Thursday, June 03, 2010
Six Ways to Come to Terms with the Sad Truth that No One Wants to Read Your Blog
Ever since I can remember, I’ve had this recurring dream. (I just had it last night as a matter of fact.) Well, more accurately, it’s a horrible nightmare. In the nightmare and any variation thereof, my family and friends make plans to go somewhere together, without me. And then they take off, leaving me sobbing and bitching. They never seem to get what I’m trying to say. Not even my mother. Especially my mother. It hurts. It really hurts.
I used to write film reviews for an ezine. At the beginning, I forwarded the link by email and posted it on Facebook. After a few months, just Facebook. In a year, I heard back from three or four people. Tops. More often, I’d get: “Did you see Such and Such a Movie?” I replied: “Yes, I reviewed it and sent the link to you.”
When I wake up from the nightmare above, I realize, once again, that I have to accept that being understood is overrated. I thought I had resolved that issue after I screened my last film for my parents. For 15 minutes, they watched quietly, eyes glazed over. My mother only showed signs of life when, as my brother’s name flashed onscreen as Production Assistant (he helped me move some very heavy props.), she said, “Oh! That’s your brother.”
Still, I get a high when a stranger sees one of my films or reads one of my posts and his/her reaction lets me know they got it. I screened the same film for my best friend’s four year old. She watched enthralled. When it was over she yelled, “Again! Again!” It doesn’t happen that often. But, in reality, it’s quality over quantity that matters.
So here are my words of wisdom:
1. Your family won’t read the blog, but they will give you blood and even a kidney if you ever need one.
2. Your friends won’t either. But they’ll help you move. If you corner them and offer them plenty of booze. Hopefully you helped them move, so can use guilt to persuade them.
3. To get people to read your blog, you’re going to have to read dozens of blogs telling you exactly how to make people read your blog. Do you really want to do that?
4. If you do read all that advice, are you really going to do all that stuff? Like read other people’s blogs and comment on them? I thought so.
5. You’re a real writer. You write because you need to express yourself. It’s an addiction. It’s who you are. Keep writing. Someday, someone will be moved by what you wrote, and if you’re lucky, they’ll leave a comment.
6. So just write goddamit!
Freebie: Go to therapy if you can afford it.