Lately, I’ve been witnessing a disturbing trend among bloggers: they’re writing what people want to read.
You can see it here on Lara Chase’s blog in the post, “So Are You Still Writing or What?” where she explains why she’s writing what she’s writing about:
When I started this blog I mostly wrote about the craft of writing, and some tips about the publishing market. For the last several months I’ve had posts on fall pilots, cooking, how to button tuft a couch, exercise, etc. Occasionally, this has led to someone asking me, “Hey, what’s the deal?”
In case you didn’t read the articles and statistics that lead up to the switch (according to my blog stats, few of you did), I realized that no one but other aspiring authors care about dialogue and how to write a convincing antagonist. So, I started writing blog posts about other things that interested me: food, home décor, TV, and whatever else I thought others might find informative. Turns out, you guys seem to find these topics more interesting as well.
(Lara’s post is awesome for another reason: go over and look at how she’s organized her work space for writing. I’m absolutely ashamed and humiliated that I write at my dining room table, hunched over my lap top eating Cheez-its® while my husband, children and two cats mill around me).
And then I saw it again, over on Musical Wishes Blog, where the blogger came right out and asked readers to vote (there’s a poll!) on what they wanted to read next. Head on over and vote! I voted for The Closeted Bisexual because I’m a Democrat and couldn’t vote for Rick Santorum in the Republican primary.
I’m about a year and a half late with that Rick Santorum joke, aren’t I? Or maybe I’m a year and a half early.
Anyway, I’m not sure how I feel about the audience dictating the subject matter of my posts. I mean, why should I write what they want to read? That would be like feeding my kids just because they’re hungry, or paying my mortgage just because it’s due.
So if I’m not going to take cues from my readers, how do I come up with topics to blog about? Usually, I get some
ridiculous moronic idea for a post and then proceed to have an inner dialogue with myself.
Me: Maybe I should write a post about anal sex.
My Inner Voice: Are you crazy? What’s wrong with you? No one wants to read about anal sex! Why do you think of these things?
Me: Well, it could be funny. I could tell that story about how I got drunk on my birthday that one year and decided that would be the night I would try to have anal sex with my husband. That was pretty funny.
My Inner Voice: That story isn’t funny! It’s embarrassing! There really is something wrong with you!
And because whenever I hear that little voice in my head telling me “No! No! No!” I absolutely must do whatever it’s warning me against, you can expect a post on anal sex from me in the near future, whether you want to read it or not.
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