Thursday, June 10, 2010

Join the Bloggiesta, the Bloggers Work-Party. This Weekend!

[So you're wondering what this has to do with the Bloggiesta. Well its a round-about story about how I learned of it and why it matters too me. I'll get there. I promise. But if you're impatient, just click that link above.]

Sheila at Bookjourney is having a giveaway this week of a swag bag she got at BEA/BBC. All you need do is leave a comment on the post but she asks you to share (if you feel like it not as a req) what the biggest draw for you would be if you were ever to consider attending BEA: i.e. the books, the authors, the bloggers, the publishers, the sites, the shopping...

And of course that got me thinking and daydreaming and then writing an excessively long comment which I amputated there before bringing it over here to rewrite and ramble at will.

The biggest draw for me? Being surrounded by books and people who don't think my ...urm 'interest' in them is excessive. Meeting people who love, write, make, sell or promote books. Also getting a peek at the 'backstage' workings of the publishing and book selling industries. My love of story extends to writing them as well as reading them (and watching, and listening) and my twin dreams vie for ascendancy--to have my stories read and loved and to work in (live in; own? an indie bookstore that is a community gathering place for readers, writers, and students from tot to tottering elder.

That's why Joystory's emphasis on the reading and writing blogospheres keeps pendulumming wildly and often just freezing in its tracks and settling into a mumbling, stuttering personal journal and interwebs trivia collector.

But alas! even if I managed to hop a ride on a magic rainbow to BEA/BBC, I'd likely only lurk in the shadows as I've done for the most part on the blogosphere since 2004 as that reticence is nothing compared to my pathological shyness in public. Get me alone in a room or a car or a quiet park bench or a surf kissed beach and give me time to warm up on a subject I'm passionate about and you will begin to wonder if I'll ever shut up (witness this comment umm post) but when I'm in the presence of more than two or three I cannot compose and utter a comprehensible sentence to save my life.

And then there is that tripping on rainbows thing--and snags in the carpet, cats, Q-tips and pant cuffs, cracks in the sidewalk, curbs, wrinkled rugs and squashed beverage cups. It can't all be blamed on my visual impairment either. It's as much a tunnel-vision of attention as it is the loss of my peripheral vision. I don't know who would be the less safe if I were to attend BEA--me or the citizens of NYC. :)

But I was lurking on the blogs discussing BEA that week. Both those attending via plane, train or auto and those attending via their armchairs. And since then there has been this strong tug as of a demanding child on her mother's arm saying 'Who cares. Let's just GO!'

It was during that week when I decided that at the very least I would attend via armchair again next year only NOT as a lurker and by then I would have one of the goto book blogs but that was going to entail developing competence at more than just writing posts. I need to figure out organizing navigation inside my blog from sidebars to portal pages; tweaking HTML; niche claiming and social networking of which I'm still clueless; ease and consistency in commenting; promo of my blog and getting hooked up with publishers and authors to promo books.

So I started paying closer attention to how other bloggers were doing these things, perusing sidebars, eying layouts, harvesting links and buttons and ideas. But it was becoming clear that just cruising and sightseeing was not going to be enough. Often just seeing what someone was doing wasn't enough, I needed to know why? As in the logic behind it. What are the benefits? How would doing such and so advance me towards my goals?

This meant I was probably going to have to ask for help. Can you hear me choking on my tongue?

Then, just as I started to panic, here was Sheila @ Bookjourney (again with Sheila) in her Blogiversary post today, posting about the Bloggiesta coming up this weekend, a bloggers fiesta or weekend retreat devoted to improving your blog (any kind of blog) where bloggers gather on the web to talk about blogging and the whys and wherefores; to ask for help and offer help; to write or read articles on topics such as I listed above and more; and to devote as much time inside a 76 hour block to doing the blog-building and blog-cleaning and blog-renovating tasks that can take you out of amateur status into journeyman and on to master in less time than it takes a blastocyst to advance through embryo to new born.

But of course one has to do more than lurk. They have to do the work. But at this moment (and holding steady for three weeks now) the same motivation and hyper-focus that had me crocheting 17 bookmarks in a week last April is zeroed in on book blogging and hasn't begun to flag. I'm anxious to see what I can do in a year if I can stay focused. Well, eleven months or so because this started in mid May.

So you could say (using Shelia's logic) that my Blogoversary is now May 17, 2010 the day I posted my first It's Monday! What are You Reading? post not April 6, 2007 the day our libraries closed (a devastation for one with no income for buying books) and I committed to daily posts no matter what, whether anyone but my sister was reading them or commenting and began emphasizing writing over reading, nor November 2, 2004 the day of my first post.

1 tell me a story:

Sheila (Bookjourney) 6/10/2010 4:58 AM  

JOy when you said in your comment that you developed a post out of it - of course I was curious and had to pop over.

I hope you do the Bloggiesta and really have a good time with it. I was saddened to read your library closed. I hope you keep on plugging away with these fun and interesting posts so I can arrive at your Blogiversary next year and say "Congratulations!"

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