I write almost all of my hubs for therapeutic reasons. My last hub was meant as a "this could happen to you if" hub...and to get some of the anxiety I had built up inside of me out.
However, I added some graphic pictures of this very real situation. And now I'm getting grief from my husband's ex-wife because she can't be bothered reading the actual hub...she's just looking at the disturbing pictures (which were meant to be an eye opener.) It was then that I realized there are triple the amount of "Slideshow Views" as there are "Hub Views."
Why is that? This website is for writing and reading, is it not?
you deserve a reply to this post and need to know that women look at photos. I have observed women scrolling through sites and all they do is look at pictures of products. Google loves content so I have decided that google is a male not knowing that a majority of purchases are done by females. I have some cartoon characters on a page on my site and know that women were clicking on these two cartoon dogs on my pets pages.
You just learned that a picture is worth a thousand words so take advantage of the lesson and keep the copy short but inline with seo and the pictures interesting with links. You may want to connect with a friend to vent with online. Don't stop writing. it's a good release. I'd be happy to read your posts and discuss them with you.
Thank you hyper. I'm still bothered at the fact that (due to the serious nature of the hub) people were just skimming through pictures without reading what the pictures symbolized.
Wendi M, I went and looked to see if I could find the Hub you had in mind; and, of course, I did. Because I know the story is a serious one, I'm going to answer candidly about why I looked through the pictures but couldn't make myself stick around long enough to read the whole story. I'm not at all comfortable being this candid about someone's Hub (especially one about such a serious subject and someone's life), but I thought it may provide some honest discussion about a situation like the one with your Hub. Normally, I keep my opinions to myself when it comes to people's Hubs; but, as you say, the story is about a serious subject. I thought your thread, the subject, and the pictures were worth just being candid about. The reason I've decided to "just be honest" on your thread is that I agree that such a story is one that ought to be read - not passed by.
I'm a woman and - contrary to the misguided remark above about "women looking at pictures" - I'm more of a words kind of person than a picture person. In fact, I've always believed it's because I AM a woman that I take in information/process things through auditory, rather than visual means. (Reading is, in its own way, "auditory", at least for me; because we hear the words we read in our head before digesting them. I'm guessing "visual people" may get what they read differently; and I know that there are both auditory people and visual people among both sexes.
Anyway, I've always assumed that women may be more often likely to be auditory because of the Nature/babies thing. Separate subject, but the remark above irked the heck out of me. The only reason I'm bringing up my own approach is that it may lay a foundation for what I'm about to say about the pictures in your Hub.
I went to the Hub and saw the first in the vertical row of pictures. My first reaction was (even though I knew the title of the Hub), "This isn't a very nice picture. What's the story here?" The easiest and quickest way to "get a better reading" (I thought) was to go to the next picture, and the one after. (Maybe that's because the remark above about women isn't as incorrect as I thought it was. The point is, the first picture didn't tell enough (obviously) about the story/title, and it was easiest to skim the next ones to see if any of them said/showed more. I had every intention of reading the whole story.
Here's where I'm uncomfortable, but respectful, in my candid reply to your thread: By the time I'd gotten through the row of pictures, I was thinking, "Well, this is all yucky; but it's not really something I want to know about at this point." In fact, the pictures of "yucky" stuff were depressing to me, and they kind of made me think, "On second thought, I don't really feel like reading this if it's about these pictures." I started to try to read the story because I knew it, of course, had more to it than just the pictures; but the pictures had kind of taken away some of the energy I'd had to read when I first read the title.
In fact, between the title and the pictures, I felt as if I had a pretty good idea about what the story was about and didn't really need to read more. So basically, the pictures distracted me but also left me feeling as if I could pretty much fill in whatever else there was by knowing the title and seeing the pictures.
Like most people, I have a pretty good idea about how bad things can get in the life of someone who's addicted to alcohol or drugs. I started out being interested in reading the story because each person's "alcohol" story is an important one and one that can help shed some more light on the problem. In all honesty, what happened with me, when I'd already seen the word, "death", in the title (which I assumed already told a big part of the story) was that when I saw the first picture of (essentially) a dirty house, I went to the next to see if there was a picture of something that was "less 'least-of-anyone's-problems". The house "situation" was disturbing, but in the "scheme of the effects of alcohol", I kind of figured the dirty house was the least of the problems.
There was also a little part of me that thought, "Who took these pictures, and why did they take them? Did they love the person who made the mess, and why would they put something so "personal" (for lack of a better word) on the Internet? Don't they want to try to preserve some dignity for the person?" So basically the pictures "turned me off" when it came to wanting to read the Hub. (I'd only found it because of curiosity about what my own reaction would be. Now that I've had my own initial reaction, I'll go back and read the Hub without looking at the pictures later.)
Something I think writers need to be aware of is that their own reaction to something involving someone in their life can be a lot more powerful than it is to strangers who just happen upon a piece of writing. The emotional impact on the person who is directly involved with, and close to, the person in the story can be complex (and something well worth sharing in words). Respectfully, I don't think the pictures in question packed the punch with me, the reader, that the reality of the situation that was photographed must have had for the person who was there and personally involved.
All I saw was the word, "death", (powerful), the word, "alcohol" (gave me a pretty good idea of the story), and pictures that struck me as inanimate yucky stuff that didn't "match" the power of the title or even the apparent substance and weight of a Hub containing so many words, as well as having a "weighty" title.
People (readers) are all different, so one person's reaction/opinion is only one person's reaction/opinion. Maybe I'm the only one who had the reaction I did. My personal opinion is that the pictures needed either pictures of other things to balance them off, or else, maybe, to be reduced in number or else left out completely with words getting to the heart of being the person who saw the situation first-hand, and maybe being complemented by pictures that expressed the mood/emotions of the person seeing what was in those pictures in real life.
I think I know exactly what you hoped the pictures would convey (and I'm sure I have more than my share of pictures that don't do what I hoped they'd do when I added them, although none are so "nitty-gritty" and "real life" as those in your Hub).
Having said all that; as a person who is about as far from "visual" as anyone could be (as opposed to "auditory" or "verbal"), I usually tend to head straight for the words and ignore all but the most beautiful and striking pictures on a Hub. I filter everything else out. What happened with your Hub, though, was that the pictures were "bizarre" enough (again, for lack of a better word) to have caught my eye, Once they did it was "all over" (at least until I go back and read, now that I know the pictures are there and they won't have the same effect on me that they originally did).
I hope you take my comments here as intended to, maybe, offer discussion about one of the kinds of things that can go on with readers when any of us includes pictures with our writing. I know we can't please or grab all readers, but just even thinking about my own reaction to your images has made me realize just a little bit more about how some uses of photos can affect some readers.
Heading over to read your Hub now. Again, I hope you take my comments here as my own attempt to try to "objectively" analyze my own reaction to the pictures - not "criticize" the Hub, the story, or the pictures.
This is untrue.
@Wendi, if it would help, you could shut off the slideshow viewer and leave it at that. Many people are probably reaching your hub through some sort of image search and not actually searching for the article itself.
I've another idea for you also....edit the hub and take out the first couple of pictures that are on the hub from the slideshow viewer, this way, people who come to the hub would have to begin reading it before they would reach the option for clicking on the slideshow viewer.
In other words....edit the hub, click on settings, then click on edit slideshow viewer. Once you get the pop-up windows, then uncheck the top three photos, then go to the bottom and click on save changes.
This will take out the top three photos from the slideshow viewer and it will relocated the "clickable" link to access the slideshow viewer down to the fourth picture in the hub.
Other than that, I can only say that it's human nature to be drawn to images than it is for them to read the text available.
Wendi M, I just read the story, and about what you are going through now as a result of it. I found it well written and powerful, and I have to say that I still think the words (particularly the words you chosen to use in your writing) are far more powerful than the pictures on the Hub.
You're in the midst of the "horror story" right now, so stay strong and keep writing and don't worry about anyone (me, the ex-wife, or anyone else) has to say about the pictures.
When I first posted this forum, I was harboring a great deal of anger.
After having time to grieve, and speaking with people whose opinion I do value (such as his estranged daughter,) I am much more at ease with the reality of "A picture is worth a thousand words!"
Thank you so much, all of you, for your insight. You have no idea how helpful it is (for me) to get someone else's perspective.
Wendi, it's not possible to express how sincerely I hope getting through such an awful time can pass as quickly for you as is at all possible. What you, your husband, and family are just going through is one of those unimaginable things for people who haven't gone through something like that. Hopefully your family will pull together in getting all of you through this difficult thing.
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