The OF Blog: Blogvolution, again

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Blogvolution, again

Charles Tan over at Bibliophile Stalker has an interesting article up about the changes in certain blogs from mostly book review to other types of blogs. This blog is cited as one example, as it has changed from being more review-oriented to more column-based, with only occasional reviews and interviews. That is indeed true and it is no accident. However, there are a few mitigating circumstances behind this.

I tend to review in spurts, usually centered around a lack of busyness in my professional life. The past three months have been excruciating for me in the sense of having to drag myself into work and to refrain from cursing out my boss for general incompetence and her unique talent for pissing off an entire staff of teachers beyond the ken of most principals. But that job ends tomorrow and I start one that I have worked before, one where I've been welcomed back very warmly, beginning Thursday (yes, no days off for me). I should have more energy for writing reviews then, or at least I hope I can write 2 or so a week.

But this does not mean that I want this blog to become more review-oriented. That ship has set sail a long time ago. I prefer to think of myself as being a better essayist than a reviewer and while I'll review what I want when I want (early or late matters little to me, to be honest), I'd much rather interact more with others. Whether it's by sharing what I receive and/or purchase in the mail (or in stores) or if it be a look at certain issues within a field (gender, race, religion, the awesomeness of Shatner), I like dialogue over monologue any day of the week.

So...

There will be a review of Angela Carter's The Infernal Desire Machines of Doctor Hoffman in the near future. Same for China Miéville's latest. Same for a few others. But there'll also be other posts about other matters, since sometimes those topics can get lost in the rush to say something about a book that might just hang around for a while longer...

9 comments:

Liviu said...

Actually I like your blog the way it is because it has always new interesting content; if I would do a personal blog I would follow your example talking about the many books I read, themes, interests, capsules with some full reviews in-between.

Larry said...

Thanks, Liviu, but I'm certain there'll be further changes, since I tend to want to try new things every now and then. But what you highlight about what I'm doing now will likely remain at the core of this blog. I'd just like to add more translation-related stuff, since I need practice still in that interest area of mine.

Terry Weyna said...

Your blog is one of the few places I make certain to look at every single day. Whether it's a review, an essay or just a thought with a short post, I always enjoy reading what you have to say. Please keep it up!

Anyone who wants simply reviews can come to my blog instead. ;-)

Anonymous said...

I too love Shatner.

ediFanoB said...

First of all thanks for the link. I didn't know Bibliophile Stalker before. I read the post and will leave a comment. I like such posts because as a reader I'm interested in your reflections about blogs and their future development. One interesting thing is that most of the time the majority of the comments are written by other blogger.
I follow blogs and leave comments since May 2008. And I can tell you not only blogs have changed. My blog reading habits changed too. In the beginning I just followed a few blogs. I was "hungry" to read reviews. Next step was to write comments. Then I read also interviews and other postings. After few month I had a list of 15 bookmarks which I tried to visit daily. I didn't want to miss an entry. But the biggest change started when I discovered google reader.Suddenly I could easily follow a lot more blogs without missing a post. This was great as long as I came to realize that I couldn't follow all the blogs within one day. Nowadays I'm happy to check blogs for interesting posts every two or three days except my favorite ones which I check daily. That means also that I write comments with a delay.
Anyway I agree that some blogs are changing. For me it is fine because I like to have a variety. That makes each blog unique. I think it is quite natural that blogs are changing because they are created and written by human beings. And fortunately we change within in our life - not all of us. Most people don't like changes because they like routine. The older you get the less you like changes. But changes are the salt of life - sometimes changes are too salty. In the end it is the question for whom do you write your blog and why do you read blogs by yourself. Based on the answer you will develop your blog in this or that direction. That is exciting because I'm curious how this will influence my blog reading habits...
(I will post this comment at Bibliophile Stalker)

Larry said...

Terry,

I'll see what I can do, although I love change on the whole (probably explains why I'm not very conservative in my social/economic attitudes! :P).

Anon,

Good taste, I see! ;)

Edi,

Charles' blog is a must-read for a whole host of reasons and I'm not just saying that because he's arranged for me to do two interviews with really cool authors! :P

Interesting bit about your own changes as a reader. Something certainly to think about!

Anonymous said...

Keep up the good work Larry. I have really enjoyed reading your posts. Your essays are always a great read.

Also you have made me sample many of those authors I meant to read but never got round to such as Italo Calvino, Jorge Luis Borges, Gene Wolfe to name the ones I have enjoyed the most. Thanks for all the great reading you have given me.

Larry said...

Thanks! Glad you've discovered some excellent books because of my posts here! I feel like I'm returning the favor for those books that I discovered from reading others' comments on their blogs or websites over the past few years.

josé said...

Strange. My comment on The Infernal Desire Machines of Doctor Hoffman seems to have disappeared. Anyway, I was just saying I was curious to read your review because I'm quite interested in that book.

 
Add to Technorati Favorites