Helen Hunt says something brilliant, and I'm paraphrasing right now, too caught up in my writing to look up hers, "The key to humor is find the sensitive, most desperate ridiculous part of yourself. And then make fun of it."
Who do we love most? The people who make me laugh over their own misfortune, be it jamming mascara into her eyeball or the honest disaster of PowerPoint gone wrong in a power play executive demonstration.
This is the key to good blogging, my friends. Sincerity is in.
(Read that again, because the first time I wrote it, it said sincerity is sin. And that's definitely not what I'm looking to convey. Just to be clear.)
Here's the thing, though: there's a fine line between being vulnerable and being needy. I can't explain it to you, because I don't know the formula. I mean, I hope I know it implicitly, but I don't know how to describe the equation.
But I think needy writing demands something from me as a reader: it calls for affirmation, definition, and 'please tell me I'm okay since I've vomited my soul on the internet.'
I know needy when I see it - most of us do - and I'll stop reading immediately. Or, if I'm honest, I'll continue reading because it's just ridiculous what some people are willing to put out there.
Self respect goes a long, long way.
In my experience, people keep reading the words of the writer who is vulnerable, sincere, and not needing anything from them.
Ask them your questions, their opinions, and - if you have a good rapport with them - maybe you can even ask favors. But don't ask your readers to determine your importance or your value.
Actually, please don't ask anyone to do that for you. You'll be disappointed every time.