Most of us, at least those reading this post, are self-made bloggers. Meaning that our work is backed by our own sweat, tears, blood, and motivation. We are not corporate bloggers, we have no advisors or backers, and daily we decide on our own what to put out on the internet. It is a gamble and just because you are “self-made” or “self-published” doesn’t mean you have any less to lose. Recently I read some forum comments attacking Christina Grimmie, a contestant on The Voice, because she is a self-made Youtube.com artist. Suddenly her hard work, her countless hours of self-motivated labor were considered “cheap” in the eyes of ignorant critics who think she has an unfair advantage. Why are these critics ignorant? They, like so many others, do not understand the work that people like Christina put into their profession.
When do you get to call yourself a professional? Is there a dollar mark, hours spent doing something, or some other standard that is set before a person can consider their “passion or hobby” their profession? Just because I work 40 hours a week at a day job, does that mean I can never obtain the title of “professional writer” myself? Is the benchmark of such an occupation these days only publication of some sort? There are other factors people don’t consider that I do. Factors that people like Christina Grimme and all the other talented artists and writers I see and read each day know. We gamble with what we can lose and we can lose our audience any minute. That is a sad truth that those of us that love social media realize. Everyone is a hair breath away from going viral AND being forgotten.
The people bashing Christina on The Voice are morons because they don’t understand the courage it took for her to even go on the show in the first place. Before entering as a contestant she had over 2 million Youtube.com subscribers. That is a very good following on any platform, I can only dream of such numbers. She put that ALL on the line when she decided to go on TV and even if that “following” helped her voting numbers it still could have gone very badly for her had the judges said she “could not sing.” When you leave the comfort of your platform and more importantly the safety of your own channels and websites, you open yourself to criticism you may or may not have heard before. Published authors that go on to create a blog generally already have a “readership” and the feedback they receive is usually expected. It is a much different scenario for a person that began their profession by first gathering an interested audience, rather than putting something of “note” out first.
What is the price of fame and what is it worth? I suppose for every peak of accomplishment for one, that peak simply presents another level for a different person. Some of us want it all and we see an unconquered land in social media. We put all our chips on the table because each day we are playing till we bust. That is the struggle and gamble of a self-made artist, writer, singer, actor, or anyone that represents themselves solely. Consider this before you assume someone has leverage in anything. Often they are putting much more on the line than you are aware.