This is not a sponsored post. Unless someone fancies paying me for it. I’ll take doughnuts. Anyone? No? Bastards.
The great thing about Twitter is that it’s like you’re stood in a vast room and if you so choose, you can totally eavesdrop on loads of people all at the same time. The other night I was doing this and caught the tail end of a conversation between two or three well-known Twitter bods about PRs and blogging, and the complications that can evolve between the two entities. It was difficult to follow the thread as stuff was being said over multiple tweets, and my eyes were tired and I was distracted by some other people talking about knickers, but I think the gist was that it’s not always easy to maintain a decent working relationship, as a blogger, with a PR, unless you’ve worked in PR yourself and have an understanding of how it all works. There were conflicting sides in the discussion, which is always handy in a mass debate. It got me thinking – again, this is hardly a new subject – about writing sponsored posts, reviews, and such like, and how I feel about all that gubbins.
So this is my experience of writing a sponsored post; fellow bloggers might find it useful, or just hilarious, as I think it showcases my general incompetence when it comes to dealing with people with grown-up jobs trying to do grown-up tasks and having to deal with noobs like me who fark it all up for them.
Shortly before Christmas I had an email from a very lovely PR lady who had obviously been reading my blog for some time and who wanted me to write some posts for one of her clients. All I would have to do would be to include a link within a key word, stick to a relevant subject, not mention rival clients, and not state that the Prime Minister is a cunt or anything politically inflammatory like that. I was even allowed to swear, for fark’s sake, which is great as I love swearing.
I agreed to do it – it’s like they were THROWING MONEY AT ME – and promptly knocked up a piece, with the link as requested, and made it festively topical as well. ‘Fantastic!’ I was told, ‘now we just wait for the client’s approval.’ So we waited. And waited. And waited.
Some time later – way AFTER Christmas – I was politely told that the client had rejected the post as it wasn’t topical any more. NO SHIT, SHERLOCK. Could I please write another post, maybe with a less time-specific theme to it? ‘Sure,’ I replied through gritted teeth, still under the impression that I could write pretty much what I wanted, as long as I included the link, and didn’t mention that the Prime Minister is a first-class dicktip of the highest order, or anything like that.
My revised post was as you’d expect: a bit sweary, a bit lairy, and totally MoVo. That’s fine, yeah? It’s what the PR lady said I could do. Everyone happy, yeah?
I waited for client approval. A week or so later, I got a sheepish email from the PR lady, which basically said, ‘Erm, our client doesn’t approve, so we can’t let you publish it, I think it’s best to call it a day, OK, thanks, bye.’
And that’s that. I replied courteously, thanking the PR lady for her time and work. And decided from then on that I will not be doing any sponsored posts, reviews, or anything for anyone else, on my blog.
I don’t think it was PR lady’s fault. She did her job. She also read my blog, which is patently obvious from some of the emails I get, that not every PR person does. Maybe it was just a case of misunderstanding, on both sides. Or maybe I am not quite as willing to bend to the conditions of others as I thought – dunno. This is just MY experience, and I know it is so much better for most other bloggers.
Wow, I’ve harped on a bit. I’ll shut up now. What I want to know is – did I fark it all up tremendously? Or does this happen regularly? I have never worked in PR, so maybe my lack of experience within this arena counts against me?
Seriously, doughnuts. You can buy me with doughnuts. FYI.
I am sitting in front of a family: dad, mum, and young daughter. They are Welsh.
Dad: [as the bus passes a school] Look at that school. That’s posh that is.
Girl: What does posh mean?
Dad: It means STRICT.
Mum: Don’t tell her that, Daddy.
Girl: What does strict mean?
Mum: Schools get stricter and stricter as you get older. Right, Daddy?
Dad: Right you are.
Girl: [sings] Dashing through the snow, on a one horse open…
Mum: IT’S NOT CHRISTMAS, ABIGAIL.
Dad: Look at that. That man is wearing a HAT.
Time for me to get off the bus. I love Welsh people.
1 Christmas tree
5,000,000 pine needles on the floor
3 missing baubles, suspected consumed by baby
16 dirty nappies
0 nappy bags
34 carrots on the floor after Christmas lunch
0 parsnips eaten
1 turkey, decimated
52 turkey sandwiches wrapped in foil, to be eaten
17 boxes of savoury crackers for cheese
2 bottles of gin
20 dodgy green triangle chocolates left in the Quality Street tin
100 plastic ball pool balls
0 ball pools
78 plastic ball pool balls that won’t fit back in bag, of which
23 ball pool balls stuck under sofa
67 new noisy toys, of which
34 don’t have OFF switches
3ft sq of floor space left empty and toy-free
387 TV programmes watched, of which
2 were OK
89 times the Cbeebies panto was watched
1 relative successfully avoided
23 relatives unsuccessfully avoided
9000 shoppers successfully avoided during Boxing Day sales
1 new pair of boots needlessly bought cos they were IN THE SALE
0 amount of pounds left in back account
2 cheques sitting around till banks open again
£1.35 scraped together so we can buy some bread
0 bread in shops
20 bits of plastic cutlery from IKEA scattered on floor
50 bits of plastic fruit scattered on floor
2 pink glittery wellies scattered on floor
2 slightly fuzzy-round-the-edges parents slumped on sofa
1 manic baby
some of these amounts are approximations
A time for families. A time for reconciliation. A time to forgive. Spirit of goodwill and all that shite.
I love my family. I do. I have a large and various sprawl of brothers, a sister, a sister-in-law-to-be, a gorgeous pocket-sized niece, a step mum, a regular mum, a regular dad.
And a step dad.
I didn’t blog about what happened in the summer. Well, I did kind of. Let’s just say, Moo and I had to move to Hemel Hempstead – in a hurry, against my wishes – and we had no choice. It was not MY decision.
Now it’s Christmas, and I’ve successfully avoided all contact up until this point. That took tact and skill, and compromise. And certain unsaid understandings. But Christmas. FECKIN’ CHRISTMAS. I want to spend time with my family at Christmas. And if they are in the company of one I don’t want to spend time with, then… there has to be a truce, yeah?
I can hear y’all shouting ‘Oh just grow up, you pussy’ at me right now. Maybe there is an element of that. I am a grown up, last time I checked. But my inner toddler is stamping its foot and shrieking ‘I don’t waannnnnnnaaaaaaa…’ and sometimes I do what my inner toddler says. Much to Hub’s delight. Not.
So. This afternoon. I enter the lion’s den. I adopt an air of haughty froideur, play it cool, and at least manage civility. I do NOT want to collapse into gulping sobs and start flinging insults. That is not a truce. That is not Christmas.
How do y’all cope with family feuds at this festive funtime? *gets pen and pad to scribble notes*
I have NO ENERGY. It has been sapped from me by all the ghosts of Christmas. So all that remains for me to do is tell you to… *cough* look at the photo… *wheeze* think of a funny caption… *wracking heaves* post it in my comments box… and… and… have a… very… merry… Chris…t… m…. *faints*
Drag your mince-pie’d carcasses over to Mammasaurus for more festive photo fun.
And, uh, yeah. Merry Christmas. Whatever.
Is that subtle enough for you? I am quite particular about presents. There’s stuff I like to receive – diamond shoes, unicorns, inflatable penguins – and stuff I DON’T like to receive. And missus Pinkoddy has very kindly tagged me in her meme to tell y’all what I DON’T want. So you can TAKE NOTE and ACT ACCORDINGLY. Hint hint.
I have to tell you about myself. *waves* Hi! I am a SAHM to one Moo. I am 33 and have a kick-ass arse, brown hair and brown eyes, and I also have skin. Which is handy. Oh! I also have hands.
This is what I DON’T want for Christmas…
Candles. CANDLES. What a fecking LAZY present. Who ACTUALLY has candles, lit, in their house, ever? When I was a teen I went through a slight, er, flame-happy phase, and had candles, but that was to practise my pyrokinesis more than anything (I wasn’t very good at it, in case you’re wondering). But now, it’s like, hey, electricity is pretty cool, let’s use it! We don’t need FIRELIGHT to see stuff any more. And they’re not relaxing or soothing, due to the CONSTANT FIRE HAZARD. Don’t get me started on scented candles, the bastards. They smell of nowt but hot wax. HOT WAX. Basically, you just paid good money for HOT WAX. Therefore I come to the conclusion that if you buy me a candle as a present, you either don’t know me, or, you really really don’t like me.
OK – right – practical underwear, that is to say, big pants and tights and thermal vests – FINE. That is stuff I can wear, innit. I am talking about sexy-time underwear. Ne’er fear – Hub has learnt his lesson – he doesn’t need to be told. I am telling YOU. Y’know, just in case. DO NOT BUY ME SEXY-TIME UNDERWEAR. I won’t wear it. For sexy-time or else. So take all your red, scratchy, lacy, crotchless, spangled, strappy, fluffy, see-through, man-made fibred nonsense and fling it back into Ann Summers. That’s a big NO NO. I will not wear it, d’y'hear? But – BUT – if you insist – and I really don’t think you should – AT LEAST GET THE FECKING SIZE RIGHT.
Yeah. Yeah – daft, innit. Most women would love jewellery for Christmas. Not me. I am not most women. The only way you’d get to buy me jewellery is if I was standing in a jeweller’s and pointed at something and said, ‘Buy me that one.’ I would have the decency to act all surprised, natch: ‘Oh! How did you know? You have such good taste! Are you psychic? Either that or some sort of sorcerer! I love my unicorn horn ring studded with diamonds! Thank you!’ See? What a consummate actress I am.
Now if by this point you are feeling really quite sorry for Hub, you’d be right. I am hard work, high maintenance and a royal pain in the (kick-ass) arse.
But, if you’re thinking, ‘Yeah, I’d just get her a book token’ then… *high five*
What do YOU really not want for Christmas? If you get the burning urge (and it isn’t cystitis) then consider yo’self tagged.
Now, post all my presents to the following address…
DOUBLE TAGGED! I’ve been tag teamed by the stupendous duo of bloggers, the indomitable Dorkymum and the luscious Not Just A Mummy. Many thanks, ladies. If ANYTHING is going to help my rapidly shrinking festive spirit, it is making a list of things I want which I will never, ever, ever have a chance of obtaining. MARVELLOUS.
I jest! Of course! Let’s get this Christmas shizzle ON.
All I want for Christmas, that money can’t buy…
A Secret Underground Bunker
Yeah, OK, money could probably buy me one of these. But I don’t want just ANY OLD secret underground bunker. I want a massive one – HUGE – with different levels, a nifty transport system, air con and heating, enough storage rooms full of food to last me FIVE HUNDRED YEARS, a couple of cinemas, restaurants and lots of my favourite shops, a library, a replica of a castle, a hospital, a nature reserve, a stable for my unicorns and a beach. Now THAT is going to cost some MONEY. Fantasy money.
A Time Machine
Just so I can go back in time and punch a dinosaur in the face. Not a big one – just one of the small ones.
A Date With Mr Tumble
Because, let’s face it – he’s going to be JOLLY at this time of year, yeah? And some of that FESTIVE JOY is bound to rub off on me. If I, er, rub up against him. Innit.
All The Biscuits In The World, Ever
I want them delivered – in vats – to the tradesman’s entrance of my underground bunker.
Makka-Pakka and His Og-Pog
Yes, the ACTUAL Makka-Pakka. For my daughter. I would LOVE to see the look on her face when Makka-Pakka pushed his Og-Pog through the door. She would probably EXPLODE. Man, she would OWE ME big time.
Expensive, beautiful, dangerous – everything a woman wants from a shoe.
And last but by no means least…
Whatever My Friends And Family Want Most In The World, I Would Get For Them…
…(as long as it cost under a tenner)
Merry Fecking Christmas!
If you would like to do this post, by all means, go ahead. I won’t specifically tag anyone cos otherwise we all end up in some mass tagging-orgy. And not in a good way.
So. My favourite C****tmas song. I’ve not yet mentioned C****tmas on this here blog. Mostly cos I’m not a fan of the yuletide. For many reasons.
But ho ho ho and all that shite, it WILL be C****tmas soon and you CAN’T AVOID IT. I’ll be sucked in to all that festive cheer and goodwill to all men bollocks. AND IT’S STARTED ALREADY. My tennis partner and part-time stockbroker SAHDandProud has tagged me in a C****tmas meme. The bastard.
However, I heart him most verily, so I’ll participate. But I want someone to note: THIS IS UNDER DURESS.
Therefore I am willing to admit, on public forum, that my favourite C****tmas song is:
And TECHNICALLY it’s not a song, it’s a piece of classical music, which means I am well cultured, innit. Listen to it – is that not C****tmas?? There’s jingle bells and everything! Love it. Fab.
But in case old SAHDandProud gets all uppity cos I’ve not picked a SONG, this also sometimes stirs my heart of stone:
and makes me want to dance a jig, round a piano, holding a cup of mulled wine. Fantastic.
Now before I get all C****tmassy, I’ll feck off.
Consider yo’self TAGGED
Five Go Blogging and
Merry fecking C****tmas!