Why I'm Leaving Quirky, Brown Love in 2016
You guys are funny. In my newsletter, I sent out a survey asking people what they thought of the name Quirktastic.co and this was basically the response.
Everyone pretty much hated it. I get it; Quirktastic is a weird, uncomfortable and somewhat flamboyant word and also people hate change. Out of all of the responses that I received, I didn't get one person to say that they loved it. Literally everyone that I asked wanted me to stay with Quirky, Brown Love.
It wasn't even just the name that people wanted me to keep, but people loved the site itself. People within my inner circle told me how much they liked the layout and the sidebar of the blog and that I should keep it that way. A lot of people didn't know that Quirky, Brown Love was hosted on Blogger because of the way that I manipulated and custom coded my template.
The problem was that I didn't share the same feeling that people were sharing about my site. I loved the content and the mission that I was trying to portray; however, I felt like a lot was being lost in translation.
Every time someone would refer to Quirky, Brown Love as a relationship blog on social media, I would literally cringe. I hadn't talked about quirky, brown love and relationships since I broke up with my boyfriend of 4 years. Not to bash my ex-boyfriend, as he is still an amazing guy and we are still friends; however, I was not motivated to write about anybody's love life, especially not mine.
Also, my site was crap on the back-end. It wasn't completely mobile friendly, the code was all chopped and screwed, and also there was a weird blur that I couldn't get rid of when I made new categories. Another things is that compared to others online, I post a lot of content. It was so frustrating writing 7-14 posts one week and having no one, outside of the people that follow me on Twitter, see most of them when they came on the site.
Another thing that I couldn't stand were the random overtly racist comments I would get from both White and Black people on Twitter. I know what you guys are thinking, "c'mon Bryanda, it's Twitter. No need to get overly sensitive about trolls," but the comments that made me the most upset were the ones from regular Black people. I guess that because I go out of my way to feature a lot of Black-owned businesses and with my name being "Quirky, Brown Love" some people thought that I was anti-white. Therefore, I would get lots of praise comments from Black people that bashed "the white race" in the same sentence. I definitely don't approve of that.
When I changed the focus of the site to focus more on quirky millennials of color (mostly Black) doing cool things on and offline, that's when the magic started. I felt even more motivated to discover and write again. Yeah my traffic increased a lot which was nice, but a spark lit inside of me as well.
This was basically my soul:
I was more inspired than ever to write when I was given the opportunity to write about and highlight other people doing dope things. Whether it be the fashionista that created an anime-inspired accessories and t-shirt line or the photographer that also doubled as a DJ, I love the feeling of sharing these quirktastic people with my audience.
Another thing that I love to write about is the struggle of growing up Black and quirky. Every now and again, an article is written about the carefree, Black girl or one that focuses on a Black cosplayer and thankfully there are events and websites like AfroPunk and Black Girl Nerds; however, I struggled to find a digital publication that talks about what it's like being called the "white kid" in a Black family. Our generation has embraced Black girl magic and Black excellence, but we never addressed the fact that the same people we stand together with in Black Lives Matter movements were the same people bullying us for "talking white", being too smart and for listening to "white people music."
Where's the dedicated publication where I can reminiscence about being one of four Black girls that went to Warped Tour every year in high school?
Where can I openly confess that Paramore is still my favorite band or talk about how I was considered an oxymoron because I was rich to my Black friends because I lived in the suburbs, but poor to my white friends because I went to public school? Where can I go and see several examples of Black guys that are basically regular Black guys that like video games, cool music and aren't doused in the paraphernalia associated with mainstream hip hop culture?
Quirktastic hasn't filled that void yet, but it is definitely the goal and now it seems more obtainable with the new rebrand. I also feel more confident when I go into the rooms with these brands. I know that a lot of you don't like the name Quirktastic, but Quirky, Brown Love was not a money-making name. The name alone would get me out of rooms before they even had the chance to look at the stats on my media kit (ever wonder why Blavity goes by "Blavity" and not "Black Gravity"?)
While the site looks completely different from Quirky, Brown Love, the quality of content will stay the same. No fluff, no BS, just honest and hopefully helpful content. I know that I've lost some homies because of this rebrand and while that sucks, I'm okay with it. I would have been doing myself a disservice if I didn't allow myself to grow.
So, here we are. Quirktastic. Quirktastic Nation. Are you with it?