Sunday, February 17, 2008
Hmm...a book about blogs
I recently heard a story on NPR about a new book about blogs, edited by Sarah Boxer. It’s called Ultimate Blogs: Masterworks from the Wild Web. I had what must be a typical reaction, because even the NPR interviewer mentioned it--her opening question in the printed article is, "Isn't an old-school paper book about blogs sort of self-defeating?"
I got more interested in the piece when Boxer started talking about a tone that is particular to blogging--personal, open, fierce, and yes, often nasty. In the radio piece, she used the word “snarky”. Not all blogs are snarky, I said to the radio. Okay, I do read snarky blogs—in fact, one from the book's list is one I check all the time—Go Fug Yourself, the snarkiest blog I know, about what celebrities are mis-wearing on the red carpets (and yes, I'm addicted).
Now, the tone thing wasn't a criticism; it was something she liked and respected about blogs, something that distinguished blogs from other writing. And I personally like that bloggers are fierce. But we all know that lit blogs are the opposite of snarky, if there’s such a thing. They are respectful, and kind. They recognize that writers work hard on their books, and when they dismiss something, it’s with cause. And they are so darned nice to each other. I feel very comfortable among them.
The article did mention another blog whose address I thought I'd pass along to you. It's called The Diary of Samuel Pepys, and yes, it is Pepys' diary, served in its daily chunks, and it's pretty cool.
And speaking of snarky, isn't the cover of Ultimate Blogs one of the least creative and least interesting covers you've seen in awhile?