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Commenting is the “Polo” to Blogging’s “Marco”

Comments are pretty damn important to me.  That’s probably apparent since my response to NaNoWriMo was not to focus on blog writing or poetry or anything else that is akin to expressing oneself a la the novel.  I went for the short and sweet route of focusing on commenting with IComLeavWe.  Comments are sort of the peel of blogging: some people toss it aside or consider it unimportant; something we can choose to consume or discard at will.  But those of us who cherish comments like a ripe apple know otherwise: most of the nutrients of the blog post are in completing that circuit between writer and reader.  Comments can’t be peeled off or crushed in the garbage disposal without changing the value of the post itself.  The two elements go hand-in-hand.

Deep, I know.

Do I want comments?  Yes, I freakin’ want comments.  If I didn’t want to hear what you had to say, I would write down all of my blatherings in Charlotte and call it a day.  But even though Charlotte is now deeply ensconced in my life, I still take the time to write in this space.  I haven’t slowed down or changed what I write.  Charlotte fulfills one need.  But this space, my blog?  It fulfills a very different way of looking at my life or the world around me.  And I need you guys to chime in on this blog.  It changes the way I see the world.

I have learned so much from you.  I’ve learned about books, historical events, and other blogs.  You’ve made me feel supported and virtually hugged.  You’ve made me feel as if my words matter.  But more importantly, your comments have been the fuel that has kept me coming back here for eight straight years of almost daily posts.  Would I have kept writing if there were no comments?  Perhaps.  But I could also see myself returning to the land of paper, journaling privately off-screen.  After all, if no one is going to say anything, why put it up at all?  It’s like talking at the wall.  We don’t do it (or… we don’t do it often) because it isn’t satisfying.

Comments make blogging satisfying.

2986 posts.

61,279 comments.

(1,189,915 spam comments caught by filters).

It’s a pretty good run, nu?

So consider signing up for June’s NaBloPoMo.  The theme is commenting.  Which you probably guessed since this whole post is about commenting.  Think of signing up as a birthday present, but it’s the sort of present where you get a gift too.  Like buying me perfume and then getting to keep the free makeup samples they shove in the bag.  Wait, please don’t buy me perfume.  I really don’t like perfume.  What I like are comments.

So say something.

23 comments

1 TasIVFer { 05.29.14 at 8:01 am }

It’s 10 pm in Tasmania, Austalia, and tonight we’ve decided to have a bit of wine. And I love your writing, and I love the community you create, and I’m tiddly enough from a bit a wine to say so. #StirrupQueensFanGirl #bighugs

2 Pepper { 05.29.14 at 8:16 am }

I love commenting on blogs, yours in particular, because so many bloggers take the time to respond. I love that I feel a connection to people I would never otherwise meet. And sometimes that connection is what helps me keep going on days when I’m feeling lost or alone. There’s just something I get from it that I don’t get from the people I talk to in real life – not a fault of their’s, just a different relationship.

3 a { 05.29.14 at 8:23 am }

That is a pretty good run!

Also, Marco Polo always makes me think of summer. I wish we had a pool…

4 Linda { 05.29.14 at 9:09 am }

I, too, think of Marco Polo and summertime and wish I had a pool too.
Eight years EIGHT years!!! Rock on!

5 Serenity { 05.29.14 at 10:11 am }

That’s a GREAT run. 🙂

I have gotten away from commenting on blogs since I started reading blogs via my phone. One of my goals is to get better about that.

6 Aerotropolitan Comitissa { 05.29.14 at 10:16 am }

Something! (That was so very lame. But comments are definitely great, even when you think they might be a bit lame.)

(That’s true, right?)

7 Life Breath Present { 05.29.14 at 10:40 am }

Although I won’t be participating in NaBloPoMo this month, I actually enjoy commenting on others’ blogs. Sometimes because *I* need/want them to know something has affected me. Other times, it’s because I just want it to be known that someone took the time to respond. I know how it feels to get a comment. I especially like thoughtful comments 🙂

8 Sarah { 05.29.14 at 11:52 am }

You know, I used to really care about comments, and then I stopped. I think it might be because they have dropped to such a low level, or lots of them come through as twitter or facebook comments that are never recorded on my blog, that I stopped paying attention. I do still love getting them, but am no longer sad when a post I am proud of has no official comments posted…

I must admit that I am terrible at commenting myself as well, so maybe I assume everyone else is as bad as me 🙂

9 Kimberly { 05.29.14 at 12:55 pm }

I’m taking a break from work and making almost 200 cookies among other prep for Brownie Camp this weekend just to say hi. I always read but don’t comment enough. But this makes me want to at least put a little post up before the start of my very busy weekend. 🙂

10 Jamie { 05.29.14 at 1:02 pm }

I don’t have a blog (I journal via paper and pen) but I do read a handful of them. I comment sporadically at best. What drives me crazy is when I take the time to comment (usually pecking out the words on my phone or iPad) and they don’t show up. There is one blog that I have tried numerous times to comment on and that is the case – it is so discouraging. Anyhow, thank you for writing. I believe I have been reading your blog for going on 4 years now 🙂

11 Katherine { 05.29.14 at 2:09 pm }

Well, i am a frequent almost-commenter. I start to type something in, then inevitably someone is missing a shoe or a book or a swimsuit so I walk away for a minute, then I come back and in an attempt to remember what i was trying to say, i reread what i wrote, I think “that sounds dumb”, and by the time I start to edit it, someone has lost another shoe and … We continue ad infinitum. Since i never really have anything profound to say — other than, “this post really touched me” — i regret to say that I usually just selfishly ask myself “why bother?” and I give up.
Can’t promise i can change this much, but since i seem to be relatively uninterrupted today, i will go ahead and delurk and say — i really do appreciate your writing. There are many many posts that have stayed with me — most recently, your posts about decluttering /the memories objects hold, and about your ghost child, have been following me around a lot.

I am half way across the world, but am very thankful i can connect this way…
Sending you lots of love,
katherine

12 Betty m { 05.29.14 at 3:30 pm }

Thanks to the time difference I’m usually first to your posts and there are no comments here and I’m on my way out to work and I think ill comment later and then I just don’t. Must try harder will be my effort for nablopomo.

13 Sharon { 05.29.14 at 5:04 pm }

I enjoy getting comments, too. . . though I think I would still post on my blog if I didn’t. (There is something about typing out my thoughts that I find more therapeutic than writing them by hand. Can’t explain it.)

I don’t always comment because it’s hard to do so from my iPhone, and that’s the primary medium through which I read blogs nowadays.

14 Esperanza { 05.29.14 at 5:48 pm }

Wow. That is a lot of comments. That is an average of 20.5 comments a post. With as much as you post, that is really, really impressive. You must really inspire people to respond to your words. An awesome feat.

Also, you’re about to hit 3,000 posts! That is incredible!

15 Persnickety { 05.29.14 at 9:19 pm }

I too get waylaid by the “my comment is not good enough” bug. But I appreciate comments when they are made, and try to comment.

Not sure if I can NaBloPoMo in June. My Internet access is likely to be shaky

16 Claire { 05.30.14 at 2:21 am }

I don’t comment on your posts often enough but I do prize myself generally on being a thoughtful and supportive commenter . I think my comments outweigh my blog posts by about 100 percent recently, which is interesting to me. So I think that by commenting I’m making a contribution to the blogisphere, even if it can’t or don’t make time to write on my own blog. . In the same way that I can spend hours on FB and making comments there but I can’t write a cohesive post about my own life.

17 A. { 05.30.14 at 5:41 am }

So funny that you mention Charlotte because I am always vacillating between feeling like a “voice” for…er, something…in my quiet little corner of the interwebs and wanting to shut the whole damn thing down because I’m revolted by the public-ness (yep, just invented that word) of the whole blogging endeavor. You’re right: the comments are the component that sets this apart from the years and years I spent scribbling away, effectively talking to myself, in a well worn series of black Moleskine journals. That’s when it goes from monologue to dialogue, reflection to conversation, narcissism to compassion, isolation to connection–all worthwhile shifts!

18 andy { 05.30.14 at 8:13 am }

I had started this year of with the promise to myself to comment on each and every blog I read. I figured if it was interesting enough for me to click through from my reader to read the whole thing, it was deserving of me leaving a comment. I’ve been slacking on that front lately, so this is a great reminder to start doing it again.

19 loribeth { 05.30.14 at 12:03 pm }

I have been a bad blogger, blog reader and commenter lately. :p Life has this really annoying habit of intervening. 😉 I will often read a post & think I will come back & comment later, but don’t. And I think any attempts to participate in ICLW &/or NaBloPoMo are best left for a post-retirement project. 😉 That said, I promise to make an effort to do better at commenting in the future. 🙂

20 Justine { 05.30.14 at 4:14 pm }

I love comments and commenting … maybe it’s time for me to get back in the game. 🙂

21 Mali { 05.30.14 at 7:46 pm }

I love comments, and try to comment on blogs I read regularly, as well as posts that move me, or that I can relate to in some way. I’m finding that Feedly and my iPad aren’t always compatible with commenting, and sometimes – after typing out the same comment twice or even three times and losing it – I just give up. And I regret that.

22 Tiara { 05.31.14 at 7:22 am }

When I first started reading blogs, I never commented because I felt, “who’d want to hear what I have to say” when I started blogging, I learned the value of comments, even if it’s a simple “thank you for posting this”

23 Shelby { 06.17.14 at 11:39 am }

I read many blogs but only comment on a few, simply because of time. But there is something I really enjoy about commenting on yours. I think it usually has to do with the fact that you make us think and always ask for a response, whereas many blogs (mine included) don’t necessarily take that approach.

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