I started running the site back in August 2011 with its first news article declaring that "Cher Has 300,000 [Twitter] Followers" -- a far cry from the almost-3.3-million that she has today.
Back then, I did not even own a computer. I did not even have proper internet access. I created and ran Cher News from my mobile/cell phone, using the internet that came with it -- which cost me a bomb! (Luckily, there was a handful of Cher fans that donated to help me cover costs.) In retrospect, it is devastatingly obvious the site was made on a phone!...
|Cher News, September 2011|
By February 2013, I had (literally) found an old computer and thus Cher News looked a little better, with its 'Biography', 'Albums', 'Singles', 'Films' and 'Tours' pages added, still running from mobile/cell phone internet though...
|Cher News, February 2013|
Lo and behold... I had secured myself a decent job by October 2013 and bought my first laptop. And thus, Cher News began to look a little more polished -- like the one we know today...
|Cher News, October 2013|
I have enjoyed running Cher News, and am proud of its success. Even in the five and half years since running it, I have seen many fan sites come and go, and have seen the self-sabotage of one. But not only am I proud of the fact that I wrote the majority of my articles -- especially the earlier ones, when I had more time on my hands to -- but also the little things:
The 2,000,000 page views is staggering and beyond my expectations. The 3-thousand Facebook likes and the 2-thousand Twitter followers, also. Plus the 2,500 comments -- and I know what a pain-in-the-ass it is to post a comment on this site!
Most pageviews by month:
September 2013 -- 96,000
September 2016 -- 91,000
October 2013 -- 81,000
Articles with most pageviews:
Back in 2012, Cher News hosted a poll to find out Cher fans' favorite Cher songs, before posting the top 100 results. I then made a very mediocre -- poor even -- video of the results for the (equally mediocre) Cher News YouTube channel, and it got 140,000 views!
And Cher News has been on the receiving end of some funny tweets from Cher:
@cherthelatest— Cher (@cher) May 29, 2013
You Wouldn't Know Love
@cherthelatest don’t remember !— Cher (@cher) January 13, 2013
Does that mean I Loose ?
Of course, Cher News is the parent of my The Cher Bible books, which have helped me in life. I recently shared the story of how the books came about on the The Cher Bible Facebook page:
I became a Cher fan at a very young age. Even though I am only 25 years old now.
My father was a big fan of Cher – he had records, movies and concerts of hers, so I was always exposed to Cher my whole childhood. However, it was whilst watching Cher's performance of We All Sleep Alone on her Live At The Mirage video that I became really hooked – I wonder why!
I do not know where that moment fits into my timeline, but my first memory of being a “die-hard” Cher fan comes from after Sonny died. Cher was all over the newspapers, and I remember doing what many of us die-hards have done – cutting out her photos and making a scrap book. I was only 6 years old!
Cher plays a large part in my life. Me and my Dad bonded over our shared interest in music. I remember him buying Believe, the single, on cassette, and playing it excessively! Around this time, he bought me Cher's autobiography, The First Time, for Christmas. It was my first proper book – and I still have it today.
The first single I ever bought was The Music's No Good Without You. The first album I ever purchased was Living Proof.
I was not a privileged child or teenager – not by any stretch of the imagination. But I managed to get my hands on most of Cher's CDs and videos. I would visit a second hand music and video shop in my town centre almost every Saturday, and often come away with something that would make my week – a VHS of Faithful and the VHS of Live At The Mirage were my highlights.
In August 2011, I created Cher News. A fan site. I was 20 years old. I had no computer. I created the site on my cell/mobile phone. Looking back, I am not sure how I even achieved that. Later on, I managed to find an old (very old!) computer, which made running the site a little easier – however, I still did not have internet access other that that on my cell phone, so I had to get technical and connect the two devices. The site was a success. And many Cher fans even helped me out, giving donations – after all, it was costing me a bomb to run a Cher site through cell phone internet! In 2013, I got my first laptop – and proper internet access!
Fast forward to late 2016, and Cher News has over 500 articles – most of which are original articles – and is nearing 2,000,000 page views.
In May 2016, I got the news that my Dad had died. I was working in a call centre at that time, and I went straight back to work, hoping that the news would not affect me. I got a caller named “Graham” on the phone – the same name as my Dad – and I broke down in tears. I was sent home. I did not want to face that job again. And I wanted time off work. Someone else offered me a job, I was unsure, but took it anyway. After a month, I wanted out.
I could not face work nor people. Me and my Dad were not even super close. But his extremely unexpected death put things into perspective for me – in a bad way. I became a hermit. I stayed at home. But I have rent to pay. I needed to make money somehow. I needed to get out of a slump somehow.
Then a lightbulb appeared above my head – the idea to write an eBook, and dedicate it to Dad. That's what I did. I wrote about Cher. All of this book. And released it. Luckily, Cher fans – mostly the faithful followers of Cher News – purchased it. Then many demanded that I release it in paperback – which I was unsure about, after all, I did not deem it good enough for a physical release and did not have the know how. But I did, and have had a great response. And the more I take a look at The Cher Bible, Vol. 1: Essentials, the more I am happy with it. I appreciate everybody that has purchased it.
Once again, Cher has helped me in life.
Why am I stopping Cher News? Before my dad died, I already had depression for almost a year, and his death just cemented it, and I haven't been the same since. I'm at a bad point in life. And whilst I love Cher, and her fans, Cher News has become a chore and a pressure somewhat. So have the books. I have written one page of The Cher Bible, Vol. 3 in two months -- and they're my only income! ($2 per book). Maybe Cher News will be back one day -- I have taken breaks before -- but from the bottom of my heart, I doubt it.
I want to thank you for visiting and supporting Cher News. ❤❤❤❤❤