Am I having fun yet? I’ve spent the last few hours “monetizing” the heck out of my blog. It now looks like a gaudy Google Christmas tree. There is some humor value in tarting up my page, especially when a pro-Palin ad gets dropped on a screed about her gibbering bacterial culture of a life. But the irony is short-lived and then I’m back to being depressed. I shouldn’t worry, I know. To sell out, I’d first have to earn something. As Seth Godin writes:
Maybe you can’t make money doing what you love.
1. In order to monetize your work, you’ll probably corrupt it, taking out the magic in search of dollars
2. Attention doesn’t always equal significant cash flow.
I think it makes sense to make your art your art, to give yourself over to it without regard for commerce.
He’s right. I am focusing on what I think will make my site a “success” and draining the joy from writing it. On the other hand, I’ve subscribed to Mr. Godin’s blog to learn about marketing. If I agree with his philosophy, does that mean I should stop reading it? At least he won’t suggest a Crazy Eddie advertising campaign. (Remember him?)
I’ve discovered many useful tools: ScribeFire, for instance, which I downloaded to help me write posts more efficiently but ended up using to place ads. RankQuest is a service that has a CodeCleaner function that appeals to my anal retentiveness but also shows a reminder of my lowly Google Page Rank on its toolbar. I have Alexa‘s Sparky add-on and I pop over to SEOmoz regularly to check my page strength. For some reason it always compares me to Perez Hilton’s site, as if I could compete with him. (I like him better when he dresses like the villain in The Incredibles. Trying to look normal doesn’t suit him.)
I’d like to go off about the term “monetize” now, how it’s stupid newfangled jargon. I wish I hadn’t looked it up. Turns out it’s derived from the Latin moneta and dates back to 1879. Knowledge can be so disheartening. It kills a good rant in its infancy.