2017 End of Year Wrap Up
Hello everyone! So it is December 31st, 2017 aka the last day before 2018 begins and, honestly, it’s been an insane year, even more so than 2016. Today, though, I’m taking the time to look back at 2017 to go over what happened and see what worked & what didn’t. Since I quite liked how I did the wrap up last year, I’m going to break it down in the same kind of way with this post having four major categories: Blogging, Business, Personal and Looking Ahead. I hope you enjoy reading through my journey and I can’t wait to see you think! Thank you!
Follower count (in comparison to 2016): 732 (+131)
2017 total page views (in comparison to 2016): 13,647 (+5323)
2017 total visitors (in comparison to 2016): 6,530 (+1937)
2017 total likes (in comparison to 2016): 426 (-267)
2017 total comments (in comparison to 2016): 114 (-106)
Top 3 Posts of 2017:
- A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J Maas – SPOILER Review, Art, Questions & Theories
- One Dark Throne by Kendare Blake – Spoiler Review
- Top Ten+ Problematic Books
Other Posts I’m Proud Of:
- DISCUSSION: 100+ Muslim Books & Creators
- DISCUSSION: #BooksForTrade FAQ + FREE Trade Tracker Download
- DISCUSSION: Don’t Forget The Young In Young Adult
Social Media Stats (in comparison to 2016):
- Twitter – 2865 (+685)
- Goodreads – 458 (+77)
- Instagram (for the blog) – 357 (+73)
- Instagram (for my photography) – 78
- Pinterest – 105 (+49)
As well, I stopped using Tumblr, Bloglovin’ and Facebook for the blog (though they’re all still up), and, over the summer, I created a new Instagram for my photography, and it has 78 followers at the moment!
Additionally, I’ve continued working with Macmillan to review up and coming ARCs, I’ve worked with a number of other publishers as well and I got my first manuscript ever to review (ahhhh!! it’s Circe by Madeline Miller and it comes out in April!).
So 2016 was the year I finally started implementing business into my blog life however 2017 was the year that I also failed at some businesses, and it might be weird to say but I think I like the failing more (I’ll explain why in a bit). Here’s what I did:
- Added more fandom art to my Society 6 and Red Bubble shops, and I also added some cool political designs which became really popular! In fact, my “Nevertheless, She Persisted” design is my most popular design of the year!
- I am still part of Amazon affiliates, however, I focused less on it which was a bit sad since I know I could do so much more with it
- For the first half of the year, I tried to improve the design shop and really researched how to be better at it but, over the summer, I realized that, at the moment, it’s not the direction I want to go in
- In January, I launched a subscription box called Diverse Reads but then got a lot of hate about me and about the business which led me to reflect on whether I had the time and energy to do Diverse Reads. In the end, I realized that, currently, I won’t be able to put my all into it and it deserves at least 110% effort so I shut it down.
Now, on the whole, it probably seems like I failed a lot in terms of business goals and I kind of did but I also learned a lot about myself and my career goals including:
- what my limits are in terms of effort and time spent on things
- what doesn’t motivate me (still figuring out – but getting closer to knowing – the ‘does’ though) and I learned how to handle being unmotivated
And the biggest thing I learned was that sometimes things just happen and you might have thought you were doing everything right but, when you look back, you realize there are cracks all over the place, and that maybe you need to put some tape on the cracks for now until you’ve gained more knowledge and time in order to put the necessary and right effort into filling in the cracks.
On a personal level, 2017 was quite a whirlwind of good and bad, and of course, due to privacy reasons, I can’t tell you about most of the bad (and some of the good). But, here’s what I can tell you happened (excuse me if I get vague):
- I fulfilled a dream – that I didn’t fully realize I had until this year – by joining a dance class
- With doing dance, I also started working out more and pushing myself
- I learned my limits, physically, yes, but specifically mentally and emotionally, and became more knowledgeable about myself overall
- I realized the importance of telling the right people things and letting them in, and also the differences in levels of trust
- I became a part of The Tempest and found an amazing community of women who I can lean on and learn from
- I went to BookCon for the first time ever and I met several of my lovely amazing blogger friends and I saw so many awesome authors!!!
- I met Leigh Bardugo (one of my favorite authors) twice (at BookCon and at another signing in September) even though I didn’t think I’d ever be able to meet her
Overall, I think the first half of 2017 broke me. Actually no, it challenged me; it made me rethink my personal goals, my religious goals and life, my business goals and so much more. Of course, there was quite a bit of that in the second half of 2017, but the first half definitely pushed me and then the second half of the year showed me what it was like to take risks, and to be strong and really, what strength and taking risks could mean.
2017 was nothing at all like I thought it would be.
Looking ahead in 2018, I want to just do. I feel like, at least by the end of 2017, I’ve gotten more complacent (even with the risks) so I want to do more in 2018 to build myself up in all the ways I can. As well, I also realized that, by the end of 2017, I felt a lot less worked up about numbers – both for blogging and business – which was a surprise that I later think is a good thing. Like I said before, though, I want to be more proactive and better about being a better blogger and businesswoman. This doesn’t specifically mean to post a ton more or keep trying to open up more businesses, but rather that I want to better myself at what I already am doing & how I’m doing them, and then go on and do new things.
Therefore, the main goals I want to reach in 2018 are:
- make over $500 from my combined businesses
- see if I can get my art into subscription boxes and/or work with authors for my art to be a part of their promo/marketing/preorder things (this is quite the dream for me so please, comment below, email me or tweet me so we can talk about this if you might be down to work with me)
- continue with dance and workout more
- actually go for YouTube and see where it leads
- finish my poetry book and one of my fiction books, as well as start querying at least one of them
- connect with more people and build up my current relationships
- work with more publishers, companies, authors, small businesses, and bloggers
- take more risks
Now, the last thing I want to say about goals, as a reminder for both me and you, is this: don’t be afraid of the future and don’t stay within the realm of possibilities and be complacent. Go for your goals and achieve as many steps as you can take to get there. You may not be able to complete all or even any of your goals at all within 2018 but, if you at least start on them and complete some steps, then you’re one step closer to doing it.
Keeping this in mind, I ask you, what can I do in 2018 to make reading Avid Reader, my art shops (Red Bubble and Society 6), and/or connecting with me a lot better? What did you like/dislike in 2017 and what do you want me to change in 2018? As well, if you want to maybe collab with me, definitely let me know as I would love to collab either on the blog, via art or on YouTube somehow!
Anyway, thank you guys for supporting Avid Reader and myself throughout the ups and the downs. It’s been one kind of year but we’ve gotten through it ALHLA*; we’ve survived and we’ve learned. Here’s hoping that 2018 will be better and more interesting in a good way. Thank you all for everything, have a great day/night and see you in the new year ;)! Tata for now!