Well it’s that time of year, and what a year, to look back and reflect a little, and look forward to next years activities.
To start off with, the year really took off in terms of blogging output, from a handful of posts per year, and finally cracking double figures the last couple of years, I’ve jumped massively and gone over 80 posts this year, from 16 last year!
I can put this down to improvements in blogger itself (I updated my template options and enjoyed tweaking the appearance of the blog, and learned more how to use it).
I added features which improved the blogs look and the way it’s laid out. The Linked Within Widget has worked well I think, as did adding ‘popular posts’ but I think the biggest change, was fully ‘Labelling’ posts and putting a ‘cloud effect’ Label list in blog sidebar. This one action seemed to massively increase my blog hits.
I’ve turned off the ‘light-box’ effect for pictures, which I didn’t like (takes too long to load and view pictures with this effect – blogger are you listening?).
I’ve also made commenting easier. All this has seen my total blog hits soar, jumping to over 2000 per week now. Thank you all for stopping by and commenting :-)
I think the fact that I have joined as a follower to many great blogs out there, and comment frequently of these blogs, I believe has thus raised my blogging profile, so folks check back to my own blog. It really has opened up the blogging/hobby online community for me.
So what happened during the year?
January through to April, started off and continued well with many Lord of the Rings figures being painted, filling gaps in my collections and making new painted units available for LOTR SBG and the newer WOTR.
An odd couple of games of Black Powder, raised the profile of this game in my mind, and I looked to further my chances of fielding armies for this rule-set, instead of having to rely on others, to play a game. And thus Perry ACW and Napoleonic stuff was ordered.
May, saw an unexpected and complete change of tack after seeing Joe Harrison’s Leadwood, though this inspired my laterally as such and the great Pirate adventure of 2011 commenced. A few more LOTR projects were completed to clear the way so to speak for the Pirates.
June through to October, saw a great deal of Pirate (Legends of the High Seas) painting, modelling and gaming done. A great time of it was had. June also gave rise to my frustrations with gaming LOTR, and I think this dissatisfaction further made the switch to Pirates and LotHS that much easier, to throw myself into… Another idea was kicked off, again with Joe’s inspiration; for VSF, and though models and a rulebook (GASLIGHT) were bought, nothing much got painted, or played…. So Zulus, Colonial Brits and Prussians were added to the paint backlog.
November came around, and this found me at a lull. I still had some pirate things to finish off, but I was in a mood to clear various backlogs, so I finally completed the ACW regiment started back in March, ‘multi-based’ for various formats of play. November also saw my WW2 interest tweaked again, and this launched me off in another direction for the year, back in to Flames of War, with another project finished that had been started months if not years ago – more commandos, and also saw the start and completion of Panzers from PSC. Meeting a new chap to the area; Paul who plays FoW, and encouraging a couple of others to play; Brett & Chris, has certainly kept this interest going.
December, saw continued work on FoW matters, and late entry into Analogue Hobbies Winter Painting Challenge, with slow but steady progress to date.
So a good year all round I think with many diverse figures painted, terrain made, games played, and more added to the Plastic & Lead Mountain (PLM) ;-)
So what does 2012 have in store?
Well so long as the world doesn’t come to an abrupt Nostradamus-like end, then I hope to continue with many projects that have been started this year, and try and reduce the PLM.
Hopefully the Painting Challenge will keep me motivated through to March, and I expect to get current FoW projects completed. Whether I start on another one, I am unsure. I have had a hankering to do the 50th Div - Tyne Tees, as that’s my home area back in the UK. There is also talk of starting MidWar for FoW and I could be tempted by a DAK (Africa Korps) force…
Other than that I really must get on and start making a serious dent in my piles of plastic historic figures of various periods; WSS, Naps, ACW, Zulus & Colonial Brits, and the VSF Prussians, and I still need to finish my Brig!
I sincerely hope I don’t get tempted into any more periods, scales and projects, though I have been pondering skirmish gaming WW2 in either 20mm or 28mm, though not sure which rule set would be best…
Well that’s enough rambling from me.
As for what 2012 will bring, well… I am not going to dwell on Nostradamus or ancient Myan prophecies, rather I would view any possible events to be a fresh start for many, rather than an end of all things. What put me in mind of this is that my wife likes to play about with Tarot cards, nothing serious as such, taken with a pinch of salt, and all that…but one thing folks always dread coming up is the ‘Death’ card – yet this rarely literally means ‘death’. Usually it refers to the end of one phase of your life and the beginning of another… that’s how I will view much of the mumbo jumbo that has been spouted about 2012; a new start!
Another odd thing about this year is that I will be 42 years old. If we are to believe the Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy; well, that’s the ‘Meaning of life, the universe and everything!’ So it could be a very interesting year for me!
Hope you all have a good one, and best wishes for 2012!