This is a little embarrassing to talk about, so don’t tell anyone ok? Sometimes, not that often but still, I seek validation through my blog. Like when I’m having a really cr*ppy day and everything is going wrong, I find comfort in a supportive comment even if I’m not sure how sincere it is at all.

Or other days, when I’m having a real good day, lotsa likes, lotsa comments, I’ll get just a little full of myself. Pump out my chest out like a robin and walk around all proud and stuff, even though no one else knows about it, and if they did, let’s face it, they wouldn’t care. That’s fine though I know and it makes me happy.

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now now, hold your applause, o.k. – just 10 more minutes…

Pretty silly right? Randomly (occasionally drunkenly) rambling about anime isn’t exactly a skill to get all pleased with yourself over. I read other people’s blogs, I know there are better writers, more creative, occasionally funnier (that last one hurts a bit). I may be silly, I’m not delusional. But just because there are other great blogs out there doesn’t really take anything away from mine you know?

And as childish as it may seem, I figure you get your happiness where you can in life. As far as guilty pleasures go, writing for strangers seems on the innocent side of things. Heck, it may even have a benefit or two. It certainly has allowed me to interact with some fantastic folks.

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they’re actually more into it then most folks…

But there’s a definite flip side. Views fluctuate, and stats go down. This can be depressing. Not soul crushing or anything but it can deflate you on an otherwise great day. My personal demon is that posts that mean a lot to me, that I really enjoyed writing and I’m enthusiastically sharing, often get ignored. Not always. I have been lucky to get some readers that will kindly go out of their way to let me know they’ve read or enjoyed a piece – for that I’m eternally grateful but you know, everyone gets busy sometimes and I have really weird tastes, so it figures that the posts I love would not be for everyone.

All of this is well-trodden territory. So, 5 paragraphs later, will I finally get to the point??? Yeah, we all know having our blog do subjectively well is a rush, so what? Well, even though getting some external valorization through blogging sounds like a good idea, is it?  Is it really reasonable? Is it ok to admit you get a thrill from it?

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think about it, really…

This isn’t one of those instances where there’s a right answer. Most likely there’s a right answer for you at this moment, that will change with time and doesn’t apply to others. But here’s mine: YES. You should be proud of your blog. You should be happy when someone else acknowledges your posts. You know what? (this is just me – I should never be listen to) You should even be bummed when your beautifully written and passionate posts go ignored.

You can use the disappointment to fuel your next post. Get better, more passionate. Rant! Try new things. We all know that failure is by far the best teacher. That’s my secret – constant defeat!

Of course, keep in mind that it doesn’t in fact mean anything. The capricious nature of the reader app, the way a post title comes off, even international holidays you may not be aware of, all play a big role in how much exposure your post will get and that has nothing to do with the post itself.

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when in doubt – pander to your audience!

The reverse is kinda true as well. For instance, if youtube has every episode of an anime except 4, and you happen to have a review for episode 4 of that anime, with a corresponding post name – you are probably going to get a whole bunch of people who are looking to watch the episode to your blog. That doesn’t mean they’re not going to love the post and subscribe for more, but it also doesn’t mean that your episode 4 review was that much better than your episode 7 review.

But just because you know the somewhat arbitrary nature of stats, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t enjoy them. It also doesn’t mean you haven’t earned most of them.

Then again, if you’re obsessing over it, you probably won’t have fun.

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then again – some people have a weir sense of fun

I’m a very lazy person. Whenever possible I go for the road of least resistance. It’s just easier that way! At some point I realized that if I really cared about views and followers, I would have to learn about SEO and start really using the power of social media platforms. I dun wanna. It sounds like a LOT of trouble. But I did come up with a brilliant idea instead! Focus on different stats!

My biggest joys are the clicks from my site to another. I’m working on that. I try to share other sites with you whenever I think you may like them. I’ve been a bit wanting on that front lately, but I’ll get back to it. Promise! And my search terms. I have zero idea how to get interesting searches to my blog but whenever I do it fills me with glee. I tell strangers about it. I can have a post completely bomb, but if someone got to my blog with “eps file file camp hustle” (real search) it completely makes up for it. Admittedly “anime bath timekids » (also real search) scares me a little…

So if you get bummed out over your blog, be bummed. Whine about it. Maybe just to me, it could get annoying for some folks. I get it though. And if you are proud of your blog, stand tall and declare it. You’ve earned, probably! And we’re happy for you!

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70 thoughts

  1. >insert intelligent comment here because I can’t find the right words to say
    So uh. Hm.
    Great job getting fulfilment out of blogging?

  2. I really enjoyed reading this post (and I’m not just saying that)! I get bummed out by my lack of readers/followers from time to time, but then I make myself go on a time out and remind myself that I write for the love of it and for the love of anime and not for the approval of strangers on the Internet. Saying that, I love it when people stop by my blog. I love meeting new people who share similar interests with me. So you’re always welcome to my blog! I’ll definitely stop by yours from time to time too!

    1. I try to read your blog regularly, it’s very nice. I’m afraid mine might be a bit Natsume heavy for your tastes but I do post about other stuff too…sometimes…if I have to…In any case you’re certainly welcome

  3. I won’t tell you you’re good.
    I’ll tell you you’re great!

    And word of advice with that whole “key word” thing in attracting people to your blog, as someone who has a recent post getting lots of attention for what I assume to be one word, I would recommend “sex.” Not really sure why this gets so much traffic, but it does!

    1. Duly noted… naked sex boobies it is…That’s gonna make for a weird Natsume’ book of friends post but you gotta do what you gota do

  4. There is a lot of Yoda level wisdom in this post. I often forget that failing is a challenge to learn. I want to be better at looking for the silver lining but that’s going to rely on me being brave enough to do so. This is an encouraging post 👍 Greatly appreciated insight.

  5. Thanks, Irina! This is exactly what I needed to hear today. I hit a sort of blogging slump today and didn’t do any of the stuff I’d planned. Appreciate the pick-me-up! 😺

  6. I really feel you on this one. Stats probably affect me more than I’d like to admit. It can feel so demotivating to have something you put less effort into becoming your most seen thing while you put out what you think is your best post of the year and watch it go by unnoticed. So, thanks! It’s really motivating to see posts like this. And no, I won’t tell you that you’re good. I’ll tell you that you’re amazing! (I know, cheesy, but I couldn’t resist haha)

  7. This is a very relateable and great post, well done! I dont comment very often as most of your posts are on anime I dont know, but I always give your posts an at least skim read (even when I don’t know what’s happening)

  8. I enjoy reading your blog, even tho I’m not a big anime fan. It’s interesting to read your thoughts on blog performance. We all have our own measure of success. The question I ask myself is: Where do I want to go… and am I headed that way?

  9. Well this is all true! One lesson that I’ve learned as a blogger is not trying to understand why some posts get more love than others when I thought they were so great! I now know to write what I feel is right and pleases me and then hope I’ll get some validation by other bloggers 😉

  10. Sees “Whenever possible I go for the road of least resistance”
    Me: Irina are you an electron?!?! :PPP
    I’m thinking that if you’re an element you’d be Calcium (For various biological reasons… and also when excited it becomes a cation… and cation means nyan-nyan… and this doesn’t make any sense XD)
    Always great to read these posts that motivate other bloggers 🙂

    1. Oh my chemistry humor! Xenon does not react is still my favorite joke. I always thought of myself as a Dark Photon because I’m not cool enough to be a Higgs

  11. See, I’m dumb-
    So I intentionally try not to be trendy and push for views, but I want to see my view numbers rise just as much as anyone else…
    But yeah, it’s all worth it cus I was able to convince someone to check out Monogatari! And they’ve enjoyed it! (Only took a few dozen posts)

  12. I think it’s normal to want some attention and validation through blogging/writing. I’ve been doing it since 2015 (started with blogspot, exchanged for WordPress and now I’m posting in medium too) and I think I reached my last phase…
    And this is me giving a different opinion of what most people will probably tell you here. For that I need to exposed a bit my experience: in the beginning I wanted audience, not only to be heard but to get some good $$ coming in (I’m no saint!), and I really started getting some attention because otome games weren’t as much explored as they are now.
    Problem is, if you’re salty you’re going to have a lot of trouble dealing with your audience… (And I really was very salty at the beginning, I’ve learned to moderate myself!). This fact made me realize that I needed to change in social media (site, twitter, etc) and the funny thing is that I stopped being myself, in fact I became a stranger to myself, and doing/saying things just to please everyone (I even got messages of ppl telling me what I should be playing, and who should I favor on those games!!) This high level of toxicity made me realize that I could deal better without twitters and filtrating comments, and let me tell you something Irina, now I breath!
    I don’t care about the amount of likes I get in a post, nor I worry about having no comments. I see the stats, and I have many ppl reading and looking at my stuff — I reached the phase where I feel satisfied with just this.
    I can express my own thoughts, be who I am, and honestly, if ppl want to read, awesome, if they don’t like they can just ignore and close the page. I’m no pro, and I’m not forcing anyone. Does this make me a selfish person? Probably, but I never said I was a sweet either.
    It’s fine to disagree with me, It’s healthy! But it’s hard to find ppl in an audience that wants to talk about things in a constructive way, or can respect the fact that you have an opinion of your own too.

    I really understand what you are saying in here, and I really do hope you have more luck than me, or be able to deal with the situation better, sometimes it’s not easy…
    I’m sorry that only from time to time I manage to see your posts, I also like anime a lot (Omg I love Nyanko-sensei so much too!!!) But, I have a backlog hell of games that I can hardly manage (and I keep getting more, cause I’m just sick!) and I also have few time for my manga (just wasted $308 on a complete collection, someone kill me!) so, only sometimes I pass and read or comment.
    Don’t worry, your posts are very funny. They feel very natural and honest, and that’s important.
    Sorry for the huge comment. Good luck^^

    1. I appreciate you stopping by and commenting. I certainly understand that time is a precious resource for all of us.
      I do need to go through your archives at some point. I like salty!

      1. Thank you! I’m going to give you two gems, of course you’ll only see them if you want or have time, if not is fine either way, — I don’t feel bad about it. These are just some examples, the writing is kinda bad, but I hope you can laugh.
        You can also point out some posts from your blog that you find more interesting, I promise to see them one of these days and comment about them.

        1. Only Kago no Naka no Alicis works…
          As for my own posts, I won’t do that to you – my tastes really are very acquired. But I write everyday so maybe something will catch your eye in the future

  13. It does feel good whenever someone checks out my blogs. I can certainly relate to that. I have a small following and not everything gets liked or commented on, but I keep on preserving whenever I can. This post is certainly relatable.

  14. You should get more bad ideas, they’re entertaining, lol.

    And yeah, we all blog to get SOME form of audience feedback. Having people genuinely be interested in your work is great.

  15. I relate to so much of this post! I find it a bit soul destroying when I put my heart into posts and I don’t get the response I hoped for. It really effects my mood and makes me question whether my blog and opinions are valid but people who do comment, like or share my work really do make me feel good about myself! I like seeing my stats grow as it makes me feel like I’m doing some right! I often find myself baffled when others who I find awesome (like you) having these feelings because I think what you do is amazing! You should be proud of yourself and your blog and soak up all the validation! You deserve it after all! 😊

    1. A Sam you are so sweet. At the end of the day I’ve met such wonderful folks blogging that I’ve already won no matter what my stats say

    1. A lot of bloggers struggle with comments. Especially when posts are more researched and there’s really nothing left to say, or deal with something that’s very precise. I know that I often get too intimidated to comment when I find a post very impressive.

  16. Absolutely get where you’re coming from here. I always get a big smile when I see some growth in stats, or if someone likes, comments or shares something of mine. I was actually quoted on some advertising for a book too, which made me smile greatly. As far as i’m concerned, you should absolutely be proud of your blog, and there’s nothing wrong with enjoying some validation of that. I don’t think any of us want to feel like we’re screaming into the abyss, after all.

    1. Oh wow – you made it on a dust cover! Now that’s GOALS!!!! I’m not surprised mind you, you write great posts

      1. Thank you kindly. Not the dust cover sadly, but the posters. That’s still a positive I think though. If I ever make it onto a cover for anything I may freak out. Joyfully.

  17. Seeking validation through writing is exactly what drives most Fanfiction authors to write more than one story. Many join forums to increase the feedback. You haven’t started writing a novel yet, have you? That would be your next step, after the blog.

      1. So you’re saying you have the soul of a critic/editor? There’s no wry inner humor aching to be expressed through fictional dialogue, or a setting that’s crying out to be taken to its logical conclusion? You could be the second person to write scifi taking place in Quebec!

        1. Sadly I probably have the suld of an accountant but not as exciting.
          Someone recently asked what I would be blogging about if it wasn’t anime and I said: nothing. My drive is really to chat with folks about the shows I enjoy but I’m not much of a natural writer. I love reading books but the idea of writing one has no appeal to me.

          1. What does an accountant do in the modern world of Peachtree and online tax processing? Apparently, watch anime, drink, and discuss it. Munchkin gaming might be another outlet. There’s a lot of number crunching in that, which is why there’s so much LitRPG written by obvious Aspergers cases.

            1. And then they step into their AMG Mercedes and drive to their mansion before lounging around the swimming pool with their mistress while the wife is on Grand Tour in Italy.

  18. Blogging can be incredibly hard work…I think anyone who is able to post even somewhat regularly about things that are meaningful to them should be proud of themselves and their content 🙂

    1. Definitely true! If I had limited my blog to posts that are really meaningful to me I would have about a handful (and yours…I love that post)

  19. A real issue that persists on all levels – see Arthur Conan Doyle’s frustration with the lack of attention his most “valuable” works received as opposed to the light detective stories.

    If everyone could turn frustration into a positive driving force as you suggest, there would really be no problem here. Unfortunately, not everyone is wired that way. Personally, whenever I get too caught up in results-oriented thinking (regardless of context), I try to take a deep breath and think back to the initial assumptions of the action. If those were worthy, that is enough to take pride in regardless of the result. If you discover something to the contrary (e.g. you unknowingly went for a cheap attention grab only to have it fail), that is actually very useful for future reference – you can end the day with the awareness you’ve levelled up.

    1. That’s a very healthy and mature attitude. Ultimately there’s something to be said about the fickle nature of popularity but it can be tough to think that reasonably in the moment

  20. …. Are you reading my mind again, soul sister??? I completely understand what you mean. I definitely get stressed out when no one is looking at my posts. It’s especially bad when the author of the book I’ve reviewed is looking at my blog…. And no one else is.
    I contacted an author of one of my favourite books about a review I was doing and when it was going up. This was no. “indie author” she has written many books and is pretty well known, my post went up and I ended that day with 8 likes…. EIGHT LIKES!!! How embarrassing is that?? Hey, pretty big author! I’m sure you’re SOO extactic to know that EIGHT more people know about your book! 😕😕 Needless to say, I was crushed… This seems to happen all the time when I put up Na important review. Far Side Friday? 33 likes… Important review?? … 10. Sigh. We just have to live with it.
    Sorry for the rant. The wound is still pretty fresh…

    1. Believe me I know. This said – I have occasionally gotten so wrapped up in a post I actually forgot to like it because it was so meaningful to me.

    1. Those are the best since that’s truly a lasting impact. Was it an anime you also liked? I wonder if Dogs and Scissors will be my new favorite anime…..

      1. Of all the people I know, you’re the most likely to appreciate a sado-maso bestiality absurdist comedy about reading and writing books. Here, have the maid song. [A word of warning, it gets rather bad near the end, and many characters do nothing during what’s covered in the anime. Apart from that it’s actually touching when it wants to be.]

        As a coincidence, I actually had prepared that link right as I read that bit about you having really weird tastes. It’s the one anime that came to mind. Before reading that comment. We should form the Weird Taste Foundation, abreviated as WTF.


        Also, just so you know, I regularly use the awesome-posts side bar after finishing your posts. I tend to click 2 on avarage.

        And finally, I don’t post regularly on many blogs, so there’s that, too.

          1. I was just told this anime is terrible but that clip was pure awesome. Also she has a truly love voice. I’m going to look up the voice actor…
            It’s Saito Chiwa and she has played some wonderful charas…

            1. Well, the production values are generally cheap. The series composition outside of arcs is really aweful (this is one of many scenes that goes nowhere), but the episode writing is great, the creative-writing in-jokes are spot on, and some of the scenes are surprisingly touching. (Er, surprisingly for the genre; don’t expect too much.)

              I’m pretty much the only person I know who actually enjoyed the show.

              And, yes, I was surprised that Saito was so good at singing.

        1. I’m going to go get a Weird Taste Foundation T-Shirt made right now!
          I really appreciate it Danstorm – our brief comment convos are always fun!

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