In a previous post, I made a passing comment that although I had not written much fiction, I nonetheless had massive amounts of written words under my belt.
Many of those words are from interactions with other bloggers, and when I say that, I don’t mean just on my blog. I mean, yes, lots of comments on my blog, but in 2017 I also tried to expand interaction beyond my blog.
At the end of 2016, I was following around 60 bloggers. Mind you, of those, over half had either stopped blogging or were infrequent bloggers. By the end of 2017, the number was approaching 100. Of those forty new blogs, about half were “silent” follows. Meaning, I liked something on the blog (usually, photos or stuff about writing) and I would follow but had no plans to engage anyone (i.e. comment on posts).
That means that in about 20 new blogs, I made the effort to engage the blog owner and their guests.
At this point, I should remind people that if I’m following you, regardless whether you hear from me or not, I do read all the published blog posts but unless something really catches my attention, you won’t hear much from me.
Let me also repeat this: if I follow you, I don’t expect you to follow me. In fact, I prefer if you don’t unless you plan on actually reading what I write.
Also, if you follow me, me following you is not an automatic thing. I gained a bit more than 200 followers last year (I’m somewhere near 1,300 followers) and a large percentage of those were businesses or new bloggers obviously trying to build a following. Asking me to follow you is a good way to ensure that I don’t.
I should also remind people that I don’t typically follow anyone who’s heavily into spiritualism or religion or anything that might trigger my sensibilities and desire to debate about stuff. That’s not for my protection but rather just common courtesy; it’s not polite to crap on someone else’s playground. Were I to accidentally follow someone like that, I would try avoiding those topics once I figure out the lay of the land, but I might eventually unfollow them because it’s difficult for me to not respond to stuff. Unfollowing ensures that I won’t accidentally piss anyone off. Yes, it has happened.
Side note: on the other hand, I welcome all manner of honest responses. I don’t much like dishonest commenting nor do I respond well to profanity or insults, but I can deal with those as well.
Back to the point at hand . . . all that following and the associated commenting takes a lot of time. Frankly, I hadn’t paid much attention to it until I started adding up all the stuff I wrote. Here’s the thing . . . I can count on a few fingers the number of blogs where my interaction was reciprocated, let alone appreciated. Some of that I understand; it’s difficult inserting oneself into a conversation with strangers. But even beyond that, it seems there is a resistance to accepting new people. Perhaps it’s just me; I seem to have that effect on people.
I have a core group of regulars (less than ten who are frequent commenters, and another half-dozen who drop by when they have the time) and I’m more than happy to converse with them be it on my blog or at their blogs. But, we’re all also fairly happy to engage newcomers.
So where am I going with this? Well, unless you are in that rather small group, you’re likely to hear a lot less from me.
This is not a threat or ransom or cry for attention. I want to concentrate on my interests and therefore I’ll put less effort on my social dealings. With that in mind, I’m back down to about 70 blogs that I follow of which many have not been active for a while (people have lives outside the Internet, apparently).
That said, if you are smart, have a good sense of humor, and want to establish a two-way communication, I’m always game, but it’s less likely that I will go out and find you . . . sorry.
If you do engage, past experience tells me few people hang around for the long-term. Don’t worry, I won’t feel bad and you shouldn’t either; life is too short for that.
That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.
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. . . my FP ward . . . chieken shit.
Finally, if you interpret anything on this blog as me asking or wanting pity, sympathy, or complaining about my life, or asking for help and advice, know you’re likely missing my subtle mix of irony, sarcasm, and humor.