I published my first hub today. The first comment I got remarked that my hub was funny. It's not. I can see that maybe a scan of the first paragraph might lead a casual reader to think that the hub may be going in an amusing direction but how can the death of my wife and my subsequent decision to stop smoking be construed as amusing in any way...
I let the first one wash over me. I know that people have short attention spans nowadays. But then another came in. Obviously the commenter had not read my hub at all but simply based their input on the first inaccurate one.
I deleted it as spam. But how depressing? I don-t know what I was expecting from Hubpages, but not this lack of ... interest.
This first Hub of yours is an emotional release, I think?
It is beautifully written in many ways. Anyone who persists in reading beyond the first three paragraphs will understand what you are saying.
You opened yourself up to all kinds of reactions, because of your honesty. So, roll with the punches.
You've received excellent advice here in this forum post. If you want to continue to write on HP (your profile says you always wanted to write and now have the time, and your daughter says you need to look at this time as a new chapter in your life), roll with the punches and learn from what you hear from others.
Most of us got rocky starts here...for me, it was a place to write on topics I didn't have the chance to in my career life. For others it is to engage in a community. For others, still, it is a vehicle for an income. When first you tried to ride a bike, did you never fall?
You can make HP what you want it to be for you. Recognize that others won't always read your words the way you want them to, and then take those clues from them and work on making your words say exactly what you want them to say to the audience you intend.
Best wishes for your getting something of great value through your participation in HP.
I don't have as much time as I'd like to read or write hubs. But there are those I can't resist. Gonna read yours now.
Maybe you should work harder to convey the right message. You can use images, and carefully consider how you word the opening paragraph.
There is a special forum, Extreme Hub Makeover, where you can post links to your new hubs and get feedback.
Better get yourself an avatar, also.
I tried earlier to upload a picture but it didn't take. I'll try again later. I still feel the comments I have received are indicative of people not being bothered to read past the first few lines but I take your point. I have a lot to learn.
The unfortunate truth is that many hubbers will go around and post general comments without reading much of your hub. We all want exposure, followers... ect.
Website Examiner is right. The best way to avoid such 'off' comments would be to have that first paragraph convey your message, using pictures and such.
And hopefully you get some hubbers who actually care about the article and leave thoughtful comments.
BTW: Welcome to HubPages!
I have read your hub from beginning to end and I found it very moving.Please stick with it and try and ignore some of the comments. You will find a wonderful mix of hubbers, including those who post things you absolutely disagree with, those who post completely inappropriate, those who will make you laugh and others cry and those that will hurt you because they leave the wrong comment. If you're going to pursue your love of writing, the only advice I have to offer is that you will have to develop a tougher skin. I know you've been through the most dreadful time and things will continue to be difficult, but don't take some of the comments personally (even over the loss of Jill)
I have read hubs here for over a year. Some people just use this place to try and make money and draw attention to themselves by posting comments and so forth.
I just opened this account and I am surprised by some of what i am reading and seeing.
Welcome to hubpages Gabe.
I liked your hub.Give yourself time to get to understand how hubpages work,you have only been here 2 days.
Keep on hubbing and enjoy
your first poster is actually complimenting you. I think anyone familiar with him knows he is a great hubber, and wouldn't post anything insensitive purposefully. he also says your hub is helpful and resourceful. I think what he meant by funny is the way you use some of your words.
it's a great first hub and welcome to HP.
and yes, some do not really read the hubs, they just make a quick comment. they usually say, great job, or nice hub.
Hi Gabe, I read just the first few paragraphs of your hub and saw right away where you might get a confused reaction to it. It is all in the translation and your use of slang. Now if your reader doesn't take the time to look at you brief bio in the corner and see that you are from the UK they will miss the meaning of your words. I watch a lot of BBC programs and I still at times mistake what is being said. So while the slang word fag means a cigarette in the UK it has an entirely different connotation in the US. So when you make the statement I just can't stay off the fags people from the US will snicker because fag is slang for homosexual and a rather insulting slang term as well. So as other have said don't let little things like losing the meaning in translation stop you from writing. If you always write to please yourself you will never be disappointed. Just my two cents
That's a very interesting and observant comment, Thorn.
Yes, people don't read them. But some do. It's harder to find the ones that do. But they are out there and if you don't let the spammers or people just trying to get traffic get to you, you will begin to accrete real readers. Don't be discouraged. Besides, a poor read and a comment can be just as funny sometimes as it was nearly tragic on yours. I have gotten some comments on some of my satirical stuff that is so funny. People read the first part, think I'm being straight, and jump to the bottom and agree with me enthusiastically having missed the punchline totally. Silver linings, my good man, silver linings. Now I'm off to read this hub of yours.
I read it too and it's a very well written article, and sad too. I agree with Thorn that you might want to re-think the slang terms. Apart from fag, a butt of a cigarette has a quite different connotation in the US. Your target audience here on Hubpages are definitely from the US, because of Amazon.com as much as anything, although of course you will get readers from every corner of the globe.
Welcome to Hibpages
Not to be a contrarian, but I think the diction is fine. I'm American and I know exactly what he meant, not only by context but by frequency of use in media etc. If he changes those very common British-isms he'll be sacrificing the authenticity of the narrative voice. I say leave them; they are fine. They are better than fine: they are truth.
Thank you to everybody for taking the time to reply. I am sorry if I was a bit oversensitive. I never thought about the US/UK divide and I can see where my use of the slang I grew up with may have been misleading.
And for those who have taken a moment to reply on the hub itself, thank you. I look forward to getting to know everybody and sharing stories with you.
Gabe Abbott, you really should not be concerned about whether registered hubpages users read hubs. It is great when you get a bit of feedback, but the money is earnt by organic search engine traffic.
I get 15000 page views per day. I am sure that many of them don't stop around and read hubs, just like I am sure you click off pages sometimes too. But then many of them do. You win some, you lose some.
Keep hubbing and, most importantly, have fun doing it. I never expected my first hub to lead to my 343rd.
I'm American and understand your slang perfectly. I would leave it exactly as you want it to read. that's part of what makes hub writing fascinating as we are from all over the world. [fag is also referred to as cigarettes here.]
I'll be over soon to read your hub.
Hi gang, and more specifically, Mr. Abbott! I want to publically apologise, here and now, for any misconstrued comment I may have left.
This is not, and hopefully will not be seen, as any method to gain exposure or seek some sort of "justification" for my response. In affect, I thank rebekah for her kind remarks, and I will add in my own two cents:
I do speed read a lot of hubs--and admittedly, I'm around most often when I'm publishing hubs. I do a lot of attention seeking behavior like posting to the "recommend another hubs hub," but it's all in good fun and in the spirit of meeting new hubbers in the community.
I absorb things at a different pace, and perhaps more like someone with synethesia then your average reader.
That said, I wish you the best here and I truly am sorry. I know that you understand my remark as shallow, but I assure it was genuine all the same.
Keep up the good work, and welcome to the family!
Here's a useless gif. Hope it brings some sort of entertainment.
Obviously they have read your question and the replies in this forum and I can see that you already have a great thread going on here.
Anyway, as a relatively new hubber myself, I am sort of in the same boat as you. But knowing that people come in here for a variety of reasons, we cannot judge or prejudge anyone, especially not after a couple of comments or on our first hub.
I have gotten my fair share of comments who I believe were merely written because of some personal (even selfish or self-serving) reason.
My thing is that, in time the right people will read your hubs or at least one of your hubs. And whether they leave or not leave a comment should be immaterial or at least secondary to you helping out others, to you enjoying what you do and to you making some money while doing it--which for some is just icing on the cake.
Welcome to hubpages.
I can't say that I had the pleasure of reading your hub, but I might just do that after I'm done submitting this.
EDIT: I just did. Loved it!
This is a very interesting thread, and I see that everyone has been quite helpful, but I did want to add a quick note as well. Some readers may also find themselves in the same position as I do, where they are genuinely moved by a hub, but really don't know the best way to express it.
I read another hub today, where the writer was discussing the temptation of food and her struggles to maintain control. It was a thoughtful, insightful, and very well written piece. Yet, I couldn't find the right words to express how well it was written. I struggled with my comment, because I didn't want to say it was moving (though it was), or funny (because I understand exactly what she was saying), so I left a comment that said it was well written.
But the truth is that I did read the hub and was quite moved by it. I just didn't have the words to express how well she had done. I am sure that some of your readers will have a similar feeling as they try to leave the right comments.
There are all sorts of people in the internet. Most readers may be from the US, but you would be surprised that over time, your readers will be global. I am from Malaysia, and my readers are global too, in my other sites.
Be patient and keep on writing and have fun. The forum here will give you the moral encouragement.
I will never post a comment without first reading what I am commenting on and feel sad that others do this and get followers as a result...
If you cannot find any words to convey an emotion then say that, or try to give an insight to something similar you have gone through.
If you cannot think of a comment to the hub then comment on a comment lol
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