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Annual Review: Writing

December 26, 2012

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Today’s article is the final look back on an individual category of goals and objectives in my series of Annual Review posts, specifically the Writing category. 

Unlike the previous two categories, this one saw a great deal of success, thought I have to admit, much of the evidence of that is anecdotal as the wording of the goals did not make them overly conducive to truly measurable results.

Here’s how I fared on these objectives in 2012:

Refine my writing to reduce the average length of my articles – ACHIEVED

If I wanted to be particular about this goal I could have kept a detailed log of word counts of my articles to help measure my success, but going through more than two years worth of posts hardly seemed like a good use of my time when I know what the results will be.

Though some of my articles still tended to be more lengthy in nature, I am more than confident that the average length of a post on this blog has decreased dramatically from when I first started up back in 2010.

Even still, I would love to get things down to an even more concise form, so I’ll continue working at this goal in 2013.

Expand the range of topics I write about – ACHIEVED

This is another area that I was happy with my performance.  Each month seemed to provide me with ample opportunity to expand the list of topics that I wrote about while sticking to the central themes of this blog: collecting sports memorabilia and finding ways to limit its impact on my finances.  I do need to narrow down the number of categories I currently have though, since I’ve now surpassed the 30 mark.

Increase opportunities for reader engagement in my articles – ACHIEVED

Almost every single article that I posted this year ended with a question or two for readers to consider and get back to me on.  Only a handful of articles really generated much in the way of feedback or discussion (something I would like to see more of in 2013), but at least I was providing the option of engagement more than I had in the past.

Include resources of value to readers more frequently in my articles –ACHIEVED

I did a much better job of this in 2012 as well.  Not every article featured links to external resources, but many of them did, often because a fellow blogger or a news story inspired the article that I ended up posting. 

If there’s one thing that I could improve on with this goal for 2013 is to make sure that I keep up with current events in the hobby better than I did at certain times this year (the last few months in particular).  As I’ve often said, there are plenty of great blogs out there with useful and insightful opinions and information that I’m happy to help support in my own writing.

Restart my Monthly eBay Store Newsletter – ACHIEVED

This is the one goal of the five that I provide a quantitative review of since it’s a matter of counting the months of the year.  I did manage to get this out every single month (December edition coming up on the 31st), so this goal is complete.

I’m planning on something of an overhaul to the newsletter in 2013, using it as more of a “tips and tricks” guide for self-sufficient collecting than an update of what’s going on in my eBay StoreIf you’re interested and have an eBay account, you can subscribe here.

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As I mentioned off the top, the across the board achievement of these goals was largely due to the fact that I didn’t keep any quantitative data to truly measure my success, all were measured in opinion and anecdotes.

That said, I am confident that what you see written above is a true and accurate reflection of my progress over the course of the year.

The five achievements in this category bring me to a grand total of 7 goals achieved, 5 objectives partially achieved, and 3 goals not achieved for the year.

Not a terrible result, but with less than half being completely achieved there is definitely some significant room for improvement and/or reassessment of my approach to my personal mega-hobby.

You’ll be able to read a bit more about that in my final Self-Sufficiency Summary (and final post of 2012) on Sunday.

Until then, all the best in your collecting pursuits!

Ryan

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