One of the benefits of writing a blog is that you can relay your innermost thoughts and well-crafted ideas to the outside world, otherwise known at ten people who somehow got referred to your site when they typed in "Doctor Who Slash." Personally, I usually just complain, but since 90% of conversations in the world are basically complaining about stuff, it's hardly unique in any way. Unfortunately, if you broaden your subject matter too much, you won't be able to get a hard-core following; but making it too narrow will cause you to never be able to expand your readership.
It's this last point that's the tricky one--when you have a very narrow subject matter, you often fall prey to the clichés of that genre. When you get pigeonholed as a specific type of blogger--what the old-timers used to call "reporters"--you also tend to become the stereotype you always wanted to avoid. It's just like those old 80's John Hughes movies, only less about hair and teenage alienation and more about praying that your Google AdSense numbers go up.
Here are some helpful ways to avoid becoming a stale shell of a blog. Don't do the following:
- Here is a graph where the numbers are skewed to prove my point. Since no one else in America has ever taken a statistics course, I will be deemed right.
- A member of my opposing political philosophy just made a mildly provocative sound bite that was four words long, and on the basis of this, instead of their lifetime of reasonable discourse, that person should be indicted as being unfit to live as a human being and should be torn to pieces and fed to the boars.
- A member of my own political philosophy just did the EXACT SAME THING as a member of the opposing side, but my person was simply misunderstood while the other person should endure 20 years of prison rape.
Pop Culture Fan Blog
- Despite the fact that there is at least six decades worth of mass media accumulated over our history, the absolute best television show ever created just HAPPENED to air the moment I turned fourteen.
- I will go through each and every line of dialogue as if it were a Shakespearean sonnet, and, indeed, at one point in my high school career attempted to persuade my English teacher that the show's premise is a valid basis for a book report.
- I will also list--and link to on Wikipedia--each and every reference that pops up about this show on the Simpsons or Family Guy.
- My kid is the cutest kid ever!
- Something that happens to every single other person on the face of the earth just happened to my kid THE WORLD IS AN AWFUL AND UNJUST PLACE!
- Did I mention how cute my kid is? Here are some alarmingly candid pictures.
- Here is this wonderful, beautiful, delicious recipe for a dish that you will under no circumstances ever be able to prepare without charring something unburnable, such as cucumbers, or accidentally substituting paprika with alum.
- And here are some glorious photographs of the finished product, which will look absolutely nothing like what your own will look like unless you include cello tape and one tube of industrial adhesive.
- No matter what, anything even remotely palatable will be 8,000 calories, and anything under 500 calories per serving will look like something found in your yard.
- Here is a picture of my cat.
- Here is another picture of my cat.
- Here is another picture of my cat.
Multi-Level Marketing Blog
- I am going to write one original blog post to get people interested in my blog. I may even include a picture of myself.
- Here is a blog entry that is cut and pasted from the corporate email I just received.
- Here is an entry begging you to buy more orange energy drink or generic Gorilla Glue before the end of the month, pointing out that the 25% markup from the local department store is worth not having to drive to the mall. Shipping not included.
- Let be paraphrase what the coach just said, but in my own words so it sounds like something original.
- Despite the fact that my last foray into sports management was to refill the water bottles for four year olds at the T-ball field twenty-five years ago, the coach that has been coaching in professional sports for fifteen years DOESN'T KNOW WHAT HE'S DOING AND THEY SHOULD IMMEDIATELY FIRE HIM BECAUSE THE TEAM IS 2-3.
- Everything that has happened in organized sports since some golden moment when I was twelve years old is a horrendous mistake, and I'm going to project my own broken failures onto the people who now wear uniforms.