Being Authentic Online

Photo credit: DJOtaku via / CC BY-NC-SA

My fear of being authentic on this blog died a long time ago.

After some trial and error, making choices about what I would and not write about and being cautious in general, I’m as authentic as I can be in this space, though:

  • I don’t write about my work life;
  • I limit what I share about my family; and
  • I wait and breathe before writing about current events that get deep under my skin, if I write about them at all (though recent currents events make my fingertips itch.

But I was thinking…

Can a writer truly be authentic if they have to place limits on what they say?

Then, I came across the answer in this TinyBuddha article:

“Authenticity doesn’t have to mean complete transparency, but it does mean acknowledging what you really think and feel. Very rarely does a person think and feel only things that align with a polished online persona.”

Well, I’m not interested in having “a polished online persona”, at least, not at this point in time.

I’ll just continue striving for “authenticity” by sharing the times when my inner voice escapes my lips, I suffer from episodes of midnight madness or when I invite you to take a seat with me at the family dinner table.

For you writers and bloggers, how authentic do you feel you can be online? 

All Rights Reserved ©2017-2018 Marquessa Matthews


33 thoughts on “Being Authentic Online

  1. I probably should have more limits than I do. I often think I am giving more of myself than people may want to know. I have one limit, for sure, though. I try not to mention politics. I don’t think my views are a secret… and I will comment on other blogs. But I have never written a blog post myself about the current, um, situation in my country. I think if I did, my head might literally explode before I could finish writing it. But I’ve pretty much let it all out about everything else in my life. Maybe I find it easier because I’m ‘anonymous’… to nearly everyone here online…

    And god knows my online persona is not ‘polished’…! 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

    1. You’re authentic with a certain level of transparency. Politics? Yeah, I rarely venture into it since I want to keep my space geared to “writing”. But I have and will continue to dabble with race/ethnicity via anecdotes and fiction…

      Liked by 2 people

  2. That’s a really good thing to point out, that authenticity doesn’t have to equal transparency. I like that! I’m with Sandra, I probably over share at times but I do try to avoid the more sensitive topics, and never use my blog as a political soap box, because it’s written under my pen name, which is essentially my business brand.

    Some things are just hard not to write about, though, like my recent post to my mom. I also edit my language lol. If I wrote like I talk, there’d be a lot more words with *** in them! 😏

    Liked by 4 people

      1. Exactly. I have no problems letting my readers know that I don’t discriminate against people…Only really bad writing practices! Lol even with those posts, I try to keep from being offensive while being honest. Authenticity doesn’t have to be rude, either. That’s a bit tougher to accomplish when something really aggravates you, but it’s easier to get a point or opinion across when your readers aren’t too angry to grasp it.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Hey Marquessa, I think the thing here is coding what to talk about online but making what you decide to discuss very real.
    This year I’ve put me of myself out in my blog more than ever before but I keep many specifics hidden because I don’t want it to become a Facebook for you my friends. I limit what I discuss about family and work and like you current affairs have me angry but I try and keep away from that.

    But is every person’s choice of course. Each to their own. I hope you’re well ☺️

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Thanks Simon! It feels good to share more of ourselves doesn’t it? And its been an opportunity to learn the art of nuances and allowing readers to read between the lines. I ignore politics mostly because…its a waste of time with all that is going on and on and on.🤔 By the way, what do you mean by “coding”?


      1. I think coding is meant to be knowing. I like being able to discuss the things that I want to and it seems were similar in some ways.
        I think politics both public and private need approaching with caution.
        Hope you’re well ☺️😘

        Liked by 1 person

  4. With a family as large as mine online, I pretty much passed the privacy issue a decade ago! 🙂 My 86-year-old aunt was posting baby pics of my sibs and me last week! LMAO! Even my 82-year-old mom…who swore she’d never be active online…has a FB page! LOL!

    Oh well. It keeps me honest. Can’t be fake when the people who changed your diapers…and the people you gave birth to are watching! 😉

    Like AC, I must watch my mouth. I’m the one who will say what everyone is thinking. Not mean, offensive, or confrontational… I simply don’t care for things being swept into corners or under rugs. They do come back. If I said all the things I truly thought, I’m pretty sure there would be about three people talking to me! LOL! So instead, I dump it all in an email…and send it to AC! LOL!

    I feel I’m pretty authentic, though. I just know how to preserve the peace! 😀 😀

    Liked by 5 people

  5. I’m with all of the commenters so far; some topics are just not worth delving into but I’ll say my peace on someone’s else’s blog if they leave it open ended to do so.
    But you definitely have to have some level of authenticity.

    Liked by 2 people


    “How authentic are you online? What “limits” have you imposed on your writing, if any?”

    I am genuine when writing…fearlessly pouring out.
    I am however extremely guarded with a strong Block and Delete game. If I discern an eyelash of one not having my best interest in mind…yes even in cyberspace underneath all the sweet emoticons…its a wrap. I have had women lie about their age to write with me. One said she was 12 yrs old and wanted to work with me. My Spidey Senses went off. Did my research. She was 28 yrs old. Not cool. I distance myself from the disingenuous with the quickness.

    Other Limits? No Profanity and No Rated X Erotica. There needs to (in my opinion) be a hint of mystery and the strategic use of language and witticism in its fullness. Yes there is indeed a place for it, but it make me very uncomfortable in public discourse. Especially when approached by someone who wants to collaborate with me.

    I’m honest about being uncomfortable and that I understand if they want to work with someone else. Every time however, if they’re motives were pure, they have immediately apologized and presented me with a different piece for consideration.

    I do follow some Erotica writers and even those with profanity riddled posts; only because I have become very familiar with who they are behind the pen.



    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are ALWAYS authentic which is fitting fos AUTHENTICITEE!😉 Yes, I don’t know why people lie when they should know that what is done in the dark will come to light. And I understand the profanity/erotic thing. I wade into both when its integral to the character I’m writing-sounds crazy but I write the voices/dialogue I hear in my head! Blessings to you Queen!

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Very, but I also believe you should do what’s best for you. I follow people who I enjoy reading so it’s not a big deal if they don’t tell me about their personal life. If I like their writing it doesn’t matter.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Excellent questions to be asked. I hesitated at first about sharing personal life stories however I feel personal stories are the most relatable and can be a game changer for ANY reader that is going through the same thing. Difference between authenticity and complete transparency is interesting. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I am new to WordPress but I just wrote a piece on this myself. Being authentic when writing, or any type of platform where you are exposing yourself can at times be difficult. I am hoping to work through this with writing, and I find it so comforting that others are writing about the same.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I have made it very clear that what I write about is all made up and is out of my own head. This gives me tremendous freedom to write whatever I like, because it’s a story. I can express more about something fictitious that I would not dare say about something that actually happened.
    Nothing is real. Or is it…?

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Those who were there are unlikely to ever read it. It’s never a snapshot, always a collage of bits from here, there and everywhere. Someone said, “Write as if your mother won’t read it.” That’s how I started. Now, I’m writing for me.

        Liked by 1 person

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