I’d Like to Use a Lifeline

It should come as no surprise: I enjoy trivia shows.

As Calvin once said,

I have a command of thoroughly useless information.

Calvin and Hobbes Bill Waterson Useless Information

As of today – June 15, 2015 – my favorite trivia shows include


Every year I take the online test.

Every year I’m disappointed.

They always ask about pop culture and sports.

Two categories I care/know little to nothing about.

Who is Jay of Running In My Head?

500 Questions

Like Jeopardy!, I do really well on this at home.

However, I believe I’m smarter than most of their contestants.

Then again, that’s what most people probably think.

It’s always different when you play for real.

500 Questions Banner

Celebrity Name Game

Craig Ferguson is hilarious.

K watches it without getting mad at me.

It helps me with those pesky pop culture Jeopardy! questions.

 Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?

When Regis Philbin hosted, Millionaire challenged Jeopardy! for my top spot.

Namely, I liked the idea of being tested on my own knowledge.

Those Jeopardy! buzzers can be brutal.

Well, they were in Scholastic Bowl.

I assume it’s the same on national TV.

One hallmark of the original Millionaire was the lifeline.

Contestants were given three:

Millionaire Lifeline PiecesPhone a Friend – call someone who may or may not know the answer.

Ask the Audience – ask the audience what they think (so long as you don’t live in Russia).

50/50 – remove two incorrect answers.

I always hated when contestants used a lifeline. I viewed it as weakness. However, they were actually on the show. I haven’t. Maybe they know something I don’t. Since we’re talking about trivia shows, it obvious they do.

Now, I’d like to use a lifeline of my own.

Actually, two of them:

Phone a Friend & Ask the Audience.

Phone a Friend

I’m calling you, my readers, because the blog is struggling. At least, I think it’s struggling.

Don’t let the total number of followers fool you. I was cursed with being Freshly Pressed two months after my first blog post. I didn’t know what I was doing, and I lost followers.

I also received an extraordinarily large numbers of spam followers. I’ve spent the last year and a half trying to build it back up by taking the Blogging U courses, and I’ve gained a few regular readers.

Stopped at Train TracksSunday Snaphots is my most-viewed weekly feature.

If I’m interpreting my statistics correctly, each new blog post gets around 50 views in its first month. That’s not too bad. What worries me is that Running In My Head isn’t growing.

I might get one new follower a month.

Likes, shares, and comments are way, way down.

Sometimes they border on nonexistent.

I want to turn that around.

I want to engage my audience.

How do I engage with no comments?

I want to promote other blogs.

What if I have no new followers to promote?

I want to converse.

My conversation starters (apparently) fall flat.

What do you do to drive your blog?

Please let me know in the comments!

Ask the Audience

Like actors on the stage, sometimes I need a bit of prompting.

Feed me your favorite word, a vivid scene, an unlikely pairing. A piece of dialog, an object, a potent verb. I’ll write them on slips of paper and put them in my tea tin of ideas.*
Red Ty phoo Tea Tin

[*Thanks to Andrea of Butterfly Mind for her idea and words.]

Then, I’ll turn your ideas into something solid:

A Photograph

A Poem

A Piece of Flash Fiction

A Passionate Post

You can let me know in the comments,
or use this handy dandy form!

I’ve also linked this form to the home screen menus.

Feel free to drop in any thing at any time!


Don’t forget to follow me on:


Facebook – where I share news stories, articles from other blogs, and various and sundry miscellany that happens to catch my eye. It’s stuff you won’t see here! Well, mostly.


Instagram – where I show you my Life in Motion and share quotes and such. The widget only shows my last three photographs – don’t you want to see them all?


Twitter – where you can see my thoughts in 140 characters or less. Also, funny retweets.


8 thoughts on “I’d Like to Use a Lifeline

  1. You remind me a bit of my first high school history teacher. Trust me, it’s a good thing.

    I’m not social, but I want to grow my audience, too. I am finding that Community Pool is helping a lot. I’ll jot down my happy little post and hope it’s good enough. I sour through as many blogs as I can tolerate and give my two cents. I try to be nice (sorry, I’m not nice. but I try, and that has to count for something.) I find that it helps, more so as you keep at it.

    Accidental Happenings are a thing, too. As you indicated, you were somehow featured on Freshly Pressed which got you quite a few people following you. Personally, I had my Battle.net account hacked, contacted customer support, and asked if a cake based on one of their games sounded cool. They were into it and posted my blog link to the entire support team and suddenly my hits went through the roof for a couple weeks and I’ve been able to ride the wave. (Just as important, they restored my account, too. Look for your opportunity and seize it.

    I’ll try to help a little more for your Ask the Audience: LIVING COFFEE.
    I’m a coffee addict – Impress me.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love Jeopardy best, as well. I read the clue for Final Jeopardy in the New York Times every day and hunt for the response on the Internet. I just discovered 500 Questions but it disappeared after only a few episodes. I hope it returns

    But that is not what you want readers to respond about. My blog grows slowly. I am not on any Social Media sites. I write only when I have a feeling connection with my post – a story that matters to me. Poetry is a new found gift and seems to be my preferred mode. When I learned about Tags and started tagging my poetry I would get immediate responses within a few minutes of posting – mostly Likes from poets wanting me to check out their blogs. I found some I enjoy Following. When I write an occasional haiku “from my head” and get no response I Trash it. I get the message. In short I write for the joy of writing and am grateful for Follows if they happen. So far, so good. It amazes me my blog gets along on the strength of my writing alone.

    I like your blog because you write about books I like and tell stories about your work. Your pictures tell stories. You do not promote projects or causes yet your concern for things in the world that matter to me is appealing. I like your responses to my posts and am honored that you took time to get to know me and my writings. You are a real person in Blogland, like the few other blogs I Follow. To me less is more. This is probably not the sort of answer you are looking for. Good luck. ❤


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