Yesterday I watched a talk called “How to get a buttcrapload of people to read what you write” by Matthew Inman, creator of The Oatmeal, a comedic blog out of my city, Seattle, WA! I’m going to say right now that The Oatmeal isn’t really the breakfast I’d choose on any given day, but he did have some helpful tips. I didn’t actually write them all out, these are just the ones that gave me that Aha moment!
#1. Make blogs as short and concise as possible. Readers get bored. B.O.R.E.D when you write frustratingly long and meandering blogs.
#2. Make a statement without very many words – a picture if possible. I am not an artist, but I decided to at least try my hand at drawing a stick figure to represent how I’ve been feeling the last few days. Can you relate?
#3. Don’t pander for likes on twitter/facebook/pinterest/or any other social network because your work should speak for itself. I agree on this. I recognize that if you want to get your work out there that your work should really speak first instead of your marketing dollars or time. This frees up a lot of valuable resources, for me that is time. I hate wasting time searching the interwebs for people to like me.
#4. Try Try Try to do what you love if you can! Obviously the caveat here is that for awhile Matthew Inman wasn’t actually doing what he loved. He had to “figure” it out. We are all trying to figure it out and one day, his Aha moment came. It’s not financially feasible for everyone to just drop their job and pursue their passion, but he was doing his “passion” on the side and if that’s all you can do then that’s all you can do for right now. Try to figure out ways to monetize on your passion like Matthew: he somehow made writing comics (one of the least lucrative industries) into a full-time career.
#5. It’s okay if you don’t know how to draw! Though Matthew Inman knows how to design and do it well, he continues to draw things that I wouldn’t consider those of a well trained artist. Why? Well… he actually explains why. The less perfect something is, the more people seem to like it. I think this is both about people relating to imperfections and also what he says is making things undefinable so any drawing can just become a blank slate for the viewers idea of what it should be.
Well… let’s make this short and sweet! How’s your week going? Are you also wondering where it’s gone?