One of my blog posts has surpassed one thousand reads. It deals with the art of descriptive writing.
I wondered why these three should be the most popular. They’re not necessarily my best posts. The answer, I thought probably lay in the way search engines work. A post is likely to be read if it (a) deals with a topic that is often searched for; and (b) has relatively few competitors, so it’s thrown up on the first page of a search.
My post on descriptive writing appears on the first page in a search for “The art of descriptive writing”, and my Magic Realism post appears as number one on the list generated by the search string “Magic Realism, Fantasy and Surrealism”.
And yet my sex writing post does not appear in the first three pages of results in response to either “How to Write Sex” or “Writing Sex”. That was curious, and I investigated further. For the first three years since it was posted, it averaged 23 reads a year. And then it took off, rising to 165 reads in the fourth year, 196 the following year, and 395 so far this year. So perhaps this post achieved its popularity by word of mouth. But the descriptive writing post showed the same pattern, while the magic realism post rose and then declined in popularity.
I’m mystified. If anyone can explain it to me, please get in touch.