Edward Bulwer-Lytton supposedly said “The pen is mightier than the sword.” Clearly the dude didn’t have a sword.
In any case, if you don’t have a sword, a pen will sometimes work just as well.
Yesterday, I received an email from the social whatever-it-is that is Squidoo. I have one page (what they refer to as a lens) on their site. I did it to see what it was like to make one. It was a lot of work. You have to jump through a lot of hoops and fulfill a number of requirements in order for them to ALLOW you to publish your lens. I did them all. I’ll be honest – it was a chore. But, once my lens was published, they showered me with “good job” comments, two awards, and moving to the next level or what have you. I was under the impression lots of people would see my lens. Yeah, not so much.
I put lots of pretty pictures up there and some accompanying text. How many words do you need to describe a photograph? Not many, right? Anyway, that’s not what Squidoo now thinks for some reason. What? You want the link to the “lens”? All in due time, my friend. I’m building suspense here.
Anyway, the email from Squidoo said they were going to take my lens down. What? Huh? Why? Oh, well, I had to go to my account and read the warning to find out why. So I did. I just figured it was because I hadn’t dropped by their site for a while. But no…that wasn’t it. It seems…drum roll, please…I suck as a writer.
“Limited or low quality text” was their reason for threatening to remove my lens! Hmmm. Well, they didn’t tell me which, so I decided to respond with this tirade:
Lazy Means Lazy
Well doesn’t this beat all. I made this lens over a year ago. Squidoo even gave me some kind of award for it. I only made it because a friend told me about Squidoo, and she wrote a tutorial about how to make a lens. I needed to try it out to make sure her instructions worked. And they did. And, we got Squidoo a decent amount of traffic in the process. The Squidoo founders even stopped by and thanked us. I guess *that* honeymoon is over.Now, mind you, when I made this lens, it passed all the criteria. Squidoo won’t let you publish a lens unless you fulfill all their requirements. So, I was a good little Squidooer and made sure I did that. I wanted the world to see all my pretty pictures.BUT….that’s right, cue the ominous music…TODAY, 2/24/2014, I got an email threatening to take my lens down! Oh, the humanity! Because of – get this – minimal or low quality writing. Yikesamundo. I’m the author of 25 books, and I’ve even won a couple of awards here and there. I dunno how many, they may be hanging next to the velvet Elvis painting over one of the gold-plated toilets in one of the many bathrooms in one of my many mansions. Because you know, I make a gazillion dollars a year and stuff. Mostly stuff.
I am hurt, stricken to my core with the betrayal of the Squidoo I so dearly trusted. *sigh*
There are two definitions that your “bot” is clearly not familiar with, my dearest Squidoo. Snark is the first. My writing is loaded with it. In snark, less is more. If you’re a woman, you’ve probably heard that before. If you’re a man, you’ve probably heard it but already forgotten it because you weren’t really paying attention.
The other word your bot needs to familiarize itself with is LAZY. I write like 50 billion words a day in my award-winning, best-selling, megabuck-making novels – and I’m tired. Do you really think if I am lazy enough to sit in my dining room and take pictures of wildlife from my comfy chair that I’m going to write another 10 billion words describing them? Look, let’s negotiate here. A picture tells a thousand words, right? Then get your abacus out and add up all the photographs on this lens. I don’t remember how many are here. But, let’s err on the side of conservative and say 10. I’m being quite generous here, you realize. 10 times 1000 equals 10,000. So please just add the spirit of those ten thousand words to the sum total of this lens and we should be all hunky-dory, whatever that means. I’m a pretend celebrity, for crying out loud.
Okay, I hope we’ve gotten this all straightened out. Please feel free to contact me through my fan club website to tell me what an awesome job I did adding top quality writing to my lens. Oh, don’t mind the small fee to join the fan club. It’s nothing, really. You can pay it with PayPal, American Express, Visa, Mastercard, Discover Card, Amazon giftcard, food stamps, or Golden Corral gift certificates. Have a great day.
So there you have it. If you’d like to check out my lens, the photographs, the slideshow, and all the other HARD work I went through to put it up, please do. I won’t even charge you admission. 😉