Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Steer Clear of the Viral Post!

Frankly, I never thought it would happen. I've heard and seen it occurring with other blogs. I'm quite sure The Bloggess can attribute her success to it. Simple Dude has got to have had it happen.


The Viral Post!

Wildly popular, able to leap search engines in a single bound, the Viral Post is that kid in high school who pulled the fire alarm and never got caught. Later, that same kid brought beer to the prom but since he brought enough for the chaperones, nobody cared.

What am I talking about? Well, recently I wrote a little post about The Guest Who Never Leaves and

It.

Blew.

UP!

Off the chains readership, at least for a modest little blog like mine... At recent count, the views were at 4127 for a post that is barely a month old.


I'm sure that any blogger who has seen this will tell you... The worst part about writing one of these posts is writing another. I have to admit to complete confounding flumoxery over that post. I had written a post for Simple Dude as a guest while he vacationed and being the perfectionista overachiever that I am... well, I gave him two choices. He decided on my post about my becoming an amateur dentist leaving me with the post about guest posting.

So, the lingering after effect that should be satisfaction is curiosity. It shouldn't be that way. I should relax and enjoy it. But I can't. I want to see 300+ comments to go along with that. I didn't choose any images that might be "hot" or "compelling" or even dare I say it "interesting." I created a new buzz phrase, "Creativity Dysfunction" that I am sure all my fellow bloggers will be using. (Chachkis available in my store, but no Joanie's) But I really have no explanation for the views.

Those of you who read me regularly know that I am often a bit angsty about writing a good post, thinking I've written a good post, and then being validated by views and comments. So often, I get views and comments on stuff that I've written and don't think is the most sparkling gem in the bag.

So I've come up with my Top 5 Reasons That Blog Post Went Viral.



5. I envision my mom hitting the refresh button a few dozen times a day? But why on THAT post, Mom?


4. Was it my ingenuity to include the word (shhhhhh) Cialis? Or perhaps Viagra? Does this start a massive spam email campaign? I guess that means people were willing to click. Just sayin'.




3. Did I create a wormhole in the fabric of google whereby because I linked to that post from mine, and somehow it linked back...perhaps the spiders got confused and continued to scan causing my hits to climb.




2. The Charlie Sheen effect. I realize I included a picture of 'Wild Thing' Rick Vaughn from Major League (still one of my favorite movies of all time!) and some of those on the Tiger-Blood-Warlock-from-Mars-WINNING track towards epic life collapse felt compelled to click. Sadly, I'm not sure which is more tragic...his life or the lives of all the people who couldn't stop watching his circus.




And the TOP Reason that The Guest Who Never Leaves went viral...

1. Sinbad. Everybody loves Sinbad. Everybody knows that Sinbad lost in the finals of Star Search, after beating Dennis Miller in an earlier round. Sinbad also starred in Houseguest where he played a guy who impersonates another guy to become a Houseguest of Phil Hartman. It is clear that all of his fans have been hoping for a Sequel. Their angst upon realizing my little blog post was NOT the news they had been waiting for was the primary cause for little commenting. I should be happy at this point that they didn't leave hate mail. Memo to me, DON'T WRITE anything entitled "SECOND KID!"


So, have YOU ever written a wildly successful post? Give us a link and we'll try to come up with a top 5 for why it was so successful!

For those of you not in the know, here is how you create a link... which is also helpful for leaving your blog URL in comments. (oh, and the link will make it so you get even more hits).
<a href="http://your fabulous blog URL here">Either your fabulous blog URL or Title here</a>

You can now get a Creativity Dysfunction mug here:

Creativity Dysfunction mug zazzle_mug
Creativity Dysfunction mug by Itsmynd
View other Writers Mugs



Once again, I am adding my witlessness to the finer folks over at YeahWrite.me and by clicking on this link, you will be taken to a mystical land of story tellers that are some of the best you'll read. Come Thursday, you should click again, vote for 7 of your favorites, of which I hope I am one.

 

 

 

Hey. I'm also guest posting over at Tsarita Says today with The Services I Offer catch me there.

 

 

Jo-Anne M. won the giveaway for the Bloggess kindle book on Criss Cross'll Make Ya Jump Jump. Thanks to everyone who played.

 

 

 

93 comments:

  1. Well, I did not steer clear of your viral post. I went and read it, commented and came back here. I did write a wildly successful post, which garnered over 100 comments on my blog (it was about blogging, people LOVE that stuff) AND BlogHer syndicated it, and it had nearly 10,000 reads/ views. 

    I've not had any success replicating that, damnit (and I won't be tacky and leave a link here, hehe).

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  2. Oh, you should definitely link it....

    I've written a few more "technical" posts, but that is always a bit of a crap shoot. I get new readers, but they aren't my abnormal type of reader. And my Abbies are sometimes confused...

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  3. AmericasnexttopmommyApril 17, 2012 at 7:41 AM

    I once wrote a random blog about a squeaky bra and it's still viewed tons of times a day (the blog is now years old). Clearly there is a worldwide social issue regarding bras!

    It's really easy as writers to want to write good stuff consistently so that our readers are happy and keep coming back but I find that for me that is the surest way to kill my writing buzz because then it because less fun and more demanding and stressful.

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  4. I think is like that whole "fifteen minutes of fame" thing.  Then you go back to normal and it's like.......okay......now what?  Me, I like comments.  But I wouldn't say no to a viral post, either. (Although I think that thing about your mom hitting refresh might be hitting the nail on the head!)

    www.thenotsospecialmother.com

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  5. Yeah, my Mom likes me. Probably not enough to mash refresh 4000 times (since I think she would have to clear her cache to get it to count)

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  6. Sex sells and bras are sexy. I don't doubt it went a little crazy. a year or more later, that is REAL crazy!

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  7. ... I might have fallen asleep on my keyboard... 

    I have been getting some freaky numbers from Russia over the last couple of days.

    Maybe the Internet is fighting back? Like mother nature, or it has gain consciousness! And it has my bank details!

    oh no... And it knows what sites I've been going to...

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  8. Oh, man.  I'd love for one of my posts to go viral.  I'll have to take lessons for you all.

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  9. I had a post go viral.  Well, not viral EXACTLY, but thousands and thousands of hits on one post.  It was exciting.  Except that 99.9% of those people never came back to my blog ever again!  Ha!  It was a blip on the radar that didn't have any long-term effects...I've decided that I'm a big fan of the "slow and steady" over the viral.

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  10. Congrats!  It's always fun to watch a spike in readership, and to guess the reasoning.

    One of my favorite posts that went semi-viral was one on Morphsuits and the giant bulge within...  I think people are just pervy.

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  11. This one got quite a few looky loos, and I just wrote it off the cuff. http://mamamash.com/2011/08/04/the-five-nap-commandments/ But you're right, the pressure to recreate that perfect storm can be annoying. 

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  12. As I am very new to blogging I have most definitely not had a post go viral. I look forward to the day. As to yours the mention of balls and Cialis, and the spiders had a heydey. Also your writing, which is good, so congrats, deserved!

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  13. Haha.  Sinbad!  That's gotta be it.  I often wonder how I'd feel if something of mine went viral - I'd be worried my next post (or next 20) would be horrible.  I owe all of my successful posts to Yeah Write.  Simple as that.  Congrats on having one go so big!

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  14. I've been reading all your blogs for the past few months and if I'm going to be honest, I've enjoyed every one of them. So I have no idea why that particular one got so many hits. Maybe its because you were a guest? lol IDK just taking a stab at it. Of course the Cialis comment probably sent it over the edge, hehe 

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  15. That was a great blog post, Scott...not surprised for it's success. I have had one viral post...http://susanszoldsays.blogspot.com/2011/11/zooey-deschanel-effect.html. It's about Zooey Deschanel of all people.

    You have great ideas about blogging, by the way. Congrats and keep writing!

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  16. I am glad you've chosen Sinbad as your top reason. I cried when he lost on Star Search some 30 years ago(am I getting old or what?). I've not written a viral post yet, but who knows, it could happen any day now. Thanks also for the explanation on linking. I'll save it for the blogger comments that I can't preview before I submit them.

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  17. I haven't had anything go viral, but I have certainly seen more viewership in posts that have any words such as "Sex" or "Porn."

    Just sayin, you might wanna include some of those words in your titles.

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  18. I've had one go viral, I attributed it to StumbleUpon.  Nail on head about writing another one.  Still hasn't happened!

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  19. I didn't get a huge viral hit, but a lot of traffic real fast. I wrote a humorous piece about the UARS satellite falling out of the sky. I posted it the night it was supposed to happen right before I went to bed. I tagged it on StumbleUpon and it got over 400 hits within the next 20 minutes. Immediately becoming the 2nd most viewed post.

    I think the timing of the subject matter was the reason. It was nuts.

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  20. Congrats on going Viral! I am still convinced that this sounds like getting a debilitating disease, but I so desperately want to say one day, "I went viral." See? I just pictured myself in a white hospital gown and people backing away when I say it. Anyway, anything Sinbad touches turns to gold. Anything.

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  21. I was just wondering if your stats show you what search terms were entered to get there and if you had noticed any common terms that might be bringing people there. Sometimes the weirdest search terms steer people to my blog and I don't always get it.  Congrats on going viral!

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  22. I read this and became you're 50th member, great post and congrats on going Viral!

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  23. Oh gosh no, I wish I could understand that also, maybe some day I will. I still just get excited getting ONE comment let alone -tons-

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  24. The weirdest and most half-assed posts, in my experience, often go inexplicably viral. Take this silly post I wrote about sunglasses. It's gotten over a thousand hits, but I have no idea why. 

    I think it might be the awesome image of Left Eye from TLC rocking the condom glasses: 
    http://thetsaritsasez.com/2011/05/put-your-stunna-shades-on.html

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  25. So the Russian Internet is charging your bank cards to watch porn?

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  26. It's almost disturbing

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  27. I can certainly agree.

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  28. Hahaha, you gotta post that link.

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  29. Hey thanks! You saw through my elaborate search for attention. Lol.

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  30. Thanks!

    I knew it was Sinbad!

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  31. Thanks Sheila, you still have the record for most blogs read and commented on in one day.

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  32. Yeah, I grew up on Star Search. It's amazing all the people who lost and now are big.

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  33. Always a good idea to perfect a post and alienate some friends...

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  34. It's kinda consuming, both desiring to write another but also understanding...

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  35. Gotta see that link, Brett. I think I actually read that one, days later...I'm one to worry...not panic. :)

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  36. One of my first posts, I talked about going viral, just not in church.

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  37. Yeah, I tried to find a pattern, but while I found other posts that would led to other posts during the time. I wish I saw the pattern..

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  38. You're the one?!

    I had a gift basket of stale fruit, but that was two weeks ago. Lol.

    Thanks for following the Ramblings!

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  39. Like I said, I had about 12 comments for those 4000+ hits. Unfathonable.

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  40. I had a couple of posts that were able to generate more hits than usual.  One of my better ones was when Herman Cain introduced his 9-9-9 tax plan.  However, without a doubt, the post that generated the most traffic was one that was one I didn't give much thought to.  I had received an email from my brother in law that stated The Real Reason Rio Beat Chicago for the Olympics.  Somehow, somebody from golfvacations.com saw the post and put it on their website and in an email newsletter.  I received over 1000 visits the first day when I had been averaging about 100 visits per day.  If you look at the post, I don't think you will have much problem figuring out why it generated so many visitors.

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  41. Haha interesting! Hmmm...I don't think I've had a post "go viral" before, though I guess some are a bit more popular than others.. 

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  42. Yeah, I like a slow consistent growth. The viral post was stunning.

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  43. I can imagine. It was the beautiful birds, right?

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  44. Great post. Very interesting thoughts. Congrats! It is pressure filled, though, writing the next "great post", but it looks like you are doing a great job at it. Keep it up!

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  45. Awesome! I have left a comment with my thoughts.

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  46. I commented (again) and am not sure if I was more brilliant and insightful the first time or this one...

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  47. Isn't it weird? I don't ever get why some posts get tons of views and comments and some posts...well, nothing. If you ever unlock the mysteries of the interwebz, be sure to enlighten us, because I'm clueless.

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  48. I loved it. I commented. It was largely snark free.. I may re-read it. And it is forever immortalized in link on my blog....muhaha endless clicking!

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  49. Winning the viral post mega-millions doesn't leave me any smarter, I just have a nicer trailer...

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  50. Tara_pohlkottepressApril 17, 2012 at 9:37 PM

    this is very interesting! I'm the girl in the back of the class doodling in her notebook, no viral hits here, but a pocket full of thoughts :) Congrats to you though, and all the best coming up with a second one!

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  51. I will take your challenge.  Not as awesome as yours with only a 2400+ hits, it is still by far my most popular post.  It's about where the runcible spoon goes when setting a table:
    http://fearlessfibrowarrior.blogspot.com/2012/01/proper-table-setting-and-other-useless.html

    Help me, Obi-wan.  You're my only hope.

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  52. Did you get any more subscriptions out of it?

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  53. My most famous (exaggeration) post is "I'm a Banana." And by famous I mean that more people read it than the 20 people that normally read my posts (before I started doing yeahwrite). The irony is that I'm not a banana, which is probably why it was so popular. Everyone loves irony, almost as much as kittens who squeeze into small spaces.

    I'm a Banana.

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  54. I wrote about the accident in China which killed a little toddler. http://jamieywrites.blogspot.com/2011/10/dedication-to-little-yue-yue-hit-and.html
    I think it was such a hit because it was current news.

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  55. Commented again, FYI talk to me about Disqus and the mobile blogspot...

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  56. A handful. Like the 12 comments, a disproportionately small size.

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  57. Wow. I have to admit that I avoid bad news. I want to believe in humanity, but so much that we see flies in the face of humanity still being alive...

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  58. I'm not certain if there was supposed to be a link to it, but I will see if I can find it.

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  59. With full confidence, I predict, no declare, this post will go viral because of the term "confounding flumoxery." Plus mentioning Sinbad again didn't hurt, you sly fox. Ellen

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  60. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a little proud of those two words. :)

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  61. I love you writing.  The most hits I have had on a post are at about 120.  But considering a couple of months ago 6 was a big number, I am pretty happy.   http://cathysvoicenow.wordpress.com/2012/04/03/perplexing-potty-problems/

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  62. Great list!  I've had a couple of popular posts that got picked up by national Tweeters or (moreso) FBers.  But nothing that garnered over 4000 views!  Fun!  It can be a let-down afterwards though, right?  I don't look at the stats anymore to avoid the roller-coaster ride.  :)

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  63. Thanks Cathy. I do love to write, but I would be lying if comments and page views didn't give me a thrill. Sometimes I wish I could care less.

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  64. Yeah, I took my overall page counter off my page because it isn't very indicative. At this point with the limited comments, I assume that it is an anomaly. As an IT guy, I want to know. The roller coaster is one of the most difficult things to avoid. I guess that indicates I write more for my audience than myself. Interesting.

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  65. I once had a post 'Digg'ed, and got a lot of hits from it. Sadly, I don't really know what Digg is, so I'm unsure how to replicate the success. 

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  66. there are so many services from Technorati, to StumbleUpon, to Digg, to Reddit that people can tag your post which then allows it to be seen by other people.

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  67. I've had a couple memes that I made 'go viral' but I found that the traffic generated by those doesn't necessarily translate to a dedicated fan base. Oh well, it's fun while it lasts, right?

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  68. Well, I'm back on the 18th and you now have 70 comments which is a lot more than usual. And thanks for noticing how much time I spend reading other peoples lives, lol.

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  69. Congrats! And good luck coming up with the next one. I guess defining "viral" is a bit relative. My most viral post (which really isn't viral at all) is a post on How Not to talk to Lesbian Moms that has a few thousand hits. It seems to get picked up in search engines a lot more frequently than my other posts. 

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  70. I haven't had a truly viral post, but here's my most popular.
    10 Things Your Therapist Wants You To Know My guess it was popular because everyone needs therapy! ;)

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  71. Congrats on your viralness. Is that a word? It should be. It amazes me which posts end up being the most popular on my blog. Sometimes I just shake my head and think "really?" Huh.

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  72. Well you went viral how strange should I offer congratulations or condolences............lol Now I know I am a little strange but when I read this bit......."Does this start a massive spam email campaign?" I read it wrong instead of reading the word "spam" I read "sperm" and wondered what the hell you were sending massive sperm email..................lol

    Now am I the Jo-Anne M that won the book I hope so I hope there isn't any other Jo-Anne M's hanging around..............lol Lucky Me..............

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  73. Congratulations on your viral post! I guess that is a really good goal for a blogger, but I am also terrified of ever being that successful. Is that weird? 
    Thanks for sharing! 

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  74. Now I have to go and read it. Hopefully, it has some advice because I have a friend who likes to invite herself and not leave until the food runs out.

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  75. Oh by the way, I have noticed that it has been getting harder to find your response to the comments I leave. ;) Yeah that's right, I came back.

    You've been working hard on your readership, and it is paying off mate. Keep producing quality, and we will keep coming back.

    Congrats for hitting 50 followers, and here's to the next 50.

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  76. Fun, frustration...either way.

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  77. Is that a funny or serious post?

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  78. Thanks! The response should email you, but I get what you mean...

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  79. Oh, if it were only that kind of guest... But hat sounds funny.

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  80. Be afraid, be very afraid!

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  81. No, it's not weir.

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  82. Yes! Massive sperm whale campaign. Nobody's inbox is big enough.

    Yes, you won, I've been emailing you to find out your kindle email address...

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  83. I know, right? (and everyone should find my post about that phrase!)

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  84. It didn't become a link. I will try to find it today.

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  85. I have not. The most views I've ever gotten is on the current blog linked up to Yeah Write. So I'm fairly sure why I've gotten so many views on that one. However, if I ever go viral, you're at the top of my contact list. :)

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  86. Hopefully that is soon, but I may not know by then :)

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  87. It's got to be the Sinbad reference...or maybe it is the Sheen "Wild Thing". Though I have quite a funny picture in my head of a mom somewhere clicking refresh four thousand times! 
    Good for you!

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  88. Hmm, I don't get the email reply

    Maybe because its because I always sign in as "Guest" for Disqus

    ReplyDelete

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