2012 Stats

2012 was a crazy year for me. I started out blogging regularly, but then my wife’s pregnancy and an insane work project (complete with all-nighters and eighty-hour weeks) hit at once. I hardly blogged at all through the summer months, and it was difficult to get back into the habit once I stopped. I made up for that all in December, though, with 31 posts containing 59 reviews! Those daily posts were the only things to give my days structure during the initial sleepless weeks with my new daughter.

Where will I go from here, though? I’m enjoying this writing a lot, but I know that my life will get busy once I have to juggle work and fatherhood. I’m going to try switching to an every-other-day schedule, and I plan to build up a little buffer during my last days at home in the hopes that I can keep it going. Honestly, though, I’ll be pretty amazed if I can stay on pace for even a couple months.

Anyway, I like to take the first day of the year to look back at my reviews in aggregate. Though 2012 was inconsistent from month to month, its total numbers were surprisingly close to 2011’s: 109 posts containing 185 letter grades:

Grades

You can see last year’s wrap-up for more details on what I counted. The only thing that I’ll add here is that I don’t even start gathering these stats until the last few days of the year, so it’s a relief to realize that my grading curve held steady. I do think I can be a little too generous sometimes: When I went back through all this year’s grades, about 90% of them still felt right to me, but the ones that surprised me consistently seemed too high. I still think of myself as someone who averages a B- review, and that is true, but only because I was so stingy with the As this past year. Will it continue? I’m not sure – I still definitely intend to give grades item-by-item instead of trying to massage my stats over the course of the year.

If you’re curious, I have more detailed breakdowns by category below the fold. (Don’t feel obligated to keep reading; I do this summary mostly for my own sake.)

Comics

Comics surpassed music this year as my most commonly-reviewed category. The scary thing is that my backlog just keeps growing. From lack of time, I pretty much focused on the mainstream titles, but I think it’s important to catch up on all the independent stuff that I’m reading, too. I’m not sure how it will work. I like my current mix of topics, and just may not be able to keep up with all the comics. (I still haven’t started writing about graphic novels, for example.)

Music

My music reviews dropped off slightly, as I discussed yesterday. I hope to fix that this year. I also hope to get a little more variety in my grades. Maybe I just happened to buy a lot of middle-of-the-road stuff this year, but it looks like I was pretty hesitant to give things more than a basic recommendation (B), and only once went below a C. Honestly, my 2011 distribution looked a lot healthier.

Rock

Pop

Country

Broken down into more detail, though, my “country” and “rock” subcategories weren’t quite as extreme as last year’s. However, it looks like I’m afraid to get very opinionated with “pop”. Several of those Bs should have been something else.

Books

My book reviews look much better than last year, though! Maybe it’s strange to be happy that I read more bad ones, but I appreciate the variety. I’m also proud of how much I read last year: Definitely more than any year since my childhood. I’m in two book clubs, which both kept me reading consistently and gave me a much broader selection than I would have picked out on my own. On the other hand, my to-read pile keeps growing because the clubs usually pick books that weren’t already on my radar…

Games

I continue to have the same problem with board games as last year: Since I need to find time to play them with friends, they are usually months old (at best) before I’m ready to review them. Also, I’m a lot less likely to review the bad ones, since we’ll play them once and then move on, and that’s not enough exposure for me to give a fair, detailed review.

Movies

I finally watched enough movies to warrant a chart for them! This is a decent distribution, though it would look pretty bad if I had split it out by movies I watched in the theater (two A-s, one B, and three B-s), and ones I watched on video (one B, one B-, and everything lower). It does make sense that the ones I’m excited enough to go out for end up being the best. I still find time for so few movies that it’s hard to read much into this.

iPhone

For the second year in a row, I didn’t have many iPhone reviews. However, I have now posted three straight monthly reviews, and I hope to keep that pattern up. I wonder if they will continue to be so evenly spread out? (Note that most of these were games, but I didn’t include them in the board game chart above.)

The one category I really fell back on is the “adventure games”, with none played in 2012. Hopefully I’ll at least participate in the IFComp again if nothing else.

Thanks for reading my blog. I got a lot more readers near the end of the year, and hopefully most of you will stick around while I find a sustainable level of posting over the next few months.

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