“Please Clap” After Reading: The Struggle With Validation As A Writer/Blogger

Can I admit something stupid? Every time I publish a blog post, there’s a part of me that expects applause.

There are a total of 533 posts on this site. Do the math and that equals…533 deafening silences every time I clicked of the “Publish” button.

Alas! The pains of an actor turned writer! Oh whoa is me not being showered with validation every time I put something creative out into the world! 

No one ever says, “You looked beautiful up there tonight, writing that blog post.”

No one brings you flowers for writing an article that’s maybe not at a Meryl Streep level, but still pretty damn good.

No one claps after you pour your heart out on a page- not your character’s heart but your very own, vulnerable-as-fuck, blood-pumping organ.

Roll your eyes, call me a spoiled, attention-whore, actress cliché (get that out of your system) then hear me out.

Applause and performance go together like Sponge Bob and square pants. No matter how unimpressed you were by a performance, you still put your hands together at the end of it. Right? It’s a cultural norm.

I’ve been in several horrible off-off Broadway plays. Believe me. You know what? People still clapped after them! No one ever said, “Fuck you for making me spend $20 on a ticket AND spend 2 whole hours watching that crap!” Honestly, there was one show that was so bad I wouldn’t blame them if they said that. But instead they smiled and said, “You were great!”

Performing arts = applause. Why is there no equivalent for visual or literary arts?

Do other writers and artists feel this? Hm. Or are non-performers thankful for this? Maybe I should try to be thankful for the silence. Think of it as a beautiful absence of bullshit and obligated responses. Silence doesn’t have to be deafening. It’s wide open to interpretation. Is it possible to think of silence as something else besides no one fucking cares?

Maybe I should shut the fuck up for once (not easy for me) and think. I’m a creative person, I can choose to imagine silence differently.

Hugs are silent. Bunnies are silent too! What else is silent? RAINBOWS.



Hello rainbow bright side (pun intended) of silence! It is infinitely better than a stream of rage, those hateful comments so prolific on the internet. Silence = no hate!

Before I start feeling like Jeb Bush (PLEASE CLAP HELP), does anyone else understand what I’m talking about? How do you bloggers and writers deal with the silence? Lack of applause or obvious encouragement? Does it not bother you?

I want an equivalent to applause when I write. I need to get over that- it’s destructive. Sometimes I think of social media as that equivalent, but that’s also a terrible idea. It’s too easy to fall into the mind fuck: “No one ‘Liked’ my blog post. Cool. None of my friends support me.”

Any advice? Or just rainbow bunny hugs…

About New York Cliche

NYC lifestyle blog by Mary Lane. Events, adventures, epic mistakes, dating, life, humor. A 20-something trying to make it (and make out) in the city of dreams.

9 thoughts on ““Please Clap” After Reading: The Struggle With Validation As A Writer/Blogger

  1. I totally get the validation thing: I MADE THIS ISN’T IT GREAT?! It’s one of those things that I try to check in myself, but it’s always waiting when I bake or act or sing or dance around in my apartment. Rainbow bunny hugs might be a good thing to develop. You could sell so many self-help books on that topic!!! Does being rich count as applause? 😉

  2. I thought I was alone in this! When I write something and post it first I get this huge feeling of accomplishment then…ennui. Where are the clicks, where is the applause, where is the prayer hands emoji! Arghhhhhhh. Still though, it’s better than getting hate comments, at least that’s what helps me put it in perspective.
    Demetrius recently posted…She seemed interested then flaked. What to do from here?My Profile

  3. I can relate to this feeling, but it’s more about wanting to invoke discussion than necessarily wanting applause (but I hate being the center of attention, so that is a personal thing :P) I don’t think there’s anything wrong with wanting applause, or a response of some sort from blogging.

    I think a lot of times there’s posts we all write that people go “huh, that’s cool”, but don’t have anything to say. And it would be disingenuous to like something when you don’t feel strongly about it. The big thing is to keep on keeping on with blogging. It’s a bit thankless sometimes, but if you’re enjoying it for your own, then it’s worth it, applause or not. 🙂
    Samantha recently posted…Journey to Silver: Part 1My Profile

  4. Hey Mary Lane,

    I can understand your need for recognition. As a human being we all crave acceptance for that which we do. You do deserve to be lauded for your efforts and I appreciate that you, like many people who write online, are not. I am guilty of not giving due recognition. I have been reading your blog for a while and have never commented. Please don’t stop posting, it fulfills a part of me that would be hard to replace without you. I suspect I’m inadvertently stating that I need you. 🙂 I refresh my email and am disappointed if you’re not present. However, more you and less events my dear. X

  5. Bravo darling! Haha, but yes, as a fellow blogger, I TOTALLY get this. Especially when I ask my mom what she thought of my latest blog post and she’s all, “oh, sorry honey, I haven’t checked in a few weeks.” Thankfully us bloggers have non friends and family that keep the sites (and our spirits) going!;-) xo, keep up the great work!

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