You can spend four years in Houston and not see snow once. In the snowy Rust Belt they remain ignorant. But in between where the proper snow is a rare occurrence exists a magical treat known as snow cream. Snow cream is, simply put, an ice cream substitute made from fresh, powdery snow.
And I, a hillbilly transplanted to a Rust Belt ready with veritable feet of good snow, will teach you the trick to making perfect snow cream.
This is my favorite of all Top Ten Tuesday posts. To the point that you can find favorite new-to-me authors posts going back past when I actually started participating in Top Ten Tuesdays. Some blog prompts are so great you have to go back in time to maximize their potential. (Check out my prior posts for 2017, 2016, 2015, and 2014.) I must admit that it was kind of a tough year for me, reading-wise, but I still managed to find some great authors. Even if I did have to count both members of a writing couple to get to ten.
A dear friend of mine recently had major surgery and is looking at a long recovery. Which sucks, but CAN YOU IMAGINE THE TIME TO READ?!? And watch movies and stuff, I guess. She is fishing for recs, and lacking options simply will not do. Besides, I have a history of being there for long convalescences and reading recs is kind of what I do (and watching recs too, I guess). Not all of these may be to my friend’s tastes, but then neither was country music once upon a time, and it only took a decade for her to come around. Without further ado, some recommendations for someone with a lot of time on their hands…
Hillbilly Highways officially launched on June 6 of this year, and it has been a tremendous experience. It was a bit of a leap of faith to start a new, second blog after spending three years building my SF blog, especially one so different and so personal. I have been gratified to entertain and enrich some fans of the old blog (“I’m beginning to like highways better than your other blog. The topics are far closer to home. I love Americana, and nothing is better than Appalachian tales, folk heroes, honest struggles, and a touch of mystery.” – Oghma), attract new fans (most notably the inestimable Jim Cornelius at Frontier Partisans), and even have some small measure of numerical success.
Establishing a fresh beachhead on the war-torn internet mainland is no easy task, but, while I may not be getting the numbers I get at Every Day Should Be Tuesday, Hillbilly Highways has done better in its first seven months than Every Day Should Be Tuesday did during its first seven months.
Thank you for joining me for 88 posts and contributing 254 comments and 276 likes.
You can find my State of the Blog for Every Day Should Be Tuesday here.
I didn’t read nearly as much this year as I did last year, or as I wanted to, but I wound up reading some damn good books. Enough so that I decided to do two of these posts. You can find my list of the ten best speculative fiction and related books over at Every Day Should Be Tuesday. This is my list of the best of the rest.
Another month, another month in review! We enter that time of year where things wind down, our tolerance for Christmas music and our gratitude already expended for the year. Or at least it should. I have a major work project that I need to finish by mid-February that will heavily effect my reading, my blogging, and my ability to relax over the next two months.
Why I remain very busy, and my reading remains way off—I only finished two books in November!—it was a great blog month. November was my best month ever for blog views at Hillbilly Highways by a wide margin, and it was my second best month ever at Every Day Should Be Tuesday. Gratifyingly, much of the traffic was driven by a handful of really strong posts rather than just search traffic spikes (even if those posts were boosted by outside links or Facebook promotion).
October was the fifth full month since I started Hillbilly Highways. To my considerable chagrin, it was also Hillbilly Highways’ worst month for views. It isn’t awful. I went back and checked, and my monthly average for my first five months at Hillbilly Highways is still well above where Every Day Should Be Tuesday was for its first five months. But I am finding just how hard it is to jumpstart viewership for a new blog. October was a very busy month, and while I kept up a regular posting schedule at Hillbilly Highways, I didn’t do as much promotion. There is nothing for it to except keep plugging away.
I didn’t set a record for views here at Every Day Should Be Tuesday, but October beat out September, I didn’t have the weird October swoon I had last year (where I saw a 40% drop between September and…