When Good Blogs Die

In my misspent youth (or, rather my overactive goody-two-shoes youth) if no one laughed at an obviously hilarious joke I’d made, I would simply repeat myself. Loudly. And often.

I was annoying.

Fortunately, I grew out of it.

These days, a large part of my social interaction takes place on line, where I can be assured that people did “hear” what I said because the words are on the screen. Sure, a gem might scroll off the twitter feed before it’s fully appreciated, but facebook statuses and blog posts last longer.

If they don’t comment when they first read it, that gem of a joke was either not funny, or people didn’t get it and didn’t care. You do not explain jokes; that defeats the purpose. If people don’t laugh, you just hold your head high and move on.

Back in April, in a post titled M.A.S.H. I slid in an obscure reference to Robert Asprin’s most famous series, as well as the fact that said author passed away a few years ago. I said “I myth him.” but either no one caught the reference, or no one thought the pun worth mentioning.

Just recently, in a post titled Introducing Charity the gem of a quip (referring to the painting The Lady of Shallot) was “It is filled with so much angst, you can almost see a sparkly vampire in the background.”

Well, I thought it was funny.

Having the occasional joke fall flat is no big deal, even though the insecure, attention and approval-seeking part of me yearns to be appreciated for my clever humor. But sometimes it’s bigger things that go bad.

I still love the idea of Choose-Your-Own-Romance and Choose-Your-Own-SciFi, but they have not taken off as I’d hoped. In fact, they are both dead in the water. Maybe they were too much like a pyramid scheme, where each participant had to find a couple more participants. Maybe the rules were confusing. Maybe it just wasn’t as much fun as I thought it would be.

Mark Lidstone and Jen Kirchner are both doing Vote-Your-Own-Adventure stories on their blogs, and it seems to be going well. The main difference is that they both have a following of readers who vote on what the next action should be, and then Mark and Jen write the next chapter depending on the results of the voting. I don’t have much of a fan base yet, so I can’t really do that unless I want to depend on my mother’s phone-in vote (for some reason, she’s afraid to comment directly on the blog) and a couple of friends. Even my own husband rarely reads my blog, but that’s because I don’t have enough car chases or space battles. Besides, I wanted the Choose-Your-Owns to involve lots of writers in one big happy project, and give readers the option to go back and try other paths just to see what happens.

Photo of John Quinlan by photographer Sandra Kimball

It’s not dead yet, Jim. The nice thing about the virtual world of the blogosphere is that there’s no cost or trouble involved with the pages and posts just sitting there. I might be able to find a way to breathe life into them. Or maybe I just need to find the right charismatic people who have enough of their own following that the project will gain a life of its own.

In the meantime, I will post gratuitous pictures of male model John Quinlan. Besides being obviously gorgeous, people are coming to my blog almost every day because they googled him and it brought them here!

Addendum: (Because you can do that sort of thing with blog posts, ya know. I can change anything whenever I want! :) )

Roni Loren directed me to this great post on Kristen Lamb’s Blog “Sacred Cow Tipping-Why Writers Blogging About Writing is Bad“. The post has some great information about how writers can get the most out of their blogs, so I might be incorporating some new ideas! Kristen Lamb is the author of We Are Not Alone. Yes, it sounds like alien conspiracy theory, but it’s The Writer’s Guide to Social Media. She has another book titled Are You There, Blog? It’s Me, Writer.

The shortlink for this post is http://wp.me/p1qnT4-bk

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About AmyBeth Inverness

A writer by birth, a redhead by choice, and an outcast of Colorado by temporary necessity.
This entry was posted in Blog Business, Choose Your Own Romance, Choose Your Own Sci-Fi, Commentary & Musing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to When Good Blogs Die

  1. NC Narrator says:

    “It’s not dead yet, Jim” Are there no depths of Star Trek depravity to which you will not sink? ROFL
    I tried (really, I did!) but every time I went to write something I caught a case of the dumbs and couldn’t brain at all! This happens more frequently in hot weather. I think I may be part troll, so my brain functions better in a cold environment.

  2. The silly thing is, it was designed to be as short and hopefully EASY as people want! If we were all sitting in a room, and I handed you a sheet of paper with the first part, I’m sure you could spout off some silliness that would continue it on. Just a couple of paragraphs and then “Do you stand up? Or do you sit down?” or something like that.
    I think I need to continue a few of them on my own, so that people get the idea that the posts don’t have to be huge and substantial, and they can be silly!

  3. Author Kristen Lamb says:

    Thanks for the shou-out. Roni is a doll.

  4. It took me awhile to figure out exactly which direction I wanted to take my blog. I’ve learned a lot from Kristen Lamb’s work. Now, I have a posting schedule with themes that help me organize my topics. I still have a lot of room to play around though.

  5. I started posting an interview every Friday. It helps that I have one thing that is very regular, and always brings a different set of visitors to my blog. They might not ever return, but hopefully then my name will look familiar to them. I’m thinking about doing some other “regular” thing that is related to either sci fi or romance (of something else that I enjoy and so would my readers) on another day.

    Thanks for visiting!

  6. Mike S says:

    Email me your direct email address and I will pass it along to John Quinlan. He is a cool guy and will send you some of his latest model shots if you would like to use them for an article on him. Thanks Mike

    • Thanks Mike! I found an interview with Mr. Quinlan and he does indeed seem to be a really nice guy. I have wondered if he’s ever modeled for a romance novel cover?
      I don’t have your e-mail address, but I can bot-proof type it as US Nessie (but there is no space in the middle) and the host is Gmail

  7. Pingback: Interview With John Quinlan | AmyBeth Inverness

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