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Viral Harsh Realities

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.


Life is short, so let’s be decent.

15 replies on “Viral Harsh Realities”

I am sure you can relate. And you have interesting stories to tell. Thank you for visiting and reading my archives. I went down the Aztec rabbit hole today and have been watching videos about Coyolxāuhqui. I remembered some of your posts referring to Aztec deities. I’ve also had a ball trying to pronounce the names.

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I thought this was interesting about numbers. Clearly people who take time to write longer comments show caring and interest but sometimes it is just meant to be a sometimes deal. I have a good group of people who comment but I also have a nice group who “like” and follow me. Both satisfy me, in different ways. Believe me, I like Cristian Mihai, both for his original likes and later, for his response to my comments on his posts. No problem with him or your comments either. 🙂

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Thanks a lot, Reo. I appreciate your thoughts here. I think that it’s a balancing act with comments. For example, I have seen blog posts where comments are invited and readers’ comments are not acknowledged. Or a half hearted “comment like” is given. Bizarre. I used to pay attention to blogs with few comments or likes on posts. But I now look at the quality of the interactions on blogs before deciding whether I should comment or not. It’s irritating to see people complain about lack of interaction or appreciation for a post when they do not even pay attention to their subscribers. When I don’t comment on a post, it is because I think that what I have to say is not interesting, might be taken the wrong way, or because I feel that it’s a toss up I will never win.


nice post, SaBiscuit. I think writers need to find their own way to overcome the gate keepers and taste makers that are the publishers. The internet is an opportunity, but of course like Opinionated Man discovered, it is a noisy, competetive world too. I have tried to start a little writing blog dedicated to my fiction writing. It has not taken off, but I still have not really promoted it. If you haven’t already, you can see it at

Thank you for following my other blog Oh, and what a nightmare to lose half a book to technology gone wrong. I feel for you.

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Thank you so much. I’m grateful for your support. I am grateful for everything I have because these rewards, I’ve had to work for. It’s not on, I think, to blame the kind people who give a little bit of theirs to create much for us. Thanks again. I will have a look at your blog.

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Something about number of followers that I noticed. If someone stops following it doesn’t show up on your number count. Also there is no way to separate out fake follows. People who try to get identified as your community to accrue hits on their own blogs by search engine references. If WordPress does have a way to do this I have not figured it out, so I have stopped paying to much attention to numbers.

I try to visit as many bloggers that click likes & comment on posts as I can, but I find it overwhelming even though those numbers are pretty low.

All I can say to your efforts is keep going – create, communicate and share. Wherever possible, think out of the box. Take advantage of new social media platforms to create new types of self expression. This advice may or may not help get you noticed, but you should enjoy the creative outlet and discover new things.

All the best and thanks for dropping by my blogs. It is very much appreciated.

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Thanks a lot for your kind words. Numbers have become less of a priority but it was horrible, feeling that I was a failure, even when I wasn’t competing with anyone in particular. I don’t want anyone else to feel like that, either. I would like everyone to feel comfortable doing what they enjoy, online or offline and to focus on the things that matter to them, even if that means just dealing with numbers. There is room for everyone here, I think. The lack of gratitude, to me, and the smugness of demanding to be famous, was a bit jarring, after only two months on WordPress. I had no idea people like that existed before I started this blog. Your advice was well received. Thank you. x


That’s an excellent way to use your blog. You have to practice. Trying new voices, ways of expressing yourself. I think it’s better to develop your skills before jumping on the marketing train. That’s when people start having opinions about what you should say, and I think that’s really noisy. Incidentally, one of my first followers, Cristian Mihai has 93,000 followers, and he’s offering to reblog posts or review books for $50 a person. I think it’s an awesome way to help others, and since you have a book to promote, may I suggest taking advantage?

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I followed opinionated man for a while, but I didn’t understand much of what he was saying. He seemed to be having arguments that I only got the tail end of. They sounded so inconsequential that I didn’t have the energy to find the beginning. Just like searching for the source of the Orinoco, one has to have a determination that unfortunately eludes me

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Thanks for this. I’m glad you know of him. It’s true, his blog is not about the “art” or the “life”, it is simply a machine for generating attention. He is not ashamed of it, and I admire that honesty. He does not even pretend to generate content others might be interested in. He’s all about “I want followers”, “follow me”, “I’m a power blogger.” WordPress is like a video game to him, and he’s using various techniques to win.


The vacuousness is what caused you to stop following him. To you, it’s not pied pipery, which comes in when or if we believe there’s something substantial there. Once we know what we’re looking at, there’s no need to worry about being taken in. I want to stay as objective as possible, because I’m comparing the differences in the level of honesty of saying “I want people to notice me” between the two bloggers. If I were comparing their content, I would say they’re both at the same level.


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