Checking the calendar, I then realised that today is actually Crime Watch's first birthday, for it was on 9 August 2009 that this blog was birthed into the (blogosphere) world, with my opening post, "Haere mai" (meaning 'welcome' in Maori). Wow. One whole year already. Time does fly.
It's funny looking back on what I said in that opening post, and all that has happened in the 12 months since, both here on the blog, and elsewhere, particularly when it comes to New Zealand crime and thriller writing.
Since birthdays, like New Years' holidays, are times for a bit of reflection, I thought I would take a look back and share a random selection of facts, stats, and moments etc with you all:
- 463 posts have been published on a variety of crime fiction news, issues, and happenings;
- There were just under 30,000 visits to Crime Watch in the first year, and daily and weekly visits now average 3-5 times what they did in the first few months;
- The three most-visited days were those relating to the Lee Child 9mm interview (the first in the series), the PD James birthday and 9mm interview, and the James Lee Burke feature article - the latter recently topped the Lee Child 9mm interview as the most popular of all during the first year of Crime Watch;
- The post with the most comments was, unsurprisingly, one of the competitions I ran to win some Kiwi crime fiction;
- Encyclopaedic-style biographies have been written for 12 New Zealand crime and thriller fiction authors - contemporary and historic - and more than fifty other such Kiwi authors have been 'discovered', discussed and/or linked to on Crime Watch - far more than I would have ever thought possible when I started;
- Fifteen novels that could come within a broad definition of Kiwi 'crime, thriller or mystery fiction' were published during 2009 and discussed or linked to on Crime Watch - several having got little to no attention elsewhere on the Internet or in other media;
- I have interviewed 29 authors thusfar for the popular 9mm series of quickfire author interviews (that are exclusive to Crime Watch), ranging from relative unknowns to big-name bestsellers and crime fiction legends. Who would have thought this time last year that I would have the likes of PD James answering questions exclusively for you?
- Crime Watch has been part of some terrific series - including 27 posts for Kerrie's excellent Crime Fiction Alphabet series, successfully completing the Expert Level of Dorte's fantastic 2010 Global Reading Challenge (I am closing in on the extreme level), and casting my eye over how well several New Zealand bookstores support local crime writing;
- I have included 24 full crime fiction reviews on Crime Watch, while linking to dozens and dozens of others, both New Zealand crime fiction and international books; and
- Guest posts and guest reviewers have recently been introduced, as well as other features like the linkbar at the top, embedded YouTube videos, and links to radio/TV broadcasts.