Online dating is a numbers game, so help me improve my numbers
December 18, 2013 11:31 PM Subscribe
Like most straight guys on OKCupid, I'm lucky if I get a response to one in ten messages I send. This would be fine if I could fire off several messages every day, but I'm running into writer's block. One-liners and templates don't work, and I rarely know how to compose a longer message to someone I know next to nothing about. (I'm a mumchance kind of guy; I'm terrible at small talk even with friends I've known for years.) Help stir my creative juices, tell me what kinds of messages have got your attention in the past, oh and why not critique my profile while you're at it.
posted by zeri to Human Relations (45 answers total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
So I've been using the OKC stars system to keep track of women whose profiles I've found intriguing. I have a couple dozen by now, so if I actually messaged them all, I might even get a reply or two. But I don't know what to say. "Well, what attracted you about her profile?" you say. It's usually a combination of (a) I like her face and (b) she seems to read a lot. Now I know enough to know that any mention of physical appearance is a no-no (even though it's not conventional hawtness that usually attracts me but a certain type of face, expression or smile). As for (b), if we happen to have any favorite writers or books in common, great, Bob's my uncle, but if not, I'm at a loss. (If there's something else we have in common, that's good too, but that seems to happen less frequently. Everyone in my region is into either rock climbing or social justice; my life, in contrast, revolves around grad school, and for that very reason grad school is the last thing I want to talk to anyone about in my free time.) So I'm usually reduced to picking some random fact out of her profile and trying to build a message around it that's longer than one line. Is that what people do? If so, does it work? And is there an algorithm for it that I could learn? I'm basically a borderline Aspie when it comes to making conversation with strangers. I need rules for this stuff. And I'm slow at writing anything (I've been composing this question for the last half hour) so at this rate it would be a full-time job to message even half the women I'm interested in. I'm not asking for a template, I know those are obvious, but for a method.
Also for examples. Women of MeFi, what messages have you received that made you click over to the guy's profile or even (gasp) message him back? Quotes please. Oh and while we're at it, care to glance at my profile and tell me if there's anything about it that says I WILL MURDER YOU WITH AN AXE? My username is the words "swift" and "slow" smooshed together.