Archive for the tag 'blogging'

Dear PR Person: an ongoing series

NS May 29th, 2010

Dear PR person,

You recently emailed me with the opening line, “Hello, Yummy Mummy!” excitedly presuming I would be thrilled to attend your event, which was fashion-related, and talked to me as if I was about five. I presume you hadn’t read this particular post of mine, then? Or this one?

RSVP: Not a chance

I can haz a MAD Award?

NS April 5th, 2010

My lovely friend Josie is part of a small group of bloggers who have put together some fantastic awards for sites written by UK mums and dads, aptly called the MADS. Now, I’ve never won an award for anything in my adult life, least of all for my writing, so I was surprised at how nice it felt to learn I’d been nominated in three categories: MAD Blogger of the Year (“For the blog that has most amazed and entertained you over the past year”), Most Inspiring MAD Blogger (“For the blogger who inspires you with their courage, humour and insight”) and Best MAD Blog Writer (“To celebrate the blogger who deserves a place on the best-seller lists”).

As lovely as it was to be nominated, I was a bit embarrassed and unsure how to react at first. I thought, “There’s no way I’m going to ask for votes and get embroiled in a competition,” but I snapped out of that pretty quickly and told myself to stop being so bloody British about it. I’m American, for god’s sake! I should be making up t-shirts, slapping bumper stickers on my car and throwing a ticker-tape parade in my own honour. Maybe I could even get hats for my family to wear that say, ‘My mama got nominated for three blog awards. Your mama can SUCK IT.’ I’m sure it’d go down a treat at the pre-school gates.

Kidding aside, I am actually very flattered to have been put forward and decided that, you know what, I’m NOT going to just sit here and be all humble about it and hope that a few people throw some votes my way via osmosis. I work damn hard on this site and have been at it for five years; I’m not a real old-timer like Dooce (NOT ENOUGH USE OF CAPS FOR THAT) and I may have grown a bit cynical after having been around the bloggy block a few times, but I’m still a person. A person with feelings. A person who feels things deeply.

Um, yeah.

What I’m trying to awkwardly say is that if you like what I have to say and/or think I’m a competent writer, I’d be honoured and grateful if you wanted to vote for me here, in any of the three categories I’ve already been nominated in. You can also get to the nomination page by clicking on the MADS badge in my sidebar.

The winner of the Blogger of the Year award gets a new iPhone, laptop and digital camcorder. I could use the latter two items desperately but since I already have an iPhone I would probably give it away in a contest held on this here blog, for my dear, sweet readers. Just sayin’.

All right, I think that’s it. I’ll go eat a big slice of humble pie now.

Tiring of aspiring

NS April 3rd, 2010

By now I thought I’d be a writer. A ‘real’ one with a regular byline or a book jacket, my name in ink stamped upon the printed page. So far, the name that has gotten me the furthest, the closest to my dream, is not my own but this one — Noble Savage.

It’s a great name, isn’t it? I read it or say it and I feel more confident. Noble — grand. Savage — grrr! It makes me feel smart and unique and clever. But it’s not me, it’s the spinner of this particular tangle of web here in cyberspace. As Noble Savage, I can tell you my darkest secrets,  sweetest moments, most haunted memories and things that make me laugh until my atrophied stomach muscles collapse into puddles of quivering mirth. I can write off the cuff with little self-censorship and press publish before a clearer head, a red pen or a no-nonsense editor can tear chunks out of the sometimes nonsensical and emotionally-overladen projectus that spews forth from my brain, dribbles down onto my keyboard and then out onto the information superhighway. This freedom of self-expression can be a gift but perhaps it’s also a bit of a curse.

Am I actually bettering my writing by blogging or am I, without any structure or professional feedback, actually distancing myself from my dream of being published? Does blogging make me a lazy writer? Should I be taking my ideas for posts, all those raw emotions, and pour them into the articles, essays and book proposals that swirl around my head at any given moment, or am I selling blogging short as a real avenue for creative and professional fulfilment? Maybe being a middlin’, indecipherable and often-times apathetic member of the blogging community is as far as I’m going to get. And maybe I should stop fighting that and just accept it.

After all, blogging is New Media. It’s the wave of the future! It’s what everyone wants a piece of, right? Except that very few bloggers actually ‘make it’ so I’ve never really taken it too seriously. But is getting published any easier? Is standing out from the crowd clamoring to get their names in ink any different, less competitive or easier to crack than the elusive blog success story most of us secretly dream of from time to time?

I know this is all going to sound really self-pitying and melodramatic; I don’t mean it to be. I’m just trying to sort the wheat from the chaff and which bits of my words are me and which bits are Noble Savage and whether either have any hope of success. Am I a blogger or a writer in the more traditional sense? Can I be both or does one always have to be done well to the detriment of the other?

For those of  you looking to become published authors or journalists (or who already are), how do you balance your professional aspirations with your blogging? Do you think they complement each other or do they compete for your attention?

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