Painted Wooden Cubes has made it through sixty days. Since it’s a board games blog, and not a US president, that rule about not reviewing its performance until a hundred days have passed thankfully doesn’t apply. What have we learnt?
The Past and Present:
In terms of attracting readers, I’m pleased with how things have gone so far. I’m no web-analysis expert, but there are a number of promising signs. Most weeks have surpassed the previous in the number of views recorded. What seems to be a healthy proportion of people visiting the site through a link to a single post then click through to see the home page. So people who read something here are, in many cases, interested in reading more. And a fair number of views come without referrers, suggesting people who have visited before are coming back. If you’re one of those, thanks for that. I’m not aiming to trick people into boosting page views artificially. I want people who visit the site to find it valuable in some sense.
To that end, what’s more important than any measurable statistic is that I’ve written a number of pieces I’m proud to have produced (and only one I can say I dislike with hindsight – I won’t specify which). I’ve had the honour of a number of designers reading my reviews of their games. And I’ve had a fair number of messages of support from readers – which are a buzz to receive, of course.
Today, I registered paintedwoodencubes.com. While domain registrations don’t cost the earth, I wanted to be sure that I wouldn’t be alone in feeling the site had value. I’m confident now that I’m not on my own in that view.
For sure, these are still early days. I’m not going to propose any dramatic changes to what has been broadly successful so far. In addition, I don’t want to make unrealistic promises regarding the amount of extra time I can give to the site. Just be assured I’m self-disciplined about keeping the site going at the pace it’s moving now.
Through writing here, I’m keen to develop my own knowledge and understanding. I’m reading more and more material which I feel can be usefully applied to board games (a certain amount of psychological theory in particular, which I haven’t personally seen employed in connection with board games). So hopefully what I write can become more refined – sharper, more insightful – as time goes on.
One thing I am interested in exploring at this stage is the involvement of guest writers in the site. Those who get what Painted Wooden Cubes is doing, in terms of a more expressive, less formulaic criticism of board and card games. Whether the person in question is an established figure in the world of board games, or not is unimportant to me. Just as long as his or her writing suits the site.
Do contact me if you have something you feel would fit here. I want Painted Wooden Cubes to be a place for conversation on board and card games – what they can, and should, be and do. That’s where I see it’s richer future.