Friday, October 7, 2011

Keeping It Real

Today we have a guest post from The Daddy Yo Dude. He's one of the first bloggers I connected with when I joined the Twitterverse a few months ago, and we've become good friends. He's a hard-working dad whose passion for his family clearly comes through in his writing. Like me, he is big on building a passionate, involved, fun community through blogging. Here, he's issuing a challenge to all bloggers out there. Enjoy, check out the Dude's blog, and embrace his challenge:

You hear it online all the time when it comes to bloggers. So-and-so says they like so-and-so because they are "real". Maybe you have received a comment on a post that drew only one response: “Thanks, I’m just trying to keep it real.” Generally speaking, and I speak for myself on this, a response like that is a little on the generic side. Typically the post is genuine, albeit one written to draw the views. I can admit to that on several occasions.

I was asked this question in an email a few days ago: “Do you live the life that you blog, or do you live the script that you blog?” At first I didn’t quite understand it. I started reading through some of my bookmarked blogs and came to this very site. That then led me to the Blogger Idol site and a post of Justin’s that I had judged. The number one reason I enjoy Daddy Knows Less is because it does not have that “generic” real feel. What I get from Justin’s writing is a core sense of who he is, on many levels. That is what makes him so real to me when I read his posts.

I finally had my answer to the question in that email. “Do I live the life that I blog, or do I live the script that I blog?" The answer is both. I write about a lot of different things in some weeks. It may be funny, it may be sad, it may be abstract. I don’t limit myself when I write for enjoyment. I write because I am. What you read on my blog, is what you would see if you were my neighbor.

The flipside to this is what blogging gives back to me. Often, while proofreading a post, I will have an “aha” moment. I have even had an experience that I read what I didn’t remember writing. I'll see something in what I wrote, and the whole thing takes on a new meaning. I have had revelations that have changed me, because the words I wrote became a mirror of who I am. I write because I am.

That is the realness that I connect to the most online. It connects to me in a different way than other blogs. These blogs, and there are a lot of them, are where real people are really, keeping it real (if you can send me a recording of you saying that 5 times fast, I’ll send you a bumper sticker.) They are written by real people, with real feelings, and they strike a certain chord that connects you on a more personal level. I bet if you asked them the same question, you would get a similar answer.

Where does this post lead up to today? I want to issue a challenge to any blogger who reads this post today. A challenge aimed at getting people to open up more, and be real. Sure, you may write for an audience if that’s your intent. But just try writing for yourself. Take one post a week. Or less, if that’s not possible. Take a situation that really made your gears grind, analyze it in a real way, and write it in a real way. How did it start? What were the exact thoughts going through your head? What was the end result? Write it from your core and lay it out there for people to read. Be you, not your online you.

Share the posts with me on Twitter or Facebook after they go up. Let me see that there are people out there who still know who they are at all times. In a world that flies by full of plastic handshakes and fresh off the printing press conversations, we should all just take a moment to be ourselves, know ourselves, and be comfortable with ourselves. Maybe then we can all make it a point to just keep it real with each other.


  1. "...because the words I wrote became a mirror of who I am."

    Perfectly stated, John. This struck a chord with me, as do all of your posts, and DKL's.

    Aside from simply being busier with life than usual lately, this gets at the heart of why I haven't been posting lately. I always write with real honesty, and that can be simultaneously emboldening and exhausting.

    Great post, thanks!

  2. I knew this right up your alley, Chris! I hear what you're saying. I try to write as much as possible when I have momentum, so to speak. Because I know there will be dry spells or busy times.





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