The other night, The Hubs and I had a long discussion about my blog. The Hubs is an IT guy who gets a high from being useful. So, whenever friends have IT problems, I tell The Hubs to go help them out, and he does. The day of our discussion, The Hubs had helped a friend out with her blog’s technical side. The Hubs said, “That reminds me, I need to do some stuff so your blog pops up more in search engines.”
Record scratch…HOLD THE PHONE THERE SPARKY.
Look, I am not a professional blogger. You will notice there are no ads on this page. Nobody pays me to write any of this stuff. I don’t get people sending me free products asking me to write about them (I did have someone once ask me to share her product’s website on my Facebook page, but she didn’t offer me a free one and I didn’t ask for one because it felt too spammy.) Professional blogging is wicked awesome, and maybe I would want to do that some day, but today is not that day. So, I don’t need people to find this blog.
“But, why not?” asked The Hubs. “What you write is good, more people should read it. There are people out there who need to hear what you’re your saying.”
OK, so, this is where I admit that I am suuuuuuuuuper selfish. Because, I don’t write all this for you, dear readers. I mean, it feels good to have people say they dug something I wrote, and on the couple of occasions that someone really big has shared my blog and I got 100 times my normal hits? Yeah, that was exciting. But honestly? I would write all this if nobody read it, or if nobody liked it. I write it because I have something to say, period, full stop. That it speaks to other people is a pleasant byproduct, but it isn’t the point. I’m not saying I don’t give a shit what people think of my blog…except yeah, I kind of am saying that. Actually, take the “kind of” out of that last sentence.
Because, I feel like if I wrote this blog to generate readers, I would write a lot differently. I would take on whatever the hot topic was that day on the Internet, the one that gets a lot of hits and that they start talking about on Ellen and Conan and CNN. Instead of writing what I have to say that day, just letting the ideas vomit out here in run on sentences with the words “so” and “like” starting every other paragraph. In short, it wouldn’t be me anymore, and honestly? I spend too much of my professional life not writing for myself, to spend my free time writing for someone else. It feels too good, after so many years of having someone else tell me what to write, to just say what is on my mind, at that exact moment.
NOT THAT I AM SHITTING ON PROFESSIONAL BLOGGERS. Look, there are a lot of serious enterprising writers on the net who are speaking their truth and who have interesting, funny, powerful things to say about the hot issue of the day. It works for them to write that way, and it’s awesome that they can make a living from their writing and be happy and proud of their work. I give them mad props. I am just not one of them. It’s just not how I roll. If I tried to be them, I am pretty sure I would lose my joy that I am finding with this blog. And then, why bother?
The Hubs then said, “But what’s wrong with writing what you do and having more people read it? I’m not saying change what you write, I’m saying, reach more people.” And that’s when my ego really showed how ginormous it is, and also how small it is. See, I think this blog kicks ass. I am proud of what I write here. And I think if lots and lots of people saw it, it might take off. In my head, my enormous ego says that I might get calls from literary agents and TV shows. And I am sooooooo not interested in that right now. I am sooooooo not ready to be famous. I like my little pond–frankly, it took me a while to decide to dip my toe into the pond at all. So, I don’t feel comfortable or safe or ready to swim into a big ocean filled with sharks right now.
The Hubs thinks I am being silly and that I’d beat the shit out of the sharks. Maybe he’s right. But, he agreed not to use whatever Internet magic voodoo you use to increase your page views these days. And for now, I can live with the fantasy that although my writing is on the Internet for the whole world to see, I am really just having a conversation with a few people.