Have you ever asked for someone’s advice and not liked their response? What do you do with it? Take it to heart (or too much to heart as it may be)? Write it off as bullshit and move on? Get mad at them and tell them to go fly a kite (probably not the best thing to do since after all, you did ask for the advice)? Or maybe you just say nothing and then go ask someone else what they think of said advice and see if they agree (and risk the chance of being mad at two people).
I recently asked a friend of mine if she had advice on how to break into a very cliquey group of Canadian bloggers. I was hoping for one of the following responses:
I will introduce you personally and recommend you to them
They may seem like self-important blog snobs but if you email them they will totally open up their post Blissdom loving arms and welcome you into their community
Forget about it, they don’t bother with bloggers with fewer than 5,000 twitter followers
The response I got was not what I expected at all. It was:
Tighten your writing and get an editor.
I sat and said nothing (shocking, yes). What does that even mean? While I agree that in an ideal world we would all have an editor, when you write as often as I do (and for free) it is not realistic. Also, I spend a fair bit of time reviewing my posts before I press “publish”, and it is rare for there to be a typo in one of my blogs. And what the hell? How does that help me break into that group of bloggers? Even if I went back to school and got a degree in creative writing, that would not help me with this particular endeavor. Are they going to magically discover me just because I have training they deem deserving of acknowledgement?
Because I have it in me to be a passive aggressive asshole, I spent last night going over the blogs I “aspire to be affiliated with” (which is becoming less true by the second). The very first one I checked had a grammatical error in the most recent post. I called my husband and told him and he suggested they “tighten up their writing”.
As it turns out, I think I'm okay not being part of this group. It makes me feel like I'm back in high school which was not much fun then and is not much fun now. Now excuse me while I go tighten up my writing.