Last week or so I wrote a post outlining six ways that bloggers can make sure that their blogging life could end up being a lonely and frustrating experience; and in some cases could even result in you calling it a failure. At the time I hit the publish button I was pretty sure that I had missed one or two other possible ways to make sure that you’ll forever be relegated to the blogging minors and, well, I was right.
However I first want to give a shout out to Tyler Romeo who was good enough to read the post and then much to my pleasure used it as a launching point for a very good post of his own on the subject. For me that is one of the highest complements that one blogger can give to another lonely soul sitting behind a keyboard trying hard to string the words together that will adequately express their thoughts and ideas.
Even though he agreed with my sediment it was only up to a point because as he put it
Despite my adversity toward pessimism, it is true. This very blog gets little over one hundred views on a given post. It saddens me to consider these statistics, but it gives me all the more reason to write this post, because there are a few things Steve left out that at least I think are very important in blogging: motivation, your inner circle, and interaction. Without these three concepts, blogging is exactly how Steve describes it: a cold dark world.
In return I will say that the three points that Tyler raises in excellent post are absolutely correct and he fleshes them out quite nicely in the post. Yes three is no question that in order to keep getting up each day and be willing to share your thoughts and ideas in such a way as to expose a bit of one’s self each and every time to those two readers out there does take a lot of motivation.
This is why I have always believed that some of the best that the tech blogosphere has to offer doesn’t come from the big boy pat each other on the back closed circle jerk. It is those smaller blogs that still believe in the whole idea of the true link economy. It is those lesser know bloggers who help keep alive the very values of what blogging was built upon.
It is those niche bloggers who are creating a real social network that is of value to them. Not because it is a way to get their <puke>brand</puke> out into the larger public but rather because while fluid and is guaranteed to change over time they aren’t doing this for the fame and fortune (which is the direct inverse of the knife in the back keep all the links for ourselves attitude so prevalent today). It is because of this willingness to truly share and help each other out that makes these bloggers worth trying to find.
All that aside I can always tell when a new reader finds my little bubble popping home in the hinterlands of the Web. Many times their either miss the points raised by my rather cranky way of making my points or they miss the underlying humor that I try to include in my writing – obvious sarcasm or not. Such is the case with the post that prompted Tyler to write his great reply to.
Humor – it’s all in the delivery
When I wrote the original post that Tyler was referencing it was done with a certain amount of tongue and cheek. Unfortunately my impression of what is sardonic humor is often missed except by those who know me beyond just the reading of an occasional cranky rant against the idiots that congregate like pallbearers looking to hitch their wagons to the newest and coolest buzzword.
I am sure if you ask people like Louis Gray, Sean P Aune or Mark ‘Rizzn’ Hopkins (and possibly Chris Brogan – see I can name drop as good as the slimiest of them) about that post and they would have been able to see the underlying humor that was there.
I have been called one of the best in delivering crank by other bloggers but just as it takes a certain skill in being able to write posts that make a plastic surgeon’s scalpel look like a rusted kitchen knife; and not like a whining cry baby, so does properly applied sarcasm and humor take some skill. I obviously still need to work on the humor part of that equation because that is the one part of the original post that Tyler appears to have missed.
My underlying intent of that original post was to in one way poke a large hole in the whole blogging tips for success genre of writing that is out there. For the most part all of that crap is only meant for one thing – to keep the n00bs coming back and dangling even bigger carrots in front of them. As well when you really start reading between the lines of all the crap .. well it all ends up being the same bunch of so-called tips just regurgitated with new phrases and graphics.
So I decided to have some fun but also at the same time provide some in your face truths about blogging.
It’s the weekend .. time for the fluff
Speaking of some truths one of the one’s we hear a lot about is that it doesn’t matter when you write something. People will read it no matter when you post it.
Seriously. Just look around you on Saturday or Sunday. In 99 out of a 100 cases you will not see anything of any substance being posted on the weekends. Hell even the big blogs are nothing but re-caps of the past week, conference listings or posts massaging the egos of their sponsors. So when some one tells you to go ahead and hit publish no matter what the time of day it is or the day of the week tell ‘em to take a hike.
The reality is if you want your thoughts and ideas to have any chance of getting even the slightest traction do not post it on the weekends. Really, be smart about it and as much as you might want to get some reaction .. any reaction .. to what you’ve written schedule the post to publish on Monday.
A good case in point is this very post. The possibility of it getting at attention is next to nil not only because I am posting it on a Saturday but I’m also doing it later at night. Instant death. So why would I post it? Probably because I’m an idiot, a glutton for punishment and because it is also part of the object lesson that both this and the previous post is all about.
Oh and one other rather important posting note. Don’t even think of trying to post anything if there is any major news happening either in the tech blogosphere or in the real world. You won’t exisit.
A perfect example of that is a large and important post that I did over at The Inquisitr about ACTA and how dangerous this move by the entertainment industry is. When I had finished it the whole news cycle around Apple announcing the iPhone OS 4 platform was still in high gear and my good friend Sean P. Aune suggested that I hold off until the next day to post it.
He was right I should have held off but unfortunately The Inquisitr is my paying gig and I am expected to get a certain number of posts out in a day and this one ended up having to be one of those posts. As a result and even as important as that post might have been in my estimation it probably never got the same kind of traction that it would have gotten had there been no Apple news polluting the blogosphere.
The short end of the stick
In the end you will always have to go with your gut. From the way you write to when you post. You can read all the regurgitated blogging tips and you can hang off the every word of some supposed blogging gurus but in the end it all boils down to you.
As Tyler quite rightly pointed out sometimes .. just sometimes … motivation will be the key that will keep you coming back. That inner circle of friends are the one’s who will be able to help you through the days of doubt. If you believe in what you write then at some point others will to and as long as your thoughts and ideas can be a catalyst for others – good or bad – then you have succeeded.
BTW if by the end of this post you haven’t headed over to Tyler’s blog and subscribed then you are missing out on a great blogger and it sucks to be you.