When does a blog stop being yours?

In romance [well, in other genres also? I don’t know], sometimes authors strike such a chord with readers that the characters the author created seem to belong to the readers (aka fans). When an author does something bad to one of her characters, much weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth ensues. Well, you know, you write romance, you know that there needs to be a happily ever after (HEA) or at least a happily for now (HFN) ending. (We will parse the romance “formula” later.)

Well, I can see why there’d be some legitimate reason for distress here. The author created these worlds and people and they belong to her, true, but the public pays to read about them. Do they have an expectation to get the story they want/expect/hope for or not? Hell, I don’t know. I’m going to write my Imaginary Friends the way my Imaginary Friends tell me to. [Uhm, I’m independent. I can do that.] But I have to expect that some people are going to cry foul if I just completely make one of them [insert horribleness here].

But now over at one of my must-stops for blog cruising, Dear Author, apparently the blog has ceased belonging to the person who built it, maintains it, and pays for it–which is a far different matter from creating books that you then persuade the public to buy who then eats them up and feeds your bank account.

I’m watching this train wreck of a thread and wondering: Why, if people don’t like a thread, a blog, don’t they simply stop reading? This isn’t Usenet, people (darn it). It’s Jane’s blog. She can post what she wants to and expect reasonably that people will remember that fact–without having to confront people who feel betrayed that what she said in her own house didn’t exactly fulfill their reading expectations that day. The sense of entitlement running through the thread is kind of…interesting.

Yo, all you gotta do is not go there. Or not read. Or sumpin. When did Jane’s blog become yours?

3 thoughts on “When does a blog stop being yours?

  • October 7, 2008 at 2:12 pm


    Perhaps Jane has been too consistent and thus built expectations that she is a flat, rather than a rounded blogger/character.

    Even if my blog were to be that popular, this couldn’t happen to me because trying to imagine what wouldn’t fit in is impossible.

    But that’s also why my blog can never be hugely popular. All the big blogs feature a consistency that readers can rely on.

    It’s both the sugar and the poison in that Kool-Aid.

  • October 7, 2008 at 6:24 pm

    I understand what you’re saying and I can see how that might be the perception.

    On the other hand, I don’t see why the regular visitors of the blog think she should conform to a some standard she either didn’t mean to create or a standard that the readers of the blog have set FOR her.

    Indeed, it seems to me as if the commenters taking her to task for posting it think Dear Author is something that it isn’t.

  • October 7, 2008 at 9:26 pm


    Oh, I agree; but I think that tendency to want things to be the same is decidedly human and something we’ll see again and again.


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