In Wednesday’s post, I looked back at 2020 and how Later Levels had done during its fourth year. Publishing the figures was a little scary but sharing this information will help me to grow as a blogger and might be of some use to those around me too.
It’s now time to look ahead to the coming 12 months. It’s hard to predict how the blogging landscape may change in 2021 because we’re living in strange times right now and so much is unknown about the future. But I’ve said that I hope to see a return to the community aspect and more collaborations, and if that wish is going to come true then I’ve got to do something to give it a helping hand. So let’s see what I’ve got planned for Later Levels during 2021…
Start: making The Great Blog Crawl an annual event
Thanks to everyone who joined us for the Great Blog Crawl virtual pub last night, and congratulations to our winner… twitter.com/i/web/status/1…—
The Great Blog Crawl 2020 (@GreatBlogCrawl) July 19, 2020
The Great Blog Crawl came out of a discussion between Ellen from Ace Asunder and I about the things were missing most during the COVID-19 lockdown. We decided to create a community event where we could recreate an evening spent with friends in the pub, while at the same time promoting the awesome bloggers in the community. Participants were sent on a ‘scavenger hunt’ around 50 of the best blogs before joining us for a ‘virtual pub’ stream, where Frostilyte from Frostilyte Writes was declared the winner.
Ellen and I would like to make The Great Blog Crawl an annual event and increase the number of sites involved to perhaps 100. The only things standing in our way are the risk of low interest from members of the community along with our energy levels – which, let’s face it, were both been hit hard during 2020. But we don’t know if we don’t try and therefore it’s important we give it a go, so look out for further details about a 2021 event during the first quarter of the year.
Do more: commenting on other posts
Something I was incredibly guilty of in 2020 was leaving likes on posts I’ve enjoyed but not comments. After deciding to stop spending so much of my life online in July, the amount of time I’ve devoted to reading blogs and my enthusiasm for digital discussions has decreased. But the community aspect of blogging is all about conversation so this is something I need to change for 2021; and I’m therefore going to make more of an effort to comment on articles and chat to their authors.
Continue: streaming and raising awareness for SpecialEffect
One of the highlights of last year was completing our 50-day challenge for GameBlast20. We knew it was going to be demanding in terms of time and effort, and we weren’t sure we’d make it through the entire period, but reaching the end was an amazing feeling. I’ll continue to support and raise awareness for SpecialEffect, a charity which helps physically-disabled people to experience the joy of video games, and can’t wait for everything we’ve got lined up for GameBlast21 in February – including seeing Pete in that Pikachu costume.
Do less: admin for The Support Role
Last January was the beginning of The Support Role, a Discord server created by Luke from Hundstrasse and myself through a desire to make it easier for bloggers to get advice and support each other. It has now grown to include over 75 members and 20 channels on a variety of blogging, streaming and gaming subjects, and it has been lovely seeing members of the community interact in discussions and collaborations. Thank you to everyone there who helped make it what it is.
It’s time for us to step away from managing the server however, as both Luke and I have increased work commitments coming up in 2021 and need to take a step back so we can focus on other areas. We won’t be disappearing completely though and this isn’t the end of the group: the reigns have been handed over to the very-capable Gaming Diaries and Dan from nowisgames.com so please make them feel at home! New members are welcome and you can join the server using this link.
Stop: posting weekly #BloggerTalk questions
The #BloggerTalk weekly community event also started in January last year and saw a blogging question posed to the community every Thursday. Although I’m grateful to everybody who joined in and shared their experiences on Twitter, it didn’t encourage as much conversation as I’d hoped for and some weeks were very quiet. I therefore don’t think there’s much to be gained from repeating the event in 2021; but who knows, it may make a return at some point in the future if the mood feels right.
Hopefully I’ll look back on today’s post this time next year and feel a sense of accomplishment at having completed some of these goals. Saying that though, it’s important to remember that blogging should be fun and this has always been the ultimate aim for me. As long as I can say I’ve enjoyed myself over the past 12 months, then I’ll consider them to have been a success – and that’s just the incentive I need to keep moving forward and carry on writing here at Later Levels.
So what have you got planned for 2021? Whatever your goals are, I hope they’re within reach and bring you much happiness this year.
Video game lover, Later Levels blogger and SpecialEffect volunteer. Big fan of wannabe pirates and fine leather jackets.