2014 Year in Review

Another year has passed and as the old adage goes, “the more things change, the more they stay the same”.  I had a lot of big plans for this year and it was a complete year of disappointment in terms of this blog and HinoMaple.  I’m not complaining one bit as it was all a life lesson.  Things have changed a lot as I have new projects to work on, and I did have a lot of fun.

HinoMaple

HinoMaple LogoHinoMaple continues to trudge along and be somewhat neglected.  I haven’t had the time as I added a new project to my lineup.  I have done my best to keep up with HinoMaple and with only a few nibbles things didn’t live up to my expectations.  I was able to take a business trip to Hiroshima to get information for a book I want to write, but I ended up delaying the writing indefinitely.  I will still get to it but I’m afraid I won’t be able to complete it.  I also had another book I wanted to co-write with a friend but that is also way behind schedule.  My other project is ramping up and it looks like these books may have to be put on the backburner…

Saijotsuru Sake Brewery

Saijotsuru Sake Brewery

In terms of sales, I was happy to meet a lovely Brazilian couple from Australia.  They had a great time in Japan and it was fun to show them around.  I also had a few other nibbles but nothing serious.  My book continues to make small sales but I’m sure this is due to the lack of advertising and marketing that it deserves.  I don’t have the capital to market it so I’m at a loss to figure out a better method to get the word out, without selling out to a major company.  Call me selfish but I want to keep everything under my control.

HinoMaple's Guide to Surviving JapanEverything here is all my choosing and I know where I have neglected things.  Next year, I believe I will be in the same boat with little change.  I’ll still do my best, but I have other endeavours that are requiring my time and money.

Dru’s Misadventures

Enjoying the sunset on Guam

Enjoying the sunset on Guam

Personally, I have had a quiet year, travel wise and blog wise.  It started off pretty busy but as time continued, I got into a new hobby and a new project which has taken my time away from here.  I hope I can continue to keep writing and keep posting twice a week.  I ramped up to 3 times a week for posts but now it seems like I am back down to 2 for now.  I just don’t have time to travel as much anymore and I don’t have any foreign trips to talk about.

Sliding Down the Slide

Sliding Down the Slide

In the coming year, I hope to get out of Tokyo a bit more and enjoy life before I’m saddled with this new project.  I do plan to do several trips as always but things may not work out as I plan.  I will keep writing here, but as you can see, things are changing more to a blog about beer more than anything else!

Stats

Me at the BeerFes Shinshu 2014

Me at the BeerFes Shinshu 2014

In terms of visits, things are still down.  Last year I saw a record hits in a single day with 354, but this year I have yet to reach that number.  I’m holding steady at around 100-150 hits a day, but a lot of this is Google related.  This year, my biggest day was 287.

JR East Christmas Tree

JR East Christmas Tree

My most popular post is still about Corin Street in Ueno.  It has long closed down but I still get a lot of people visiting to read all about it.  People are still reading about my smart card post from early 2013 as well.  I guess it is necessary for people to understand things.

Bakeable Kit Kat (Pudding Flavour)

Bakeable Kit Kat (Pudding Flavour)

Somehow my Kit Kat post in May is my biggest post of the year.  Of course this does not include my home page.

A Wild Animal Sighting!

A Wild Animal Sighting!

Japan Guide and Virtual Tourist continue to be my biggest referrers.  Just from scanning the information, Merry Witch’s A Hundred Views of Edo brought the most people here.  Not too many but it was the most.  Lina’s Urutora no Hi came second with Rurousha coming third.  Honestly, I think Ru actually came in first, but because her blog tends to have every .com, .jp, .everything, they all get separated and I can’t keep count.

Sox

Sox

So, how was your year?  Will 2015 be better or worse for you?  Stay tuned for my New Year post where I put in my information for what I hope to accomplish for 2015.