Goodness gracious me, but I appear to have let the Very Important Anniversary of my first-ever post here at Books on Spain pass me by. How remiss! So, let’s pretend it’s last Wednesday, and this is my one-year blogiversary post.
A year ago, I didn’t know if I’d be able to keep this up for a month, let alone a year. But here I am! And here, if you’re reading this, are you – in which case, thank you for the support, the comments and the conversations. It’s been wonderful to meet so many new people – friends, writers, colleagues, bloggers – through this space. Notably, one of my reasons for creating Books on Spain was because I’d found very few blogs that talked about books on Spain for an Anglophone audience. And one of the joys of writing here has been to discover some other wonderful blogs that do exactly that. If you enjoy Books on Spain, go and check out By the Firelight, Caravana de Recuerdos, and Liburuak. You won’t regret it!
It’s been a blast this morning to read back over a year’s worth of posts, which show that it all started out fairly serious and on-topic, but gradually relaxed into an eclectic mix of reviews, reflections and, of course, the inevitable rants. A good proportion of the posts have been concerned with the shockingly marginal role still allotted to women authors and critics in the Spanish literary world (and read Bettina’s post at Liburuak for the latest), and one of my projects for the next year will be to continue drawing attention to that, as well as doing my bit to redress the balance. I’ll be following with interest the outcomes of the recent rumpuses about women’s participation at the Real Academia Galega, the Real Academia Espanola de la Historia, and the Spanish Dictionary of National Biography (which has also come under fire for other very good reasons).
And finally … I thought it would be fun to share with you a little insight from the site stats for the last year. Believe it or not, the entry that’s had the most traffic (after the homepage) is my review of Eduardo Mendoza’s Planeta-winning novel Rina de gatos. Madrid, 1936. “Rina de gatos” (even without its many variants) is also the search term that’s brought the biggest number of readers here during the year, with more than twice as many searches as the next most popular search term, “Ana Maria Matute.” I wonder if it’s evidence of a ‘Planeta effect,’ and if so, whether it will hold true for whoever wins the prize this year? I guess we’ll find out in October! On the other hand, if you were the person who wanted to know about “galician women writers who have received bad reviews,” I’m afraid I couldn’t help. Sorry.
So, mil gracias to everybody who reads, and here’s to another year! Keep coming by, and please, keep commenting – I love to hear from you.