cool videos, check out My Trending Stories  .

I am currently contributing to this blogging website.

This link will take you to my page on there, and from there you can explore the other endless posts, by clicking on the My Trending Stories banner, in the top left hand corner of the page.

Dorne x








Does this qualify as a poem? Grabbing some peace.


The beauty rose up as high as I could see.

The beauty rose up as high as I could see.

I’m not an overly religious person, but I do believe in a power of some sort. Otherwise how would we and this fantastic globe that we spin through space on, exist?

As a child I schooled at Church of England schools and so regular visits to churches were the norm. One overriding memory is of my five – year old self standing at the entrance to our local church, one Sunday morning. The beauty, as I perceived it, rose up as high as I could see. Inside the church amazing colours shone through the stained glass windows and music, that sang to my young soul, infiltrated every stone of that vast building.

I find that during the course of a mad day, grabbing myself a bit of peace in what I like to think of as nature’s house of worship, helps me to ground myself.

Being outside, whether in a woodland, forest, amongst mountains, hills, or roaming fields and beaches feels like a spiritual place to me. It can be likened to entering a house of worship. I’m not going to say church specifically, because we all have our own beliefs.

In my eyes they are all equal: and so are we.


Entering nature's house of worship.

Entering nature’s house of worship.


Beneath, is a poem that I wrote on here, some time ago. I say poem. I’m not sure if it does qualify as a poem. I just wrote it as I felt at the time. To my rhythm and with no rhyme. It seemed to work when it was first published and some folk took the time and trouble to stop by and pass comment.

So, as more of my buried posts are brought to the surface, in the great blog clean – up, I unearth this one again. And a version of it appears on My Trending Stories, to which I am presently contributing.


The poem describes a walk that I take, with my retired greyhound – the Daisy dog.

Prior to her, I walked the favourite walk with my original greyhound, Misty. Some of you may be aware that she passed over a year ago.

In my times of grief, at her passing, the walk, the trees and the overflowing nature brought me comfort and peace.


Finding my peace.

A canopy of leaves.

A canopy of leaves.


Beneath a canopy of leaves

I seek

and find my gods and goddesses, 

residing in nature’s cathedral.

The ancient, and twisted tree trunks

rise to the heavens

and give support to a roof of thousands of leaves.

A dazzle of colour and light.

As the sun catches the leaf edges

they become like stained glass windows.

The birds above

are an angelic choir.

The soft, grassy carpet beneath me

is ancient and blessed.

Truly, holy ground.

Many have walked this way before me

and will continue to do so:

when I no longer walk the Earth.

In the pews, either side of me

wildflowers quietly worship

I whisper my secrets to the trees

and they keep them safe.

They in turn,

whisper their ancient knowledge to me.

I leave nature’s cathedral/ chapel/ synagogue/ mosque/church.

It has no preference:

any one of us is welcome here;

in nature’s house of worship.


As always, thanks for reading. I’d love to hear if you think my free-style poem works.

Dorne x

Want to make some easy and quick money? Write a letter.

Make some money in fifteen minutes.

Make some money in fifteen minutes.

This is another of my posts that has also been published on My Trending Stories. If you love reading blogs check it out. Just allow plenty of time, as there is loads of really great reading material.

Another version of this appeared on here some time ago and is now in the colon of my blog… nice?


A brief letter to one of your favourite magazines could earn you a pretty good return for about ten to twenty minutes of work.

Here’s how!

All publications need feedback on how they’re doing with they’re readers.  Whether it’s good or bad…they want and need to know what we think. This makes us  – the reader VITAL. So vital in fact that these publications are prepared to pay good money, whether in actual cash, or enticing monetary equivalents.

But, the trick is to not write just any old letter. It does require a bit of thought.

Do some quick research.

No, this doesn’t involve months of scouring the internet, or being cocooned in the corner of a toasty warm library. Although that isn’t a bad idea!  Take a look at the style of other reader’s letters.

For example:

  • The subjects they cover ( invariably they relate to the articles published in the magazine).
  • A rough word count of the letters. They don’t have room for your beautifully penned War and Peace!
  • The style of the writing.

Do they have a prize on offer that you could use? Ladies, could you really use that fishing rod? Oh – you fish! Cool! Guys, do you want that day at the health spa? The woman in your life will love it though and you  – for at least a week afterwards!

Get the thing written.

These days you don’t even have to put pen to paper. Just tap away on your computer, laptop, phone, tablet, or on a quaint typewriter. Does anyone still use typewriters? Let us know.

Write the letter however you like.

Write the letter however you like.

Email makes life so much easier and cheaper doesn’t it? And there’s the added excitement that you may get an email back.

Do remember to spell and grammar check your work: and of course, write properly like what you does normally!

Editors are not idiots, nor teachers and they aren’t there to correct their readers!

Let’s think positive and assume that your letter is just what your favourite publication needs and it’s going to be published… great! It’s even been awarded the Star Letter accolade.

You’re published! However, sometimes changes will be made to your carefully crafted masterpiece. If this happens, take it in your stride. It really isn’t worth having a screaming hissy fit about it. Just think about the money/ beauty set/ paint/ tool kit, model sports car winging its way to you.

Once you've seen your name in print, you'll want more.

Once you’ve seen your name in print, you’ll want more.

Be warned…letter writing can be addictive.

One you’ve had the thrill of seeing your letter in print and have received a year’s free supply of cough medicine, you will be hooked. You’ll be chomping at the bit to get another five pounds, or something else for free and see your name in lights again! Okay… not quite in lights, but published – just the same.

Over the years I’ve received money, garden centre vouchers, extremely posh notebooks, dog beds and dog sweaters, ( yes, I like wearing dog sweaters!) for a few minutes of writing.

Go on, write your letter and press that SEND button now.

More importantly, once you’ve had a letter published it gives you the confidence to try again, and again. Letters become reviews and then you get really cocky and above yourself and try out a pitch on some poor, unsuspecting editor, for an article idea that you know they will just have to commission!


Sometimes, it actually works!

Just how do you progress from letters to reviews and articles?

I’ll be back to spill the beans on how I found my way into some of the publications I’ve been published in. Hard work, brilliant editors and a lot of luck helped me. I’m by no means a big-time writer and I have loads to learn. Don’t we all?

In the meantime…get writing those letters. And feel free to share your successes with us, either on here, or on My Trending Stories.

Thanks for dropping by.

Dorne x

Ten ludicrously easy steps to getting a new mobile phone and writing for My Trending Stories.

header-6As some of you will be aware I’m currently in the process of re-organising my blog. This has been going on for about a month now and I can see it being ongoing for oh… well how long is a piece of string?

Seriously, do I really think that one day my blog will be perfect? Blimey… I hope not. I don’t do perfect  – I do ME, which is as far away from perfect as it gets.

In the meantime, I have been invited to contribute to the rather wonderful  website My Trending Stories click here to go to this post on there and then will have access to loads of other great articles, videos and just really cool stuff.

My aim is to post two posts a week. God help them. I’d like to post on a Wednesday and Saturday/Sunday. So, here I am posting on Monday. These posts will appear on here as well, with a link to the site – just in case you’re as addicted to reading the other articles as I am.

So, this post has been given an overhaul, a new name and a new leash of life. A few of you read it the first time round and I hope you like the new version. It will also be interesting to see what attention it gets on My Trending Stories. I’m watching it now. A few views, but no comments. I can see folk walking away shaking their heads, with confused faces. It’s good to have folk read it though.


Where would we all be without our mobile phones? Can we even imagine a world without our little slinky, sexy friends? We depend on them for pretty much everything… right?

When we lose them/they die on us/or the dog chews them, it’s the end of the world… yes? And we just need another phone. Like five minutes ago.

It’s time – consuming and frustrating wading through pages and pages of adverts and references on the internet. Why not ring the friendly help/sales line and speak to someone about it?

Okay... the phone is ringing at the other end. Try not to get too excited.

Okay… the phone is ringing at the other end. Try not to get too excited.

You dial the number, which has at least ten zeros in it. On your tenth attempt it connects.

A friendly message tells you all about the amazing company and just how they can help you buy your dream mobile phone, improve your appearance and make you a better, more worthwhile person in general.

Just ten minutes later and you are invited to :

  • Press 1…  if you’re a customer of theirs and would like to become a customer of the other company.( What other company?)
  • Press 2… because, you can’t become a customer of the other company. They’re merging…right?
  • Press 3… if you know they’re merging.
  • Press 4… if you’re a not a customer of theirs, but are a customer of one of the other companies.
  • Press 5… if you actually understand any of this.
  • Press 6… to talk to a human being

We’re sorry there are no human beings in this new company… choose from these options.

Press 7… to choose your new super phone, deal and tariff.

We’re sorry our system won’t allow you do that…  please choose from these other options.

  • Press 8… if you’d like to be promised a new phone, with the correct SIM card and a next day delivery.
  • Press 9… if you’d love to wait in all day and have no phone delivered.
  • Press 10… if you’d like to have to ring us again…on a premium rate number, and be kept hanging on , whilst we prat around, check our system to see if your order has even been processed.
  • Press 11… if you’d love to be serenaded by songs such as ‘You used to call me on my cell phone.’ ( I kid you not!) whilst you wait for what seems to be an eternity.

Let’s have a listen to ‘You used to call me on my cell phone’ for a while.

Okay, now you’re at screaming point – let’s get on with processing your order. Can you hear me typing away on my computer?

Okay, can you hear me tapping away on my computer. I am a real person and I understand your real needs.

Okay, can you hear me tapping away on my computer. I am a real person and I understand your real needs.

  • Press 12… if you want to be told that your order doesn’t appear to have been processed.
  • Press 13… if you would just love to be told that the model of phone that you ordered is now out of stock.
  • Press 14… if you long to hear that they don’t know when they are due to get some more of these fabulous models in.
  • Press 15… if you  want them to tell you that they expect some more models of this phone in  3 to 5 days.
  • Press 16… if you really want to be informed that this is the best that their super, rather crappy system will do for you right now.
  • Press 17… if you want to patiently wait for the 5 days and still receive nothing. Not a thing… not a message… apology… nothing at all!
  • Press 18… if you would like to have to ring them on their premium, blood and life sucking number… YET AGAIN! To be informed that they still haven’t got any of the damn and blasted phones in.
  • Press 19… if you really want to be told that… no wait… they do have some models in. But, they are for the new customers. In fact they have 319 of this model in. Would you like one?
  • Press 20… if you feel like slapping someone in the face with a wet fish
  • Press 21… if you can’t quite believe what you are hearing. They have stock for new suckers,  customers…but for the poor imbeciles that have been gormless enough to sign up with them, they have nothing. NOTHING!
  • Press 22… to hear that again…


Here at the most AMAZING mobile phone company that ever existed – on Earth, we pride ourselves on customer satisfaction. Yes,we know that you have not even taken delivery of your life – changing mobile phone yet,( in fact you may never) but hey, what the hell? we’re still going to ask that you give us some feedback. It helps us to provide this kind of service.

  • Press 23… if you’d like to praise us on our amazing customer service.
  • Press 24… to threaten to leave us and go with another well-known company… only you won’t be able to take your number with you… why? Because, for reasons known by NO ONE, that number can not be transferred. This new system that has been presumably designed with extra masochism in mind, won’t allow that to happen.
  • Press 25… if you know you re stuffed… BIG TIME.
  • Press 26… if you’ve lost the will to live.
  • Press 27… to be promised yet another phone delivery.
  • Press 28… to ask how you will return the original, crappy, faulty one.
  • Press 29 … to explain… for the tenth time that they sent a phone that won’t take a charge.
  • Press 30… if you’re confused as hell.
  • Press 31… if you’ve had one phone sent to you, that didn’t work.
  • Press 32… if you want another one.
  • Press 33… if you’ve had enough.
  • Press 34… if you understand any of this at all.
  • Press 35… if you want a SIM card that works.
  • Press 36… if you believe in fairies living at the bottom of your garden.
  • Press 37… to tell us that you’ve actually received a damn phone that b****y well works, but you can’t actually use as a phone, as the SIM card belongs to the other company.
  • Press 38… if you’d like to wait some more whilst they promise to mail it out the next day… but don’t.
  • Press 39… if you’d like a phone that actually works.
  • Press 40… if you’d like to take part in a quick two-hour survey and give us some feedback on our amazing, professional service.

So, there we have it. Nothing to it and you’ll likely get nothing at the end of it.

If you do, it won’t work and you’ll have to drive half a day, to the nearest retail outlet of the most amazing mobile phone company that ever existed, on Earth. The friendly staff there will listen to your story, laugh like hell  and give you a new phone that works… just like that.

Oh and yeah, those ten easy steps soon became 40.

If you’ve read to the end of this… well done and thanks. Now go and lie down in a dark room.

Thanks again.

Dorne x