Build It & They Will Come … Or Will They?
I’ve been blogging since early 2011. I enjoy the storytelling process. I dive into blogging the way a decorator dives in when staging a home newly listed on the market.
For me, the enjoyment of blogging is more than the writing process itself. The enjoyment includes things like front end web design, theme selection, visual layout, graphics, etc.
I have very few readers and I’m pretty sure I know why. It’s because I’ve painted myself into a corner by writing almost exclusively about my personal story. Few people (other than maybe our mothers) are interested in reading our personal stories for very long.
Probably more germane to my low readership is how (now that I’ve healed and moved on from my drama), I irreverently pen satire about my pain experience. Gasp! Yes, I dare to mock my role in a hot topic: narcissistic abuse and recovery.
The Safest Woman In Town
Over the years since this happened, I’ve written a number of different blogs, each one dedicated to a specific subtopic within Narcissistic abuse. For privacy and security reasons, I always posted under a series of changing pen names.
I figured it wasn’t to my benefit to blatantly call out the doctors where I worked. Why put the smack down on my ex husband and his muckety-muck new wife in an overt in-their-face manner, when I could do it anonymously and leave ’em all guessing?
Nine years have passed since ‘the event’ and I am still finding endless inspiration from which to pen satire. Granted, my inspiration is rather twisted, but it keeps me writing.
I blog about my N=1 discoveries about how to be clueless, get cheated on, dumped for another woman, embezzled from, forced into bankruptcy, left homeless, and eventually end up living a car.
Albeit a perverse list of how-to’s, I have to say the best how-to is how to look back fondly on adversity and embrace it as a teacher and friend.
Pardon Me Folks, But Have You Seen My Tribe?
Most of the advice written for bloggers isn’t applicable to my ‘niche’ blog. In my case, niche is just a nice way of saying ‘painted rather solidly into a corner’.
Right now, I’m waiting for the paint to dry. The jury’s still out whether anyone will follow it—but that’s okay. I can afford to be patient. It’s not like there’s a mad rush of people waiting for me to post each day anyway.
You say ‘niche’, I say ‘a corner’. Either way, what’s certain is that I’m a one-off blogger.
I don’t run a business … I’m not a mommy blogger … I’m too old to care about being a fashionista … I don’t write in rhyming pentameters .. I have too much ADHD to stick with a plot and write fiction … I’m not selling anything … and I’m not in search of a book deal.
None of that is my focus. Put simply, blogging is a fun way I’ve found to clap back—and I do. I tell my personal story, despite the fact that there may be times when no one is listening.
I know that my content is an acquired taste.
Dear Subscriber: We’re Cancelling Your Membership
As you might imagine, humor can be an unwanted elephant in the room in Narcissistic Abuse Support/Recovery support circles.
As a Senior Sufferer in ‘The Pain Olympics’ [a term coined by ChumpLady/Tracy Schorn] I’m far enough down the road in my recovery where I no longer enjoy perpetually autopsying the malignancy of my said narcissist’s personality disorder.
I was there! I understand. When freshly wounded, most forum members want to stick pins in voodoo dolls that look like The Other Woman in hopes of getting some relief and vengeance. I know that I did!
Now, imagine the sudden sound of a mic drop. Then imagine the awkward silence that follows when my input on a forum is to suggest scheduling a block party and dancing in the streets over the fact that The Other Woman is the one stuck with your man.
Yeah … invitations to guest post on these sites aren’t forthcoming. I get that. I really do.
Don’t Call Us, We’ll Call … Never Mind, No We Won’t
Submitting articles to journalists who specialize in the areas of psychology, relationships, women’s issues, etc. doesn’t look to be a possibility either.
Admittedly, I haven’t done an extremely deep dive on Google, but my cursory search leads me to think that the email addresses for these folks are locked down tighter than the gold at Fort Knox.
I get that too. I really do. I imagine these editors and journalists get inundated with unsolicited articles every day.
Simply put, venturing out with my genre of satire is like bringing bacon to a bar mitzvah [Oy vey!]
Back At Ya Babe
The takeaway here is that I was blindsided and preemptively silenced by my ex husband and his new woman’s shenanigans.
But blogging has very effectively helped to put a smile back on my face.
My smile is similar to the impish grin that appears on the face of a child who—when banished to his room for an extended time out in solitude as punishment—discovers that someone left a smart phone and charger behind.
Don’t Despair Darlin’
Yes, I’d be lying if I said I never look at my blog stats. I’d also be lying if I said that I haven’t stuck my lip out and pouted a few times at my paltry numbers.
Followers or no followers, I will continue to write for my most loyal fans who interact with me mainly at night … the crickets—hence the name of my current blog:
The Cricket Chronicles: Orations Into The Night Air.
Rinse. Lather Repeat
So far, I’ve managed not to collapse backwards onto my fainting couch in despair. I don’t hyperventilate on a daily basis. I’m not having to grab something to fan myself due to the stress of just being some obscure blogger.
When I log into WordPress in the morning and glance up to notice that indicator bell in Reader is still dark—with no little red dot above it—I do what I can to comfort myself.
I lean back in my chair and take a sip of coffee. I then take a deep breath, close my eyes and imagine that my writing mentor (the late great Erma Bombeck) is peeking over over the banister at me from up in Heaven. In my mind’s eye, I see her winking at me, giving me a thumbs up, and nodding her head to let me know that (at least) she ‘gets’ my humor.
What more does a humor blogger need than the assurance that one of the best humorist of the century approves of the way she reframes things?
With that, I smile, hit the ‘new post’ button—and continue writing the day’s draft.