On caregivers, faith, family, and writing…

Author, Know Thyself

I was chatting on-line with my son earlier this week. As I’ve mentioned, he’s a writer, too, and I was telling him about the all-time high I reached on my blog the day before.

Me: I ended up with 591 hits yesterday – a real rush until I open it up this morning and back to 1 hit and gotta come up with something to top the last one! Now why is it we do this?

Christian:  hehe. it’s a drug. especially for us narcissists with inferiority complexes.

Me: Boy, you nailed that one.

Christian: author, know thyself.

In an earlier post I said I knew I wanted to be a writer when the need to put thoughts into words became greater than the fear of rejection or criticism. I sounded more noble the way I said it.

Comments on: "Author, Know Thyself" (6)

  1. Nothing’s worse than getting the spike in readership followed by 4 views the next day.

  2. Happens to me all the time. Two articles ago, I had nearly 3,000 comments on my huffington post article. The one that came out yesterday has 5.

  3. We do it because we have to. It’s not really a choice, but we can pretend we don’t really need to do it, but choose to — if that helps. How many views does it take to change the world? Just one.

    So how will the world ever change if we never write the piece that begs us to give it life, but doesn’t rank well in popular culture or get a warm reception from people that like to lie or are content to remain in denial?

    How many views does it take to make us feel successful? 100, 1000, 1,000,000,000? Doesn’t matter as long as it is more than it was the day before. Right? Christian said it spot on: it’s a drug. Only you don’t need a prescription, and it’s not illegal (although some of the material out there should be…just saying).

    The more we get, the more we have to have to get the same rush, and soon we’ll need more to keep the rush alive. And then, one day when we’re not really paying it that much attention…view tallies become the primary measure of our worth, our success, our moods, our lives, our life. Uh oh. Is this the part where we go to rehab and get a therapist or two? Thought so.

    Seriously… I’m just jealous. The most views I’ve ever had in one day is twelve, and all twelve of them were just me — making edits to the same piece. Looking over my shoulder to make sure no one is watching me click my own link, again. Nonchalantly clicking, as if I had no clue it was my own article, blog post, video, whatever that I had linked to, and then act so pleased and satisfied with the exceptional content I found before my eyes… “Wow! What a great piece! Who wrote this I wonder?” “Oh look, I did!” After a dozen times the novelty wore off, but it was entertaining at the moment. [i know it’s a little weird…so just don’t go there.]

    I guess it might help increase my views (that aren’t my own) if I actually published the piece somewhere so other people had the opportunity to enjoy it — or not. And “or not” is why they make commenting optional and/or moderated (so you can allow the stuff you like to get through). I mean, these things are our babies you know? Would you really throw up a picture of your newborn child on Facebook and say to the world, “Isn’t this is most precious and adorable thing you’ve ever laid eyes on in your entire life?” and expect to receive unanimous agreement, or even mostly politely neutral responses. Not on this planet. Not in this life.

    We like view counts because they have the potential to make us feel good — for no particular reason. We hate view counts because they have the potential to make us feel bad — for any particular reason. To deny we really care about them would be like saying we don’t really care if our team wins or loses, we just want to see them play the game and be noted for their outstanding sportsman-like conduct. It’s about how well they play the game, isn’t it? Right… Know anyone who says that and isn’t speaking about the losing team?

    It would be like saying size doesn’t matter. Words can’t hurt me. Like saying, “Nothing taste as good as being thin feels…”. Who ever came up with that last one should be exiled to…the same place people that say they don’t care how many views or comments their pieces garner — get sent to. Thin, but starving. Delusional, but entertaining to watch.

    Just admit it. We like them. And we like them to be high, not low. But never forget…they are not who we are. Who are we? Lovers. Looking for love in some very publicly exposed places. Not feeling the love when the numbers say this, and feeling we are invincible and the-fairest-of-them-all if the numbers say that.

    What matters most is knowing we are here to be living love in action. And that won’t change even if there were no numbers at all. It’s cliche’ but it’s true, learning to love ourselves is the greatest love of all. Even when you only have twelve views, all made by yourself. If we don’t love what we write, love who we are, and love what we do? Who will. Exactly. Now how many views did you get today? I know it doesn’t matter, but tell me anyway. 😉

    Okay, Linda… I do really need to get my own blog don’t I? Or begin paying you rent for using space on yours. I can’t help that your art inspires me, but I guess I could try leaving comments and not sequels. Something more, in length, like a tweet. Obviously, I don’t Twitter. I can’t! How could I??? Can you imagine ME trying to express even one tiny sentiment or quick point of view in 140 characters or less? Not until pigs fly, or I die. Pigs don’t have wings, and I’m far too mean.

    So thanks for being real and giving me some zeal to speak what I feel. And don’t tell me you saw flying pigs in your dreams. 140 characters is for wimps, or when you don’t want to have to think very hard for very long. [Yes, I’m making fun of it because I can’t do it myself.] One can always hope to learn. But obviously for me, it’s too late to try today, but I’ll get right on that tomorrow… Tweet Tweet, Twittery Feat! [but if I were you, i wouldn’t be holding my breath or anything.]

    Peace. Ciao. That’s all for now…

    • Yes, Tim, you really do need to follow the yellow brick road to the Wizard, get yourself some courage, and hit that publish button. But that’s only half battle. Then you have to publicize. You have to post the link on your Facebook page and send an e-mail including the link to your contact list. There are lots of other ways to increase your readership, and there are tutorials on WordPress to help you out. But you must begin with baby steps. You must publish!! What’s the worst thing that could happen?

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