I Want to Die — A cry for pageviewsPosted: August 31, 2012
I am writing a posting about blogging, which may, in fact, turn out to really be two or three postings. The process of writing this blog-related posting has been ongoing for a long time, which is no real surprise given that I currently have approximately 15 postings in varying stages of completion. Some postings are waiting for data, some are waiting for events to unfold, and some are waiting for a wave of inspiration and desire. Moreover, sometimes I get distracted by interesting things that show up as part of the research part of the writing process, resulting in some postings simply ending up waiting for me to pay attention to them.
While writing this particular posting I find myself distracted by James Altucher. James is a prolific blogger, using his blog, I suspect, primarily to explore — or tease — out subjects that he can expand on and then collate into yet another one in a seemingly never-ending series of self-published books — and, of course, as a vehicle for getting speaking engagements — and sometimes he writes and says some outrageous things.
Actually, I am being unfair. It was really BloombergBusinessweek Magazine that distracted me by featuring an article about James Altucher, written by Roben Farzad, and noting something that I thought was incredibly interesting:
“Shortly after launching his blog, Altucher learned that the top search query bringing readers to the site was “I want to die.””
Now, hold it right there. Yes, James Altucher says some controversial things from time to time, and, yes, he has, without a doubt, made a point of experimenting with ways of expressing himself that draws people in. But, if this statement is true, then it is extremely interesting, not just from a societal standpoint (in what kind of society, for chrissake, do people Google “I want to die,”) but also from a blogging business standpoint, since James has tens of thousands of Twitter followers and apparently had more than 10 million page views the first year his blog went live.
So, no… I don’t want to die — well, not quite yet, at least. Rather, this posting is a simple experiment to see what kind of draw a statement like that of James has.
In fairness it should be noted that I have actually cheated a bit, adding suicide as a blog tag and, also, adding the picture of the actress Helen Twelvetrees who, in 1958, did, in fact, commit suicide and who had remarkably sad eyes. However, in my defense, in order to keep myself relative honest, I have added some tags implying that this is but a grand experiment and, also, added a pretty transparent modifier to the provocative “I want to die” statement.
I just can’t wait to see what tomorrow will bring.