I was searching for an interesting topic to write about. On Googling, I stumbled upon such overly saturated, repeated blogs, videos and content talking about the same stuff in tweaked active and passive voices. One or Two tips added or removed or innovated and voila, there was a whole new expert content that you’ll need. Ridiculous! Imagine if that’s what we did in the Renaissance. Defined how to create a viral art rather than an art that stands out, matters or speaks volumes of the idea. Da Vinci, Van Gogh, Picasso, all trying top 10 things to make their painting first in the line! Ah! you get the idea.
Well, the worse of it is, these “overly-saturated” tips are legit. They really work to get more traffic, reach more audiences or rank your content on the google page. How absurd it is! I really don’t wish to hate it, because I know to navigate it through SEO and Viral Topics: I know how it works. While it gives equal chance for anyone to use these ways and make it work for them. But somewhere in these overly confined and repeated tricks, the art is lost in many ways. When I worked with individuals across the industry, I realised how some simply create these soulless spreadsheets of content. Countless topics simply based on trends or creating the next new trend. Most of them laid on the years and years of a ‘tried and tested formula’ of topic curation. For example, the one like our today’s ridiculous blog topic. (I say that in a comical sense.) So, for the sake of it, here are the reasons why I have more hate than support for writing trends:
1. Art Should Not Be Attached To Rules – Ever!
When one defines rules before creation, it limits the creation itself. It can be done in any innovative spirit, yet it will miss out on the uniqueness. For example, the top 10 topics for a blog or how to create a viral blog! Ironically, the first top 10 results you will find under these searches will be of the same bullshit coated in different and fancier versions of wordplays. Some will find innovative ways to draw attention to the same rules of creating a blog that works/sells. Maybe, that’s why in some ways there is such a morbid word – ghost – attached to nameless writers.
2. Online Writing has Roughly Become Equal To Selling
The motive of creating art has changed so much. Especially for online spaces, it has majorly become to sell something. Commercial writing and writing should have had a balance on the online space. If you observe, commercial writing dominates the market. The motive of creating art just to create has been lost in some ways. Maybe, that’s how writers who could have been timeless artists of their art in ways they haven’t tried yet, have become the master players of actives, passives and content banks.
3. In The Long Run
All these countless work online, in the race of ranking on a search site will someday fall off on the dark spaces of page numbers no one looks at. And, most of them, will be forgotten. In the long run, we’ll create so many of these. While there is nothing ethically wrong with it because it must have served the desired purpose when created. But, in them, at least some would have been opportunities to set this system right. Maybe make it better. Maybe, some writers, who could have broken their rigid editorial structure and create a Renaissance of their own world.
4. The Abstract Struggles
While there are some, who are making use of this online writing space to create something valuable. But in many ways they struggle to make to the audience they need. We’re in the world where writing is 20% of the work and 80% is selling and marketing; is considered normal. In this the soul of the art itself, however you try, will reach it’s 20%. On the lines of what I said before, if Van Gogh painted Starry Night because he wanted to make it a “top 10 painting of all time”, there’s 80% chance we wouldn’t have known about it.
5. Your Art’s Control Is Not Entirely Yours
Write on what is trending right now, look for how many times the keywords have been searched, think about your target audience, here are what these top pages are writing on, etc. As an online writer of today, these are a few of many countless things you’ll hear, read or learn. While they are valid for every legitimate reason, many times, the magic a writer’s personality would have added to the art is lost in these well-stitched strategies.
I hope soon we change that and find ways, to just create. The online space can become a place where there is balance of artistic expressions and commercial writings. And it should come in ways where the artist doesn’t need to mould it’s art in the defined strategies to make it. Even Instagram in many ways is becoming a space where there are development of these subtle rules to make the ‘algorithm’ work for you. At this pace, we’ll lose track of when art was lost to a trend.