Freshly Pressed is bogus. It’s got a year-old article from a man who posts every two years. And a Christian expatriate living in South Korea who’s obsessed with pre-marital sex (and the prevention thereof). She’s married to a man who gives her butterflies. So, it’s okay for her but I should want not.
She’s also a greedy young woman who has complained that 1.6 million article views aren’t making her happy enough. Writing is hard work so she’s scared because the expectations are plenty. But, on the other hand, she wants more followers so she can feel validated as a writer, “It’s not fair! Only 200 + people are following me”.
You, fellow blogger, are preventing her from getting more subscribers because you are taking up space on the Internet. She wants you to delete your blog so she can get more readers. She has nine hundred plus subscribers as of this post. Should her readers say “congrats” or hand her a tissue?
If I have my way, this blogger will define herself forever as the woman who got 1.6 million views for one article. When she meets people she will find a way to sneak it into the conversation. This obsession with a statistical anomaly will stunt her personal growth and dampen her creative outpourings.
Our Christian blogger has another problem. She says writing is hard work and she wants to give it up. She envies friends who have book deals. She projects unto them envious thoughts of her million-view spike. A sensible person should be asking, “How many of those views were from real readers?”
This behaviour is typical of greedy people. They are bottomless wells of want. They want what they don’t want. Then they fantasise that everyone wants to be like them.
Life is too precious to get hung up on page views. If no one reads a post, it is okay to feel bad. But find out more about the numbers, where they come from, and leave your self-esteem out of it. Acquiring new readers requires an effective strategy, hours of work, and perhaps a consultation with a professional.
On a slightly tangential note, I want to say that I am amazed at how writers are beholden to publishers. They outsource the reading of your manuscripts to freelancers but you are offering up your self-worth to them?
I sort of get how that starts. One editor told me, “I’m promoting feminism among women of colour to make the world a better place.” An essay of mine addressing those two issues was not accepted for publishing.
A week after that, the editor published a rant from an Asian-American woman saying nasty things about “white belly dancers”. I realised that this is a game called, “the editor is a two-topic pony (white people are racists/you all hate fat women) and will not publish material she could not write herself.”
This same editor later went to a grocery store and when the staff did not genuflect to her highness, she tried to create a national scandal about it on Twitter. I now see why she would not publish my essay.
And as the world continues to marinate in that sauce, I continue to have zero expectations and immense gratitude every time someone shows me that they are paying attention. I am defined by the desire to create. I let my stories write themselves. I am their engine.