Happy Blogging Birthday To Me!
The first GolfBlogger post appeared on March 22, 2004, so today GolfBlogger heads into its fifth year of publication.
I started the site just to see what this blogging phenomenon was about, but quickly found that I loved it. While I now teach economics and political science, in a former life I was a professional writer—mostly ghostwriting for others. Blogging gave me a writing outlet that I sorely missed. It’s one thing to write for yourself. It’s another entirely to write for an audience and is eminently more satisfying.
My initial thought for writing a blog was to write about economics and politics. I have degrees in those fields, and worked in politics (before teaching) for a number of years. But that niche already was crowded, so I chose my other passion: golf.
GolfBlogger is, to my knowledge, the second oldest golf blog, so when I started, there really were no models to follow. I did not want to turn it into a site that simply recycled news on the PGA Tour (and I’m glad I didn’t, for there are far too many of those now). Instead, my models were Instapundit, Gizmodo and BoingBoing. Like Instapundit, I decided to offer short, pithy comments and links to news; as with Gizmodo, I planned to link to new products and review them; and following BoingBoing’s lead, I would simply write about and link to things that interest me. Finally, as with any blog, I would offer observations on life—in this case, my golfing life.
Since that first post, I have published 3, 418 articles, avoiding the fate of most blogs where the authors write a few pieces and then quickly lose interest. A post a day has always been my goal, and as you can see by the numbers, it’s one I’ve easily met. And I see no reason to stop now. I love golf as much—if not more than before—and reading and writing about it is my second favorite thing to playing it.
This past year has been a good one. The site had a complete redesign, including a new logo. GolfBlogger was mentioned in SportsIllustrated, and on PGA Tour Radio. And in spite of my neglect of promotions and advertising, readership continues to climb.
For this year, I’m going to finish my project of playing, photographing and reviewing every course in Washtenaw County, Michigan. Then, I’m going to splurge and review some of Michigan’s wonderful resort courses. My dream for the summer is to play Oakland Hills ahead of the PGA Championship; at the very least, I’ll attend the event. On a more practical side, I plan to purchase some new software to handle the golf directory, and to upgrade the bogging software (yet again).
I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank the many thousands who make a habit of visiting the site, and the sponsors who make it financially possible for me to keep it all going. Those sponsors have paid for the site redesign, a new logo, software, hosting costs and most of the other expenses associated with the site.