Disclaimer: Every so often I have to reduce my xanax dosage so that I don’t develop a tolerance and I’m doing that right now and I’m having some withdrawal issues, so if this post seems fuzzier and more shouty than usual it’s because of the drugs. Or the lack thereof.
Whenever I’m on pinterest I find myself interrupted by pins that tell me about the 5 THINGS YOU ABSOLUTELY MUST KNOW ABOUT BLOGGING or 18 WAYS SEO WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE and I occassionally break down and click on them and then I read a bunch of bullshit I don’t even understand. I’ve been blogging for years and objectively speaking I’m somewhat successful at it, however the one thing I’ve learned about blogging is that there aren’t any hard-and-fast rules that help you succeed at it. It’s mainly luck, luck, some work, more luck, a little talent and assorted bullshit.
If I was good at doing graphic shit I’d make an infographic explaining this, but I’m bad with design and I fucking hate infographics because I realize that they’re really just ads that people want you to post on your blog for free. (Seriously. And it’s okay to post infographics, but be aware that you’re being used as free advertising. Which is fine…if you’re aware of it.)
Anyway, I thought that since everyone else is writing OHHOLYSHITLISTENTOMEBECAUSEIMAGODDAMGURU posts that I should probably contribute, because you aren’t a real blogger until you make a list yelling at other people. Apparently. So here are my 15 Things You Absolutely Must Know About Social Media or Your Face Will Melt Off and Get Eaten By Goats:
1. Every year a ton of places come out with their “best blogs of the year” list and you have to be there. Here’s the trick: Get on one of those lists and you will get on all of those lists. Why? No one knows. But it’s very nice to be able to talk about over dinner when your grandmother asks how you “globbing” is going and asks when you plan on getting a real job. Aside from this, those lists are very encouraging but don’t actually do much. This year I’ve been on Time, Forbes and People and none of them have given me as much blog traffic as I’ve gotten from being on the sidebar of a blog that gets updated once a year. True story.
2. SEO is very important. It stands for Screw Everyone Over. Or something. I don’t actually know, but apparently it’s something you should be paying people for. Or not. I prefer not.
3. Your google page rank can make or break you. Or it can mean fuck-all and no one cares. Last time I checked mine it was a 3 and I was all, “Hey, 3 out of 5 ain’t bad” but then someone told me it went up to eleven and then I realized that I don’t really give a shit. If you google “the bloggess” I totally come up. I say that’s a win.
4. Always use linkbait. Write about totally controversial things that will get people to come scream at you. Then you can write about how you were bullied and then more people will come and read you. You have now created an entire audience of people who either don’t like you at all or who are just reading to mess with you. I have no idea how this is considered a success, but to some people it must be, so fair play to them.
5. Write vicious posts about popular bloggers and then email them to tell them what you did. Inside the post write about how you just know that the popular blogger is going to send all of their minions to attack you for saying it. But before you do this? See if that blogger has ANY HISTORY AT ALL OF EVER DOING THIS because most likely the only comment is going to be from the blogger telling you that you misspelled “punctilious”.
6. Judge everyone. All the time. People are looking to you to tell them what they’re doing wrong. You obviously speak from a position of authority. You’re a blogger.
7. Write rules regarding etiquette of blogging. Break all of them. Get mad when people call you out on them. It’s not your job to follow the rules.
8. A lot of people refer to themselves as social media “gurus”. The phrase is used so often that people forget the main definition refers to a Hindu spiritual guide giving personal religious instruction and not just someone who throws twitter parties for palmolive. Take it up a notch and begin referring to yourself as the Messiah of SEO, or the High-Priestess of Google. Don’t be afraid of offending people. You’re a Messiah. You’re past that.
9. Any article containing more than six words should be made into a 15 page slideshow. That way you can make it look like you’re getting more hits than you really are, plus it wastes everyones time and bandwidth. Bonus points if the “next” arrow is so close to the advertising banner that people accidentally click on it over and over.
10. Get mad about something everyone else is already mad about too. This seems trivial but do not overestimate how many indignant people you can get to comment when you write about how awful it is when people drown kittens or punch babies, or ignore basic human rights. Bonus points if you start out with a particularly brave statement. Example: “I know I’m going to get a lot of flack for this but I’m taking a public stand to say that slavery is not cool.”
11. Only talk to important people. If they don’t have at least 10,000 followers they are not worthy of your time. If you accidentally freeze out someone and then later realize that they actually have tons of followers and clout just go back and explain that you didn’t realize they were important. That always works.
12. Beg. Beg for shit like crazy. Passive-agressively tweet to companies about how you want something from them but you can’t afford it. Look as thirsty and desperate as possible. Don’t be afraid to use “Do you know who I am?” There’s a reason that phrase is well-known, and douchebags must be using it for a reason.
14. Call out people on twitter or on your blog. Have a public fight. Sling mud everywhere. It’s not actually good for your brand at all but it’s very entertaining for the rest of us.
15. Write your own post about the things that you TOTALLY have to do in order to be a success even though you know that every single successful person has their own personal story and that luck and timing and support aren’t things that you can just make happen by following a set of rules. Make it seem like the people who aren’t making a living blogging totally would have been millionaires if only they’d followed your rules in spite of the fact that there are no real rules except the ones you make up as you go.
16. There is no 16. There’s not even a 1-15. There are no real rules or magic potions. Blogging success is fleeting, fickle, and largely based on luck (much like everything else in the world). This might seem depressing, but in a way it’s rather freeing. It allows you to write for yourself instead of just following a set of rules someone else made for you. Find your own voice. Find your own rules. Find a way of measuring success that’s more about freedom and fulfillment rather than page-views and analytics. Page-views mean nothing a year later, but the words you’ve put together may stand and affect others for a lifetime.
456 thoughts on “15 things you absolutely must know about social media or your face will melt off and get eaten by goats”
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13. There is no 13, and there should be a 13 because for you it HAS TO be lucky.
Formula or no formula, your blog is the only thing to cheer me up some days.
Re: #8. i call myself the Iron Man of Online Communities. And Tron.
i see these as wins.
Ever what you’re doing works.
Someone had to say it and I’m glad it was you.
I think I love you.
Excellent. Keep following your rules religiously and I’ll keep laughing my ass off! Love you (especially on days when you throw up a new post as I’m still reading the one I missed)!
I consider it a successful post if I get 25 views. I don’t know what SEO means and have no idea how to look at my google page rank. I can’t seem to piss people off even when I try.
17. Do what you love. Oh crap, I just put a valid point on your list. Oh well. 🙂
Hang in there during the meds shake-up.
This made my day. For realz.
These are all so perfect, I can’t pick a favorite.
After reading this, I might just get up enough courage to take that public stand against killing unicorns tomorrow. I’m sure everyone will hate me for it.
I’m considering Grand High PooBah of the Snakepeder Army.
Because I’m astounded when anyone other than Husband reads my blog, and that’s only because I added it in the fine print of our marriage vows. His fine print included something about loving him when he’s a pain in his ass until he kicks the bucket, but I didn’t pay that much attention…I make the rules only to break them. I mean, HELLO: PooBah!.
Oh, good. Based on the non-existent number sixteen, I’m doing it right. And so is everyone else I know. Yay! I know smart people!
I like 16 the best.
I am a digital media fairy and all I have to say is BRAVO & ::::slow clap:::: You are on point with all of your tips. Well, not #16. That was silly advice.
So glad I’m just the Leader of my Cultus of One. That way I don’t have to follow any rules but my own. (becoming the Leader of a Cultus did not stop the overexcitability and OCD, sadly)
Oh good goddamn, thank you for posting this.
Don’t forget the part about how you should write and blog all the time everyday and never stop. Not even to use the bathroom and how if you don’t pee in a jar and throw it out the window to give yourself more writing time you are doing it wrong and you will never ever be successful.
In part two you can take about insulting other bloggers by calling them hobbyists.
Yes. Exactly. Let the goats eat my face. I just want a ‘like’ button for this post. Facebook has ruined me.
I really freakin’ love you.
I think your rules make total sense. And was leaving out rule 13 on purpose just like many buildings don’t have a 13th floor?
every time my blog gets a single hit that’s not my mother, I consider that a successful post. In addition to mom is what I mean, not instead of. It might encourage me to actually post
This is the best blog rules list I think I’ve ever read. Thank you. 🙂
I’m glad I’m not following your advice, because that means goats will eat my melted face, and that must mean I somehow acquire goats. I’ve always wanted goats.
Also, comment really quick whenever the Bloggess does a post. I swear I get more Etsy hits from here than I do with paid advertisement elsewhere . . . sometimes I even have something to say 🙂
You are inspiring. Thanks for cutting through the crap and saying it straight.
And, definitely calling it “globbing” from now on.
My life became instantly more satisfying the moment I stopped worrying about “success” and started writing about what I damned well wanted to.
I just consider blogging a new way of finding writers that I like. So my assessment of a successful blogger is one that writes something interesting or funny. The rest of the crap isn’t important. I read your blog because I enjoy your writing. I am so glad this medium exists so that I can hear your voice. Your writing means a lot to me. Blogging may be fickle but your words aren’t fleeting. They occupy a place in my memory that inspires me and keeps me sane. I’d say you’re more than successful. I know this is a funny column, but I have often thought about what successful blogging actually means. A huge number of hits on a post about your tuna salad that you just ate or just one or two on a post that actually means something. I’m just glad more than one or two are finding your posts.
I love this, and you, so much. Also, you forgot to mention that your readers must fund your adoptions of pets and people. Get a paypal button on there stat! 😉
Now this is funny. I’m all over #16…
You are the best blogger ever. The end.
What comes to mind is the expression “since I gave up hope I feel much better.” I used to be all obsessed about page views and shit, until I discovered what I really liked was meeting new people and just writing for me. Now that I quit caring about SEO and likes and hits and blah blah blah, I actually enjoy myself more AND get a surprising number of page views when I post. Win win!
I only take pictures of people who don’t know how to park and I am positive they drown kittens too.
I fucking love you, Jenny x
i’ve been having this conversation with my “blogging peers” recently. I’ve been obsessed by all this shit in the past. I’m over it now. Love this post.
Heh. Don’t forget to re-hash content as “best of” posts when you run out of ideas or feel lazy. Also excessive use of random-word hyphenation (I’m guilty as-charged)
Your grandmother’s inquiry about your “globbing” made me laugh. When my daughter was five, she used to call Jose Feliciano’s Christmas song “Feliz Blobby-blob.” I guess you had to be there…
Doing 1-15 sounds terribly exhausting. I think I’d rather wallow in obscurity. Though it might help if I actually finished my backlogged posts and updated my blog. Mine even has a metal goat on it, though it doesn’t eat faces and now it’s a goaticorn because I added an inflatable unicorn horn.
I have no idea what I’m talking about. I haven’t slept in two days. And Nagzilla’s post above me mentions the most epic T-shirt ever and I have to agree that’s one damn epic t-shirt.
Is it bad then that I frequently refer to you, Moms Who Drink and Swear, and Insane in the Mom-Brain as the Holy Trinity of Bloggers? Because I’m pretty sure I’m actually following a couple rules that doesn’t exist with that.
On another note, I tried blogging what was on my mind and came up with the dirty version of someone else’s blog post by accident, without reading their post or knowing about it until after the fact, so I’m pretty much a failure at being myself. I am pretty sure the aluminum foil I use to block the NSA and aliens mixed with the vodka somehow tuned me into other people’s brains.
You’ve ruined my whole game plan. Tongue-in-cheek or not, I’m gonna have to rethink all of this. How to you digitally shake someone’s hand with a $20 bill in your own to pass on?
The Cheeky Daddy
I am SO making an infographic out of this!!
(Or, rather, I would if I weren’t so damn lazy)
Seriously with the lists. I barely ever blog any more, but because I made a list once years ago they just keep putting me on them. The lists are not for you, blogger or blog readers: they’re for marketers and PR interns who need to send email blasts.
I just do a Victorian Doll Rain dance after each post, throw glitter at my monitor, and scream BRING IT! (Never ever ever any twerking, that brings the trolls)
It may not be what everyone does, but I feel pretty secure in my routine.
I’m simply amused because I know that the last post I wrote is a totally silly one with self created meme about a certain someone who thinks sticking her tongue out is some kind of sexy thing when all it makes me think of is cows…
I blog for me. It’s more like a self-indulgent public diary. Also, you’re a success because you’re real, and funny and that’s why we love you. Also you like dead animals dressed up in outfits, which is pretty much a necessity for the interwebs.
Personally, I kinda dig it when you get a little screamy. Mainly because you’re screaming about shit that needs to be screamed about. So…thanks for screaming!
Wait there are twitter parties for Palmolive? I miss out on all the good shit.
The slideshows. TOTALLY the slideshows. People love that shit.
#16 is the effin’ best! Keep on writing what you think is rad– your words do affect!
You fucking rock.
I had to double check, thought I was reading GOMI for a sec there.
No lists, no blogging and no stinkin’ badges.
Rule #1 – Ignore all the rules except this one – because if you ignore this one – you are paying attention to all the others and then …..
Oh dear – that could create an endless loop – and now the program will run continuously until the power is shut down. And then when the power comes back up – it will start all over. DOOMED, I tell you, Totally Doomed.
Keep doing what you do – because it works. You have some loyal (and AWESOME) followers. I’m one – so I should know….. P
Brilliant. And true. I made a joke the other day about changing all of my blog post titles to link-baiting-outrage-inducing stuff like “Everything You Like Is Stupid And You Are Stupid For Liking It–and 13 Signs You’re a Fake Introvert, And Why Cupcakes Suck,” so I totally relate to this list.
i NEEDED to see #16 today. in ways i can’t explain.
i’ve read your blog. and your book. and to tell you the truth i don’t even know how i can across it all, but i did. life changing. instead of saying “on pinterest, i saw…” it’s “in this book i read by this lady who writes a blog as if she’s sitting in my brain all day” and then i tell my counselor “remember that book i was reading and it helped me come to terms with my own (insert mental “illness” here).
so thank you. again.
Don’t diss the twitter parties for palmolive. We all did our nails and drank massive quantities of wine. It was da bomb.
PS: Be sure to use phrases like “da bomb” as much as possible. It makes you sound like a social media maven goddess guru.
16 reasons why I will always remain a fan.
Don’t you EVER change.
#17 Actually write stuff in your blog. It is amazing how small your readership will be if you don’t regularly write and publish. This is the number one reason I am not a popular blogger. It has nothing to do with the crap I write.
Also go to popular blogs and beg for traffic. This is the Internet people, it is no place for people with scruples. (Isn’t that a cat’s name? Mr. Scruples)
Re: #1. What blog only updates once a year? I’m fascinated by this.
And instead of guru, I refer to myself as The Goddess of Awkward and Inappropriate. And I require my underlings to do so as well.
I found this list very hard to follow. You should have made it a slideshow. Stock photos also might have helped to.
Epic. Love the “missing 13” … and of course all the rest.
Going to buy your book now.
You totally forgot to make this post a slideshow. I can’t scroll down for that long. I mean, clicking next is like the internet equivalent of nodding in agreement, right?
I love you. You always make me laugh. I hope your xanaxless time is short and you feel better soon.
Thank you! Now, I feel certain I have everything it takes to be awesome. You = Benevolent Blogging Genius.
I love this so hard. Especially #1.
I tried to blog for a living and crashed and burned. Tried again, crashed again. Once more just to be sure? Yep. Crash. Burn. Then I found another way to write for a living, which freed me up to blog for fun. And now it actually IS fun, even after five years and only one subscriber. But I’m definitley going to start peeing in a jar now, just because.
You have the best definition of SEO I’ve ever seen.
God bless you. Not just for reminding myself and others that obsessing over being an internet success is only relevant if that’s how you make a living (and even then its subjective), but that I hadn’t considered temp. lowering my pill dosage to prevent building a tolerance.
I just want you to know I totally stopped reading some very important Star Trek fanfic to read this post and I learned nothing! NOTHING! Yes, that’s shouting. Well, okay, I got a chuckle out of this post and then I shared it on Facebook so…oh, look, you win. I heart you.
The Holy Bloggess:
Love it, Love it, Love it !
I try and follow the “Bill And Ted” rule
1.3 Drive people crazy incessantly tweeting links to your own blog posts from the last two years, because TRAFFIC. Cause drama everywhere. Angry traffic is still traffic and you get a warm fuzzy feeling when you break 50k page views, even if 48 of them hated you and will never return.
I hate lists. Except this one which is the best one ever.
Yes. yes. yes. yes. yes. Thank you.
a-fucking men. seriously. Most of this is why I hate telling people that I blog at all.
FYI, yours is the ONLY list I have read! I just KNEW you would give it to me straight up Miley Cyrus style~
OH thank you messiah of blogging!! Do you have candles with you on it so I can light them for my novena of you..
I LOVE you!
I’m happy to say I don’t follow any of these rules and I’m beloved by tens of readers… some I’m not even related to.
Be awesome has totally worked for you. Only rule to follow? I think so. 🙂 Thanks for this post. Everyone wants the magic solution….
It’s official. You are FABULOUS 🙂
I’m glad you haven’t given up “globbing.” Please don’t ever get a “real job.”
I love this….I needed this.
I hve been struggling with everyone telling me what I need to do to monetize the blog and start getting famous….can’t I just like to write? What is so wrong with that?
I know I’m going to take a lot of flack for this, but you’re right, I am the Messiah of Messes and I’m over caring whether I offend anyone…
1. I’m sure if it’s Allie’s blog you’re talking about, it gets more hits than People, Time, AND Forbes put together because she rocks (and so do you) so getting more traffic from her makes sense
B. You need to write ALL THE RULES from now on
Number sixteen is the best rule. Sorry they’re screwing with your Xanax to keep you from becoming tolerant of it. All the good drugs need holidays from them from time to time.
When a single mother in Tasmania makes an 8 foot tall giant chicken out of papier mache and leaves it on the doorsteps of people she knows are having a hard time because a CERTAIN BLOGGER makes her laugh and forget her own woes, well then, for me that is the essence of blogging and is the reason I blog. The sharing of our stories, the lessening of loneliness, the knowing that I am not quite so strange and that sometimes my words also have an impact on strangers. Hope your head isnt too fuzzy for too long Jenny xx
I’m freaking making #8 my goddamn cover pic on FB!
Bahahaaa This was absolutely epic! And much needed. And now I’m sitting here trying to figure out if I’ve broken any of these rules. hmmmm
Not sure. I sure as hell don’t even know how to put page breaks into mine, I don’t think I could ever figure out how to beg for money/ads or try to rile people up with shouting “YOU suck because you don’t think the way I do”. Oh and the bloggers who call out people in their blogs or on twitter for not living their way? UGH I hate them. There are a couple who come to mind who seem to just bait other bloggers on twitter for not being all perfect like them. I wanted to punch twitter one day when I saw that.
Also, I write what I want to write. And it’s usually very personal and often very depressing. Because HEY that’s my life!! Or I just have a very, very dark mind. And heart. Or I grew up wearing too much black and writing bad poetry in my room a lot. Ummm I plead the fifth on the last one.
Hell I do have to admit, I get more of my “hits” through your blog Jenny. For that I’m grateful. I think. My viewer count has gone up quite a bit lately but still, I don’t know how to be all funny like you. Maybe I need to take a class.
The first rule of blog club is never stop talking about blog club.
The second rule of blog club is NEVER stop talking about blog club.
The third rule of blog club is if this is your first day at blog club, you must write….without pants.
OOPS! I mean #9. I gotta look up SEO before I even know what #8 means.
LOL on #10! So typical 🙂
I’ve always loved you, but just when I think I can’t love you more, you bark out this masterpiece of truth and I just want to rub your tummy until you purr. Or not. I know that’s weird.
I just have to ask, what’s a blog? And how much money do you make, being a globber? Is it as exciting as it sounds? Oh, one last thing, you’re the one who wrote that other set of Rules, a few years back, aren’t you? I thought you were.
I would make a fancy infographic for you but I am spectacularly lazy today.
Being a great writer, witty, and honest doesn’t hurt either. I love your blog, I love your book and I think you pretty much rock the world. 🙂 Even when you are lowering your med dosage! 🙂
Okay, but now I NEED to know which blog it is that is only updated once a year and links to you in the sidebar.
I mean, if you were a considerate person you’d link to them so all of us could click over and make their page view number spike up really high!
Also, you forgot the one about tweeting a link to your most recent facebook status (which doesn’t open right on my phone) so you can get those numbers up too.
Happy Globbing everyone!
Yup…still my hero <3
@ RachRiot, I happen to know from a very good source (Patti) that you are loved and read by 12’s of people, some of whom you aren’t even related.
I just cherish you. Thank you.
Thank you, that was so refreshing to read, made my day.
I’m going to use this as part of my research for my MA on creative non-fiction blogging. Would you prefer to be referenced in APA or MHRA?
Also, this is the best “things you must” list EVER in the history of the Internet…
I love your anti-rules!
I plan to only follow #13.
I am called the queen of all time and space by more than just myself, actually. My crazy sister also calls me that….and then she asks me to make it time for her to go home from work.
Truth. For you, I would have clicked the slideshow. I live dangerously, but I’m pretty adept at avoiding the advertising.
I am calling myself The Flying Buttress of not at all understanding SEO. I just like writing. I also adore random off-the-wall key words that draw “the wrong kind of people” to my blog. My personal favorites are “ass cream”, “things that piss someone off”, etc. Mostly because I get a huge laugh out of what the hell people are typing into their Google bar to answer their insane questions.
Also, talk about boobs. My highest rated post over time has been one called Boobs McGee or something like that. People like boobs.
What were we talking about?
I totally forgot to add you to my blog sidebar. I must remedy that now.
I started my blog – holy shit – six years ago. I was such a good girl, posting every week. After a few years, my confidence lagged and I stopped. I only posted once in a blue moon. I’m trying to start it up again and I hope my old buddies rediscover it. I know I have one regular reader: my dad.
In my pre-Twitter days, I got into a tussle with a reviewer and I regret it to this day. I hope I didn’t make a complete fool of myself.
I don’t know why I blog these days to be honest, except that I like entertaining myself. I don’t understand SEO either, and I am too lazy to figure it out. I will never make any money at it. I like to make people laugh and I like to share stuff that I’ve done. I don’t want to sell anything. I don’t want sponsors or advertising or whatever. Right now, it’s just an outlet. And, I like words. A lot. I can’t seem to get into that whole “how to be a better blogger” stuff. I guess I do it for me and me only. I do like the interaction with others that I get (very rarely), so I’ll do a blog-share here and there to “meet” other bloggers. I stay at home with four kids and homeschool them, so I will talk to just about anyone out there. Ha! I know. Sad.
I find that posting lots of cats pictures gets you a lot of traffic. In your case, cats are one of the few non-dead animal pictures that you post…so because we are both doing it (posting cat pictures, that is), it must be a rule. I have yet to convince my wife that I need to collect (not alone photograph) stuffed dead animals.
#9 is spot on. I don’t know how many times I’ve clicked the wrong damn arrow. LOL
I used to always click on those articles too, but there’s only so much “You need to be on twitter” and “name your photo files with keywords” that I can take. I name my photo files “IMG1038372” instead. Stickin’ it to the man.
True story…I don’t blog. But you do…and that’s why I’m here. And you do it so well, so I think I’ll leave the blogging in your capable hands and I’ll continue reading. I like to read. And laugh. And learn.
Actually, just today my blog’s pageviews broke 100,000 and I am unabashedly proud of this. Especially since one of my husband’s co-workers once said, “Oh, so you’re just a groupie” when I answered his question about what I did for a living with “I write a blog about competitive jousting”. Sadly, ‘blog’ seems to have such a negative connotation in my husband’s social circles that I now answer, “I run a website about competitive jousting.” People seem to respond much more positively to that answer.
Number 16 can be applied to all sorts of things – religion in particular. There is no more set formula to success as there is for salvation. Just talk. Breathe. Be nice to people who have it coming – god knows we’re invested enough in doing the reverse.
A lot of these “tips” are sort of true. But sort of not true. They’re part of the whole story, but not all of it. That’s sort of obvious but you would be amazed at how many hours I’ve spent googling about many of the items on this list.
It is all about #16. Truly.
Well I have recently pissed off the Amish, you know the group of people that don’t use electricity, so I got that going for me. Of course they don’t read my blog bc of the whole lack of electricity thing, but I feel pretty good about the potential there.
I wrote something nasty about you on my glob.
Wow I just attempted to read a post on SEO today and about halfway through my eyes glazed over. Also as a reader, I hate it when 10 of the bloggers I read post about the same product in the same day… it kinda makes me hate the product and them.
This is fantastic, and just what I needed to read today. I just started a blog (two posts and counting, woo!), but mostly to practice writing on a semi-regular basis… I have stories I want to tell, but have always been a reader rather than writer. I’m pretty sure my best friend is the only person who has even read it, but she’s awesome, so it’s ok. 🙂
Can’t tell you how much I love this post. I have grown so weary of those link-bait listicles, which have transmogrified in my brain to “12 things you ABSOLUTELY MUST do before lunch to avoid A HORRIBLE, PAINFUL DEATH.”
(Item 1: “Breathe.”)
This is by far the best list of blogging tips everrrrr. Someone had to say what we’re all thinking 🙂
don’t forget “Snark about your children. They gave you stretch marks, so it’s totally fair to shame the in public. As long as it’s funny it’s FINE!”
Slideshows. It’s like Satan blinking.
I got back and forth between just wanted to blog for myself and then wanting people to read it. I average about 40 visits a day and that’s mainly my Facebook friends. I just figure I’ll write it and they will read it or they won’t.
What can you do? You are my hero though. If there’s anyone that’s my role model, it would be you! You had me at metal rooster…
I just stood up and gave you that long slow applause. Good one.
Been following / stalking your blog (surprise!) since you got named in the ‘must read’ blog. I wish I was as articulate as you are. But then again, no one’s reading my “glob”.
Screw Everyone Over is right!
I read at least 8 of these rules…and I wanted to place hearts all around them…and then I became distracted…because it’s Monday, and frankly, I’ve gotta pee……….
I agree with Morgan (comment #108). I post something I think is interesting, funny, relevant, controversial, etc. Nothing. Nada. Zilch. I post a photo of my cat. Highest day of views (and including an incredible amount of views from overseas). So the lesson here is, people, don’t bother blogging. Just let the cats take over.
Don’t forget tweeting your newest link every hour, freebies and commenting on 16.5 blogs every day.
If I did everything I was supposed to I wouldn’t to live a life worth (sometimes) writing about.
I’m surprised at how often I need to be reminded about #16.
I tried starting a blog once. Not one view. My friends didn’t even take a look…it was depressing.
”I know I’m going to get a lot of flack for this but I’m taking a public stand to say that slavery is not cool.” — I started giggling a little bit, and then I just completely lost it. Everyone in this room thinks I’m having a seizure. But I don’t care. That shit is funny.
Number 9 is freaking genius. I’m off to go create one of those right now.
Also, DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM? Because if you did you’d completely ignore this but maybe you’ll check to make sure I’m not someone important and I’ll earn another $2.34 this week. Ka ching!
I’m a little embarrassed to say this, but this is the first post I’ve ever read of yours.
And I loved it.
Every time I read a post on ‘how to be better’ I think, “fuck…….” and yep, that’s about as far as my thought goes. I’m happier when I’m blogging me for me and not the numbers.
Geez, and here I’ve been doing it all wrong for all these years, but that’s probably because I realized a while ago that I’ll never make money blogging and I should just use to platform to say and do what I want and if other people enjoy…Good for them! (and they probably need therapy) If no one reads it, good for me! (because it means I’m talking to myself and need therapy). Failing at blogging is probably why I’ve failed at almost everything else in life, but I’ve sure had fun being a failure even if it sucks in the short term.
Having read quite a few of these how-to-not-fail-at-blogging lists lately as I try to de-fail my own blog, I really needed to hear this today. Thank you so much. And pointless slideshows can go die in a fire. Along with those ads that suddenly expand when you accidentally move your mouse over them because they scare the crap out of me every time.
My Dad’s the kind of person who’d call it “globbing”. Last night he told me to “send a letter to Malaysia on the television” (that’s what he calls the computer). Nobody in particular, just Malaysia in general.
I pretty much follow the rule you said Neil Gaiman told you when you were recording your audiobook. I even named my blog after it, “Pretend you’re good at it.” I don’t have a huge audience or Twitter following, but I’m still writing, and hey, that’s good enough for me.
I keep worrying about your health because you haven’t written about it in awhile. How’s your body doing now that it is gall bladder-less? Do your other organs miss it? Did you get to bury it in your back yard like we did with our kids’ placentas? (Our fig tree and lemon tree are flourishing, apparently because they are vampires who feed off of baby blood and poop).
I’m bound to stay in the mediocre range. I’m terrible at controversy.
Thanks for the fun read! 🙂
Oh Number 9. Thank you for mentioning number 9. Lately, I’ve been wondering why I have to hit that unholy arrow over and over again to read a 500 word article. And yeah. I usually end up hitting the advert on accident. Bastards.
OH NOOOOOOOOZZZZ.. you forgot 13. And I am soooo angry about this. I love 13. I have a tattoo od 13 on my arm.. I am ssoooooososososososo angry.
Lol. I love your blog.
Atilla…she doesn’t do 13, never has, never will.
I think I may have just wet my pants. How entertaining…. oh and of course insightful.
Stellar list. I couldn’t follow any real rules anyway.
I can’t talk myself into reading a Writing/Blogging how-to book. I still haven’t read the instruction manual for my VCR. The VHS eats tapes and I don’t care. Instructions are for Sissys. I prefer to make lots of mistakes and learn the hard way.
Best. Ever. I don’t think I’ve ever read a better list of “things you MUST do NOW or NO ONE will like you and you will DIE a sad horrible DEATH…” or whatever. Seriously epic.
P.S. I literally ,not just figuratively, LOL’d at least 19 times. True story.
OMG love it!
We’ve been reading all the SEO crap trying to get our travel blog to be noticed but I think I’ll follow your rules and just write what I love to write about…..usually food and booze 🙂
HAHAHAAH….I LOVE THIS.
I’m TOTALLY doing everything wrong. And I’m good with that!
I remember when your post about being prescribed meth (back in 2008?) made my very sick teenage daughter laugh and helped her through a very rough time. If that’s not success, what is?
Now I know why I can’t get on any damn “best of” list.
Can I just call myself the buttfucker of social media? I’m not entirely sure what that MEANS, but it demands authority.
Great. I am new to blogging and I get stuck a lot. Your posts always encourage me to get going again. I have to keep reminding myself that if I build it, they will come. Or they wont. And I’ll still be my own biggest fan either way.
The last line nailed it. I have a post that brings people, men I assume, in droves from places like Thailand, Phillipines, and India after searches for “how to suck breast of women.” I kinda think they aren’t searching for a breastfeeding post, but still, my words give them a place to go.
my universe is tiny-whiny-itsy-bitsy but you are a big gem in it! everyone appreciates your blog and if they don’t it’s b/c they’ve never been here. like, you can’t love chocolate if you’ve never tried it. what does SOE really mean? i won’t google it, that seems like unpaid work. i suck at work, ask anyone – i’ve got references.
As I start out blogging, I am now realizing everything I have been doing wrong. Thank you for shining a light on the path to blogging in the right! 😉
This was hilarious, thanks for the great read.
I mean, there has got to be other people out there that want to read ADD, anxiety disorders and bad decisions. I can’t be the only one…
I’ve been doing it all wrong…
What, you mean baby-eating puppy kickers should be ashamed of themselves? The very nerve!
Just kidding. 🙂
I’ve worked pretty hard across my life to write in my own voice. People even laugh when they realize that the style of my writing really does echo my spoken words (or vice versa), but they seem to have missed the point that I worked at it.
Sure, my point of view isn’t all knowing and perfect, and my memory may be terrible, but my words are my own, and I prefer knowing that I’ve said or written something I’m willing to stand behind.
If more people were brave enough to say what they really think, and made the effort only to say or write things they’re willing to stand behind the world would be a happier more interesting place. (Also the internet would be much less hazardous. Random comments from anonymous strangers? Not as meaningful as some would like to believe.)
I found this SO helpful. But didn’t you mean #klout? It really is all about #FREESHIT isn’t it? And attention. I’ve found posting about boobs really drives page views up.
I can’t decide if I like 8 or 13 more. Keep being you! If you would have told me a couple of years ago when I started writing all these truths; I may have doubted. That isn’t the case anymore. Hope you feel better soon.
I used a picture of goats in one of my posts last week. Cute, sleeping goats . . . not face eating ones, but still, I must be doing something right!
I think I speak for all of us when I tell you that we will all take a big, fat, steaming dose of your “assorted bullshit” any day of the week.
Bring it on, Honey.
As a blogger, customer service manager and SEO manager, this me laugh and happy on so many levels. I declare myself as the Countess of Customer Service as well as seriously awesome at SEO (okay…that last one is lame but my creativity is running dry this late in the day).
Holy crap on a stick–I need to grow more balls. Or some balls. That don’t involve hormones or weird surgery on my lady bits. Write on!
LOVE, love, seriously LOVE this.
“the words you’ve put together may stand and affect others for a lifetime.”
It started out with one simple chicken story for me and I haven’t looked back since.
This post NOT brought to you by Xanax! LOVE it. I’m bookmarking it and posting the link anytime someone posts SEO nonsense anywhere.
I am sure that luck is a factor, but I sincerely hope you have at least some idea of how amazing your perspective in life really is. I have been following you for years. And there are some posts that I simply cannot forget. Not just for their hilarity, which most all of them have, but for the truly beautiful, graceful and humane way you present yourself. Case in point, your blog about the fake prom to keep out the lesbian couple. I learned sooooo much from your words that day. And I am ALWAYS one to be overwhelmed with empathy, but all I felt was anger till I read that post!! You are successful because you are special and you have a purpose in this world!! Your voice is important!! Luck or no luck! I heart you ;). And thank you!!
Jesus, even under-medicated you’re a mother-effing GENIUS. Thank you for existing.
“4. Always use linkbait. Write about totally controversial things that will get people to come scream at you. Then you can write about how you were bullied and then more people will come and read you. You have now created an entire audience of people who either don’t like you at all or who are just reading to mess with you. I have no idea how this is considered a success, but to some people it must be, so fair play to them.”
This just happened to me. It was SO. EXCITING. The “controversial post” was about BENTO BOXES. (WHO KNEW?) It is now my most read post EVER, because people who are evidently extremely ardent supporters of bento boxes showed up in droves to fling mud at me and call me a bitch. On the other hand, some of the people who read my blog showed up to defend me. That was kinda awesome.
I goddamn fucking love you forever and ever amen.
Jenny, I would adore you even if I didn’t have a picture of you and me and Juanita Weasel. Who managed to pose better for our photo than I did even though she is DEAD.
I think #13 should be “take the opposite stance from common opinion”. There are people I swear would argue FOR slavery (for a random example) as an awesome form of job security, just for the hate-reads.
brilliantly funny – or as we say in England “rather good”
Although i’m a bit worried – a goat ate my socks once on a camping trip. I now realise quite how close I came to having my face eaten ….
Tip # ??? To increase your comments, make sure to include spelling mistakes and poor grammar. Who cares if the comment is not related to your post, there’s so many comments!
I’m convinced everybody knows the different ‘yours’ and ‘there’s’ and they’re just misusing them to get comments. And traffic. And annoy people.
I love this list and its blatant truth.
Thanks, Jenny! It’s you already! (Filipino expression of I salute you!) 😀
you forgot to mention something about writing a comment on someone’s blog who goes viral – that is sure to get you lots of traffic… especially if you post a link to the time that clown balanced a baby goat on his head – this link is not to that post, but you’re probably going to click it anyways, right? – http://brettfish.wordpress.com/2013/08/23/pearls-before-baby-swines
yeah, i thought so. commentator reader people who get down this far are all the same.
pretty good Pearls before Swine cartoon though, right?
ha ha, twas a great read – thankx for sharing
love brett fish
#9 is the one that pisses me off the most and will get me to leave immediately no matter how much my interest has been piqued.
I think SEO is an imaginary thing created to make women that blog in their pajamas feel inadequate. I refuse to play no matter how many spam comments tell me my SEO is so bad that tiny ninjas are going to come and murder me in my sleep. Because that would be an awesome way to go out, right?
I have to admit, I have pondered the popularity. We are all on a level playing field. We all use words to get some kind of message out into the universe. I agree that the more controversial the better. Dropping the f-bomb doesn’t seem to hurt either.
I have to be me and that has to be enough. It would be nice someday to be listed in People, Time and Forbes…you never know. I consider myself pretty lucky.
You are so smart to reduce your dosage of Xanax. I wish my doctor had told me to do that. I had to keep taking more and more and unfortunately became addicted. I really sympathize with you on the withdrawal; it was just awful. I wish I could give you a hug.
I don’t know anything about writing a blog but I love reading yours.
Take good care Jenny.
I’m amusing myself by compiling a list of bloggers that inspired these. I’d list them here but you kept it classy so I’m going just point and laugh in my head instead.
You are brilliant. You’re loved because you don’t mire yourself in blog bullshit…never change!
I feel like this is a personal message to me, because it involves goats, and also, I just started blogging. Thanks for the heads up and I hope you get to re-medicate soon.
OMFG this is the best goddamn thing ever. Almost close to Wheaton collating papers.
Absolutely hilarious!! I love it!
Guru’s keep telling my to use photos in my posts. I hate using photos. I like to think I am the Guru of not using photos. 10 points to you for not using photos in this post 🙂
I read this as I scarfed down some leftover turkey, trying to buff up my non-existent blood sugar – I also feel a a little screamy and askew. It’s almost like getting to read Plato in the original something.
“look as thirsty and desperate as possible” hahahaha!!! Love that.
Globbing is the new black.
I now await being put on a top globbers list. That is, until I go all Don Quixote on some other Globbing Guru and go down in flames.
This made me want to give you my dead taxidermy mouse I’ve had since I was teeny and the clothes mom made for her/him. I’d already wanted to give it to you, but of course I’m not sure where he/she is. However, if I find it, or you know if I die or something, it’s totally for sure yours.
Can we be besties? Like for reals. <3 this.
What kind of goats specifically? The large ones or those funny fainting goats?
I used to get paid to do SEO for this weird foreign company. I think they sold carpet cleaners, but it is entirely possible that they were really a money laundering front for some terrifying Eastern European mafia. It was so mind numbing that I actually wanted to pull my brain out my left nostril like an ancient Egyptian.
You nailed it. Each and every word. Thanks for being so real.
It’s 94 degrees here and the goats in the field are looking a little wild-eyed. Damn good thing I read this post today… (love it!)
I think the goats can smell all the melting face flesh…
Fuck it…I’m going to show pictures of my surgically replaced vagina on my blog sometime soon!
Thank you for this! I am so sick of reading about the different rules to follow. Ugh.
Be careful with the Xanax withdrawals – they are rough!!!
after just seeing beetlejuice do a freak show with Hannah Montana doing crazy eyes impression, this post was so refreshing. thank you.
Just thought I’d touch on a point that some have made already, regarding how they feel their post is a success if someone OTHER than their mother reads their post…I still can’t get my mom to read my blog. WTH? Every now and then, I’ll ask her what she thought of this or that…and she’ll go, “Oh, are you still doing that blog thing? I keep meaning to check it out.”
Seriously? Talk about depressing. But, I bet the minute I write a hilarious, rollicking post about how my mother drives my crazy, she’ll be the first person to read the damn thing. I can’t win.
Just another blogpost solidifying why I follow you! Thanks for keeping it real! Can we totally have a blog fight on Twitter? I think it would trend! Lol
number 8 – I die….. Messiah of SEO – I need to order my business cards with that STAT. I’ve always wondered what makes someone think they can get away with ‘social media guru’ – you put it perfectly – thanks for cracking me up as always.
I’ve got #6 on lock! Judgey McJudgeface over here!
But seriously this is incredible, and I love that you used the thirsty.
Allie Brosh Rocks.
My firm just put me in charge of social media because I’m a blogger [LAUGHING MY ASS OFF HERE!] and because that must mean I know about SEO! The joke’s on them. I have absolutely no idea what the hell I’m doing except writing and shooting my random thoughts into the void, which I have to admit is kinda fun. Althought, now that I know SEO stands for Screw Everyone Over, I think I can take my new job much more seriously and enjoy it much, much more. Thanks for that.
I shall now call myself the Grand Puba Mistress of SEO, Esq.
Your welcome world.
xanax withdrawals are a bitch.
btw, i am dying of laughter every time i have a chance to pick up my nook and read more of your book. i am even quoting it to my husband and have bought it as a baby shower present for a friend.
10,000 followers? Oh my, you’ll never talk to me again. Could we dicker a few thousand? My “skill” is letting loose German curse words. ;P
#1 Always remember to smergle.
Yeah. #9 infuriates me every time I see it. And when I see it, I instinctively seem to know that I SHOULD NOT EVER FOLLOW THAT BLOG. I mean EVER. You don’t reward bloggers who take advantage of their readers like that, all in an effort to pull in advertising dollars.
Slideshows are awful, just awful.
I love to read, and I love unique, unpretentious people. A keen sense of humor helps. @shthisisme
Awesome. All kinds of awesome. Now if only everyone unfollwed the rules and wrote because they loved it we’d be golden. Thanks for keeping it real.
I’m pretty sure Bloggess = goddess = Messiah. You win.
The post that gets literally half the hits on my blog was a post I almost didn’t write. It’s a random topic that people apparently sometimes google (along with the many other things people google) and so it seems that post randomly stumbled upon a little SEO love. Or perhaps it’s just one person reading that post over and over in which case…creepy!
Regardless, the random popularity of that one post made me realize there was no way I’d understand SEO and why some blogs attract more readers than others, and the best thing I could do is WRITE. Write from the heart about all these ideas that have come to coalesce into words. Write things that I will be proud of when I go back and read them. Write for me and if someone else likes it, hopefully they tell me so we can be all the more awesome together.
You forgot something I have found extremely effective at getting one or two hapless readers: comment on the Bloggess’s posts. 😉
OMG, I think you must have been reading the same shit-storm infighting among bloggers that I was reading. For a while. Until I removed all the names from my bookmarks because life is too short for all that, plus I don’t have that much wine in the house.
What wise words
I’m baffled that you mispelled Pinterest and didn’t take the opportunity to embed a hyperlink to your boards for all of us ~ I thought that & Google+ were the end all be alls of blogging these days? Seriously. If big bloggers like you don’t follow the rules how the hell are the rest of us supposed to make it???
If I follow all 15 of these steps will I really be popular on the line.
I’d like to buy you a drink?! Don’t we both live in SA?
This is the most punctiliously funny post I’ve read this week. I think your meds are just fine. Well, I guess that’s your call, not mine. Thanks for sharing!
I was totally wondering what SEO stood for. Wow. I feel better.
You are now my guru and I shall use this as my bible. 😉
Thank you, thank you, thank you. I love not only what you said but the way you say it. Humor is the best way to get a point across.
For the record, you had me at the category “Posts That Will Get Me Hate Mail”. That said, this is freaking fantastic. You made me laugh…at 10 pm on a Monday. That’s definitely a win for you!! This is the first time I’ve visited, but now that I know that a globber of your hilariousness exists, I’ll be back (said in my absolutely worst Schwarzenegger voice). Thanks again!
I am so totally going to follow all of these. Thanks for the keys to success. When can I expect the check in the mail? Or will it just be direct deposit?
Hahahah. Oh gosh, I totally cackled out loud at #9. The many times I have cursed myself for falling for that effing fluff.
My sadly neglected blog keeps getting regular hits on the one post that shows up when people google a certain life-project inspiring phrase. The rest of my work? Not so much. Kittens! It should be kittens and cats all the way down.
I do love your commentators. I find the best people that way.
”I know I’m going to get a lot of flack for this but I’m taking a public stand to say that slavery is not cool.”
Literally laughed so hard, I spit my drink. You owe me a new keyboard. -Veronica
#1 is so true. That is actually how I found you off of Allie’s blog!
good luck during the xanax drought. stay strong.
also, glad you wrote this post because it reminded me to googlebate.
All of this can only take me so far. In the end I think I’m going to need something more human to rely on. Warm arms to hold and rock me occasionally. No more shit storms for awhile. My tear ducts need to crinkle up at the edges and make smiles instead of rain. Jenny, you’re brilliant but it’s time both of us leap into the pit of balls and giggle awhile. Join me?
because you weren’t already the awesomest…
I’m saving this link and will post it as a comment on every Pinterest post I see with blogging and social media advice.
I want to pin this to my (nonexistent) how to be an amazing blogger board. With like an empty white square. Or a melting face? Or a goat? Goat with melting face?
I have a blog ok 2 blogs I think I have had 25 views total . I have a twitter account Haven’t really figured the damn thing out yet a nd really haven’t tried 9 followers on blog and one commenter LOL I could never blog for a living Didn’t even know there were twitter parties what the hell. Every rule you wrote is like a foreign language. I have no idea how I found you and your blog but I hope I never lose you.
Wow…Affect others for a lifetime? I’m not sure I’d want to do that… 😛
As if one generation of people thinking I’m a total loser and a klutz isn’t enough!
Having to tweak a xanax dosage is never a fun time. I had to go off it entirely for awhile. That’s not a fun time either. I find I’ve started to eat a lot of sour gummi worms. I don’t know if that might you but I’m happy to share mine with you.
I had a favorite. Then I had another favorite. Then I stopped counting favorites and just fell in love with your writing all over again. There are no rules. People like to make them up. Other people like to make different ones up. I like to ignore them and let things happen as they are meant to. Speaking of which, gotta go. I need to write a mud-slinging post about popular bloggers who host twitter parties for Palmolive.
Love this list! Now I know, I am already awesome, I just have to remind people of that!
Your google page rank can make or break you- Honestly yes. 🙁 sad thing about google page rank is that we need to pay google for better rankings.
I love this. I started blogging after the wife forced me to read the Bloggess and I realized. “Damn, she needs therapy.” Then I realized. “Damn, I need therapy too.” I do this because I’ve got to get this out of my head and I can’t afford therapy. Oh, and rules? Screw those. http://worstrefeverstuff.blogspot.com/2012/02/of-coursely-alsoly-post.html Oh, and I hate people that can’t park worth a crap. They irritate me to no end. http://beingsmokey.blogspot.com/2012/05/all-new-crappy-parking.html Yep, got a blog about that too. Okay, going to bed now.
This was amazing and needed to be said. Medicine for the community online. THANK YOU!
At first I thought, oh gawd, this is another one of THOSE posts. But it wasn’t. THANK YOU!
Yes, the infographic thing! Everytime I get them I send them my sponsored post rate and they mysteriously disappear or tell me who do I think I am for actually thinking I should be charging them for the use of their ever so important life changing infographic that will amaze and my dazzle my readers and that I should actually be paying them. You know for something that I didn’t solicit and have no plans on using…..
Oh. OH… testify, sister.
I am a rubbish blogger.
I mean, when I have something to say I write it – but I live in the realm of “Independent Author”land.
I have been in forums with “cutting edge” amateur promoters… they blanch when I openly say that sometimes I manage about 2 posts a month.
“You have to post everyday, you are a writer, write something, anything” they inform me from their high artificially acquired horse. Then they puke a little. Then look around to see if their interaction with me might mean that their hit-rate will be down for the day. Because numbers are EVERYTHING dammit. (not)
The cottage industry of circle-jerking that revolves around the desire to promote a book, or WORSE, the need to promote to other writers that an individual has a direct line to the 5/8/23/9gazzziolion/only rule/s for becoming successful is immense and vulgar.
I’d like to add something, not to tack on to your rules, but more as an observation on social marketing:
“If the only people that interact with your posts are part of the aforementioned cluster-fuck, then you might be getting those sought after page hits, BUT it doesn’t actually MEAN anything. Other than a bunch of other folk are standing around with their junk in their hand, and then passing it on to the next crotch holder.”
It seems that writer-ish style people, blog, book or otherwise, are forgetting a fundamental aspect:
It is the reason that the bloggess is so good. The QUALITY of the posts is good.
I’m not suggesting for a second that you don’t do anything else to consolidate your success, just that without a foundation of good stuff for people to consume, what is the fucking point of promoting it?
*can’t get down from soapbox*
More than 1,000,000 blogs are STARTED every week – many have great content. Some don’t but don’t care. So many more are started in the decade-too-late belief that there is actually money to be made by writing about your cat. And something that happened yesterday. And the local plumber that over-charged but due to some kind of “I’m just like a journalist”integrity issue won’t be named, won’t be offered a location, and as a result has NO RESONANCE with whoever lands on that forsaken page on the interwebs.
People have a right to blog, but the industry that preys on those who wish to artificially create celebrity should be taken out into a paddock, and shot. (Not the people, just the industry… I truly believe that the circle-jerk industry feels like they are at the forefront, they aren’t necessarily bad folk, just horribly misguided)
*both eyes twitching*
Need coffee… coffee makes everything better.
OHMAGOSH I love this <3
Great post! I’ll definitely link to it when asked for blogging advice. Especially for questions like “How much money could I make if I blog?” and “How much time will it take each week?” and the very best “Is there a quick way to be popular?”
just in case you haven’t seen this yet.
Australians are fucking awesome.
#16 was the true one. I could tell.
I’m pretty sure that if I died, my husband would just bury me. Is it blog worthy?
I love absolutely everything about this x
I found you through Jen Lancaster (who I found through a friend who raved about her books). Through you I found Hyperbole and a Half. I guess I really need to thank my friend Julie for all of this. Anywho, all of you ladies rock in my book.
And this is why I love The Bloggess! 😀
Blogging – just as almost any type of writing – should always be for yourself. Blogging is to finished piece as knitting is to scarf. Depending on your climate, of course.
I love this post because it reaffirms everything that I have been saying for a long time. It’s all about who is reading and whether or not what you wrote speaks to them on whatever level they are able to connect to it at that moment. These blogger cliques and supposedly best bloggers are not really that great most of the time. Keep on keeping it real. 😉
Thank you, I love absolutely everything , it is the same of this: http://bit.ly/143ZGjG
I have to write my blog for an audience? Who knew?? Luckily I will forget this the minute something interesting happens and go back to writing for myself. Or I’m given a biscuit. Yes, I am slightly like a performing monkey but with words, not a tiny fez and sequinned waistcoat.
I am always surprised when I get more then 1 page view on my blog. I write my blog for therapeutic reasons and I know I will get one view because I make my husband read it but still the rest of my family and friends seem to read it to. I don’t tend to get much in the way of comments but since I’m not expecting any it’s cool.
Besides the blogs I like the most tend to be blogs that are written naturally, not forced to get the most pageviews.
Anyway you Rock Jenny 🙂
If you made an infographic of this, I would totally share it on my blog. And I wouldn’t care that it’s free advertising for you.
She’s not the messiah. She’s a very naughty girl.
Yes. The globbing is going as well as can be expected. In fact, a lot of people that I talk to say they’ve never met a “globber.” (They may not say it, but for the most part I can tell they are honored to be in my presence.) lol Loved this post!
thank you for the laugh…..very entertaining!
Yay!! I AM going to make it because I do none of these things!! *pats self on back* Well, ok, maybe I do number 6 sometimes…well, if you can call reading a comment and making “meh,meh,meh,meh” noises while sticking my tongue out sort of Miley style ‘judgy’…wait is that how you spell it? or would that just be the same as ‘juggy’? I know a lot of juggy people. Can I have your spare Xanax????
Freeing. Thank you. All that pressure makes me not want to blog. But having a creative outlet is important. Thank you!
Brilliant, raw, and honest. Love it. Especially #11.
Blogging nowadays reminds me of high school.
With this information I can finally start my own glob! Just as soon as I figure out what things like SEO are.
And here I thought that being an entertaining writer was a big part of your success.
I love this! Thank you!
The blogs I love to read the most are the ones that just tell real life, like it is. No garbage. I mean you know, they might even post about taking out the garbage. Or dirty diapers, or how they haven’t done dishes in a week or keep washing the same load of clothes over again because they keep forgetting them.
Because that is REAL. No one is pinterest perfect– all those jackanapes have been shot by their less than perfect partners by now and left to die. What? It’s true. No one is perfect.. except the people that just write about real life— because they realize it isn’t perfect.
16) Plagarize! If you read tech blogs as much as I do, you will see the same article on multiple sites. Word for word. I think they are in cahoots (I love saying “cahoots”.) “Bob, it’s your turn this week to write the blog. Don’t forget to email the copy to the rest of us so we can repost it under our names.” And the 6 words becomes a 15 page slideshow? Oh yeah. See ZDNet for that. They are pros at getting click for no content.
From a dude who wrote an unposted blog entry titled “The 10 Things I Hate the Most About You and Your Blog,” with “bloggers who write and post top 10 list” as #1 on the list, which is obviously (and purposely) contradictory considering the post it was ranked #1 in, I can HONESTLY say, no bullshit….this was one of the most awesome blog posts I have read in a while. I….have….the….weirdest……adrenaline….rush…..right…..now….!!!! Loved it.
Speaking of luck…there is this dude from Iowa who I have been friends with for almost 20 years. He’s always done standup/videos while I’ve always just done real zany blogging. We have always mutually been legitimately supportive of each others’ shit. ANYWAYS, this dude moved to L.A. about 5 years ago and even asked me to go with him, in which I declined for my heart is stuck in Iowa and I didn’t really have plans on doing standup. Well, since then he has gotten a 15 minute slot on one of those Comedy Central shows and the kicker…just yesterday it was revealed that he has been named 1 of 3 new writers for Saturday Night Live for the upcoming season. UNBELIEVABLE. My God…I hope he keeps me in mind when he has a zillion twitter followers. He knows damn well that I’ve always been supportive of his shit and he has always been supportive of mine as well…since the Myspace days. I HOPE this could potentially be my lucky break.
“…Your Face Will Melt Off and Get Eaten By Goats”
You say that like it’s a bad thing.
SEO = Screw Everyone Over!
I love that! Thank you Jenny!!
#9. Totally! Best way to drive traffic away from a blog.
It’s actually kind of nice to know that there are truly no rules. Makes me feel like I’m floundering around a little less. 😀
I totally found you through that blog that only posts once a year -and then bought your book -and I’m one of a zillion. You don’t need no stinking rules……you made the rules! haha
Love this post, love your message-clothed-in-humor, love you. Good luck with the xanax tinkering.
JUST LOVE!! That is all!
Here’s a preview of my CONTROVERSIAL and UPSETTING impression of the Bloggess!
“Blah blah blah, my name is Jenny and I’m entertaining and compassionate and crazy in that perfect way that makes all my fans want to be best friends with me!”
Oohh burnn… I bet you all are going to come to my blog to tell me off now!
I just pinned this with the description of “15 Things You Absolutely Must Know About Social Media or Your Face Will Melt Off and Get Eaten By Goats” Just to see how many people will actually re-pin it. I’m an asshole like that.
I found you through Allie Brosh! I was looking for something funny whens she was on a break. Now my entire left thigh is covered by a tattoo inspired by one of your blogs so is having your work immortalized on fans flesh a sign of success?
I love this with the force of all of the pink puffy hearts in the world. Ellen
OMG #9! YES. But I mean really, NO. Ugh.
I shall henceforth be known as the Countess of Coupon, or perhaps the Princess of Prudence, no wait the Empress of Everything!
Awesome post..Next up..15 back link building strategies..PLEASE.. On a serious note this is perfect proof that great content will be found and all the BS that tries to make poor content seen will be fleeting..
As always, you had me at the first character….maybe it’s because I’m in a cymbalta fog but your words are clear to me and I raise my cawfie cup and yell HELL YEAH…..
Back to my normal life now.
I don’t blog and I don’t even know what SEO might really mean. That said, I love you. I hope your weaning goes well. I’ve been there a time or two myself and it’s not fun.
I have a really excellent infographic on Uranium (“The Metal of Tomorrow”).
If you are interested.
But I’m not selling any uranium.
Not right now.
Call back later in the week.
Thanks! I really needed that. What a wonderful world when you’re surrounded by entertaining people who take themselves WAY TO SERIOUS.
:nods solemnly: :goes off to rethink her world view:
Here it is: http://www.advisoranalyst.com/glablog/2013/08/14/uranium-the-metal-of-tomorrow.html/print/
I had to take an Ativan after I read 1-15. Then I get to 16 and realize I didn’t need it, but by that point I was already taking a nap and feeling really loopy.
Hope you get back to your regular dose soon 😉
When you are writing on your own blog, you must not care what others think, because these are your thoughts and you own that blog.
Blogging sucks unless people read your blog. Otherwise it’s a website with inflated numbers based on a person who gets a bunch of free stuff and gives it away (Btw, there’s a giveaway on my blog right now.).
It’s also, really hard work. I’ve quit just about every day of the past three years while trying to discover a little luck or a better shtick. It hasn’t happened yet.
My daughter did something to my iPhone and now Siri calls me Leader of the Unicorns whenever I ask it a question.
Thank you for continuing to inspire and make me pee my pants laughing… I didn’t actually pee my pants… but you get the idea. You’re swell and I love your blog! Thanks for sharing!!!
#1 Fan. Right here. Always.
Excellent glob post.
#11 This is why I love you! Because you actually did follow me back on twitter and I only had like… 30 followers at the time! <3 🙂
Yup, the words you put out there in the order you choose to put them always make me happy.
Thanks for a good laugh this morning.
All of this! Seriously, much of this is what caused me to become disenchanted with certain parts of the blogosphere. I just wanted to write and maybe meet some like minded people. All this other stuff… meh!
You, Jenny, win the internet. Today and always!
@Kristin in comment #202. I wrote a blog post (http://amazingsdj.blogspot.com/2013/08/the-math-of-college-dorm-move-in.html) exposing to the world the fact that my mom and dad snore. Mom won’t miss a blog post for ANYTHING now. THAT’S how to get your mom to read your blog.
Oh thank god…now I can go back to sucking at all of those things.
From my heart, I WISH your doc would put you on klonopin or Valium. They, along with Xanax, are all benzos with anxiolytic properties but Valium and klonopin have a MUCH longer half life. With Xanax you get interdose withdrawal which can just be mistaken for your normal anxiety or panic attacks but they’re not…also, the tapering of it is far more brutal because of how short the half life is. I’ve been a student of the “school of hard knocks: benzo edition” since Feb. 2010. It’s a long story. I’m not a know it all person at all, I’m quite the opposite. I’ve just researched sooo much on this, talked to others, experienced it myself and then found a great psychiatrist in NYC. He won’t even prescribe Xanax for the reasons I’ve named above. It’s so similar to klonopin and Valium that is a cross tolerant with them (I’ve experienced that firsthand). They are all the same class of drugs, all anxiolytic, they just stay in your blood longer and have a smooth come down. For the life of me, I can’t understand why the worst anxiolytic benzo of the bunch (Ativan is the second worst, 2nd shortest half life) is the most popular. I just want you and anyone else reading this to know that to taper you don’t have to suffer making big cuts cutting pills in half. You can get a reputable compounding pharmacy (do not let a regular pharmacy do it) to make a liquid bottle of your med. You can get a liquid prescription (this is true for other meds too, not just benzos) and a syringe and make slowwww reductions so you don’t have very noticeable withdrawal symptoms. I never knew this! Please spread the word. Dont suffer cutting pills, reduce slowly. Best of luck to you. I just bought your audio book recently 🙂
Well thank goodness. I’d made a mental note to try and learn about the SEO stuff. Okay, well I made that mental note last year and I’m still procrastinating.
Now I have “permission” not to worry about it! I have time for a nap! THANK YOU!
one reason to read this blog: so you can have a terribly tiny connection to THE BLOGGESS
ok. two reasons: reason one , and JUST DO IT.
thank you for being.
Thanks. I needed to hear that. I WILL stop stressing about my Alexa score and page views and keep writing because I NEED to write.
I had to reread this on account of I read it in the middle of the night during one of my hamster marathons and as I suspected, LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this piece! Thanks for writing it. Hugs 🙂
Rule 17: “Also, the cock looks awesome.”
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. For the laughs, for the inspiration and for being so radically YOU.
I have continuously wondered at the popularity of lists! The 5, 7, 10, 15 a gajillion rules that someone makes up which are really a regurgitation of the obvious or shamelessly plagiarized (wow the spelling of that word escaped me, another great example of English gone wrong!) from someone else. Thanks for an original list!
You’re so awesome.
Hahahaha! Such a brilliant list!
LOL! Thanks for the reality check. You inspired me to delete the ugly ads off of my site. For me it never was about that. I earned a whopping $.12 over the summer. I’ll take pretty for $200 Alex!
Where is the GD ‘super-like’ button? I feel the need to super-like this post.
Do you ever have those days when you feel like a power source and everyone else is just a low battery.
I have been caught by that putting-the-advertising-arrow-too-close-to-the-Next-arrow in #9 more than once. I have finally wised up.
Love it when you’re off the meds. 🙂 This is so very true: “Page-views mean nothing a year later, but the words you’ve put together may stand and affect others for a lifetime.”
It’s a bit of a Catch 22, isn’t it? We blog because we want “success” with our blog. Otherwise we’d all just put pen to paper in a journal and tuck it into our desk drawer. The problem lies in the fact that we all define success differently. I myself generally blog within the rules outlined here, but know many other good bloggers who do host Palmolive twitter parties or use slideshows, and really – they’re all just trying to succeed by their own standards, not ours.
That, of course, didn’t stop me from laughing out loud at this post or retweeting it, but just thought I’d clear my conscience a little…
*Packing up soapbox now*
is it wrong that I’m always slightly horrified when my family reads (and comments on) my blog but I’m totally okay with strangers reading my diary?
Thanks for the helpful hints!
I measure my success by the number of co-workers who randomly let me know they read my stuff. And by how many hits I get from Indonesia!!!
This is precisely why I do not blog…and why I love yours! (And Allie’s, because she can disrupt the entire webosphere with one post a year!)
Well, I only wax poetic about my own shit… what’s happening or not happening in my own life. I guess people could come over to my blog and argue with me about me. Hell I’ve argued with people about a lot less…(shrugs shoulders)
I gotta find you on pinterest.
And I’m with you on on that SEO, google, tracking, page views stuff. Whatever baby.
Ha. Okay, I recently did #10. I completely agree with the sentiment of #2. And I plan to use the word “linkbait” as often as possible in conversation.
I haven’t giggled so much reading a blog in a looooong time! ?
Great post. But you could be a blog guru, just post #16. And thanks for that link to Hyperbole and a Half. I took her off my blog links months ago. Thought she completely stopped blogging and might never recover from her depression. Glad she’s on the road to recovery.
Over the years of reading you, 16 is the only thing on that list I have ever seen you do, that is why I have followed you for years. That and I actually understand you and I have sought help for that.
I needed to read this right now. Thank you for the inspiration and for the smile. Ok, got to go, I need to go update my glob.
Thank you for this post, it was refreshing. I have been reading so much crap (trying to improve my blog) that I think my eye balls my fall out.
I hate myself for not finding the bloggess sooner. So much gold here.
SEO means search engine optimization. I just wanted to share the fact that I know this with everyone, because I’m super-duper proud that I do. I am the knower of all the initialisms. (Or acronyms if people try to pronounce this see-oh irl.)
Your post made my day! I’m tired of reading all the “How To’s” as well.
Very true what you said about luck playing such a big role in anyone’s success. For anyone who thinks otherwise, I refer you to a book I read recently: The Drunkard’s Walk: How Randomness Rules Our Lives.
One of my biggest successes in blogging has definitely been the community I’ve found a place in, and the friends I’ve made. It doesn’t matter so much that I don’t get many hits (at all), when the hits I am getting are from people whose opinions matter to me.
Aww crap, I’m doing it all wrong.
I don’t even know my google ranking. loved this post thanks!
I love all of these. And the reminder, within them, that blogging usually starts out being…for the WRITER. Mine did, anyway. It’s just a place I can record things that have happened to me or our family, or whatever I feel like, for free, on the spot. My mom was all, “What’s a BLOG? How do you know if anyone’s reading what you write, if it’s just OUT there? Why wouldn’t you just write a book?” …and I was like, “Because it’s FREE. And I can say something at like midnight, from my phone, in a car, if I want to, and tah-dah—there it is, online.” That’s endlessly cool, to me. 😀 Thanks for always making me smile!
I literally laughed out loud, repeatedly, in public, at no. 11.
Personally, my rule for blogging is: Write whatever the hell you want because people either will or will not read it and that phenomenon will not, in any way, correlate to the contents of your blog.
I’ve had some entries get over 200 views, and some got 4 (it’s not nearly as successful as this blog, obviously.) and I can see no real reason as to why.
The kind of luck I seem to manufacture is 6 hits. On a good day. Sheesh. And followers? They’re disappearing! So I guess you won’t be following me.
But I’ve been off Klonopin for over 6 years. Does that count?
Great blog. It’s all in the voice.
You’ve got to see this – it would go so well in your collection!
I’ve been chewing on the real threat of facial assaults by goats, so this list couldn’t have come at a better time.
I just say “I make Doctor Who Stuff” and people come running…. Ok, not really, But I can dream, right? (And I do make some Doctor Who things!!!)
I’m fairly certain no one actually reads my blog, as I never say anything but just post bits of my unpublished fiction. I’m not amusing enough for reals to drive any traffic my way, I have to hope the people who live in my head entertain SOMEONE.
At least it keeps me busy.
I was smiling and nodding along until I lost it at 8 – I think it was the combo of Twitter parties for Palmolive and the High Priestess call. I am now considering becoming a blogger just to use the title!
Thank you for the five minutes of laughter this morning.
I represent a company that makes goat-repellent face cream (SPF 13), and would love to offer you a free infographic to share with your readers. This is a great opportunity to build the readership of your glob!
So you mean I’m NOT supposed to start a Twitter flame war? Goddamnit!
I just started blogging, and I started for myself, in effort to relax after a high-pressure job and sort out my circling thoughts. The fact that people actually seem to enjoy my humor and stories about shopping carts named Shakira is great. But in the end, this blog is for me and I couldn’t be happier.
I had someone pingback to a post i did about infertility, trying to tear it to shreds. A bunch of my friends/folllowers/familyl got a wee bit internet crazy and were commenting on her post, whatever (my husband said, I want to start a blog just so i can fight on the internet) haha! JOKING PEOPLE CALM DOWN….anyway -it was just funny. a few days later she “apologizied” saying she thought I was a big time blogger and didn’t mean to interrupt just little poor me who was blogging to a handful of my friends. HILARIOUS.
I’m afraid of goats, so I’ll be following your directions to the letter, Jenny!
In the early days of Twitter, I followed a lot of people who turned out to be gobbledegook-spouting wannabe gurus. But I’ve mostly culled them out by unfollowing anyone who mentions SEO or “increasing your followers.”
When I first started blogging, I got really disappointed really fast. I had read some popular blogs and they would get a dozen or more comments on every blog post. Meanwhile, I was putting out some really good stuff and was getting nothing. For awhile, I considered stopping blogging. After all, if I didn’t have an audience, who was I writing for?
Then I realized the answer: Me. I was writing for me.
An audience is nice, don’t get me wrong. I love getting comments when I do. (Except from comment spammers with whom I seem to be wildly popular for some reason.) But in the end I’m writing about what I like to write about how I like to write about and the only person who needs to be happy with my writings is me.
I stink at self-promotion. (I think my work is above-average but ask me to name my good points and I blank out and think of everyone who does it better than me.) I don’t have time for SEO. (I sometimes barely have time to finish my blog post at midnight before the post goes live.) My main method of “promotion” involves a WordPress plugin that randomly touts my last 2 weeks’ worth of blog posts so I can be “promoting” while working at my day job. Impersonal? Perhaps, but it’s the best I can do at the moment.
Whenever I hear people say “You must do X, Y, and Z to be successful as a blogger and if you’re not successful (as defined by me) then you might as well quit blogging”, I roll my eyes. Blog the way YOU want to for YOU. If you build a rapid following, great. If your blog is only read by your mom – and then only when there’s nothing good on TV – that’s fine too. Blog for yourself and you’ll always be a success.
The closest I come to a blog is Tumblr, and I just have fun with it.
And I’m one of the ones who found your blog through Hyperbole and a Half (after this long, I don’t even remember how I found her blog), and I’m grateful every day that I did.
I fell in love with your blog when you wrote about Beyonce for the first time and this just makes me love you even more. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU.
Damn, the ass kissing in some of these comments is overwhelming to the point of nauseating. It’s like reading a script for “Girls.”
We have two Nigerian Dwarf goats; their names are Oreo and Daisy Mae. I want to reassure that goats are completely vegetarian, never carnivorous and would, in no way, ever eat your face, melted or not. I just thought you might feel better knowing this. Plus, you’re my new hero.
so in addition to because wine, there’s because drugs? and the wine one we use when we’re cranky, and the crazy one we use when we’re crazy? have i got it right?
that blog you mentioned has sixty thousand followers. sixty. thousand. i’m guessing this is because sweet jesus!
i don’t give a shit about s.e.o. either. i just write. it would be nice if more than three hundred people read it but… whatever.
it would be nice, too, if my days didn’t end exactly the same way every damned night, but… whatever.
thanks for being here.
So you’re telling me I can’t call you out on my blog and then become besties with you? But that was my plan, and I already bought the Best Friends necklace.
“and the crazy one we use when we’re crazy? have i got it right?”
yeah. that first instance of “crazy” was supposed to be “drugs”.
only i can’t use the because drugs excuse. unless you want to count benadryl as a drug.
This list explains so much. I’m not controversial or shouty, which would explain the tumbleweeds rolling through my site.
Thank you for #16. I’m a new blogger and I don’t know what the hell I’m doing. But I am writing for myself and that makes it easier.
Touché Kiddo. Much more importantly, it’s the good words that may affect people for a long time…
And they do.
(and with correct grammar too! It swells my heart) xx
You might to take my course in How to Write Lists of What People Need to Know to be Successful at Blogging and in particular check out the list of 20 Key Things You Shouldn’t Mention when Writing Lists of Things People Must Know about How to Teach People to be Social Media Gurus…………
This blog is original and great. The commenters: It’s depressing — and scary — how the majority echo the tone of the Bloggess’s voice exactly.
I can’t even get my family to read my blog, except my husband, because when I buy things without telling him I just say, “I wrote about it days ago. You didn’t read it?!”
You left out “comment on really popular blogs in the hopes that all of that blogger’s followers will be so intrigued by your wit/wisdom/obvious intelligence that they won’t be able to help but click on the link to your blog and next thing you know you’re addressing BlogHer conference audiences and buying everything you want from ebay/zappos/barnes and noble.”
I actually thought of you a couple of days ago at a staff meeting where we were practicing thinking “Compassionate Thoughts” while imagining someone who had maybe harmed or damaged us in some way, and when I got all the way to the end I was still feeling stabby. And luckily I just caught that autocorrect tried to change stabby to stubby which just means that it doesn’t spend anywhere near enough time here, since we all know that stabby is a very useful and valid word.
Certain albums stand in for or complement my klonipin or just keep me company when shadowed by depression. Blind by The Sundays, The Trinity Sessions by Cowboy Junkies. I know I’m feeling better when I switch over to Tori Amos, P J Harvey and Sleater-Kinney. Hope you feel better soon.
Thank you for #16. I was beginning to get nervous about going out and milking the goat in the morning, because she would definitely eat my face if it melted due to my social-media incompetence. And I have to milk her, so I can make cheese tomorrow afternoon.
how have I only just discovered you? This is it.
The house down the road has goats, I think id better keep away from them then as I quite like my face and don’t want it eaten.
Love this post x
Awful. Horribly wrong. This goes totally against the spirit of what blogging is for: the collaboration on ideas and sharing and support for those out there we care about – with whom we’ve formed intellectual bonds. How could you preach this?
I needed this. (My blog sucks….but this post made me care less about that). Thank you. 🙂