This is an archival post from my older blog, Techsophist. In 2012, two out of three of these blogs did not have a long life. However, I still feel the project for both are good and that their respective demises have a lot to do with the stresses of grad school. Or do they? That will call for another post.
Clearly, I’m still blogging, but I’ve blogged endlessly about why, so this post is about new bloggers–both (relatively) new and brand-spanking new. The key to the new blogs I’m highlighting here is a keen sense of project: these are blogs with an overt purpose.
An obvious and now well-known example of a blog with a sense of purpose is ProfHacker, now one of the featured blogs at the Chronicle of Higher Education. I remember when the blog literally formed on Twitter. A core of two quickly became a gang of five teachers willing to share teaching ideas in a fast-paced (Minimal one post a day) blog. This was the blog as magazine, a reliable place to go for its niche and a guarantee for a sort of glossy, high-color view of teaching in higher ed. I know I’ve linked to it here more than once, and will again. The quality is high and the circle of regular bloggers are committed to keeping up the pace. It was a clear winner for the 2010 John Lovas Award.
Now blogging, successful blogging that is, always has had a purpose. What I like about these new bloggers is how they think seriously about the purpose before beginning, something that sounds familiar to those of us who teach writing. A brand-new example of a project blog is Virgin Food. The project is to chronicle the last year in an MA program for two roommates through meals that they prepare. There are two entries so far, and I must admit, the main reason I’m highlighting this blog is not because I know the writers (I do), but because the second post was hilarious, and good humor is hard to find. Add this to you RSS reader, and if you use Google Friend Connect, follow it.
The other new blog is also a project blog from a MA student in the second year, but clearly, this is a different project and a different MA. Sure, Stuff that Never Happenedis an example of an overflow blog, a blog that houses ideas and snippets that the writer wants to save for a later time when he/she can work on it, but it is also a specific project: created archival fragments from a determined future. The about blurb calls the blog “a receptacle containing messages from futures yet to be, reviews of books never written, fictions twice removed from fact, and other events that never transpired.” Clearly a project, and one worth following, either on your RSS reader or to support using Google Friend Connect. I know this blogger in real life too, and the interesting thing here in contrast to the bloggers behind Virgin Food is the indifference this blogger feels towards audience. The Virgin Food bloggers are promoting their blog shamelessly, as they should. They want to be read. Stuff that Never Happened is equally public, but most likely will never be actively promoted. I’m not saying that one motivation is better than the other, but it is interesting to note that not all new bloggers are the same. Some want to be read, some could care less. Bloggovia, what I’m calling it now instead of the Blogosphere, is still an equal-opportunity writing spot.