10 Reasons why lists are bullshit

We all love a good listicle (a blog composed primarily of lists) and while they can be fun, fact of the matter is they are the worst. This isn’t because these lists are a sign of the moral decline of independent thought, no, if you’re looking for that you can watch the news; the reason why these things usually suck is due to these 10 things.

1-They are lazy

Nothing says, “Shit, that deadline came up fast” like a listicle blog. As a writer, formulating thoughts into a cohesive little package known as an article takes time. Usually these are initially plotted out in note form and then morphed into a seamless thought. Now, if a writer doesn’t have to do the morphing but instead just has to input their notes into a blog, that is really easy. Just be sure to make a sly comment at the end of each point to keep your audience engaged, because really, this is just a glorified grocery list.

2-Usually they’re about a thing you already know

3-They use click-bait bullshit titles

4-They contain only opinion

5-They are inspired by pure evil

6-They are killing long form articles

7-10-Underwhelmed? Angry that the last few points are not what they seem to be?

Welcome to 95% of listicles on the Internet! They always start off strong but eventually peter out toward the end. By point 4 the writer can visibly be seen crying into a greasy taco bag as they drum up some kind of connection between the last few points.

Hell, I even made one, and even this blog is one! This is meta as hell! I am in your mind now!

More exclamation points!!!!

P.S.- If you don’t like list blogs, don’t read them. The fact I’ve seen multiples of this same kind of article online really chaffs my ass, because guess what? The writers having to write these things have a quota to meet. If they do not meet that quota, they are fired. Gone are the days in which a writer worked on maybe five or ten pieces a month. Newspaper style work is the name of the game now, and if you’re not producing, you better hit them bricks.

These things work because they cater to a specific time frame and medium in which they are being read. Online, a writer has, maybe, 15 seconds to catch your attention long enough to have you read the entire post. These have to be punchy, fast, and entertaining.

Oh, and they have to be original-ish. Copying ideas , now that part is bullshit, but really, they are a product of the audience who is reading them. The reader, you, controls what content is king. Fact of the matter is if you wanted puppet shows in the street to give you the information you wanted, all the socks in all the stores would be gone, drawn on, and terrible voices made behind the cardboard stages.

You want better? Then read better. Find better and post that on your social media. If you’re sick of seeing guilt trip bullshit filling up your feeds, firstly, just drop the people you are following/friends with, second, don’t re-post it. Stupid spreads like a spark in a match factory out here on the Internet.

Now buy my book.

On Making Content

You can accomplish content creation through a number of avenues and when they are explained to you the person saying it can and will come off sounding like a douche bag. This is a fact and one that cannot be avoided because explaining how to create content is a lot like explaining how to paint. Anyone can do it, but some people do it better than others, and if you try to break down their techniques, you are going to be seen as that know-it-all jerk.

Now, I am generalizing here, because it is the presentation of information that really matters.
There is but one rule to content creation and that is it must be genuine. If you create something and it lacks that human connection you can rest assured that your content will never be read or watched. If you try to act bigger than you really are people are going to notice. This is why I find it so fascinating when I read articles about this topic and the person writing it quotes a bunch of numbers to show how “successful” they are as a company.

News flash chief, if you were really successful you wouldn’t have to quote your popularity or backup your professionalism. You would simply approach the microphone and say, “I am Mr. Tibbers and I run the site Tibbersbemad.com.” or whatever it is you do. If you say, “I am Mr. Tibbers, owner of Tibbersbemad.com a site with over 4 million hits a day.” you’re a dick trying to compensate for something.

Half of the time these companies do the bad Mr. Tibbers intro in order to feel important, but if you just approach the mic and be confident then people will take note.

This sidetrack ties back to content creation because if you are not confident in your content it will show and people will notice. I am in the boat of if you’re going to do something you throw yourself at it and hold nothing back. If you pump the breaks when you are making anything you are limiting the potential awesome that may ensue. Plenty of these successful websites became successful because they were honest about something and that related to people and either made them laugh or cry.

Emotion is the core of anything you make.

Content isn’t merely blog posts, videos, podcasts, and what have you. It extends into anything we make because whatever comes into being from the mind of a human is content. If you want to be known or noticed make something and put it out there for everyone to see. Show your passion in what you make because it will register with others and that is how a picture posted on Twitter explodes on to hundreds of websites.

You are what you make, so go make something dammit!