Wednesday 5 September 2012


Before I get into IWSG just to say thank you to everyone who visited my GUTGAA post and I will reply to everyone and get round a few more GUTGAA and IWSG posts myself. I wanted to get this up though ;)

That’s a very Borg esque headline isn’t it? It’s because Dr Who is back on. It seems to me that often our insecurities come from comparing ourselves to other people. Not in a bad, jealous way, but in a woe is me way.

For example, I see people post that they got their first draft done in a day or did barely a revision and out popped this beautiful piece. I compare it to my own piece which took a million years and a hundred edits (okay I may be exaggerating these timelines, but you get the idea) and I feel all forlorn and in need of eating chocolate.

It’s the same with blogging/twittering/etc. I am new to this lark and recently had four people ‘unfollow’ me in a day. I hadn’t even posted anything that day! Was it something I said? Do I smell? Similarly I see people with 1000 followers on whatever platform and think crikey! Not that many people are following me! I must be very dull!

Well. It’s all madness isn’t it. We know it’s madness yet (if we’re honest, which I think you’ll find I am being) we all do it a little bit. It’s human nature.

The writing process comparison is madness because it’s like we’ve all been told ‘build a chair’. Just that. No more instructions. So some of us are making joey and chandler style lazyboys (I don’t know what they’re called. You know what I mean). Some of us a wooden kitchen chair. Some of us maybe a beanbag (bit left field, but I think a beanbag could fit the ‘chair’ genre). No wonder we’re all doing it differently. Even if we were all told ‘make a wooden chair with five legs’ we’d all make a different one because we’re different people and good at different parts of the chair making process.

I don’t know why I have picked a chair analogy. Perhaps all this giving up caffeine makes me want to sit down.

But you get the point. We can take tips and learn from others, sure. For example (and I won’t use a chair analogy), I am good at pace. I can do pacey writing but I have to work harder at a beautiful description of a scene say. Doesn’t mean I can’t work hard at it. Doesn’t mean I can’t take tips from those who are excellent at description. But doesn’t mean a) I should feel bad when I inevitably make these comparisons or b) lose the fact that I’m good at pace.

The same with blogging. We all have different amounts of time to put back into blogging/twitter, and are good at different things. Some people are good at pithy short statements so they love twitter. Others better at spending time on a long blog post. Some people just *do* have more time to give to it, or able to make more time and man, I so admire the amount some people put into the blogosphere. I am still learning and trying and maybe I will never give as much back as some, but I try. Those who have a lot of followers tend to put a heck of a lot out there too.

We shouldn’t compare ourselves to others and feel insecure about what we’re not good at.  BE PROUD OF YOUR CHAIR.

Even if it’s wonky and missing a leg and isn’t that comfy, I bet you can improve on those things. And I bet you can still sit in it.

/end random analogy of the day/


  1. I think the chair analogy works perfectly! As long as we don't actively try to duplicate someone else's chair, I think we're on the right track. I tend to make very comfy, fluffy cushions, but sometimes the back support is a little on the weak side. :D

  2. Mine is definitely a lazy-boy.
    I stopped comparing my blog early on, when I realized I didn't blog like most authors - but that was all right. My style works for me. So does my writing.
    Don't worry about those who no longer follow you - focus on the ones who do!
    (And some days I look at my followers and think Holy crap, when did THAT happen?)

  3. I question everything, over analyze, and hate criticism, and yet here I am putting myself out there -- trying to make a connection. Isn't that what we're all trying to do. And while I could build a chair, I won't because it would be stiff, very strong, and so...uncomfortable. Sort me!
    Great blog!

  4. I see my number of supposed followers drop all the time, but usually it's because some random strangers from Twitter unfollowed me. It's kind of frustrating that my number of followers isn't accurate, since it for some reason counts Twitter and Facebook people along with actual blog followers and blog comment followers.

  5. I chuckled at the chair analogy but you are so right. We are all different, with different strengths and weakness, likes and dislikes and differ on the time we have available to commit to blogging. I try my best as I'm sure most of us do. I think your posts are very interesting and I always try to catch them, carry on doing what you're doing.

  6. Laura - hee, the fluffy cushions sound good and as you say, as long as we don't try to copy!

    Alex - you are so right, focus on the people here! And you are one of the people who gives *so much* back I am in complete admiration!

    Yolanda - yes we are all here putting ourselves out there aren't we! Hee I got a bit carried away with the chair bit ;)

    Carrie-Anne - interesting that it counts FB/Twitter too, that does sound confusing!

    Suzanne - thank you

    Thanks everyone for your lovely comment!

  7. well, one good thing about blogging and the "i wish i had more followers" or the "why did i lose a follower" bug, is that, if you stick with blogging long enough, that will fade away. You won't worry about followers at all any more. And it's definitely a relief. Or at least it was for me.

  8. This is something new bloggers have to realize right away. It's not about quantity it's about quality. You can have a 1k followers who never interact with genuine interest, or you can have 100 that leave over 50 comments on every one of your posts cuz you're genuine and you reciprocate the effort.
    Same with Twitter. The number of followers isn't important. We really have to be building honest, genuine relationships or it becomes insincere and a way to use others for our own gain.
    You've got the right idea. There's no hurry. True friendships are not built in a day... and we'd much rather have friends on this journey.

  9. You're so right about all of it! And a chair is a great analogy...a chair provides support when you're tired and a platform for a writer to work from. And there are as many styles of chairs as their are people!

  10. I know the feeling. I don't know everyone does it. That and my Twitter followers have been dropping like bad cliches from a draft manuscript.

  11. Some much needed words for me about now! Thanks for sharing; glad to have found your site!

  12. very hard not to compare when lots of friends are getting published...but lots more arent, i guess we arent there yet...and twitter is for the birds, i mean i am not into twitter yet, and i like you =)

  13. It is a human trait to stack against the others and get some insight as to where we stand in the pack. Thing is, we tend not to use the insight as a way to propel us forward, but to feel we are failures and stop our momentum altogether. Comparing with other writers more successful than us should be a source of inspiration (success is possible, my writing can be as good as theirs, I need to work harder) not to bring us down with a dose of self-pitty.

    Great post.

  14. I think those feelings are completely normal, but I love your perspective. "BE PROUD OF YOUR CHAIR." *smile*

  15. Sarah - Thank you, already I am not starting to think about that, I appreciate the advice.

    PK - you are absolutely right. What is it, dunbar's number do they say, you can only interact with 150 people truly. I agree. True interaction is the most important.

    Elizabeth - what a great response, support and platform you are so right!

    Samantha - nice analogy though sorry to hear you have lost followers - but better ones who want to be there and who you can truly interact with !

    Kimberly - thank you for visiting.

    Jessica - thanks!

    Tara - will be you someday I am certain of it! Would love it if you were on twitter;)

    Gina - you are absolutely right. It should only spur us on 'that can be me' not make us feel bad. thank you.

    Emily - thanks. We will be proud of our chair!

    Thanks everyone for your lovely comments!

  16. Great post, VikLit! I'm proud of being in my chair!

    Yes, yes, I try not to compare myself to other writers\bloggers, especially in the Blogosphere. I look at my follower widget all the time and see if I've increased my readership but it doesn't change a whole lot.

    Yes, I do have quite a lot of time to comment on the other blogs but sometimes, I just don't. I'm trying my best to get followers and comments. IT TAKES A LOT OF WORK to get to 100+ followers and several comments. I always think to myself, "How does those popular bloggers do it?" Then I think to myself, "I'll get there to 100+ followers, I've only been on blogger for four months so don't rush it."

    Thanks for the eye-opening post!

    1. Thank you for the Comment Livia! It is so hard not to compare oneself but it is the route to madness ;) You are right it takes work and time and it's hard to find that time. Don't rush it indeed!

    2. Thank you Viklit for following and commenting on my blog. I appreciate it so much!

  17. I love your voice in your writing and while we only know each other via blogosphere, I pretty sure you don't smell. And if you do, we can't tell. ;) For the record I've also rewritten my MS one hundred times (at least) and it took close to a million years for me to finish. ;) Am I following you on Twitter? I'm checking right now!

  18. That is awesome! I posted something similar to this. I couldn't write because of all the numbers. When I stopped worrying about the numbers, the words started flowing again! :D

    Check it out of you want:

  19. I worried about numbers at first, but when I stopped, they started. It's more about the content. Good content means people want to read what you have to say, regardless of topic. And you're doing great. I'm glad to have found this place.

    I gave you a Shout-Out on my blog today. :)

  20. Kimberly - See you on twitter ;) Thanks for the comment! (And glad to hear I am not the only 100 times rewriter!)

    Jamie - Glad to hear it is going well not worrying about numbers.

    David - thank you for your lovely comment and the shout out!


Please comment, I'd love to know what you think! :)