Wrapping up the year by the numbers

Every so often a year rolls by that has an impact on those who lived through it – an impact so intense that the year becomes iconic, legendary. Like 1914, the year that the First World War began – a trauma that divided the old world from the new and set the current shape of the world on its way.

Wright_AuthorPhoto2014_LoIn a historical sense, 2014 wasn’t one of those watersheds. But it was a vigorous enough year anyway, not least because of all the 1914 anniversaries that rolled through. For me it’s been an amazing year in many ways. Books to write, blog posts to write, stuff to do that’s too boring to blog about. The usual thing. Here it is by the numbers…

275 – the number of blog posts I published on WordPress this year.

101 – the number of dollars I spent filling my car’s petrol tank just before Christmas.

8 – the number of cents per litre the price fell straight after I filled the tank.

4 – the number of my own books I worked on this year, finishing writing two of them and working with the publishers on the editorial side of all four. They are The New Zealand Wars: a short history (Libro International); Living On Shaky Ground: the science and story behind New Zealand’s earthquakes (Penguin Random House) and Coal: the rise and fall of King Coal in New Zealand (Bateman). The fourth, Man of Secrets, will be published by Penguin Random House in a few weeks.

3 – number of books of mine published this year (see above).

2 – number of books I published on geoscience this year (see above).

1 – number of military historians who snubbed me at parties for writing in their field (down from last year but that, I suspect, is because only one was at this event…)

I hope you all had a great 2014 and have a wonderful 2015 to come. To all my readers, thank you, very much indeed, for your kind support of my little corner of the blog-o-sphere – and especially to my regular correspondents, I’ve enjoyed and been humbled by your kind support and thoughts, and I’ll look forward to blogging with you in 2015.

Copyright © Matthew Wright 2014


15 thoughts on “Wrapping up the year by the numbers

  1. Don’t you just hate it when the petrol price drops days after you filled up? Here they announce the change a week in advance, but sometimes you just have to fill up.

    Thanks for all the informative posts and a wonderful 2015 to you also.

    1. Thank you! Yeah, the thing we have here is weird. If oil prices go up, it’s an instant increase, including on all the petrol in the storage tanks which they’d have bought at the lower price. If it goes down, petrol doesn’t drop instantly on the excuse that they have to use up the expensive stuff in the storage tanks first. The logic is impeccable providing you first assume the oil companies want to gouge their customers… Hey, wait a minute…

    2. We’ve had a string of price drops recently right after I’d filled up. Fortunately, I’ve had to do a lot more long-distance driving than usual so the price keeps falling. … Wait, I’m doing something not actually sensible overall, I think.

      1. It’s a fundamental law of the universe in which intentions guide price changes. “I just filled my tank” = price drops. “I need to fill my tank” = price goes up. If nobody has plans to drive anywhere, that universal law disappears and is replaced with a more annoying one. What worries me is that this may already have happened.

    1. Thanks – and same to you! Looking forward to your posts in 2015 – those NZ Wars figurines were tremendous. I still think it’s amazing somebody’s cast them, those wars really aren’t well known outside our little corner of the South Pacific.

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