How Is Blogging Like Eating a Twinkie? (or…My Take on the PR Blackout Buzz)

Say you’ve never had a Twinkie in your whole entire life – maybe you had those parents who wouldn’t let you eat stuff like Big Macs or Lucky Charms or…well…Twinkies.  But you saw other kids eating them and thought to yourself, “I’d like to try that some day.”  And then your “some day” comes and you discover – WOW – you like the taste of Twinkies!  I think I’ll have another, please!  And then another, and another, until maybe you’re eating Twinkies all the time and you’ve lost the taste for something that used to tickle your palette.  A good friend would tell you:  STOP EATING THE TWINKIES!  Don’t stop eating altogether, for goodness sake, but chose something better for you, something that will help you feel good about yourself again, and so on.

I believe Trisha Haas from the uber-site MomDotis that good friend who is bringing a much-needed reality check, not to a Twinkie-addicted friend (obviously), but to mom bloggers who are feeling burned-out by their obligations to public relations reps and product reviews.

I don’t often write about the behind-the-scenes stuff of blogging, but I feel compelled to now – maybe because Trisha came right up to me in a hotel lobby and talked to me when I was feeling invisible.  Maybe because she’s like that with many, many bloggers – approaching them with an openness that offers help, guidance, and support.  True, there are those who have their issues with Trisha, and I don’t discredit their opinions or experiences.  But I have MY experiences with her, and you can’t discredit those, either.

Trisha recently issued a challenge to mom bloggers to participate in a one week PR Blackout– for one week, don’t run any giveaways, no reviews, she says “don’t even talk to PR.”  This in response to hearing from too many bloggers that they are feeling overwhelmed, overworked, and disconnected from the real reasons they started blogging in the first place.  Trisha encouraged:  “We want to see your blog naked, raw, and back to basics. Talk about your kids, your marriage, your college, your hopes, your dreams, your house and whatever you can come up with for one week.”

Yes, you could say that if bloggers are feeling overwhelmed, they brought it on themselves in the first place.  Just like no one shoves a Twinkie in your face, no one forces you to take that first product for review.  It’s easy to get beyond your own capacity for – well – anything that seems tempting enough.  Trisha is just saying STOP IT.  Take a break, remove all external influences from your blog, and just do it for yourself , for one short week.

What I cannot understand is the wave of near-hostility and fear that has swept through the blogosphere since Trisha issued her challenge.  It’s like some kind of panic has set in – intention has been taken out of context, unkind (and inaccurate!) assumptions have been made.  Trisha is not calling all mom bloggers sell-outs, and she’s not calling all PR reps piranhas.  She’s just responding to a situation like a good friend would and saying STOP EATING THE TWINKIES TAKE BACK YOUR BLOG.  Get to where you feel healthy about what you’re doing, about the choices you’re making.  Make it about YOU – just for a week at least!

I, for one, find her message compelling and her intentions without guile.  No one needs to take offense, no PR rep needs to fear.  A healthy dose of reality can do a world of good for all of us!

  • Perfect analogy and so right on about the whole thing!

  • Perfect analogy and so right on about the whole thing!

  • Thank you so much for the thoughtful and well written post. I feel the same way. I plan on participating in the event and have posted about it but there seems to be way too much controversery surrounding it and I’m not sure why.

    I’m simply excited to go on a Twinkie diet with a bunch of other mom bloggers for a week. Not to say I won’t go back to eating Twinkies or that I don’t love the Twinkies. I just want a little break from them is all without feeling guilt or being tempted. Doing the diet with other moms is just more fun.

    Thanks for trying to put things back into perspective.

  • Thank you so much for the thoughtful and well written post. I feel the same way. I plan on participating in the event and have posted about it but there seems to be way too much controversery surrounding it and I’m not sure why.

    I’m simply excited to go on a Twinkie diet with a bunch of other mom bloggers for a week. Not to say I won’t go back to eating Twinkies or that I don’t love the Twinkies. I just want a little break from them is all without feeling guilt or being tempted. Doing the diet with other moms is just more fun.

    Thanks for trying to put things back into perspective.

  • Perfectly written post! Thank you!

  • Perfectly written post! Thank you!

  • Excellent post. I love the Twinkie comparison. You are so right!!!

  • Excellent post. I love the Twinkie comparison. You are so right!!!

  • Very true! I agree 100%.

  • Very true! I agree 100%.

  • Very well said! Awesome post 🙂

  • Very well said! Awesome post 🙂

  • Wonderful analogy – Trisha is like a “Mom” to us – we need a good kick in the pants sometimes to tell us to “stay home” and stop going out so much, you need your sleep and rest before you get sick.

  • Wonderful analogy – Trisha is like a “Mom” to us – we need a good kick in the pants sometimes to tell us to “stay home” and stop going out so much, you need your sleep and rest before you get sick.

  • I loved your comparison to Twinkies. Who can’t understand it when you put it that way?! Awesome post!

  • I loved your comparison to Twinkies. Who can’t understand it when you put it that way?! Awesome post!