This isn’t the busiest blog in the world, and I don’t suppose it will ever have a huge audience, but WordPress send me notifications of new followers and likes, and it’s always nice to think that a post has appealed to readers, even if it’s impossible to know exactly why.
I check the stats page to see if I can find out a little more about who is reading and clicking, but this often poses more questions than it answers. I happened to look just after midnight the other night, just after the numbers had been reset, and this is what I found:Dear visitor, whoever you are, can you tell me how you managed to travel half way round the world in a matter of minutes and why you read six pages of my blog from three different countries?
In a recent email, a friend said he’d “been enjoying” the recent posts on the blog. “But you haven’t liked them!” I retorted. Of course that raised the subject of what the like button signifies to each of us and why some of the posts here are more popular than others. Which also raises the question of what blogs are for – especially this one – and whether I should be deliberately posting things that I think will generate more followers and likes. Continue reading “what’s not to like?”
I mentioned two survey questions last week, which asked about reasons for reading and reasons for writing poetry. At the time, I didn’t say who was carrying out the survey, as I wasn’t sure it was relevant. But what is a survey without results? And now the results have been published, and they raise further points for discussion.
The survey I mentioned yesterday also had a question that asked “What is most likely to motivate you to READ a poem?” It gave the following list of possible reasons, from which you were allowed to choose up to three:
I’ve been back in the DCTN archives discussing narrators – first person and third person – and what’s ‘real’ in my poetry, and have just written that the inspiration for a poem is almost certainly something in my life, but it isn’t necessarily something real that actually happened to me.
The trigger may be a personal experience, or it may be something I read or overhear, or something from today that I connect through to something half remembered from the past etc. I then take that kernel of an idea and extrapolate it and link it with other images and ideas to create a poem. The same trigger can inspire different poems in different styles or forms and with different protagonists, and the information that fleshes it out may come from personal experience, research or imagination. Continue reading “of shoe-cleaning and elephants”