Elements of (some) Style

“Step it up, Diane." I’ve heard this advice a lot lately.

First on Tuesday, the dreaded LA Weight Loss woman shared this wisdom after I gained 1 pound, and before she put me on a two-day diet consisting of green vegetables and 6 ounces of meat.

The next day, my personal trainer echoed the sentiment. “You need to dig deeper,” he said as I grimaced my way through two sets of 210 pound leg presses.

And then I heard it again today when this site was reviewed by Ask and Ye Shall Receive.

After checking Sitemeter, I realized my time had come. It wasn’t even 11am, and the site had already exceeded its average hits for the day. The last time the Martini lounge had seen heavy traffic was when I posted pictures of my head shaving to raise money for cancer and landed on a fetish website. Since I now have a full head of hair, I checked my referrals and saw this.


Because my company closely monitors web traffic, it seemed imprudent to follow the URL from a work computer. So, I drove home to read the review.

It was a more than fair criticism. To sum it up, the reviewer thinks I need to work harder if I want to take my writing to the “next level.”

In other words, ““Step it up, Diane. Step it up.”

This could really be a theme for my life. I’m average at many things, not great at anything. But then again, I don’t work for “it” and never have. When you’ve become comfortable with your own mediocrity and happy with the status quo, it’s hard to step it up. As a result, I’m always fighting the stubborn 10 pounds or earning 3 out of 5 on a review.

Maybe this time will be different. Maybe I will work harder. I started this site on a whim, but it’s become important to me. With a post count totaling 300, it’s obvious I enjoy writing. Why not try to make it better? Why not spend more than 30 minutes on a post? I appreciate the counsel and will be taking this review to heart. In fact, I even dusted off my old Elements of Style handbook, which hasn’t been used since high school. Now I just have to open it.


AmyD said...

Yep, they fucking teared you apart, alright, and I think it's fucking bullshit! You're a great writer, Diane, which is what keeps me coming back. Step it up if you want to, but certainly don't think it's because your LOYAL READERS think you have to. Sheesh... :o)

utenzi said...

That's a very inspiring post, Diane. If I wasn't so lazy I'd follow your lead and work on my blog more too. (and lose some weight also)

Jamy said...

I read the review and I agree with one thing: I don't like your template either! It take a long time to load and it's a little too pink for my taste.

All writing can benefit from editing, we know that. You are a good writer and I'm glad the review recognized. They also recognized that you're a great story teller. You've collected a lot of great material in this here blog and, if so inclined, I'm sure you could make more of it.

Three stars from them is really good. Be proud!

Jamy said...

PS If you can press 210 lbs you are AWESOME and don't need to lose an ounce. You are all muscle!

kenju said...

well, Gee whiz, how'd you get luck enough to get chosen for THAT review? I think they're full of sh*t.

Siryn said...

I hate when people try to tell you what to do with your own blog. Write as the spirit moves you.

running42k said...

I think your writing is fine.

As far as being average. What is important to you? If it is having a loving husband and your health, then it appears to me are you are above average.

David said...

Thanks for stopping by to say hi! I have not blogged much lately. Guess after doing it for so long, just lost the interest for a bit. I do stop by often though, I will make sure to start leaving more comments! :)

mollymcmo said...

diane, speaking from experience (you know my recent tearing apart of my blog, which i really didn't give a crap about), don't take their advice to heart. i think you have a great template, the writing is great and most importantly the content is awesome!
i think when you have to work really hard at something its not a labour of love anymore, know what i mean? sure some of us are lucky to have "work" that we love...but why make a blog work?
unless you want to be a professional blogger, make it a job so to speak, go for it and take their "constructive" advice to heart.
otherwise keep doing what you're doing. why fix what ain't broken?
for me, while my blog isn't serious, its an outlet, a place to have fun for me. and thats the key word, its MY blog. i'll do what i want with it. if people don't like it, don't read it. simple as that.


mrsmogul said...

AS long as you;re happy in what you;re doing that all that matters. I usually am lazy and hire people to write for my blog (JUST KIDDING!! I WISH! LOL)

egan said...

Diane, I read their review your blog. I'm not sure about the writing style thing. I guess it all depends on what your aspirations are with a blog. I must agree with the template thing. Not so much the color, but the vertical lines makes it hard for my delicate eyes to read at times. Just don't switch to a black background with yellow or white text color. Keep up the good work.

Also, did they just review your blog without your consent? I'm not sure I like that so much, but I guess blogs are public.