i read a lot of blogs.
i do it because i'm interested in what people have to say. and today a woman whose blog i'm following expressed despair that according to her analytics, her readership has fallen off. this is, i guess, a crisis to her, because i think she has dreams of being a famous blogger or something, and she asks what she can do to increase her readership.
so maybe this isn't entirely unsolicited advice.
well, from where i'm sitting, i am wildly interested in ordinary people who have something to say. i am interested in your dog's agility trials, the blooming date of your daylilies, your recent cruise to alaska, the music on your ipod, your latest drawings, your rollerderby practice, your adjustment to changes in your relationship, your weekend at your lake house, and your backpacking trip across asia.
i am interested in your garden, what you had for lunch, your photos, your first triathlon, your move to san francisco, your volunteer work, your day job, and your cat.
i am interested (i'm talking about you, train wreck lady) in the way you manage to self-sabotage your entire life and self-destruct so completely, write about it so clearly, and yet seem to have no idea at all that you are making a series of very bad choices and i'm not sure you realize that a blog is a public outlet, at least if you don't check the little box to make it private.
i am even interested to see the latest in paper products from that woman whose blog is about selling paper products. she is a vendor of such items, she loves such items, and as such her blog is interesting because her ideas about it are original, and her purpose is clear.
i am NOT interested in the latest repetition of every internet meme, i do not care about what darling web promotion you are whoring about this week, and i am not in the least bit fooled when you ask questions (what do YOU think/do/love?) that are not really designed to open a conversation, but to elicit comments or -worse- give an appearance of caring what people think in order to suck in a readership.
many of us have read the same little treatises on increasing blog traffic and multi-level marketing. the difference between all of us here in group a and all of you over there in group b is that while we may read these things and even subscribe to a newsletter or two, it is only to see how you, the other half live and to explain to us why we see you endlessly re-blogging the same nonsense that wasn't all fresh and hot the first time it hit and sometimes i only think you loooooove this week's tripe because you think you're going to make a fraction of a penny on each of your gajillions of click-throughs.
if you are reading this, you probably have a blog of your own somewhere. if you're giving me an authentic slice of life whether you do it for free or whether you make a living at it, i will not only read you over when i see your new post pop up in subscription, but i will actually click over to your site because i like to see your formatting!
if you bother to give me real content, i may even read the comments left by other people and join in a conversation! if you are interesting enough, i will even follow links!
so, lady-who-can't-understand-why-her-readership-has-dropped-off, consider this: you used to write more about regular stuff. you used to write more about your life and your projects, even if it meant you didn't write every day.
then you started writing about things that can be marketed through adsense and about blogging itself and sometimes you just re-blog some other lame thing that somebody else already blogged, and you started posting two and sometimes three times a day, but saying less.
do you see where i'm going?