I see you breathing and believing and filled with emotion and background and circumstances. I see you angry and frustrated and happy. I see you succeed and fail, fall and stand up. I see you in need of inspiration and encouragement and it encourages me to provide that serenity as best I can on this blog, as an individual. I also appreciate the encouragement many of you give on your blogs. For the most part I’m that person nodding my head in agreement (or shaking my head) and walking away. If I like your post its not because I’m a robot programmed to do so. It means I really liked your post! Some of you are awkward though. I see you coming into class with tilted glasses and pocket protectors. Some of you are loud and outspoken, others are quiet and reserved. Some of you are wild and passionate about that wildness. That’s your business. Some of you are super smart and can’t really hold a decent conversation without going over someone’s head. Some of you take off people’s heads. Some of you are a lot simpler. You walk into the door ready to listen and engage. Some of you come in popping bubble gum and rolling your eyes. You don’t really wanna hear what this woman is talking about again but you can’t stop showing up either.
I didn’t intend on writing much today. But I came across a very interesting post by my girl Linda G. Hill: Your WordPress Audience. In this post, Linda posed an exciting question: How do you see your WordPress followers? Are they friends? Are they followers? Are they individuals? What if you could get your followers into one room and stand before them and write your post for them? That post inspired this one. For Linda’s post, Click Here.
I think it’s about personifying your post, about making sure that you insert your personality into your writing; finding that balance between personal and too personal. Never sacrificing your stand but just being real with people. I think this is important so that we can better connect with others. Linda’s post made me think about that, and why I see my subscribers as everyday people like me. This is why I wanted to express my thoughts about the post on this blog in front of all of you. I think it’s a very good topic of discussion and it’s a great way to look at your blog. I know a lot of us would see things differently if we were in front of each other than behind a keyboard. Makes you ponder the question: Who’s being real?
We are bloggers, people who have decided that a particular blog was interesting enough to subscribe to. (As a quick side note, I say subscribe and not follow because everyone “following” your blog is not necessarily following your blog. Instead, I like to think of it as people who decide to subscribe to receive your post in their emails or in their readers. And although I do have something called “Audience participation” I see each of you more as individuals) For those of us who have trusted that blog enough to take off our shoes (please don’t leave footprints on the carpet, thanks) and sit down and leave a comment at the table, or to like once or twice, it is obviously easier to get to know those people, and they become much more than just a subscriber we never hear from. But they become associates. And maybe even friends. I say friends slowly and loosely. Everyone is not your friend, that’s just real and it’s an important thing to know when interacting online.
But in any event, how do I see you?
Well, like I said, I see you breathing and believing and filled with emotion and background and circumstances like every day people. I wouldn’t say that I am standing before podiums and stages. I stand instead before you a woman. You walk into my place and we pull up chairs and gather together close like a writing group. I offer you beverages and snacks because I love to eat and I’m sure you do too. And depending on the atmosphere, we may even have a little wine. I only require that everyone has their writing brains turned on and their utensils ready to begin. Together, we nestle ourselves shoulder to shoulder, pencil, pad, smartphone or laptop in hand and we share. Our blogs collaborate and we are not just bloggers anymore but this is brick and mortar. Somewhere someone has built a time machine that takes you to this place as instantly as an email and together we meet eye to eye and I face you with my thoughts. There is a moment of silence as you listen and you read and decide how you would perceive the information. Some of you decide to get up and leave and never come back. Some of you scribble little notes on pieces of paper and place them into a drop box. Some of you speak, openly and candidly, you match your experience with mine. Some of you nod your head, and it is my hope that we can build. I picture us laughing and joking and learning and who knows where we’ll end up. Someone somewhere will get so upset that they storm out of the room. Some of you will cry because you can. Some of you will engage me in thought provoking and in depth conversation and who knows how long we’ll sit there.
And at the end we all give our goodbye greetings and there’s a sign-up sheet. Will your name be among those who will return? I wonder.
On the other hand, how about you? How do you see yourself as a blogger if you had to sit face to face with your subscribers? Would things be different? Would you be more or less nervous? Would you be the same person offline as you are online?