Declining an Award

Notes from the U.K. was nominated for a Very Inspiring Blog Award a while back, and it threw me into a quiet little crisis. I was flattered and even inspired, but also flummoxed. It was Angie K. from Not Another Tall Blog who nominated me, and in her acceptance post she admitted to taking two months to accept her own nomination and do all the things a nominee is supposed to do.

What’s a nominee supposed to do? Thank the person who nominated me and link to them: Angie, many thanks. List seven facts about myself. Display the award and nominate 15 other bloggers. Figure out how to display the award. Follow the person who nominated me. (I did that and it’s been a pleasure; she’s a good writer).

Irrelevant Photo: A hut circle near Rough Tor, part of a prehistoric settlement

Irrelevant Photo: A hut circle near Rough Tor, part of a prehistoric settlement

But I coasted for a while before I did anything public, figuring that if it took Angie two months, I could hide for a month or three and still be a moderately good citizen of the net. Or at least not an awful one. Because something made me put off doing those things, and it wasn’t just that I couldn’t figure out how to copy the award so I could display it, although that didn’t help.

At some point during this time, I read a blog that declared itself an award-free zone, and it rang one of those silent brain-bells that are preinstalled in all of us. Yes, I thought. I don’t have to do this, however flattered I am.

So I’m declaring Notes an award-free zone. Why? Partly because jumping through the hoops that come with breaks the focus of the blog. I write about the joys and absurdities of living, as an American, in the U.K. At least in theory I could write about the joys and absurdities of living in the Internet, and somebody probably should, but that somebody isn’t me. So flattered as I am, I’m going to pass.

But I will tell you two facts about myself: I’m as short as Angie K. is tall and I’m the kind of person who can say, in all sincerity, thank you but I have to pass on the honor.

And one final fact: Last week I bought a pair of jeans that didn’t need hemming. I can count on one stubby little hand the number of times that’s happened to me.

45 thoughts on “Declining an Award

  1. I’m totally with you on this, Ellen. Early, early in my blogging career I was nominated for the One Lovely Blog award and I did the requisite hoop-jumping quite sincerely. But as time wore on….and more “awards” came my way, I grew uneasy. Particularly in one case where I knew full well that the person who nominated me, who does follow me but has never once commented on my blog, was probably scrounging for the fifteenth person to nominate. I am not suggesting that was the case in your nomination, not at all. But for myself, “awards free” it is. The nicest award I can receive is a read and a comment on a post.

    Liked by 2 people

    • In all fairness, as a person who will fave and not comment, very often I just don’t know what to say…

      I haven’t been around long enough to know what I think about the
      question of awards…I will say that one thing I do know as a member of other sites is that there is popularity and quality.

      The two exist in the same package more often than not…but
      when they don’t, it’s obvious.

      Great post, great comment…

      Liked by 1 person

      • It’s so true, Robert, I remember many times not commenting on blogs for various reasons. I’m sure there are people that read blogs regularly and never comment….our phantom followers, right? As far as awards go, there are some great bloggers out there who enthusiastically accept them and others who do not. No right or wrong way to go about it, really. I’ve decided they’re not for me but still feel flattered when the message comes that I’ve been nominated. Take care and nice to “talk” to you here.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Thank you for such a kind and detailed reply. I will say this: I didn’t start using WordPress until late September though I’ve had the account for a year.

          Since I’ve started posting and interacting with other
          bloggers I’ve been deeply impressed with the degree
          of insight and respect that people bring to each other.

          Your comment was informative and respectful.

          I am glad that I chose to blog with WordPress.

          Be well and thank you…

          Rob Goldstein


          • I hate to sound like I’m doing commercial endorsements, but my experience with WordPress has been good as well. And the community’s been fantastic. Several times, when I couldn’t solve technical problems, I posted a question on the forum and other bloggers bailed me out.

            Liked by 2 people

  2. I stopped accepting the awards a long time ago for the same reasons. It’s too much work and effort, as nice as it is that someone remembered me. I have limited time to blog and spending it on an award just didn’t do it for me.

    It’s cold and rainy today. Fall is definitely on its way to Virginia.



  3. Hi Ellen – yup, we all wrestle with the award dilemma. Certainly an honor to be recognized, but there are other meaningful ways to do that. The award ‘circuit’ works some of the time for some of the bloggers. We’re all free to choose, and guilt should be the least of our worries :-)

    I’m here on Maggie’s recommendation (Zombies). She’s sends me to fabulous bloggers, and your Divirce Diet book is on my “get it; read it” list. Look forward to it!


    • Welcome! It’s great to have you here, and thanks for putting The Divorce Diet on your list. I just browsed your own blog and like it but can’t follow right now. If I try to follow one more blog, I’ll split at the seams.


      • LOL I know the feeling! Too busy reading; no time to write :-). I do ‘cull’ my follow list occasionally – especially if bloggers post multiple times a day or every day. That’s a bit much for me to have effective engagement.

        Take care!


    • Sammy D. So glad I read your comment on awards! I just nominated you for the One Lovely Award. I am an avid follower and enjoy your blog posts. And I understand your choice to not accept the award. I tend to agree, it ‘s an award circuit thing and a lot of work to accept. So, as I wrote in the blog post, please keep the thank you and gratitude anyway for following my blog! I’m a new blogger and now I’m 120 emails behind (today) in reading followers posts. For me, the award brought me more followers with creative, interesting blog sites. If this keeps up, I won’t have time to write comments back or more chapters for WIP! Phew! I might be done at one award!


      • :-) Thanks, Christine! I did Comment on your award post, and thanks, Ellen, for letting me know about Christine’s comment here. What I enjoy about finding a great blogger ( in this case Maggie) is I find other great bloggers … Ellen, then Angie, then Christine through the original blogger by way of interesting comments, shout-outs, etc. It’s like my own little Six Degrees of Connection.

        I try to be guilt-free about not doing the award work, and I make up for it by featuring bloggers at different times and in different ways in my posts. I truly appreciate each of you :-)


  4. I’m award-free too. I particularly disliked the chain-letter style of such awards where I’d to pass on awards to another series of bloggers and, since I like all of my fav bloggers, it seemed a cruel thing to have to choose between them, plus, of course, chain letter style anything stinks anyhow.

    Of course, very many of the awardees are fantastic bloggers in their own right, just like Angie.

    Now, onto more important things, where did you bag your jeans?

    Liked by 1 person

    • M & S. And it’s funny–not to say absurd–you should ask. They had an online survey, which I clicked on because, although I’m usually survey-free ans well as award-free, I wanted to say something about the fact that their men’s department only carries jeans from size 32 upwards, and I’d love to see if their size 30s fit me, because men’s jeans come with serious pockets, which The Gods of Fashion have decreed women don’t need but that I (godless wonder that I am) like. But it’s not just me, surely: What do boys do when they outgrow the kids’ department but haven’t gotten to size 32? Anyway, I filled out the survey because the woman at the cash register told me there’d be a place to leave comments, and that they really do listen to them. The survey went on forever and insisted that I have opinions on subjects I have no opinions on before I could move to the next question, so I finally just shut it down, but before I did it asked why, since I said, basically, “very nice” to many of their questions, I’d also said I wouldn’t be likely to recommend the store to my friends. “Because I don’t run around recommending stores to my friends,” I wrote.

      So please, do not take this as a recommendation or you’ll make a liar out of me. But I did get them at M & S.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Hi Ellen. I recently reworked the ownership of my site just to change the email address associated with it (thanks WP, really?) and lost a few people I follow. You were one of them, boo hiss. Glad I found you. That said, the awards thing is a pain on the back side. Not had one in a long time which is good but my method was to simply delete the nomination. Crude but effective. Stay warm!


    • I wondered what had happened to you. I’d gotten used to hearing from you and missed your comments. The technology of this stuff can be a nightmare, can’t it?

      So far, it’s still warm here. It’s a bit disturbing, having it stay warm this late in the year, but it’s nice.


  6. Oh! How on earth did I miss this?? Good job I read your blog regularly, as I don’t think I’ve seen a ping-back (or whatever it’s called) notification. Thanks for your nice words. Ellen, much appreciated. As for the award – sure enough. Being a new blogger, I guess I’d accept everything and anything in the hope it will bring me more traffic, but maybe one day I’ll stop bothering. :-) Your great fan and sincerely dedicated reader, AK


    • I may not have punched the right buttons or blown the right virtual whistles to set up a pingback. In fact, I don’t really understand how pingbacks work, or even (and this matters to a copy editor, even after she retires) whether they ought to be hyphenated. Sorry I didn’t think to notify you directly, and I’m glad you found the post. And that you feel that way about it.


    • Angie, I started following your blog recently, and love your creative writing. I wanted to put you on the nomination list for the One Lovely Blog Award, and glad I didn’t. Why? I haven’t followed you long enough to establish any kind of blogger relationship! And now I know your site is an Award-free Zone! I’m a new blogger and needed to learn these things. Thanks.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Whoops. Somehow this ended up on the wrong blog. I guess we created a lot of confusion, as well as interesting discussion, when we linked our posts on accents. I’ll forward it if my email consents to work this morning.

        Does anyone know how to fix problems with Yahoo, by the way? Or if I can’t fix them, does anyone live close enough to its headquarters to throw a rock for me?

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Ellen,
    I must say you have given me a different idea about these awards and I thank you. I have been nominated for two or three in the past month and have not accepted nor declined as yet. I believe you have given me the courage to write and decline mine as well. I’m well and truly flattered that someone would think so much of my writing, but I don’t know about awards per se. thanks!


  8. Hi Ellen,
    First of all, thank you for taking the time to read my post, and liking it. That’s the one on “Highlights of the Weekend, and a story…..”
    I totally understand what you say about awards and such. In fact when I first started blogging I received an award too, although I wasn’t quite sure why. Maybe the awarder was scrounging for another person so they could complete their list of awardees, who knows.

    Although you’re not a fan of awards, maybe you’ve notice my “Paintng With Words” Blog Event on my site. Like I said I totally get your point, and thoroughly understand it, but the reason I posted such an event is to rally the word press community in an event which will bring us together even more, I think this is a great way to share with each other, learn from each other, and participate with one another as a writier’s community. Award or not, it’s the participation that counts, as a writer, blogger or whatever one likes to label themselves as, and also, as a participant in the spirit of community.

    I think your writing is incredible. Your blog is lovely, and I hope to read more of your posts in the future. I’m now following you. :)
    Take care Ellen, and keep on writing!



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