Monday, April 11, 2011

Grown People Talking turned three years old today. Unlike some milestones, it actually does feel like a significant amount of time has passed since I launched this blog on April 11, 2008. I guess it's because I've chronicled so many experiences, moments, and topics, which almost always pertain to Charlotte. And I've had a lot of fun doing it, which is why I believe I've continued to keep it going whereas I've seen plenty of other blogs come and go.

Over the past year, some things have changed however. Most significantly, in December I began writing a nightlife blog for Charlotte magazine called "Dusk Till Dawn". That's been so far so good as well, but because of it I don't blog on GPT as much as I have in the past and is why you don't find much about nightlife on here anymore. But when you add up the number of posts between the two sites, I'm probably blogging as much as ever. It's been nice to have a blog with a singular focus, which is what DTD allows me to do as I opine on Charlotte nightlife ranging from happy hour to late-night. If you haven't been reading it, you might want to if you're looking to navigate the party and social scene in this city. And here on GPT, I pretty much write about everything else related to Charlotte: sports, music, entertainment, arts, education, business, politics, philanthropy, community issues, and more.

From the beginning of GPT, I've blogged about what I want, when I want, which is the kind of creative control most creative people love to have. It's a great balance to my "day job" as a freelance writer when I'm writing stories that first begin as an idea I usually pitch to an editor, which he/she must first approve of before I proceed to write the story, that he/she then edits or asks me to revise. I respect the process, though, because it usually makes the story better, but sometimes it's just good to say what you want, how you want. And since day one, this blog has helped me become a better freelance writer, I think, because it keeps me plugged into the city and people I cover in between the articles that appear in monthly magazines.

But while there are some selfish reasons as to why I maintain Grown People Talking, there are also reasons I do it that I think others appreciate. I often get emails from readers who thank me for keeping them informed on what's going on in Charlotte and for adding my perspective. And I especially take pride in being able to write about a community event or nonprofit organization, and do a small part in helping spread their message and perhaps be the reason a few more people showed up to volunteer at an event.

GPT is getting more traffic than ever, so that's more motivation for me to continue it. Like I do each year, below I've listed the top-five blog posts that received the most page views during the past year. In parenthesis are the dates the articles were originally posted, and I measured the traffic from April 11, 2010 to April 10, 2011, which is for the last twelve months. So when you take that into consideration, it's remarkable that interest in Sonya Curry continues to lead the way after more than two years and that the Sun Drop post ranks so high after being up less than a month. According to Google Analytics, 45 percent of my traffic comes from search engines, and there are just certain topics and names that draw people to the site.
  1. Two Things I Realized About Sonya Curry (February 13, 2009)
  2. CIAA 2011 Parties and Events: The List (January 17, 2011)
  3. Sun Drop Is Dropping It Like It's Hot in Funny Commercial (March 15, 2011)
  4. Charlotte's Kendra James Is a 'Bad Girl' (December 2, 2009)
  5. Facebook Campaign to Bring Jacinda Back to 'The Beat' (April 29, 2010)
Cheers to another great year as I celebrate this third birthday! And may the best be yet to come. Thank you for your continued support.


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