4 Comments

  1. Here’s how I see it. At least, how it seems to work for me. I’m not 100% myself on the internet, at least, I don’t show all the sides I show, say, my boyfriend or my best friend. But I think I’m being genuinely myself (in other words, I’m not being something I’m NOT), and a decently well rounded self too. I don’t show only the good or the bad sides, I show a little of both like one might with a friend, but not a best friend.

    People who might hire me almost always find my blog. They simply must not be offended by my liberal perspective, foul language, non-traditional views on love and relationships, and openness about certain topics like abuse and sexual orientation. But if they’re willing to look past those things, if not embrace them, they’ll also find someone honest, dedicated, hard working, genuine and community minded, all traits that are reflected in both my internet life and my work life.

    The way I see it, I’m not really pretending to be anything I’m not in any facet of my life–not with work, family, relationships, or the internet. I have a bit of a “take it or leave it, this is who I am” mentality about it all. So I can, with that mindset, more or less talk about what I want where I want without worrying about it fitting into a “brand.” Within reason, of course, and keeping in mind that I’m still trying to be a kind, conscientious and overall pleasant person. You, Tim, very well might sell more books if you wrote happier stories, but then again, some of our most celebrated writers were dark as fuck. Maybe you need a little more “take it or leave it” attitude in your life, because your work is good and YOU like it and it helps you. So fuck ’em, is what I have to say. Let them get happy stories from people who mean them.

    That said I do worry about this myself sometimes in that I feel a bit of pressure to cater to my funny side on the internet, just because that’s how I sell myself. I tend to stay off Twitter on my extra moody days. So there’s a bit of hiding there…but then I hide from MOST of the world on moody days so I suppose it still remains that I present myself on the internet the way I present myself to most of my friends.

    • AbsentElemental

      As much as I’d like to think companies will be accepting of their employees’ political, social, and other beliefs, regardless of what they are, I know very well that’s not always the case. I do think, however, your point is valid about the fact that perhaps I need to adopt more of a “take it or leave it” mentality. I know I’m wont to try to make people happy as often as I possibly can, regardless of the situation. While I do this because I feel that acting compassionately is critical to being a good person, I know I’ve found myself in situations where I’ve been criticized because standing my ground on a situation has gone against what someone wanted to hear. In the end, I relented, but I felt terrible after the fact. Especially since I knew I was in the right.

  2. Ah did you get into my head? Seriously. I’ve thought a lot about this topic. I mean I have no answers. But I’ve thought a lot about it.

    The idea about writing a happier story is interesting. My husband & I share an Audible account, and we were trying to figure out if he would like any of “my” books. But over 1/2 of them have something he doesn’t want to read about- child abuse, etc- and he made the comment about how dark it all is. But that’s usually the stuff I find most interesting.

    • AbsentElemental

      I’m the same way, both in my reading and my own writing. It’s almost cathartic in a way to read sad stories. Hank/John Green (not sure which one of them said it) was talking about the psychology behind this on the Dear Hank and John podcast recently. It’s apparently an actual scientific thing.

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