It’s a good question: “If you knew that in five years one million people would read what you have written, what would you do with that opportunity?”
Traffic has slowed here lately, but in the last five years I have had, yes, upward of one million page views, so I am tempted to say something like “Look upon my works, ye Readers, and despair!”
But that’s too easy, and it’s not fair to Lynn, who put some serious thought into the things she’d like to say to her visitors.
So instead I’m going to harp on her second piece of advice, which goes like this:
Get to know history and “high culture” …. English is full of cultural references. If someone spoke to you of a Sisyphean task would you really understand what that means or would you just make an assumption about its meaning based on the context? A lot of things make so much more sense if you know where they came from.
Not to mention that it’s a lot easier to get through life if you don’t have to have things constantly explained to you. And if you’re anything like me, with a tendency to invoke cultural references a bit less ephemeral than the last installment of The Daily Show, it’s a lot easier to get through life if you don’t have to explain things constantly. (For an illustration of what I mean, see the first three comments to this bit of shoeblogging.) This is not, incidentally, intended as a knock on The Daily Show, which has a pretty high signal-to-noise ratio for a contemporary television series, but if Jon Stewart is over your head, I submit that you’re keeping your head too low.
And here’s another link to Lynn. Actually, it’s the same link, but if I can get you to click twice, her page views go up twice as fast. It’s the least I can do, considering that building traffic these days is like pushing a boulder uphill.