The blogosphere is a rum old place. Set up an account on Blogspot or WordPress, share random musings with the world, and there you are – a genuine, bona fide published author, one of the multitude of voices that would once have been entirely unheard and are now, um, very occasionally heard. One of the results of the democratic, untrammelled nature of the web is that punditry and opinion-forming – once the preserve of a tiny minority – are now feasibly within reach of all.
It’s not that your influence is particularly broad or strong – ninety-nine times out of one hundred, it’s completely the opposite – but it’s nevertheless there, one tiny background note in the immense cacophony of sound that is the internet.
Such were my thoughts when I heard that my online friend, Thomas Cotterill, had nominated me for the Blogger Idol Award. Bloggers build pathways and friendships; online, people are connected in ways that would have been unimaginable just a few years ago. In the space of a few months, I’ve made friends with people all over the world, without having even left the house. Such are the marvels of technology.
“Because writers are the new rockstars”, the award’s tagline says. I’m not sure about this – I’m not generally surrounded by starry-eyed groupies, and I’ve yet to get steaming drunk and trash a hotel room – but hey, who am I to argue? So my thanks are due to Thomas, whose blog is undoubtedly worth a visit, not simply because of the quality of his posts but because of the staggering quantity of them. Thomas is currently averaging about two intelligent, well-written posts per week. I think I’m doing well if I manage that twice a month. That’s even before you consider the unapologetically cerebral nature of his blog. I can’t remember the last time I penned a literary dissection of Jungian psychology or the decline of Western Civilisation. I probably wouldn’t even attempt it unless I had a few drinks inside me. For Thomas, it’s all in a day’s work. So: gratitude and respect to Mr Cotterill.
This award is refreshingly free of the usual paraphernalia – you know, list seven random facts about yourself and so on. It seems that all I have to do is nominate four other bloggers, nominations which can be interpreted as “nods of respect”. Instead of taking the path of least resistance and nominating my usual victims – Aniko Carmean, Paul Dail, LK Jay (though their blogs are certainly worthy of both respect and visitors) – I decided to seek out four new bloggers to nominate. These are bloggers that I don’t know very well (and in some cases, hardly at all), but I like their blogs. (Naturally, there is such a thing as “award fatigue”, so I’ll quite understand if they choose not to accept.)
My nominees are, in alphabetical order:
Katherine Givens. My get-up-and-go, as the old quip says, got up and went several years ago now. When I encounter people with vast reserves of energy and determination, I can only look on in awed and slightly envious bewilderment. If genius is indeed 99% perspiration, then Katherine is surely destined to literary immortality on that basis alone, whereas I am no doubt condemned to eternal obscurity. Oh well. Katherine’s blog is always worth a visit, not least because her interaction with her readers often extends to allowing them to choose settings for her stories. Now that’s democracy in action!
J.D. Hughes. J.D. is a writer whose contemporary supernatural thriller, Northman, is now available, and will be added to my Kindle as soon as my faulty WiFi connection is sorted out (regular readers of my blog will know that I have a fraught relationship with technology). If it’s as eloquent and witty as his blog, it will most definitely be well worth the read.
Kim Koning. Kim is a dark fiction writer. Her short story, The Ring of Fire, is available in the anthology Tales for Canterbury, and she is currently working on several WIPs, including the paranormal historical novel Ring a Ring o’ Roses – Book 1 “The Cursed Trilogy”.
CL Raven. “CL Raven” is actually the pen name of identical twins Cat and Lynx. Their books include Gunning Down Romance, Soul Asylum and Disenchanted, which I’ve just started reading and love so far! I’d also pay good money to any stylist who could make me look as effortlessly, wickedly cool as they look in their photos. Besides, they’re from Wales. I’ve been living away from my native country for a few years now, and so consider the odd flag-waving nationalistic moment forgivable.
There’s no need to do anything in particular, my friends. Nominate four other bloggers if you wish. Or don’t, if you don’t. I’m just happy to pass on my little nod of respect.