I've been thinking alot about my blog and where I want it to go. Do I want it to be Food blog (since I love food?), or just a general blog of the goings-on in my life (since I'm narcissistic/unhinged enough to think the goings-on in my life are worth broadcasting?), or even just a purely Jewish blog where I comment on things happening in the Jewish world?
I've decided to do none of these things. I want a regularly updated blog with some of my stories: new short ones bubbling about in my brain, and excerpts from the long ones. I want to write about everything - Jewish living, Everyday living, Living as a Jew in the Diaspora, Philosophy, writing novels, my takes on things of the day - I want a blog with no border to limit what I can write or will write, and I hope the readers appreciate, understand and enjoy the mad collection of things I choose to write about. This is the joy of being a blogger - there is no editor or publisher to rein in my imagination. I can write as much as I want, as little as I want; be as verbose or obtuse as I choose to be. That's what blogging is about: no limits.
I've got tons of interesting things I think of blogging but never do because of: 1. pure laziness, 2. timidity, 3. fear of being vulnerable, 4. fear of being criticised, 5. pure laziness. Though your greatest hope is that the internet traffic on your site goes beyond a total of three persons (i.e., yourself, your mom, and that one hit from Azerbaijan), as a blogger, you still worry about the repercussions of what you write. The very freedom which one enjoys in having no editor, publisher, circus-master, means that there's no one to tell you what you're saying is ridiculous, offensive, cruel or so yesterday. A blogger must be impassioned writer and unbiased editor in one person. And that's a difficult two caps for one person to wear. But, we must learn to do it - for that's the price we pay for the freedom. We have to learn to adopt the Tim Gunn mantra of: edit, edit, edit.
So these were/are my obstacles in the way of my blogging, and I'm ready to move beyond the scope of hoping and dreaming and wishing and wanting. The writing world today is not merely about talent and ability, it's about the name you've built up for yourself and whether your story fits into a certain niche market. The profit-or-loss world of publishing forces the writer to turn himself into a keen marketer. And blogging is one simple and wonderful way we aspiring writers can use to hone our craft and gain the interest of readers. I'm not saying that the publishing world is the big, bad wolf. I understand that like all things in this dizzyingly fiscal world we live in, publishing, too, is governed by the laws of demand and supply. If there is a demand, the publishers will supply it. And demand only happens after the wily marketers can generate buzz and interest - and with aspiring (and poor, unpopular) writers such as myself, we have to generate the marketing buzz for ourselves. And this is the simplicity which comes with being a blogger - you get to market yourself to the world.
Blogging is not just about writing. It's about promoting, it's about interaction, it's about dialogue. Although I will write about what interests me and not be curbed by an editor when it comes to topics and scope - blogging, at the end of the day, is still greatly determined by the readers. If my blogs of my puppies or my adventures on Ambien don't get hits, but my blogs about Israel and/or Trinidad do, then, like the world of publishing, I'll stick to those. The readers (through comments, feedback and a monitoring of internet traffic) are the ones who let us know what's good and what's not. And that sort of raw critiquing is priceless for any writer.
I'm learning that I need to make a name for myself as a writer. It's almost impossible for someone to become a novelist by being an unknown. The chances are slim to none. You can write as much as you want, but it's not going to happen unless you've established yourself through some other means as a writer (be it blogging, magazines, op-eds). Charlaine Harris, Stephanie Myer and JK Rowling were the lucky ones - and I'm not even sure if they had their own columns/blogs/pieces coming out prior to becoming established novelists. Most other writers I know of (A.J. Jacobs, Rich Cohen, Mike Gayle, Nick Hornby) are established columnists. So it would be great to follow in the footsteps of such greats: i'm going to write and write and write some more, and ope that you kind folk take pity on me and sometimes click the link to nicholasjagdeo.com, just to read my pitiful offerings and allow me this wonderful opportunity to share myself with you, because, at the end of the day, that's what writing is all about: expressing oneself.
So, in a nutshell, this is what my blog is about. It will capture all my main thoughts - all the mad ones - and I'll write them here for your edification, clarification, education, enjoyment and many critiques and debates which will undoubtedly happen.