How Three Drag Queens in a Bus Lead to Better Blogging

Priscilla, Queen of the Desert

Remember The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert? That was the 1994 Academy Award-winning film about three drag queens driving across the Australian outback in a large bus they’ve named Priscilla.

It’s amazing what you can learn about blogging from the way-out-there – and it’s amazing what it can do for your success online. So let’s see what we can learn about effective blogging from Priscilla.

Embrace Your Inner Boa

There’s something distinctive about the three main characters in Priscilla – they’re different from each other. They’re all drag queens, but they don’t look the same. It’s easy to tell them apart from the different clothes, makeup, names and personalities.

If you blog, you need to do that, too. No, not dress up in drag (though if you’d like to, there’s nothing wrong with that). I mean being different while standing with a group of similar peers.

You see, bloggers tend to look to other writers they admire and try to mimic that person. “Oh, if I could just be like so-and-so…” Blogging is a performance, but it isn’t the Rockettes line-up where everyone looks identical.

Find your own voice. Flaunt it like a bright pink feathered boa. Get naked, wrap your arms around it, and take it to bed.

Have Fun with Your Message

Strutting stage performers aside, Priscilla wasn’t all about hooting it up with a D-cup strapped on. It was a rather serious movie, exploring sensitive controversies and moral issues. Strip away the slinky dresses and false eyelashes and you find some deep messages.

The film doesn’t linger on the bad, though. Just a taste is enough. Instead of being dark or dramatic, Priscilla uses humor to deliver messages in full flamingo flamboyance.

That’s a lesson bloggers can take home. You don’t have to be serious to get your message across. Lighten up a little, sheesh. Using humor is a great way to entertain your audience while writing about a serious topic or a controversy.

Have fun – even when you’re being serious. It keeps people interested, relaxed and listening.

Finishing the Journey

Beautiful Priscilla, Queen of the desert broke down in her journey across the outback, leaving the guys (or is that gals?) stranded. That could’ve been the end of the trip. Disaster! Failure! No show!

It’s especially easy to give up blogging when we get discouraged, too.

But the queens didn’t give up. The characters had faced countless hard times even before their desert journey even began. The breakdown was just a bump in the road, really. Cave in the face of setbacks and adversity? Hell no.

They made it to the big city and danced the night away.

That’s an important lesson for bloggers: Perseverance pays off.

So many bloggers get discouraged at the first sign of a bump in the road, but blogging isn’t about overnight successes. You have to be willing to persevere for the time it takes – and that time shouldn’t be measured in short months.

Priscilla’s drag queens knew they could do it. They strutted their stuff. No holds barred.

When you blog, believe in yourself too. Hang onto your determination. Stick with it. Find your voice and get out there on the stage. Shake your groove and then be proud of what you’ve done.

And that’s the last lesson Priscilla teaches us. The Australians were so proud of the movie that became an icon of their country that they drove Priscilla around in the closing ceremonies of the Sydney 2000 Olympics while the whole world watched.

Go on. The world’s watching. Get out there and strut your stuff.

About the Author: For more from James Chartrand, visit his blog at Men with Pens. Better yet, don’t wander over – grab the Men with Pens RSS feed right here.

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Comments

  1. James, it makes me immeasurably happy that you wrote this. I raise my pink feather boa in your honor.

  2. James,
    I did not see the movie, but i really liked how you compared blogging if what you wrote…I also liked your blog and subscribed to it.
    Michael

  3. Just to get the premise of the story correct, the three characters were all gay or transsexual MEN — none of the three were women.

    Love that movie and love how you tied the “rules” of blogging to it.

    First rule of any writing: be sure to get the facts!

  4. I guess you can’t trust Wikipedia after all… but I guess there is room for debate about gender when dealing with transsexuals. :-)

  5. @ Jules – I’ll speak to my creative editor about that :)

  6. @ Brian – Not only that, those queens switch things around when you least expect it. More fun that way.

  7. I have not seen the movie but I enjoy the metaphor used to compare writing for fun with dragqueens. Nice post, bottom line if you aren’t writing for fun and to be different, you need to.

    Craig
    http://www.introin.com

  8. I haven’t seen the movie either, but I did enjoy the metaphor. Be yourself. Pure and simple, throw yourself into your life/blog and just be yourself.

  9. Thanks for reminding me to embrace my inner boa.

  10. The question of whether or not a MTF transsexual is a woman or a man is political, not grammatical. I’d go with woman as well.

  11. Nice reminder to be yourself!

  12. Sonia, does grammar not have a relationship with reality?

    Are you a marketing nominalist? :)

  13. Great movie, and great post!

  14. haha, it is amazing where you can get inspiration and messages for blogging. Those are some good tips and lessons I never originally got out of the movie. Thanks for the lessons!

  15. I brilliant Aussie movie that showed a little bit extra about Australia to the world.

    And a great post about sharing that little bit extra with your visitors and readers.

    I am endevouring to become more personal by finding my voice, and then sharing more about ‘me’ and ‘my view’ and experience in the world.

    Fiona Fell
    The Profit Maximising Web Geek

  16. Loved the movie.

    Agreed that far too many people do things far too seriously. Even serious matters have a lighter side.

    Oh… and an important fact ;) the bus certainly wasn’t purple, it was lilac :D Just in case anyone was wondering.

  17. James, thank you for being you! Great post with great relevance to our industry. Very inspiring tonight…much appreciated!

    Have fun!

  18. I have a friend who is a transsexual woman (biologically male, culturally female) and SHE would be appalled to be called a man. ;)

    Cute article!

  19. @James – It might be more interesting when things get switched around, but if The Crying Game taught us anything, it’s not always more fun

    ~Graham

  20. Excellent excellent post, James. I love when I can guess that it’s you by your title! : )

  21. @ Chris – Haha, that’s too funny! Hm, now I’ll have to write and see if I can trip you up ;)

  22. Thanks James, great stuff. Priscilla is a wonderful film — laugh out loud comedy with genuine pathos. And some damn fine outfits.

    No boa constrictors around here. :-)

  23. Like any new endeavour, be it blogging or heck life in general, it takes awhile to find your voice. Actually, it’s like being a singer. When I first started singing, I sang everything. My voice is NOT suited for everything! But as I tried out different songs, and different styles, I found the range and styles that suited me best. And when I sing those, heck I bring tears to my own eyes! But you have to experiment first. I started writing humourous antecdotes. Then I found people really responded to my more serious philosophical words of wisdom. I am pretty sure my true voice falls somewhere between those two extremes. Time will tell.

  24. I don’t have any boas…..yet…..but it’s so true that we need to start using our creativity and our brains to give information our own spin. You could think that everything has already been done, but that’s a negative attitude that give you the excuse to stop trying.

    In the end, if there were a set way for everyone to succeed, we’d all be billionaires, but even that wouldn’t work because money would, then, have no value.

    Find your own way and you’ll get there eventually even if you don’t get that instant satisfaction we all covet so much.

  25. Priscilla and blogging!? How do you do it, James? Bravo!

  26. I have not watched the movie either but I really liked the way you explained the things

  27. I’ll speak to my creative editor about that