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Wednesday, August 7, 2013

"GaryFest" is *THIS* Monday & I see you, IWSG post


Before I begin with the insecurity of my writerly lack of security and posit on my latest WIP deposit, I wanted to remind you, dear friends, the Anti-Bloghop that is “GaryFest” kicks off this coming Monday.

Full details are totally here, like.

The last I looked, we were only nine hundred and fifty-one away from 1,000 who have signed up via the Linky List - so come on down and join the fun :)

In other awesome sauce news…

It’s time to once again think before you write the acronym for Insecure Writers Support Group.

In case you don't know, IWSG was founded by a non-mandolin-playing dude called Alex (and funded, in 400 parts by his new start-up, “Clones ‘R’ Us”)

IWSG is a place where discovering a writer friend in the fetal position next to a overflowing trashcan of crumpled white printer paper is considered OK, and where weeping of grown men with shiny bald heads is encouraged.
All this happens only because of the wonder that is the Fellowship of IWSG.

You don’t need a precious ring or even remove a huge, old sword from an older rock to participate, but when you do, you *will* leave stronger than before you posted.

Of that I promise you :)
(Now, where's the darn box of Kleenex...)


This month, as I bury myself in WIP#2, I’m going with a simple insecurity:

I rarely ask questions at the bottom of my posts.

Is that bad?

I understand asking a question is a way to entice commenters to bite at your hook, but I grew up* (subject to change at author-reader discussion and discretion) as a beat reporter who was supposed to WOW! the reader and leave ‘em with a zinger of a thought.

And, if I got "THE QUOTE" to end the article, that was like finding two jars of Trader Joe's Cookie Butter on the shelf :)

So, what do you think?

Do you ask questions at the bottom of the post – or leave ‘em with a zinger of a thought/quote?


Suzanne Furness said...

I'm not usually a 'leave 'em with a question sort of gal.' Here, here, this band of IWSG followers are a monthly writing therepy - better than drink and far more communicative! Haven't signed up for the fest only cause I'm not sure I'll be around much beginning of the week but Gary rocks!

S.P. Bowers said...

Your blog, your style, do it your way. I've done both depending on the post and my mood.

Suzi said...

I do both. Don't have a preference. You're good with the wow factor though, me not so much.

"IWSG is a place where discovering a writer friend in the fetal position next to a overflowing trashcan of crumpled white printer paper is considered OK, and where weeping of grown men with shiny bald heads is encouraged."

Is this on the official IWSG site? Cause that is just perfect and you so gotta get it on there. :)

Bob/Sally said...

I usually include a question of some sort (sometimes implied) to hopefully get a conversation started.

Nothing is quite so daunting as the blank wasteland of comments and the bleached bones of doubt they expose.

Yolanda Renée said...

Both, depends on the subject! Your posts are always a WOW!

I see I'm the 49th to sign up for the Anti-Blogfest Garyfest - but I'm sure I won't be the last!

Should be a lot of fun!

Rachna Chhabria said...

Mark, our blogs are a lot about our style. I like asking questions at the end because the answers from my blog buddies teach me a lot of things and clear the confusion in my mind.

" by a non-mandolin-playing dude called Alex (and funded, in 400 parts by his new start-up, “Clones ‘R’ Us”)" love this description of Alex :)

Mina Burrows said...

It depends on the post. And sometimes I just forget. :(

Unknown said...

I don't really have a "questions at the end of my post" policy. It kind of depends on the post. I really like to stay flexible, foot loose, and fancy free in this area.

You know, that Alex dude is so cool. If he JUST played the mando, he's be so much cooler though....

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Clones R Us needs to send more cash.
Garyfest!! Can't wait.
And yeah, I ask a question. Several in fact. Who wants to know?
And Julie, I read that!

Cassie Mae said...

Never asked a question. I leave a Harry Potter spell instead, lol. Just because I ain't nerdy enough.

Crystal Collier said...

Sometimes I ask questions, sometimes I don't. I do always call to action for comments and responses though. If you get people invested in what you're saying, they're probably going to want to contribute. Right?

Elise Fallson said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Elise Fallson said...

I'm like Sara. Sometimes I'll ask a question sometimes I won't, depends. But do what feels comfortable to you. Folks are gonna comment anyway because you rock, your posts rock, you have totally cute kids, live in HI, and have killer caterpillars. (;

Sheena-kay Graham said...

If I have a question I ask it wherever it seems appropriate. But generally no, I don't ask questions with each post. The blogfest will rock next Monday.

Rena said...

I do sometimes leave questions. Sometimes quotes. Sometimes neither. I know that's a pretty wishy washy answer, but it's true. What I notice is that it doesn't seem to change the number of comments one way or the other.

cleemckenzie said...

I ask questions when I remember or if I think it helps others with comment.

I'm ready for the "GaryFest." But I'm just so bad at the quippy-reparte-blog titles. Now here's my Insecurity slip showing: Don't laugh at my contributions to this anti-blog hop, okay?

Also kudos on WIP#2

~Sia McKye~ said...

Most of the time I ask a question or two. And yes, it gets the reader's brains operating. :-)

There are those articles/posts I leave a zinger of thought. I think both methods work well and it depends upon what the subject is.


Johanna Garth said...

Sometimes I leave a bottom of the post question. Sometimes not. It's all very mood driven. As is most of how I operate in life. Kinda scary, but at least I own it. ;)

Melissa said...

I do some of both.
Your blog seems to be thriving, so you must be doing something right. ;)

Great post! :)
August co-host and IWSG #110

Kirsten said...

I almost always ask questions, because there are always things I want to know. I learn so much from my blogging buddies, and I love a good conversation. :)
I would love to end with a WOW once in a while though. Maybe I'll give that a shot someday!
Either way, IWSG is a huge boost for my writing!

The Words Crafter said...

Sometimes, I end with a question. Depends on the post....

I'm signed up for the Gary Fest. Be warned!

klahanie said...

Yo Mazza,

Do you realise it's four in the morning where I am? Did you wonder why I took so long to get here?

Well, the answer is simple. I've been working my way through the list of my admirers and now I've arrived. Yay n'stuff!

Wishing you much fulfilment and positive interaction with that anti-blogfest. That dude in the photo looks like he should be arrested. Who is he?

I also want to thank you for noting that dude, Gary, in this "I Was Seeking Gary" group. I'm sure it does his ego a world of good :)

Argghhhh!! Lingo alert! "WIP" not one, but two.

To answer your question and you have asked a question at the bottom of your post. Which means you have asked a question at the bottom of your post. To answer your question, I don't normally ask a question at the bottom of my posts. Recently, I have. Although it's a bit of satire that is spoofing a certain ninja type dude :)

Asking questions at the bottom of a blog sure is a nifty neato way of getting more comments, I reckon.

I might attempt to leave a thought that ties in with my first thought in my posting. Or leave them with a sentence that has the title of the posting in it.

How was my comment? Are you impressed I commented at four in the morning? Who is going to win the World Series? Do you think that Chelsea will win the Premier League?


Gary :)

Samantha May said...

Sometimes I do and sometimes I don't. Not every post warrants a question.

I have to say Insecure Writers Support Group out loud just to make sure that I put IWSG instead of ISWG...

Elizabeth Seckman said...

I prefer to start and end with half baked thoughts. That's just how I roll :)

I think you should do whatever you want. Your blog is always fun!

Tammy Theriault said...

i think you know me well enough that my questions are either hypothetical, or just amusement. why? do you want me to? should i question more? is questioning a good thing? did i leave too many questions? am i sorry?

not really... :)

Libby said...

I've gotten into the habit of asking a question at the end but I feel like that's more for my bloggy friends then it is for my "readers". I'm considering not doing that anymore for that very reason, or did it less often.

Unknown said...

I tend to ask on the bottom, so it's the last thing people read.

Ella said...

I alternate and entertain both-now I ponder? I like hearing I mean reading others thoughts. Insight is a powerful gig! I don't do it every time or do I? Do I need to question myself more on an ending thought or question?! Nah!

Thanks Mark for sharing!
Clones R US-yes it does exist! lol

Optimistic Existentialist said...

I ask a question at the end of every single blog post. I don't remember when I started doing it, but the response has been wonderful. Plus it's a way of engaging my readers and that's my favorite part of blogging.

Unknown said...

I've read to try to leave a question for interaction...to spur comments. I've always hoped my article would spur them on its own. By my stats, I get many more visitors than comments, and I LOVE comments (and will answer them all), but I don't get 100's of comments, either and still spend a lot of time.

Anyway...to answer your question. No, I don't leave questions. I tried that once, but it was so obvious that I was dredging for comments. The questions were silly. So I just figured that if they are moved enough by something I wrote, they'll comment.

Good post!

M.L. Swift, Writer

Mark Means said...

I think questions are good...sometimes....but, if you can zing, by all means, zing!

Either way, though, your little corner of the blogosphere is great, as is :)

Unknown said...

I ask a question at the bottom of my posts. Sheepishly, I do in order to spark comments. I also like to hear what people have to say about my post topic.

I do like the idea of a fellowship of the IWSG. We are a pretty amazing group of people!

Donna K. Weaver said...

I frequently ask questions. People who comment don't always answer, but it like an icebreaker at a social event.

Anonymous said...

I feel like I probably ask more questions than I think I do. lol

Morgan said...

I think your posts are hilarious/and/or/thought-provoking enough that you don't need questions. I usually use a question at the end only because I'm not as cool as you are. ;-)

Nick Wilford said...

I ask questions because what other people reply is probably more interesting than what I actually posted! Seriously, part of blogging for me is sharing what's on my mind and I like to hear others' take on it.

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