You found it. That something that gives you goosebumps. That keeps you awake at night. That you love and can’t wait to share. And you’re pretty convinced it will change the world if enough people knew about it.
So, you start writing. And writing. And writing. Each blog post better than the one before.
Before long, readers take notice. They begin to react to your words. They leave comments. And they share you with their friends. Could this be it?!? Have you finally made it?!?!
And then all of a sudden it happens. They begin to go away. They stop reacting. Stop commenting. And stop sharing. The excitement they once had for your blog has disappeared. And you are left wondering just what went wrong.
So, what do you do? You panic. You worry. You weigh the possibility of whether or not you should just give up.
But Before You Give Up, Here’s Where You Went Wrong
Somewhere in between waking up deciding to start a blog and hitting publish for the first time, someone somewhere out there gave you this little piece of advice:
“Find your passion and write about it”
So, that’s what you did. And it worked for the first post. Even the second. But after a few posts of regurtitated passion, your blog ran out of steam.
The problem is simple. You are writing about what you love. And although it’s important to write about what you love, it’s only one side of a much more complex coin.
Writing only about what you love is flat. It’s boring.
It’s not real.
You see, life is a roller coaster. It has ups and downs. Hard turns. Twists. Big drops. Loops. Massive climbs. And a bunch of other stuff that is making me nauseous as I’m writing this. But without them, life would be boring.
Just like your blog.
In Other Words
You can’t just write about what you love. You must also write about what you hate. The ups and downs. Hard turns. Twists. Big drops. Loops. Massive climbs. And all of the stuff that makes you jump out of your own skin. This is how you build excitement. How you get readers to think. How you get readers to take action. And how you get readers to keep coming back.
This is how you make a difference.
As a writer, you want to take your readers on a journey from Point A to Point B. You can push them away from Point A. Or you can pull them towards Point B. But what you really want to do is to push them away from Point A while pulling them towards Point B.
Love and hate.
Take this blog for example. The one you are currently reading. I write about being human and building relationships in an otherwise digital world using search engine humanization, social media and blogging. But if all I did was write about the touchy feely “let’s all join hands and sing kumbaya” side of things, it would get really old, really fast and you would eventually lose interest. So I also talk about the the people out there ruining the space for the rest of us. The self-proclaimed gurus that take advantage of those that don’t know better.
The ones I hate.
It’s a big part of my message. And pointing out the negative side of something is often more valuable (and more entertaining) than always pointing out the positive side of that same thing.
Don’t Worry, I Haven’t Forgotten About You Positive Folks
I know. But you’re a positive person. You like to focus on the good. You watched The Secret one too many times and you don’t want to manifest what you hate by writing about it. Does that sound about right?
If your mission is to help others with whatever it is that you are great at, then that means giving it to them in a way that is real. A way that they can connect with. A way that they understand. And this is just one of those ways.
It doesn’t make you a negative person. And it won’t call to the universe asking it to rain poo-poo on you.
We all have these emotions within us. Including you. So take off the halo and wings for a few minutes and allow the rest of us a chance to see who you really are. Show us that you have more than one dimension. And trust that we will find our own comfort in knowing that you are just like us and we will feel more connected to you because of it.
Who knows. You may just fire us up to a point where we get behind your cause Braveheart style and race down the mountain to fight by your side.
So, Here’s What’s Next
As you start thinking about your next blog post, I want you to travel down a different path this time. Think differently.
Write about something within your industry or topic that you hate. Something that makes your skin boil. And write about it with as much passion as you have when writing about something you love.
For example, if you have a self-help blog, write about the frustration you feel over people that buy the books but never read or implement them. If you have a sports blog, write about the anger you have towards the players taking steroids and how they are ruining the game. Or, if you have a social media blog, write about how much you hate people that buy Likes and Followers.
If it needs to be said, say it. A post about something you hate doesn’t have to be hateful. It can still be constructive. In fact, I bet you will get a much more positive reaction from it!
You have no idea how many of us are sitting on the sidelines wishing someone would just come out and say what the rest of us are thinking in a way that the rest of us are feeling.
Give it a shot. And if you do, make sure to include a link to your post in the comments below so we can all check it out.
Featured image courtesy of David Goehring licensed via Creative Commons.