Stop Worrying About Whether Anyone Reads Your Blog

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I often write about the 17 long time readers but I know I have more than that. If I looked up the stats for everyone who follows via RSS, Jetpack subscriptions and or other methods I would come up with a much larger number and then I would ask myself if it really matters.

Once upon a time the Shmata Queen suggested I was addicted to my stats and to an extent she was right. I was on the hamster wheel where every day I would check them and wonder why there weren’t more people reading my wonderful words.

Eventually I reached a place where I stopped obsessing about why the numbers weren’t what I wanted and when I checked in it was to see if my wacky queen had come by to visit or it was when a brand was vetting my blog to determine if I might be among the lucky chosen few to represent them online.

You see I blog because I am compelled to do so. I have so much inside my head that if I don’t share these stories my head will explode. And I write because writers write. It is what we do and I am obsessed with improving.

Stop Worrying About Whether Anyone Reads Your Blog

I am not going to lie and say I never think about it. Not going to lie and say I never wonder why some inferior writers get more attention and more traffic. It could be because they are better marketers, networkers, luckier or better at kissing ass.

None of that really matters to me.

It would be nice to have more of everything. It would be nice to have more readers. It would be nice to have more subscribers, brands working with me and opportunities but I don’t know if it would be as much fun or as easy to rant.

And believe me, it is fun to rant about the number of people who don’t blog as I wish they would, who ignore the ancient art of blogging and defile it.

I like ranting about how bad and or basic some of the advice from experts is. Every month there is another post about bad pitches and how brands don’t understand how to engage with bloggers. Every month there is a post about how bloggers don’t understand how to engage with brands and why they shouldn’t be so goddamn self important.

You can take that admonition to stop worrying about whether anyone reads your blog to be me talking to myself as much as anything else.

You can call it a printed reminder to focus on becoming a better writer and communicator.

What Is The Ultimate Goal

Social media is fun. I have made friends, gotten jobs and gained a lot from it. Been around the block enough times to know all the buzzwords and to have my own bit about how to define influence/power in social media.

But that doesn’t necessarily sync with my goal.

The most important thing I can do here is become a better writer/communicator. That goal is a big part of why I write daily and don’t focus on any one topic.

It is because I want to be able to produce compelling content. I want to be able to write about any topic and be entertaining and informative.

If you really lucky you are graced by god with the kind of talent that makes golden words flow like honey from your fingertips.

Or you have a knack for constructing sentences that tell stories that make people laugh but most of us don’t get that sort of gift.

Most of us figure it out by grinding away at the keyboard and by reading hundreds of books.

You have to be willing to write dangerously and share the stories about the things, people and places that scarred you. I have done quite a bit of it but not enough of it lately.

When you worry about readers you start to forget about the importance of telling stories about stains that don’t wash away, stairways to heaven, relationship ads, Donut Shops, Detours or burying dear friends.

A Few Final Comments

There are some technical issues here that need to be attended to. Duplicate comments, SEO issues and broken links. I am working on them because I hate the clutter and chaos they cause but the bottom line doesn’t change. My focus is on the words and on becoming a better storyteller.

You are welcome to join me on the journey if you would like.

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14 Comments

  1. Pingback: Good news Chicago, I Voted...Twice

  2. TheJackB August 27, 2014 at 6:16 am

    kenyagjohnson I am glad to hear it. Writing is like any other habit, if you fall out of doing it…

  3. kenyagjohnson August 26, 2014 at 10:07 am

    TheJackB kenyagjohnson I meant “post” what I wrote.

  4. kenyagjohnson August 26, 2014 at 10:07 am

    TheJackB kenyagjohnson You definitely inspired me with this post. I played around with an app Hanx Writer on the iPad on Sunday and decided to write what I posted. Nothing impressive but it’s an exercise that I plan to do on Sundays now and I expect those posts to get “naturally” better and teach me to get back to the good ol’ blogging days.

  5. TheJackB August 23, 2014 at 12:21 pm

    brittanybullen Hi Brittany. I liked your post and I am still laughing about waking the baby.

  6. TheJackB August 23, 2014 at 12:21 pm

    kenyagjohnson Hi Kenya, long time no speak. It it is easy to get caught in that place where we get lost in those thoughts. It has happened to me multiple times and I expect it will again.

    Sometimes I get emails from people who don’t have kids and ask me to write about parenting. Sometimes I get notes from people who weren’t in fraternities and ask me to write about that. I think the point is we forget how the ordinary in our lives is sometimes exotic to others.

    And we forget sometimes how the ordinary also lends itself to building relationships with other people. Write about an argument with a spouse, heartbreak, death or just making a meal and others will smile and or cry with you because we all do it.

    I know for me when I just write without those other thoughts it tends to be more raw and more authentic and I think that helps people respond.

  7. TheJackB August 23, 2014 at 12:17 pm

    @Sebastian Aiden Daniels Sorry about that. I hate when the blog eats comments.

    Marketing, money and networking really do impact and influence things here.

  8. TheJackB August 23, 2014 at 12:16 pm

    @Rebecca It really throws me sometimes to see how some of the crappier places online can get so much traffic and others can’t.

    I have never found a satisfactory answer but I figure it doesn’t matter because it is unlikely to mean I can stop working. 🙂

  9. brittanybullen August 22, 2014 at 8:55 pm

    Jack, I think this was the perfect post to read after I just published something equally silly (yet not quite so eloquent) as this. There’s a shoutout to you in it. Maybe you got a pingback, but let me know if you didn’t. Talk to you on Triberr!

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  12. kenyagjohnson August 22, 2014 at 11:54 am

    Great post Jack. I’ve been a better writer and I am trying to get back there. Now I am connected to more people (including my dad who is a subscriber) I always post carefully. I spend too much time thinking of something to write when I’ve looked over other topics. I consider whether or not I am going to write that, who it might reach and who I might offend. I really want to forget about “who” reads my blog and just write it.

  13. Sebastian Aiden Daniels August 22, 2014 at 11:21 am

    Man. As i tried to figure out your livefyre thing it deleted my epic comment : /. Sadness descends onto me now. : P

    I think stats are something that every blogger worries about at one point or another and for some, all the time. I had to stop because it made me depressed as hell because my unfillable blog greed could never be filled : P.

    It doesn’t matter too much about your skill in a lot of cases, it is all about marketing and who you know sadly.

  14. Rebecca August 22, 2014 at 2:49 am

    I agree – I sometimes wonder how some sites get so much traffic as the writing is shocking, with typos and bad grammar left, right and centre. I think there’s always a place for good writers to share their work. Thanks, and keep it up! 🙂

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