Category: meta stuff

Who? Qui? 誰?

An acquaintance of mine recently started a new blog of her own, and I wanted to welcome her to the blogosphere, but hesitated. My dear readers may be shocked to hear this, but my given name is not ‘Cheshire’, nor do I come from the ‘_Ocelot’ family. Though that is the pseudonym I use online, obviously nobody I know from the real world, this acquaintance included, would recognise me by that name. So, should I blow my online cover, so to speak?

I’ve never really hid my online presence from real-world acquaintances, so exposing myself in such a way would really bother me so much, though I do have some concern about random folk on the internet figuring out my real-world identity. Now that I have tied my name ‘Richard’ into this blog, it would be that hard to figure out who I am anyway. It’s just, what I do and the people I know online have always dwelt apart, and thrusting them suddenly together would seem strange.…

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WordPress Jetpack

So, a few days ago WordPress released Jetpack, which makes some features of available to users of self-hosted WP blogs. I find this a little funny, because I briefly made ‘OK!’ a self-hosted blog but eventually returned here because I found more useful. No major problems, of course, just a few minor things. Now, though, it turns out I may as well have just waited and self-hosted a little longer and I’d feel a little silly moving this blog again. Maybe I’ll go back to self-hosting in the future; we’ll see. ^_^…

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Now to Start Writing

So, after a couple years of a vague desire for a website, here it is –! Yay, me!

Of course, now remains the hard part of making the best of it. The old version of this blog – – sat dormant for long periods. It still got more use than most blogs out there, but nonetheless felt underused. Now that I have more time to write for it (and now that I’m actually paying for hosting) updates should be more frequent.

What can you expect? Well, the general theme for this blog has been intellectual growth – my own continuing education. Practically, though, I’ll be posting my impressions of whatever works impress me – whether they be poetry, philosophy, film, or whatever else I encounter. Perhaps that’ll range too broadly, but I’m reluctant to separate these topics because I’m not sure that different genres and media can be divided so cleanly.

Besides, many different kinds of works and moods factor into my life, and I enjoy reading and writing about all of them.

So, let’s get writing!

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Intro to America First

I’ve done more blogging in the past couple months than I’ve ever done before, but none of it’s been here. That’ll change soon as the school year winds down, but for now I’d like to direct your attention to another project.

America First is a political blog, of which I am co-editor. The goal is to seek solutions to some of the myriad problems the United States face. I have contributed most of the material so far, but my co-editor should be working on some articles soon, and ultimately we would like to build up a lively comments section.

So, stop by, and be sure to comment.…

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“All I Gotta do is…” Update Regularly?

Several decades ago, Buck Owens sang that all one had to do to become famous in the movies is to “act naturally.” According to the Wall Street Journal, the way to become famous in the blogosphere is to “be consistent.” I ran accross this article through John Houghton, who focuses on commercially owned blogs and podcasts, and points out:

You can’t expect to be popular after one or two blog posts, nor can you have a large following after one or two podcasts. If you release weekly, you must stick to it; monthly, that’s not as frequent but you may see results in 9 months. If you release episodes daily, you’ll grow quickly, but make sure you have a staff to support you.

Though I don’t read many blogs, I have found this statement to be very true regarding something I do follow – webcomics. There are several very good webcomics on the internet, but those with the largest audiences are generally those that update the most regularly – Penny-Arcade and xkcd come to mind. On the other hand, I can list several great comics that could, or used to, have larger audiences that floundered due to unpredictable update schedules – Fallen is a good example.

Of course, there are exceptions to this rule. Fred Gallagher, who writes and draws Megatokyo, is infamous for missed updates, though he’s still consistent enough that he hasn’t totally hacked off his fanbase.

Houghton continues:

The article also exhorts us to “Act Like a Pro” and advises against “amateur” production values but that “the most popular material is definitely more polished than the rest of the pack.”

Ah, yes – professionalism, something that is even rarer in online social environments than in the “physical plane.” Just as with any other project, online or offline, people are impressed by those who take the extra effort to make their work just a bit more polished. It does not matter if one is creating art, running a business, or writing a blog, customers will notice when a product is Bush League, like how I misspelled “across” in the first paragraph of this post.…

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