Blogging allows us play at writer, editor and publisher. We can be as creative or as self-indulgent as we see fit.
Yes a piece published after a copy-editor has run their jaded if watchful eye over it may still be death by a thousand cuts, death by a thousand buts. But there is at least that approval even if it attracts negative criticism by readers, or far worse, ignored by them.
And that is the best of it.
Let us assume the more usual fate of your submitted piece…that it is not even acknowledged. Or it is but only in the form of a standard, cursory ‘We thank you for your time…’ (Never mind your blood, sweat and tears). And then perhaps you brace yourself and prepare to send to another editor – presumably your second, third, fourth, that is your lesser choices, and trying not to consider serial rejection and its effects on your will, on your spirit.
Or perhaps you took the plunge and sent out your piece, your latest work of art, your baby, to multiple journals. A half-dozen rejections easily salved if but on the seventh there is an acceptance – those others then are fools, what do they know, I always thought the journal who accepted me was a cut above the rest, understood real art better than its peers etc. But naturally you fail to factor that not even the seventh accepts you – that your rejection is multiple, compounded, beyond complete.
You were as brave as you were masochistic. But at least there is a line around it, you can grieve and fume and curse but then begrudgingly accept and move on. Perhaps even to another piece, if ever becoming a shadow of a shadow of a shadow of your former self and dreams. The rejection was at least mercifully swift in the same way the guillotine was.
Whereas with WordPress (and all other blogging platforms of course) the rejection is terminal but never-ending, the slowest of slow deaths?
Initially the published post goes unLiked and unCommented by your subscribers. The endlessly creative and frankly tangential tagging designed to lure new unsuspecting WordPress bloggers to your post piques the curiosity of a mere motley few. As for your multitude of social media sharing options with their mocking promise of viral fame …the counts remain resolutely zero for the likes of Facebook and Twitter and well LinkedIn – did you really think your decidedly non-business like prose-piece would end up on there?
But then there is the follow up in the days and weeks ahead. Those views that search engines bring your way, well Google. But that is but hope, the kind that always kills you…as each subsequent day of silence taunts you.
Like the proverbial poop in the wood that goes unseen and did it then happen, likewise your barely viewed WordPress post, does it really have existence? Published but unread – snublished?
And then the Internet Long Tail, another Fairy Tale, Ray Kinsella Field of Dreams, “of build it and they will come”…eventually. Give it 10,000 years and your post will have its share of savour and appreciation…
And what do we do readers? Do we take up other jobs and tasks where at least we are noticed, appreciated and sometimes thanked?
Of course not. We forget about it as best we can and start the process all over again.
This time they will take notice we tell ourselves. As said, it is the hope that kills you.