2021’s greatest hits

Every year at this time I look back at the year’s most popular posts and review my stats. I started doing this because I figured, who’s reading my blog on New Year’s Eve anyway? Then it turned out to be a nice way to reconnect you with my favorite posts from the year.

But first, let’s look at this blog’s 2021 stats. The number of pageviews I get is a great vanity metric. I like it a lot that I got slightly more pageviews this year than last year. I wasn’t trending to that at the end of November, so I juiced my stats by sharing on a Facebook group about my hometown, some long ago posts I wrote about my hometown. That brought a couple thousand extra views and pushed the total over the top, at just over a quarter million.

I’m bummed out that comments were slightly down this year. But I’m only a little bummed because my blog still gets more comments than any other photo blogs that I know of. I do this to be in community with people like you, and your comments here are my rich reward for doing all of this writing and making all of these photographs. (That, and when you buy my books!)

Here are the five posts I liked best this year. They’re all personal essays and stories. Normally, I deeply love one or two of the essays I write each year. That’s not the case this year; I feel like my writing has been so-so in 2021. I have been in a creative slump most of the year, driven by the burnout I’ve experienced because of my incredibly demanding job. I managed these five posts that are pretty good.

My most viewed posts from 2021 rose to the top thanks to search and heavy sharing on Facebook. Here are the top five:

Pageviews are nice, but I write this blog to engage with you. That happens when you leave a comment! Here are 2021’s five most commented posts:

Thanks for reading Down the Road in 2021!

To get Down the Road in your inbox or reader six days a week, click here to subscribe!
To get my newsletter with previews of what I’m working on, click here to subscribe!


14 thoughts on “2021’s greatest hits

  1. Stats are funny. I quit obsessing over them a long time ago, but I can’t quit feeling validation when they are good or feeling a letdown when they are off.

  2. Hey Jim, I wish I got half as many comments as you get! I can go a month, sometimes two, without a real comment on my blog. It’s a major bummer, as I had a healthy comment section from 2011 through about 2015. I blame Instagram, mostly.

    • Yes, social media really did put a bullet in blog comments. I think I just have a particularly tight group here, cultivated over the years. They’re starting to have conversations with each other in the comments!

  3. tbm3fan says:

    I had to re-read the story on best cameras under $50 and all the comments. Since that point in time I have taught myself to CLA the Pentax Hv, Sv, and Spotmatic bodies along with the Exakta bodies with new curtains. SR-T is next on the menu to learn. Come this Monday my time has arrived to send off my F2 to Sover. A complicated piece of photography deserves him while I’ll handle to more simpler ones.

  4. Hi Jim, those are impressive blog stats, especially given the impact of Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

    My blog stats were never that high and have declined since 2013. I have no data before 2013, but the blog is nearly 20 years old.

    • Thank you, yet a few other film-photo blogs I know get a million or more views a year and haven’t been at it as long as I have — 15 years next month! It grinds a little. I guess I do have a little bit of competitiveness in me.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.