After all this time, I still can't leave negative comments alone.
I appreciate all of you who are hoping I will receive the POWER of BURNING, your support is awesome. And I have to be honest, if I lose to The "Blog" of "Unnecessary" Quotation Marks I will not be upset in the least, as it's inventive, funny, and Bethany seems to be a very cool (and nice) person.
Plus I don't really need to be walking around with a device that can burn things.
However, I received this comment this morning from an anonymous commenter named "frankly speaking" and I HATE that it's bothering me:
Kristy is self-absorbed and cannot handle criticism of any kind and she calls herself a writer? a wannabe writer? Grow a spine, Kristy. Get over yourself already. You’re the new stale *bleh*
Every blogger out there has to deal with negativity, and everyone has their own style for managing it. I'd LOVE to know if any of you have a fool-proof solution, because I know I don't.
But I do have three points to make for Ms./Mr. "frankly speaking." And sure, these points have been made repeatedly by me and by other bloggers everywhere. But apparently there's still a need.
1. Blogging is personal.
I am always surprised and confused about people who criticize bloggers for being "self-absorbed." My blog is not a news site. It is not a general social commentary. It is not a gossip site. It is not fiction. And I am most definitely NOT providing any sort of useful/technical information.
My blog is my personal web journal. I am, in effect, writing something of a real-time memoir.
Criticizing someone's personal blog for being self-centered is like reviewing a biography on George Washington and saying it wasn't very good because it focused too much on George Washington.
2. Blogging is personal.
It is true; I am NOT good at handling critical comments here...but that doesn't necessarily make me a bad writer.
The problem is that the criticism I receive is never about my writing. I don't get feedback like, "Kristy, your sentence splicing is offensive!" I don't get feedback about my use of non-words or hyperbole. I don't get actionable suggestions, such as "This part was hard to follow" or "The humor didn't work here because _____."
Instead, I get criticism about me. My life. My life choices. My "story." Well, except it's not a "story" because it's not made up.
And that IS hard to stomach.
I write about my life, yes. But I edit, too. There is always more to the story -- I am just presenting pieces. Sometimes life is boring, or happens slowly, or not in neat or orderly fashion. So I take a series of events and put them into perspective and write about them in a structured way and then I post it.
And then I get feedback.
So yeah -- if someone calls me out on poor behavior or a decision they disagree with, I tend to engage. For example, when someone recently announced that I had clearly badgered and guilted my boyfriend into going away with me, I responded.
Because again, this isn't some fictional character I'm writing about.
3. Blogging is personal.
Here is what it comes down to, for me.
I write a blog that chronicles my life. I am more than the sum of my posts, but I am truthful. Every time I write a post, I am putting myself out there.
Why? Because it feels good. It feels good to get it out. It feels good to share my experiences in the hope that others feel the same, that others know what it's like. It feels good to hear the "me, too"s. It feels AMAZING to know that people laugh at my writing, or feel things because of what I write. I mean, how COOL is that?
Way cool. It's the best thing ever. So I keep doing it.
And you, "frankly speaking," well. You might not like what I write, and you might not like how I write. That is fine. (Though may I ask why you're reading me at all?)
But I will always take personal comments directed at my personal life personally. That's just how I'm built, and I'm not ashamed of that. In fact, I think it takes courage to put myself out there -- out here -- knowing that I'll be misunderstood and judged.
Blogging. It's not exactly easy.
So yeah, you wanna talk spineless? How about insulting someone's personal blog ANONYMOUSLY?
That's not just spineless AND lame, but it is the stalest of the stale.
And so I say to you and to all the mean-yet-anonymous commenters, *bleh* yourself.