May 15, 2007

First Person Crabular

So Cranky Fitness is celebrating its One Month anniversary today. And guess what: Crabby is already thinking about messing around with the format.

(At this point, health and fitness enthusiasts who are not writers or bloggers may want to bail; Crabby is going all Meta in this post. More Health news soon, she promises).

Crabby is re-evaluating her consistent use of the Third Person in her posts. (A tradition already broken in the comments section). This formality was inspired, she thinks, by predecessors like Judith Martin ("Miss Manners") and more recently (though only on occasion), and Miss Snark ("Miss Snark"). Crabby is thinking, as an experiment, of dropping this convention for a bit just to see how it goes.

Watch out: brutal transition ahead.

Because now I'm wondering if third person might be a bit off-putting. What if I were to address you all more directly from now on?

Don't worry; I'd still be grumpy and old-fashioned and write in a cumbersome indirect fashion. I'd still employ lots of passive voice and other frowned-upon linguistic contrivances. Perhaps I'd use the editorial "we" sometimes, as though I had a staff of eager interns, even though you'd all see right through it. And maybe I could continue to use the third person sometimes, but sparingly, not incessantly.

I can't help wondering whether I might even retain a few more visitors if I sounded more like a normal blog. I'm guessing many newcomers must mutter "WTF?" when they arrive here looking for heart rate monitor information and discover they've somehow arrived in the 18th or 19th Century.

But I'm open to feedback. How about I try it for a while and see what you all think?


  1. Change if you must, Crabby. I've enjoyed the third person construct immensely, but I'll follow your claw marks wherever you go, blogwise.
    And congratulations on your one month anniversary. That's the Dark Chocolate Anniversary if memory serves. I'll make sure to have some in your honour.

  2. I wasn't put off at all with the 3rd person writing. Whatever you choose to do, your unique and fun voice will still be worth reading.

  3. Third person GOOD!
    First person BAD!
    Grog like third person.
    Second person is okay sometimes, but you don't think so.

  4. Anyway you go is fine as long as you keep on blogging!!:)

  5. Iie, iie!

    Third person is the mark of a superior mind.

    Unworthy Kenshin urges the esteemed Crabby-san to stick with what works.

  6. either way your blog is fun. i like the third person, its entertaining.

  7. Crabby, my sweet sweet crustacean, I'd like you however you want to talk. I must say I enjoyed your third person crab-talk. I don't believe it would put people off. But change and adapt as you want. I'm with you for the long haul.

    What sort of cake will you have for the one year anniversary?

    (I know, I know, I'm supposed to be working on the website. I only popped out for one minute! Sheesh!)>

  8. Crabby is truly going to have an indentity crisis if you all are going to be so nice to her. How will she muster up enough Crab to snap her claws when necessary? It's only one month and already she feels incredibly sentimental about all her new bloggy friends.

    Okay (abrupt switch again), so I'm really kind of torn about this first/third person thing. I like writing in third person most of the time, but it does get a bit limiting. Also I'm afraid it might appear sort of gimmicky and distancing over the long haul. And I don't want to seem too strange to casual visitors and scare them off prematurely before they figure out they need to come here to meet all the cool people I've got tucked away in the comment section.

    So if you guys will bear with me, I'll try the new way for a week or so and see. Thing is, those of you who comment tend to be the super-bright writer/blogger sorts who aren't thrown by weirdnesses such as third person. But if we all miss Crabby in Third and can't get used to her in first, I'll switch back and we can all pretend nothing out of the ordinary ever happened. Our secret.

    Damn, this is going to be the longest comment in blogger history. I'm not sure I can do justice to each of your kind & witty contributions. (I was off taking care of Family Related Health Issues today so I got a late start on blogging.) Plus, I'm eager to visit all your blogs and see what you've been up to.

    So I'll just summarize: You all totally crack me up, and meeting you all is why I've gotten so addicted to this blogging thing. And checking in the comments section tonight felt like I just got a one month anniversary present even sweeter than dark chocolate. (Though dark chocolate sounds like an excellent idea and I believe there's a bar of it in the cupboard that may not be long for this world).

    Oh yes, and I love that the anonymous visitors are starting to get rowdy!

  9. Sorry everyone, I prefer FIRST person.

    "Thing is, those of you who comment tend to be the super-bright writer/blogger sorts who aren't thrown by weirdnesses such as third person."

    That *other* sort would be me. not really thrown off, just easier on the eyes. does that make me retarded?
    oh well.

    However, (as previously stated), whatever you choose, I'll keep reading...and stop lurking :)

  10. Hi Katio,

    Oops! I so didn't mean to imply that lurkers were any less super-bright than people who comment. I love lurkers!

    I just meant that some casual visitors who google their way here in search of health info might be more tempted to stay if it sounded more normal.

    And making broad generalizations, as I'm prone to do, I thought they might be less patient with third person than those who hang out at blogs. But there's certainly nothing retarded about preferring one form over another!

    Thanks so much for stopping by and letting me know your thoughts. I'm still not sure what i'm going to do, but all this input is very helpful.

  11. Perhaps you could use a pen name or "alter-ego" to do your different voices.

    I enjoy your comments and will continue reading whatever you decide to do.

    I am astounded you are only one month in to this. I thought I was reading something that had been around for a while. Good work!

  12. Thanks so much Holly!

    I'm definitely going to have to figure something out before I drive everyone nuts with all the switching around.

    So Crabby McSlacker having her own alter ego. Hmm...

  13. I like your crabbiness and your (mc)slackery-ness and your writing from the 3rd-crabness. They are all refreshing. And cranky!

  14. I find your third-person appealing. If having a niche is good (as all the "experts' keep telling us it is) then that third person Crab voice is your point of difference.

    Holly's idea made alot of sense. Have your third person Crabby voice and another first person "real you" voice and use which ever feels appropriate for the subject.

    I am not meaning to imply that your third person Crabby voice is not your real voice. To me, you will always be Crabby and this other person who hangs out at your blog will be the imposter.

    Long live Crabby!

  15. Hi Anonymous!

    I should have an identity crisis more often, I'm getting all this really helpful feedback and enjoying reading everyone's suggestions. Thanks so much for your 2 cents--I'm actually taking all this into consideration.

    And Dawn--I hope for your sake you get back into your blog, but for all of us, it's quite lovely to get all these extra visits!

  16. I'm happy with however you decide to write Crabby! :) I do find the 3rd person appealing (and cute!), and I also don't mind the switch between the two in one post either. We all know it's our Crabby talking, regardless. ;)

    Congrats on your anniversary! :)

  17. Hi sera!

    There may be news on this not-quite-earthshaking question as soon as tomorrow. Stay tuned!

    And thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your thoughts.


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