31 Days to Better Blogging: Writing to You Just Because


[WARNING: this one is not pretty. Let me say that up front. I say more about this to Kathleen in the comments section below.]

It is Day 5 (Email a Reader) and you are peering over my shoulder, reading the email I'm sending to new readers. You know, just because.

Dear Potentially-Loyal Reader (You Know Who You Are),

I'm supposed to email you today, to show you how totally, genuinely, honest-to-goodnessly happy I am that you came to my blog and left that funny, helpful comment (it was you who left that comment, wasn't it? :) .

Really, you can trust me, even though I'm emailing you on the advice of a blogging pro (who has gained, apparently, thousands of readers by sending polite emails, like this nice email I'm emailing to you).

Anyway, like I said, you can trust me. I'm not asking you to drop by again, to tweet my Oprah post; subscribe to me, or me, or me, in your Google Reader; or even link to me on your blog sidebar, though if you are feeling magnanimous, why... I would never want to stop you from following your heart.

To show you my absolute sincerity, I'm giving you this link I found called 10 Techniques to Get More Comments on Your Blog. Seriously, this link is totally free, no strings attached. Not even one request to drop by again, tweet my Oprah post; subscribe to me, or me, or me, in your Google Reader; or link to me in your blog sidebar. That would be so cheesy.

Nope, I'm just emailing you to say welcome to my blog. I mean, just for today. I mean, you needn't come again. But if you do, I may have a few more links for you...

Very Sincerely Yours,
The Blogger Who Loves You Just Because

LL's Day 1: Bambi in the Database, Day 2: The Dalai Lama Effect, Day 3: Darren Rowse, Please Link to Me, Day 4: Oprah, I Wanna Be Like You.
ProBlogger's Day 5: Email a Blog Reader
Paul's 31 Days to Build a Better Blog Project

Day 6: Shakespeare and Company's Top 20 Blog Tips, a companion to ProBlogger's Must-Read Tips and Tutorials for Bloggers. (NOTE: This post will depend on your great tips. See the comment box for your invitation.)

Would you like to follow Bambi's efforts at better blogging? Here's a button, if you like :)

31 Days to Better Blogging

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    Blogger Kathleen Overby said...

    [deadpan] I have no response to this. None. But I am traffic. Right? That's important. Right?

    9:54 AM  
    Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

    I know. This one was pure "what?!"

    In other words, I felt like the suggestion to email a reader just to retain that reader's traffic, was such a bad idea.

    I mean, it's a good idea if you actually feel connected to the reader for some reason. But overall I felt very uncomfortable with this suggestion/strategy from the 31 Days Project.

    10:07 AM  
    Blogger Kelly Langner Sauer said...

    I have seen this side of you in your sense of timing, the glint of humor in your poetic eye, but wow. Full-blown, you leave me laughing and wanting to invite you for dinner, just to see more of you!


    10:33 AM  
    Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

    Kelly, you are too kind. I was (and continue to be) very worried that this one would be too contemptuous.

    I suppose that my regular readers will see the real me behind it... the me who thinks that strategy should never trump genuineness in this blogging world... and also that my regular readers might possibly see that if I make fun then I am also making fun of my own sometimes dumb motivations.

    Invite me. Someday I'll come. :)

    10:39 AM  
    Blogger Sam Van Eman said...

    She emails me, she emails me not...

    11:03 AM  
    Blogger Sam Van Eman said...

    SHE DID, SHE DID! Just look what I got:

    Sam Van Eman has left a new comment on the post "31 Days to Better Blogging: Writing to You Just Be...":

    She emails me, she emails me not...

    Post a comment.

    Unsubscribe to comments on this post.

    Posted by Sam Van Eman to Green Inventions Central at 11:03 AM

    11:06 AM  
    Blogger Kevin said...

    I love the way you handle a topic that you feel is "Half-Empty".

    Some of the things in my life that have worked out best were the things that I tried even though I thought they were stupid or silly.

    Way to keep it real.

    11:26 AM  
    Blogger R. Sipes said...

    Today's lesson for me was a dud too. But you made it fun--thanks!
    Maybe someday I will pick up that "I'm sarcastic, but really nice about it" tone in my writing.

    11:26 AM  
    Blogger Claire said...

    you told me that i was going to have to sweat for this one and hear i am getting the entire office into an uproar...

    11:48 AM  
    Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

    Oh my goodness, Sam. LOL! I got your email too (these comments), but of course in reverse order, so I was totally confused until I opened the next email. :)

    Kevin, well, maybe there's a whole lot more potential coming up then? (I have a hard time thinking I'll start to take the 31 Days too seriously. It goes a bit against my philosophy of blogging. :)

    R, thanks! :) I have never been called nicely sarcastic before. Can you make an awards badge for me to post on my blog? ;-)

    Claire, oh my, what in the world are you doing? Did you put salt in the office muffins instead of sugar? :)

    11:58 AM  
    Blogger Sam Van Eman said...


    And as a special bonus, I just noticed that my two comments together make the first poem you've ever seen from me, and it was purely coincidental:

    She emails me, she emails me not...
    SHE DID, SHE DID! Just look what I got

    Any space left in Barbies at Communion? I can't wait to share this latent gift with Marcus!!

    12:22 PM  
    Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

    Sam, you are a genius. (And there's a blank page at the back of Barbies, so I say we lobby to get you on your way to poetic fame. :)

    12:41 PM  
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    ... *I* haven't received an email from you. Why not!? I thought you cared! The rest of the day will find me hitting "Refresh" on my mail client, quivering with anticipation, wailing ever more loudly, until that email arrives.

    Oh, and since one of the assignments was to include a link to our blog in our (helpful) comments...

    But I really am only posting this comment to contribute to the overall discussion, and it is in NO way motivated by my hoping to get traffic to MY blog.

    The blog you can find by going here: http://prayerexperiment.wordpress.com/

    Sorry...sarcasm is not a fruit of the spirit. In all seriousness, I think today's assignment does have to exercised with caution. I don't like emailing people unless it's sincerely to connect with them.

    And I will continue reading your blog even if you don't email me. :P

    12:41 PM  
    Blogger Janis@Open My Ears Lord said...

    What a clever and humorous approach to today's assignment! I was just going to send out a plain vanilla email. You have inspired me to do something creative with it.


    12:44 PM  
    Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

    Prayers, you'd have to leave me your email if you really wanted a sweet note from me. :)

    I wonder about the sarcasm thing (in all seriousness :). Wasn't Jesus just one of the most sarcastic people you ever heard? (Brood of Vipers, and all that jazz.)

    12:44 PM  
    Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

    Janis, you have come to the right place. I am a huge fan of chocolate. Dark, okay? :)

    12:45 PM  
    Blogger Erica M. said...

    Your post was right on it. Who wants a self-serving email disguised as a thank you note? Ugh.

    Happy Friday!

    1:00 PM  
    Anonymous Marcus said...

    Now, now. Who's becoming the queen of snark?

    And yet, you DO this. You know you do. Without the snark. And with seriously no strings attached, except to be honest and open and treat online relationships as if they are real and not marketing personas.

    As for Sam. The proof is in the mail, buddy. I'm afraid my book will have to just be me, and me, and me.

    But we'd love to have you participate in T S Poetry this coming week.

    2:40 PM  
    Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

    Okay, who wants to give me a must-read tip for bloggers? Funny is good. Profound can work too. I'll put you in my Monday 31 Days post.

    Tips from history, poetry, the box in your cabinet, all accepted as potential 'must-read tips' for bloggers.

    Please provide tips asap so I have time to compose the tippy post. :)

    3:21 PM  
    Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

    Marcus, yay, you've finally acknowledged that I am QUEEN. :)

    Okay, and you are right that I "do things" to be a good blogger and build community. But I have to say that I have never once emailed someone new after they commented on my blog. I find that...

    Well, I think you might already have guessed. :)

    3:39 PM  
    Blogger Kevin said...

    Help me out. By "must-read tip", are you talkin' about just stuff in general that we really like that others should drop in and read? I found a blog that is hilarious while doing research on my niche.

    Does that include selfless self-promotion?

    3:54 PM  
    Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

    Kevin, thanks for asking. I'm looking for brief quotes or quips from history, poetry or other weird places that, when applied to the world of blogging, would give us humor or insight.

    These are for my Monday's post, which I'm going to use for my own personal approach to ProBlogger's Must-Read Tips and Tutorials for Bloggers post.

    Does that make sense I hope?

    An example would be:

    do unto others as you would have them do unto you

    Or (this one taken from a tortilla package on my counter):

    "Expand your [bloggy] repertoire using exotic ingredients, healthy vegetables and international spices."

    I'm sure ya'll can do better than this, but I'm just reaching for some quick examples. :)

    4:12 PM  
    Blogger Kevin said...

    Ok, I got ya now...

    Here is mine:

    Hebrews 10:24-25
    24And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good comments. 25Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see Day 31 approaching. (NIBV) New International Blogger's Version

    4:31 PM  
    Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

    Kevin, yay! :) Can you drop your blog link into the comment box here? I can't seem to get it by clicking on your name. Thanks.

    4:36 PM  
    Blogger Kevin said...



    4:40 PM  
    Blogger Billy Coffey said...

    I have to say I'm thoroughly enjoying these posts. And I have emailed readers in response to their comments before, if someone asks a question or has a particularly touching something to say. But to do it just to get them to come visit again is sort of like snatching someone's keys as they leave your home.

    I'm gonna go read this again. I could use the giggle. (Guys can giggle, right?)

    10:18 PM  
    Blogger Halfmom said...

    OK - let's just say, "you crack me up" and I needed that tonight.

    12:19 AM  
    Blogger katdish said...

    I find if my friend Annie K comments on my blog, or if I use the name Annie K anywhere in my blog post, I have a spike in traffic. Of course, people who find my blog via a search for Annie K are sorely disappointed, as it seems there is ANOTHER Annie K with considerable, um....frontsettes.

    9:02 AM  

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