The Rant I Promised You

This needs to be reblogged because it’s so passionate and made ME angry too. Yes, there is a lot of “salty” language in Jason’s post, but I think it’s justified after what he saw today and makes it so clear why Jason has EVERY RIGHT IN THE WORLD to be as RIGHTEOUSLY ANGRY as he is.  There are so many ignorant, bigoted, and hateful people in the world who use the Internet as their bile spewing playground.

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Blogging 101: blogging phrases to know.

More bloggy wisdom from Opinionated Man!

Blogging 101 – Blogging Phrases to Know

BLOGGING 101: BLOGGING PHRASES TO KNOW

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“I really enjoyed your article! I wrote a “somewhat” similar post which you can find at http://ThisPostHasNothingAtAllToDoWithYours.com. Thanks again for blogging almost as good as me.”

Basically this is link dropping. The person hasn’t really read your post, perhaps the first sentence only. They just want to try and steal a little of your limelight while your post is currently at the top of other people’s Readers.

“Yet _____”

Any commenter that begins their comment with the word “yet” is about to say some complete horse shit. It might smell good, but it will still be horse shit. Yet they will still say it because they must.

“God said ____”

The Jesus freaks will flay you with these sentences and they follow the scent of blood. Much like any other predator. Be wary of the sentence that begins with “God said ____” because it will normally be followed by a direct quote from the bible… that you could have read by just reading the bible…

“Your SEO is off in a few areas.”

Read the rest of OM’s article here.

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Why I blog.

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I read a very interesting article today called Pimping for Likes (thanks again to Opinionated Man, I found another great new blog to follow).  The post addresses the all too common frustrations we bloggers experience when our Likes, views or followers aren’t growing as fast as we’d all like them to and asks the question, would you give up blogging if no one read your blog?  

If you’re only blogging to be popular or attain a web presence, I think people can tell.  Your heart won’t be in it.  It won’t be honest and it won’t be engaging.   People are smart.  They will pick up on your lack of passion for your chosen topics and go elsewhere if all you care about is gaining a web presence without actually caring about what you blog about.

There are lots of wonderful bloggers who don’t have many followers or views.   That’s not because their blogs are bad.  It’s because either they haven’t been blogging long enough to attain a web presence, or because the blogger is mostly writing for themselves and isn’t actively trying to promote their blog.  Some people don’t care about popularity.   And there’s nothing wrong with that.  They’re blogging for the best of reasons–because they love to write and blogging gives them a voice and a way to express themselves. .

It’s the reason I blog.   I really can’t think of anything I love doing more.   It’s also been very healing for me.  I’d keep writing and blogging even if I was the only person in the world reading my posts.  But I’m only human and it can be very discouraging when you feel like your online voice is falling on deaf ears.  At first, it was frustrating when I’d spend a couple of hours perfecting a post, choosing the perfect picture for it, editing it and re-editing it, and then post it, only to get no likes and only a few views.

Here is a post I wrote when this blog was less than two weeks old, when I had a whopping 12 followers and hardly any views. It makes me laugh to read this now, but I’m sure most new bloggers can relate to these feelings of frustation:

https://luckyottershaven.com/2014/09/18/im-frustrated/

It was the first time Opinionated Man reblogged a post of mine.  With his 50K plus followers (at the time; now he has nearly 60K), he seemed like a blogging God to me. Because of his generous nature and willingness to help new bloggers succeed, this post (which sounds very whiny to me now) wound up getting a ton of views, Likes, and comments, and I got my first sizeable batch of new followers.  What a great way to start your blogging career!

Although being popular isn’t my primary reason for blogging, I have to admit I’ve come to care about this blog’s growth too.    There’s nothing wrong with that, as long as it doesn’t become your main reason for blogging.  I’ve been blogging for a year and a half now.    During that time, my stats have grown steadily, to the point where I’m averaging 50K views a month.  A year ago I never would have believed it.

Source: http://luckyottershaven.com.webstatsdomain.org/

I’ve been fortunate enough to have had a little help along the way,  thanks to other, more popular and established bloggers reblogging or linking to my posts.   I learned about sharing to social media (something I was reluctant to do at first) and linking to other blogs.   I’ve made a lot of friends among other bloggers and we’re like a big community who help each other get seen.  Yes, of course there is envy among bloggers, but fortunately I haven’t seen too much of it and for the most part, there’s more of a desire to see your fellow bloggers do well than to see them fail.

There are blogs far more popular and successful than mine.   This blog is really pretty small potatoes, but watching it grow is still incredibly encouraging and exciting, like watching your baby grow up.    It’s a heady feeling when you type a few words into Google and see your own blog come up at or near the top.    Although I would still blog even if I only had 10 views a month, these incremental rewards have a way of motivating you to keep writing even more.  It’s also very cool being in a position now where I can begin to help other bloggers the way I was helped when I was new.   It’s wonderful to be able to pay it forward and help others get more of a web presence.

I’ve been accused of caring too much about my stats.    Maybe it’s true.  Watching my stats has become one of my favorite hobbies, but maybe that’s because I’ve always been a numbers junkie.   The growth of this blog didn’t just happen on its own though. I had to work hard at it, and the hardest part for me was getting over my fear of sharing posts to social media.  I don’t have enough of a Google presence to just sit back and let things take off on their own.   I have to keep working at it, keep sharing, keep connecting.   It’s almost a full time job.   Even so, while watching my views  and web presence increase is a nice side benefit of blogging, it’s not the reason I blog.

If you only blog to see your stats grow, and care nothing about what you write, not only will people be able to tell your heart isn’t in it, but chances are you’ll get discouraged and give up the minute your stats take a downturn.  I’ve had slow months and a few with no growth at all. It hasn’t all been a smooth ride uphill.    Some of my posts that are personal favorites just don’t seem to resonate with others that well, while other posts that I could care less about, seem to take on a life of their own. It’s always a surprise seeing what others like and what they don’t.  You can certainly try to concentrate on writing more of the types of posts that seem to resonate more with others, if being popular is your thing.

My other blog, which documents my journey in therapy, is nowhere near as popular as this one. It hasn’t really grown at all since I started it in August, and that’s okay.     I don’t share most of the posts on that blog to my social media and I don’t promote it at all.  I only write about 1 – 2 posts a week for it, while I write every day on this blog.    It also has a much narrower topic focus, while this one covers a much wider range of topics.  I figure, if people want to read the posts on my other blog, they will find them, but I don’t worry about it too much or try to call attention to it.   I mostly write it for myself.

In summary, I blog for four reasons, in the following order.

  1.  Enjoyment, love of writing/blogging
  2.  Self-therapy and healing; giving myself a voice.
  3.  Community with my readers and other bloggers; helping others
  4.  The thrill of increasing web presence.

So.  Why do you blog?

Blogging, WordPress, Goals & Doubters

This sounds so much like the feelings I have toward blogging and being an emotionally honest writer that I simply won’t be able to sleep tonight if I don’t reblog it.

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My low frustration tolerance.

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I’ve always been an impatient person, especially when it comes to trying to learning something new or getting something to work.   When I was a child, I regularly burst into tears of frustration or became agitated if I couldn’t solve a math problem (even though my father used to teach college level algebra, the math genes seem to have bypassed me), solve a difficult puzzle, or get a battery operated toy to work.

I still get frustrated with myself in jobs that have a high learning curve, if I don’t pick up things as fast as I think I should.    Maybe it’s because I set unrealistic standards of perfection for myself, or maybe my BPD lack of emotional regulation makes it hard for me to cope with very much frustration. Or maybe I’m just dumb with some things.

Many of us who blog know Opinionated Man is busy setting up his new self-hosted website and documenting every frustration, mishap, challenge and success–no matter how small–as he moves along in his new journey.   I give the man props for undertaking this risk, because to me, it seems like a huge risk, even though (for him at least) it’s a risk worth all the toil and tears.   It’s great to own your own home, but owning your own home means you have to do all the maintenance and repairs yourself (or contract them out), even if you do get to tear down walls, install Roman fountains in the living room, build a sarcophagus in the bathroom, and paint the exterior orange and purple. Personally, I think Opinionated Man has the patience of Job. Every day I read his running commentary on the transition to self hosting and I can do nothing but gawk in amazement as if he’s from another galaxy.

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I for one don’t know how he does it.   Self-hosting seems incredibly difficult to me, especially after the things he’s been describing!  On top of that, I’d be gnawing my cuticles down to bloody stumps of bone and flesh over the anxiety of possibly losing everything I’ve worked so hard on–or completely f’ing it up beyond repair.   My low frustration tolerance couldn’t handle that!  I’d be going nuts!  I think if it were me, they’d be carting me off to the loony bin about now.

So for the foreseeable future, until and if I have no other choice, I’m going to keep “renting” my domain from WordPress and let them take care of all the maintenance, even if it means I can’t tear down walls or change the color of my boring white walls.

 

Opinionated Man, I don’t know if I should thank you or kick you!

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Yesterday, Opinionated Man wrote a post called “My Greatest Blogging Fear.”  In that post he talked about the unthinkable for any blogger:  that one day you sit down and open up your blog…and find it gone.   All the work you put into it, the hours, sweat and tears…gone, just like that.  Poof.

If that happened to me I think I would want to die.  I have around 1600 posts on this blog now.  Sixteen months of work.   After reading his post, I realized how easily all that could just disappear.   A glitch, a hacker, WordPress suddenly shutting its doors, you name it.   All my hard work, gone just like that.   I know it’s not likely to happen, but it could.

I’m a worrier by nature.   I never worried about this before because it never really crossed my mind.  It never occurred to me to have a backup plan in case the unthinkable ever happened.   Now I have something new to worry about thanks to his post.

So I realized what I need to do is start a 3rd blog just for storage.  I’ll set it to private.  Most of the articles I care about will go in there.    I’m also going to save some of my best posts in my computer, probably Wordpad.   Then I won’t have to worry that one day I’ll log on here to find…everything gone.

Opinionated Man Update

I have no idea who is doing this to OM or why. It seems to me Jason is well liked by almost everyone and has helped so many bloggers when they’re just getting started. He makes them feel supported and welcome.

I think it boils down to envy. Jason has many followers, many more than any other non-commercial WordPress blogger I know of and that might not sit well for some. But frankly, Jason deserves the adulation because he always pays it forward and never feels threatened when another blog becomes successful. In fact, he’s more than likely to be cheering that blogger on and applauding their successes.

This is absolute bullshit and it breaks my heart.

OM, don’t let your haters get to you. You are better than them and why should you allow haters, trolls and other assorted malcontents who are obviously envious of you dictate what the content of your blog should be, or whether it should exist at all? Why give up something you clearly love doing so much?

When I was first getting started last year, I don’t know what I would have done without your help and your welcoming and supportive attitude. Not once did I ever feel like I was being dismissed or patronized because I was a “newbie.”

I feel sorry for new bloggers who won’t be able to benefit from all the support you have given me and so many others.

I want you to know I’m furious about this. I hope you stay around.

10 Annoying as Shit Things Bloggers Do

If you blog, please DON’T do these things!

A HarsH Goodbye…

So Jason is leaving the blogosphere to hunt treasure.
I’m grateful I started my blog when he was still here, because he was of such immense help to me getting started.
A lot of people here will miss you, OM! 😦 Good luck in your future endeavors. Maybe you’ll be back someday…

What happened to Opinionated Man’s site?

It’s been marked to Private!?! WTF? I wonder if it has anything to do with that troll that’s been harassing him. I understand the troll is also going after other bloggers who are supporters or friends of OM.
Or is WP mad at him again and made him take it down?

I can’t believe it. Has anyone else had trouble getting on his blog?