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Back Off, Lit Mag Snobs

(photo by Migraine Chick)

I remember how excited I was to meet like-minded people in college after spending 17 years in a rural town where I often felt misunderstood. College orientation introduced to me all of the social options for a literature major honors geek like myself – including the Literary Magazine.

I went to my first meeting expecting to bond with other Tori listening sisters in black, but instead I found that a.) these girls all already knew each other and b.) they weren’t the bonding type.

Where did I go wrong? Was it that my writing occasionally made sense or that I once missed a poetry slam to attend a fraternity party? Hadn’t I gone to see Rocky Horror enough times, or maybe I didn’t have the right tapestry hanging on my wall?

Now that I’m in the mommy blogosphere, I’m noticing a lot of the same insanity. The majority of these women are genuinely open to meeting new people, helping them around this crazy interweb world, and forming relationships. But then there are those who have built for themselves a Bloggy Ivory Tower, in which they would like to stay – alone together.

What went wrong? Could it be that a shameful few who have burst onto the scene to make a buck or get some free swag have ruined it for the rest of us who are playing nice with the big brands?

Today I saw a tweet calling people “SEO whores” (search engine optimization, for those non-techies) for commenting on or blogging about the deaths of Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson. My first reaction was, “Good for you for not getting sucked in to blogging about this just because it’s ‘the thing to do’!” But then I felt a little sick. Blogging about what is happening right now in popular culture is a way for people to feel connected with other people. It’s not about driving blog traffic. Why didn’t she get that?

Clearly she worked on the lit mag in college.

Recently the “we’re better than you” has become so out of control that I was afraid to leave a comment on the Queen of Spain’s blog. I drop by her site whenever I think of it because it’s fearless, it’s thought-provoking, and many days it feels just like home to me, but I’m not a daily reader and thought this might make me look like what the upper echelon call….wait for it….a “comment whore.” I told Erin as much and she laughed out loud at me. For the record, Erin’s one of the cool kids who has been nothing but welcoming.

I also sat quietly – very unlike me – stewing about whether or not I should write a post about Kate Gosselin because of what the girls using the WiFi at the coffee bar would think about the fact that I had jumped onto the search engine train to hades. This is more than a little nuts.

So I’m throwing down the gauntlet. Ladies, write your blogs the way you want to write them. If you’d like to vent about your children, giveaway a prize every week, work with Walmart, and even put button ads on your site, do it. It’s. Your. Blog.

And to all of those bloggers peering down at us with contempt and displeasure, know this. We had fun at those frat parties and we’re having fun now, too.

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