This blog is just under a week old, which makes it the equivalent of a shaky-legged, newborn foal taking its first tentative steps in the world (and perhaps thinking: “I hope this amniotic fluid washes out of my coat.” I’m sure we’ve all thought that at some point in our lives). In fact, up until yesterday barely anyone had visited this blog or read a single word I’d written. Slightly demoralising? Yes. Disheartening? Of course.
However, late in the day yesterday I heard the distinctive chirp of a TweetDeck notification emanate from my laptop, so I went to check out who was saying what on Twitter. To my surprise (a wonderful, spirit-lifting surprise), a friend and former colleague at Maverick Television had given something of a shout to this blog and had crafted a 140-character nugget of joy, which I immediately saved to my favourites.
Now, I should point out that this isn’t a ‘tweets for cash’ scandal, and I hadn’t promised to buy him a beer (although, now I may have to). No, his comments on Twitter were a complete surprise.
But who is dancingwombat, I hear you ask? Well, his real name is Alex Hryniewicz and he’s my old line manager and a BAFTA award-winning New Media producer (for Embarrassing Bodies Online – go on, why not spend a few minutes finding out if that discharge is normal). For my writing to be well received by him is high praise indeed (and I mean that most sincerely). In fact, at one point yesterday I’m ashamed to say that I filled out a text box on my blog, which read:
“Funniest thing I have read in a long time. Bittersweet…but hilarious.”
Alex Hryniewicz, BAFTA Award-winning New Media producer.
It was written with tongue pushed firmly in cheek (although, I cannot deny that I have always wanted to produce something that I could attach a plaudit to!) However, I decided against it in the end in case people thought I was being serious. (It would only have been half serious!)
Still, my blog had already started to reap the benefits of the ‘Hryniewicz Effect’, and I watched with pant-soaked joy as the line on my blog stats graph (which had crawled along the floor for the past five days) suddenly shot up to around the thirty mark. Sure, I wasn’t quite setting the world alight, but I was as happy as a man who’d just watched visits to his blog hit the 30,000 mark.
It made me think that if Alex had played the voice in ‘Field of Dreams’, the famous line of “If you build it, he will come,” would have gone more like: “If you build it…and I like it and recommend you…then, perhaps, a few more people than you were originally anticipating, will come. Beyond that, I can’t make any promises.”
Works for me!
(UPDATE: If your eyes have wandered momentarily away from this blog post – perhaps in the direction of the right-hand column – you will likely have seen the very plaudit I originally claimed I wouldn’t display. What can I say? I’m weak. And just so you know, the Hryniewicz Effect doesn’t last for long. When my blog visitor numbers plummeted soon after the initial furore, I needed to feel good about myself again. Don’t judge me!)