GolfBlogger’s Blogiversary: Sixteen Years In
Today marks the beginning of the sixteenth year of GolfBlogger. It is, to my knowledge, the oldest, continuously published golf blog on the net.
In the years since 2004, I have posted (as of this writing) 13, 101 articles, received (literally) millions of visitors, and built a substantial social media following, including nearly 10K twitter followers and active Facebook pages for GolfBlogger and Michigan Golf. Google likes GolfBlogger enough to give it a first page listing on many golf searches.
None of the was intentional, however. I started the blog because I love to write. Before I changed careers to become a social studies teacher, I was a professional ghostwriter and editor. I found that while I loved teaching, I missed writing very much. In 2004, the (relatively) new concept of a “blog” seemed to me the perfect outlet for the writing urge.
The question was: what do I write about? In this, I followed writing advice that I had heard from everyone from my screenwriter Uncle to the professors at my journalism school at West Virginia: write about what you know; write about what interests you.
Golf blogs in this day and age are a dime a dozen. When I started in 2004, however, I had the course pretty much to myself. Lacking any golf models, I looked to existing political and tech blogs. The takeaway was the same: write about what you know; write about what interests you.
I like to say that GolfBlogger is the “blog of golf’s 99%: The working stiff who plays at munis with ten-year-old clubs and whose family and work take precedence, but whose love of the game never diminishes. ” It is both a description and a mission statement.
Sixteen years is a long time, but I’ve kept the blog going because I love both writing and golf. Writing for GolfBlogger is pretty much a compulsion.
There are worst things to be addicted to than golf and writing.
One of the highlights of the past year was meeting and interviewing Jack Nicklaus. He was in town at Oakland Hills Country Club for the 100th anniversary of the Golf Association of Michigan.
Nicklaus is the second of the Big Three that I have met. I met Gary Player at the Ford Senior Championship some years ago.
Another of the years highlight was joining the Golf Writers’ Association of America. You need a couple of recommendations from existing members to get in; I was gratified that people thought enough of my work to make those recommendations.
I enjoyed covering the inaugural Rocket Mortgage Classic, and the second year of the Ally Challenge. At the Rocket Mortgage Classic media day, I was privileged to play with Michigan golf legend Janina Jacobs.
In 2019, I extended my list of courses played and reviewed to 219. My Michigan course review total now is at 185. I also extended my personal streak of playing at least one round a month in Michigan to 61.
In this next year, I plan to add another twenty or so new courses to my “collection.” Most of those will be munis or daily fee courses, but I won’t turn down any offers from private clubs.
I have hopes of extending the streak at least through December — if the coronavirus doesn’t shut down Michigan’s golf courses.
I’ll also continue to offer up reviews of golf related products as manufacturers send samples for review.
And of course, I’ll continue with my observations and musings on golf life as of one of the sport’s 99%.
In closing, I’d like to thank Mrs. GolfBlogger for her unwavering support of my golf and writing addiction these past sixteen years. We recently celebrated our 29th wedding anniversary; our support of each other’s interests is one reason we have remained strong.
I’d also like to thank some others who have offered the friendship and support I’ve needed to continue with GolfBlogger: Tony Korologos of Hooked on Golf Blog, John Duval of Into The Grain, international media star Bill Cuebas; Greg Johnson, who represents Gaylord Golf Mecca and the GAM; Kevin Frisch of Kevin Frisch PR, Ken Griffin at Boyne Resorts, Tom Lang of Michigan Golf Journal, Bill Hobson at MGL; Terry Moore; Shane Sharp of Southbound4; Noelle Zavalata at Srixon Cleveland, David Wheatley at Medi8 LTD, Dave Richards and Bill Johnson at Gull Lake View Resort , Karen Moraghan of Hunter PR, Chris King at Kingfish Communications, and many many more.
Here’s to another sixteen years of GolfBlogger.