I've been watching a lot of Louis CK comedy lately. I love that man. He's so offensive and nasty and -so- wise. Like everything that comes out of his mouth I say "Oh my god, that's true!"
As a writer and creator who puts his raw self out there for the world to either love or hate, I have so much respect for him because as bloggers, we do that too.
I was reading an interview with him the other day and he was talking about how his story writing was getting kinda long to just be one episode. He said , "...so I wrote a card that says This can be anything you want and it sat on my desk the rest of the season."
Bloggers so often get tied up in what the readers want. We're "creating content" for the readers, choosing blog design that the readers would like, hosting giveaways for the readers. And yeah, it's good to always think about what kinds of things your readers like but really, we all need a card on our desk that says This can be anything you want. Your blog should always be about the things you love. When I wrote my blog post about how I make time for blogging and family, I got some comments about how people can't put that much work into a blog and that its exhausting or they feel obligated. In 4 years of non-stop blogging I have never felt like this is an obligation and although it is a job, it never feels like work because I love it, it's my passion and it makes me happy!
In season 3 of his show, Louis got a little crazy and dark and although it wasn't what viewers of the show came there to see, it was fantastic and inspirational and you could tell that he was really loving being able to tell his story the way he wanted to instead of living up to other people's expectations. I've seen a lot of bloggers try to cling to the original purpose of their blog although they have grown and evolved in their own life and you can always tell that they aren't having fun with it anymore. We all change, let your blog change with you. Readers will enjoy the honesty.
Another bit of wisdom from The Man is- he was talking about his offensive jokes and the interviewer asked if he has ever been asked to apologize for jokes he's made. He said, "It's a really desperate thing to need everybody to be really happy with everything you say."
Again, as bloggers, we try so hard to entertain readers, to be liked and even...loved. If you wrote a post that you thought was really good, you got 10 really nice comments and one person came along and said "Hey, this post is shit." How would you feel? I used to feel angry, then sad and doubting myself. When I lost a follower, I'd question myself. What am I doing wrong? What did I say to make them want to leave?
The truth is, no matter how awesome you and your blog is, you're going to lose followers, you're going to get someone who doesn't like a post for whatever reason. Like Louis said, it's desperate to want to make them all happy and trying is like swimming up stream with an anchor tied to your leg. So, next time you get an unlike on your Facebook page or someone un-follows you or even says that your blog is shit- remember that you aren't doing this for that person. You're doing it for you and for the readers that enjoy what you have to say. They can go find another blog to read and you'll keep doing your thing.
There are thousands of blogs out there and I don't like even a percentage of them but the ones I do like, I love! Write your blog for yourself and for the readers that keep coming back. Let your blog be anything you want it to be.
Anyway, stay tuned for Day 3 of our bullet bra sew-along tomorrow!