Written for a prompt on project 365, a newby blogger seeking advice from veterans

Dearest Sir or Madam, more likely the latter, please guide a confused babe in the woods in this confusing virtual world of letters, where writers outnumber readers by a ratio of 10:1. That is if you can call a wrong side of fifty overweight graying man a babe, and this strange land populated by such fabulous beasts as urls, linkys, widgets  et al as wood…. But in the virtual world anything goes. And batting my eyelids won’t be visible behind my thick minus six progressive glasses, but still do help me out.

I need to unravel the eternal enigma of the amateur writer- how to grab eyeballs. How to get someone who doesn’t owe me money, filial loyalty, bonds of brohood or is otherwise indebted to me, in other words complete strangers, to read the outpourings of my soul. And read it to the end, controlling impatience, irritability and the myriad distractions of the millions of other posts, as well as that shadowy realm of the real world, inhabited by live humans who exist outside the laptop screen.

In the ancient times of snailmail and manual typewriters and little magazines and stenographers, life was simple. You simply dictated your ramblings, and sent the manuscript in double spaced type, one side of the page only, by post, addressed to the editor, along with a stamped self addressed envelope, and you got a polite rejection letter, or more rarely a cheque by post. Or you wrote longhand and dropped it at the friendly neighborhood little magazine publishers place, to see it in print when they could afford the next issue. The whole affair was leisurely, and took months, and you were gratified to see your babies in print, around once a month, sometimes with a monetary reward, but you didn’t know if anybody ever read it.

Nowadays I have to type it, with great difficulty, and through many trials and errors manage to upload it and share it on the social media, then wait for the elusive blue columns to see who has read them. Then waiting in vain for ratings and likes, turning greener than Greenpeace at the sight of you veterans with one million views, five thousand followers, comments ten pages long,  likes from hundred odd people., and dozens of awards advertised on the margins.

Your pieces come in myriad fonts, liberally peppered with pictures, videos and links, with many alluring exertions to comment and share. Your background and profile pix grab me by the collar and make me read. My piece in plain B&W text stand out forlornly like the spinster aunt at a ball in old English films, waiting desperately for a dance.

Tell me, should I change my Nome de plume to Partygirl and the profile picture to a early shot of Madonna (from whose first film I have stolen the title). On second thoughts, no… it might put off the ladies, who seem to constitute 80% of the population of this blogging world, and the only ones who sometimes read like and comment.

Modern poets, whose work no one reads, have a protocol. You listen to my ravings and I listen to yours. Anyone who welshes, runs away without listening to others after having read out one’s own, they are hunted down mercilessly by the thwarted poets. Does this work in the blogging world too?

Stories flock my mind, fighting to be born, held up by the roadblock of my tech illiteracy.  After giving sweat and blood in getting it into the netsphere, how do I find readers, followers and get those awards?

Any suggestions Sirjee or Madamjee?Image

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  1. Ahahahahahahaha This is great man… Yes you are right, the blue columns can be disappointing. But it takes a lot of sacrifice and a heart of stone to go on.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. So you have 1 reader Guru. If I were so lucky. My children don’t. Let’s solemnly promise to read each others. Like bong poets. U show yours & I show mine? Posts of course what were u thinking? Don’t worry 6 months 50 posts later I’ve only 5000 visitors with 166 being higest in a day & only 100 fellow bloggers following. In TOI presumably lakhs read me only I didn’t know. Desperately seeking more. Send me your link & check out my other 49 posts or else!
        Sent on my BlackBerry® from Vodafone


      2. You are way better than me… 5000 visitors? I am yet to get to 700 visitors! well I have been blogging for 3 months now. And Of course I know what you were talking about… If I had kids, I would make it a rule for everyone to read my blog post and give me a summary before even spreading their beds. here’s my link, https/ Mine is a mix of things though….

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Good to see guys worse off than me. But don’t worry u’ll catch up. I’ve done various stuff too but rarely serious. I’m allergic to it
        Sent on my BlackBerry® from Vodafone


      4. Well there’s no denying that you are better off than me no, most of us(It feels better when we are many) but I am trying my best to catch up…

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Good. If u want to get married stay married have kids have a working relationship with them have a career ets pl read my blog relegiously & learn what NOT to do. 50 posts not too much for such life lessons. Don’t u agree
        Sent on my BlackBerry® from Vodafone


  2. Hello, Sir.

    Myself, TheLastWord, am blogging also with very much little readers. I trying to post cat and kitten pictures and I am having lucky with that. Also, sir, you are writing too much good English and too little pictures.

    On my blog I am created a new page called Little Red Blog, where I hoping to obtain links to blogs that are not having too much readers.

    aaarrgghhh! I can’t do it!

    There is this one that gives some hints to what seems to cause an uptick in readers.

    And what the hell are you whining about? I started before you, taught you everything you know about WordPress (which isn’t much, admittedly) and you have more readers and followers in months than I’ve been able to gather in more than a year…. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thank you slo… you are really slow with appreciation, which i desperately crave from my gurus in this weird passion, you and Musings.. you created this Frankensteins monster, deal with it


  3. the more i read your blogs, the less am I sure about writing myself!! veterans like you and me still a newborn in the field of words, it shows that I have a long way to go!!!! absolutely brilliant blog!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Tip # x : Create a Gravatar profile and connect it to your WordPress blog. That way commenters can click your Gravatar pic / username and follow you to your blog. Shrika – see I wanted to visit your blog, but have no idea how to get to it.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. You desire to provide your readers good writing to read, no? Then they should visit my blog. It’s currently ranked amongst the best little red blogs on WordPress. 99% of blog readers have voted for it in the Little Red Category.

    Did I mention how modest I was?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I certainly understand where you are coming from. I’ve been blogging since about 2004, seriously since about 2008. Lately I’ve been bloggin at least one article a week. Most of my traffic is from spam bots, though I do receive a comment from time to time from a few that follow me. Essentially, I write because I’m a writer and I love to write. If you are writing just for ‘likes’ and comments, I think you are doing it wrong.

    But to answer the question, I do what you are doing. Posting my articles in group, in hopes it will grab someone’s interest. But to play fair, it’s always good to check out other peoples blogs as well. They will then be interested in your blog, you will be returning a favour you are looking for, and it keeps the blog groups interesting.

    Essentially, keep writing if that’s what you enjoy doing. Readers will follow, it just takes time.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Sheesh, actually I’m not sure what you’re talking about. The responses on this post alone shows that you’ve garnered quite a bit of readers. It’s a crowded field. You have to write, and read, and share, and share, and connect. And do it all again. That’s it! Maybe I should write a blog post about that.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. And with that post you have already managed to get the comments increased. Very apt question and I wish I had the answers too. I am into my third year of blogging and I still haven’t touched 50K hits. So in case you finally get the answer to your desperate query, do inform us lesser mortals. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  8. WordPress has far too many writers. It is not possible to keep up and the advice to comment on others and follow others only works for a few weeks. Obviously, this was a good post. Obviously it takes a lot of time to develop readers and followers. I always keep the content high, but no matter. Life is a crap game.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. The post goes on to demonstrate that use of four letter words and intriguing titles is not the only way to grab eyeballs. There is a big audience out these which thrives on subtle humor, ever keen to savour something of this nature. Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Its marvellous!Even though couldn’t follow all these,but quite interesting.Your writing has done a lot to my aesthetic sense for reading.continue will follow as I can.

    Liked by 1 person

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