Writing

Blogging Paranoia…(It’s All About Me!)

Since I’m rapidly approaching my one year blogging anniversary (and am in the midst of a busy week), I thought I would share one of my older posts. Happy Blogging!

 

Before I started Amanda’s Wrinkled Pages, I had never intentionally read or sought out another blog.  Borrowing from that timeless classic of artistic expression, Pretty Woman, I’ll say, “Close your mouth, dear.”  

It’s true, and I had no idea what I had been missing. 

After a few days, I started surfing around with a sure-foot (and finger), and was amazed by how much talent (and crapola) had been floating around the blogosphere all of this time.  I left a few comments here and there, followed links to other blogs of interest, and found a few favorites.  And, then, something really freaky started happening — everyone seemed to be blogging about…me!

Each comment I submitted appeared to be directly linked to what that author would blog about next. For example, I was excited about a particular post, so (uncharacteristically) left a couple of exclamation points and a smiley face to illustrate this.  (In fact, I’m doing this more and more often now — someone stop me, please 🙂 ! ).  The next day this same writer did a post on something like “Too Many Exclamation Points are Making You Sound a Little Crazy.”  Coincidence? 

Here’s another questionable incident: After a rough night’s sleep, I found I was leaving comments with careless spelling and grammatical errors.  Wouldn’t you know, “Watching Grammar and Spelling in your Writing no Matter How Informal the Venue, Idiot” soon appeared. 

Not just with comments, the cloning phenomenon was linked to my posts as well.  There was one where I thought I may have gotten too wordy, and I think a reader agreed.  Her post on how annoying she finds it “When Writers Over-Explain” seemed to be written directly to me.  In fact, her opening of “Dear Amanda” might have been a clue. Hmmm…

I even witnessed a moment of “psychic blogging.”  Hours before publishing what surely would have been the post of my life (“I Have Business Cards, Therefore I am”), a blogger that I have a particular fondness for posted about her new business cards (which are much, much cooler than mine, by the way). 

Paranoia was setting in — all of the posts on writing, books, the Freshly Pressed story on “Politicians and Prostitution” (wait…never mind about that one) seemed to be linked to me in some way.  Or, were they?

The truth is, we all know that good ideas are a dime a dozen, so a blogger (and a writer/blogger in particular) just has to roll with it.  You are most likely not a genius with a ground-breaking blog post.  No, you’re not.  No. You’re.  Not. 

It’ s hard to accept, I know.  When you see other blogs with topics, themes, and entire posts that are similar (if not identical) to your own, it can affect the way you view your own creativity, and hey, can’t be much help to the old self-esteem.  But, don’t let it get to you.  Aside from praying you have different readers, celebrate the fact that you have an idea that is interesting to someone other than yourself.  It’s all about presentation, baby.  Readers never tire of a good storyline, whether it’s the first or fortieth version they’ve heard.

And, if your writing or opinions are being openly, er, mocked?  Adjust the blinders, and feel good about being someone else’s muse for the day. 

**********

Find me on Twitter @amandahoving

45 thoughts on “Blogging Paranoia…(It’s All About Me!)”

  1. As my father always tells me “You don’t like everyone else, so you can’t expect everyone to like you.” When applied to blogging, I’m pretty sure it means I get to do whatever I want.

    No? Is that not the moral of the story?

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  2. My dad really put it in perspective and helped me shed the paranoia with “Don’t flatter yourself.” That sobering comment made me less paranoid…but I do agree, people listen and we do influence those around us.

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    1. Yeah, I can see how that would bring you back to reality (and humility) pretty quick, Georgette…

      But I still really think that everyone is blogging about me. Really. (This is a joke.)

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  3. When I started my blog six months ago, I thought the same thing — I’m not original, so why bother? But each of our voices is distinct and valuable, so even if we’re blogging on similar topics, we are still adding to the conversation in a meaningful way.

    I really enjoy your blog, Amanda! You definitely have something to offer.

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  4. I missed this post the first time, Amanda…it amazes me sometimes when somebody I know “beats me to the punch” when blogging about a certain subject. I guess that’s why I continually try to “change things up” on my blog!

    Happy Blogoversary!

    Wendy

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  5. It’s so funny! I JUST wrote a post about this in a writing sense before I read this. I see you’re stealing my ideas, Amanda ;-)!

    Seriously, this was a tough one for me to learn to deal with, especially when it comes to writing. I had a crushing experience when I read a book about the same thing I was writing about (sort of). It put me off writing for a while. But we all have to realize there’s nothing new under the sun; we just have to find new ways to talk about it and explore it. If we are writing what we know, it will always be unique to us. Great re-post.

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    1. Yes, I have cameras set up everywhere so I can anticipate what people are writing. Beware!

      I had the same thing happen 2blu. A new book idea came to me, and then…I read a review on a very (very) similar book. I think I’ll put working on that idea on hold for now.

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  6. There’s nothing new under the sun, but we can keep writing along and putting our own spin on things because nobody sees the world exactly the way we do.

    Keep blogging! I like reading your posts. 🙂

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  7. Ah, the lonely life of the poet. I haven’t found anyone else who is doing what I’m doing (editing my poems online to show the process). I come to your blog for the company, Amanda, and the great writing. Congrats on the upcoming anniversary – my one year anniversary is coming soon too. I can’t wait!

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    1. You are welcome here anytime, Gillian, but I enjoy reading your editing process. It helps with my own (mostly closeted) poetic self. And, congrats on your upcoming anniversary as well!

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  8. Oh! This made me laugh 😀 Though I have to admit that sometimes comment,s or other blog posts, inspire me to write about a particular topic on my own blog. Maybe it IS about you! LOL

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    1. Yes, it is. 😉

      It happens to me so often — I have about 30 blog drafts that I haven’t published because I’ll have just read something too similar (at a blog that draws many of the same readers). I’m saving them for when the idea well runs dry.

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  9. Hi through wordsxo. (-:
    So glad I found your blog. I love the title. I’m a newbie so I haven’t had the experience of someone beating me to my post yet…yet! (-:

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  10. Well put! You know, they say there’s nothing new under the sun. But perhaps there are new, or fresh, or inspiration, or amusing ways to write about the same old things? Web 2.0 and the flooding of the world with all our blogs will make for some redundancy; but clearly there’s a place for YOUR blog. Keep it up.

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  11. A great (new to me) blog post! Paranoia must go with the territory; certainly I’ve felt that way often! But I’m assuming it goes away (at least a little) with time, once you figure out that it’s inevitable since there’s just so much out there!? HAPPY 1 YEAR 🙂

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    1. Yeah, it’s inevitable, (especially with writing topics). Those bloggers who write about their own lives have a bit of an advantage in the originality department, I think. Maybe?

      Thank you, Julia!

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  12. Outstanding post. I would love to be Freshly Pressed and be original; it just seems so many bloggers do already have something very creative. I will blog even if I can’t hold up to some.

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  13. Awww, shoot! I’m always using exclamation points and smiling faces! No wonder people think I’m crazy! : )

    Seriously, Amanda, I love this post and congrats on your one year blogging anniversary!

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  14. Oh, this hits very close to home. Man, are we all so self-centered as bloggers or WHAT? Don’t answer that. But honestly, I’m pretty sure you wrote this post about me. And yes, creativity is non-existent. Just wrote a post on Google and couldn’t stop thinking about the million other rants about Google I’ve read.

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  15. You mean I’m not a blogging genius? Really? Awww…did you have to break it to me this way?

    This post was about me, right?

    Seriously, congrats on the one year mark. I hadn’t found you blog yet when this was posted, so thanks for sharing again.

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  16. “You are most likely not a genius with a ground-breaking blog post. No, you’re not. No. You’re. Not.”

    Harsh ! (but true)

    I remember when I came up with a great tag line for my blog and thought, “God, I’m so … brilliant!” only to find that one of my blogging buddies had decided to use it. Great minds think alike, fools… never mind.

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  17. You are HILARIOUS, Amanda. Thanks for the chuckles! I especially liked your line about “celebrate the fact that you have an idea that is interesting to someone other than yourself. ” I do. I do every day someone comments on my blog. And thank you, by the way, for your support of my over-talked, over-done musings.

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  18. LOL! Same thing happens almost every time I start a new piece of artwork…. I find 4, 037 others are doing the same thing, only different. Love your attitude and humor. Thanks! !!! 🙂

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