I love your pink guitar!
Hi, Sooz! Congrats on the new house! And... my condolences on having to go through the process of moving. :)My name is Tamara. I’m new to your blog (and new to doing some blogging myself) but have a long-time interest in environmental issues. Recently, I’ve been thinking about how the internet - especially blogs - can be a place for telling personal stories that are also forms of environmental activism. I was hoping I could draw on your expertise in this area for a post that I’m working on for my blog. If it’s ok, I’d love to (virtually) talk with you a bit about your experience with creating and posting to this blog and then share our conversation through a link on my blog at email@example.com. I’m hoping to gather some insights about what it means to share personal stories with an activist dimension online from people who have more expertise in this area than I do. I just started blogging recently for a Visual Research Methods class I’m taking, and I chose to pursue my interest in this topic as part of a project for this class. One of the things that really interests me about your blog is that it is both personal, because it’s about your own life and own experiences, and political, because it advocates green living. Maybe this is a chicken-and-egg question, but I’m wondering what role each of those aspects of the blog played in your decision to start it up. Was it more a personal experiment - a way to investigate and shape your own ideas about certain environmental issues? Or, were you already committed to a certain set of environmental values and began blogging as a way to raise awareness about them? Some of both? Neither? Has this changed over time?I also wanted to ask you about the audience for your blog. When you post, who is it you primarily write for? Is it people you know off-line, or is it mainly for an online community? Is there a particular activist community that you’ve communicated with through your blog? How does their feedback shape your experience with the blog? How does the blog form (short posts, links, pictures) shape your decisions about what to include on the blog?Finally, what do most appreciate about the experience of blogging, personally? What influence that you hope your blog will have on others?Thanks very much for the work you do on your blog and for considering this invitation to share your perspective on these questions. Any thoughts you have would be very greatly appreciated!All the best, Tamara Ramirez
OOh you must be both excited and overwhelmed. I am hoping to move early next year, can't wait actually. Yes, I too have just noticed that pink guitar.
Thanks Carolyn..she's called Marilyn! I also have a blue one called Elvis (and a brown one and a red one which have gone to the charity shop, becuase how many guitars does one girl need!?)Shaheen, we're both! We moved on Thursday and we're nearly all sorted now...good luck with your move...hope it all goes well :) x
Hi Tamara, Thanks for visiting my blog, and good luck with your project! :)I'm going to try and answer some of your questions here, but if you want to 'talk' more you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org ...although I don't think very deeply about blogging, it just sort of comes out, so I might not be very much help if you're doing academic research!Maybe this is a chicken-and-egg question, but I’m wondering what role each of those aspects of the blog played in your decision to start it up. Was it more a personal experiment - a way to investigate and shape your own ideas about certain environmental issues? Or, were you already committed to a certain set of environmental values and began blogging as a way to raise awareness about them? Some of both? Neither?My blog was environmental first, I’ve always been into green issues (recycling, buying less, reusing stuff, using less power, etc) and have a background in activism (when I was a teenager I was heavily into animal rights protests and groups (peaceful ones I might add!), and ran a group with a friend for a while…we did press releases and I was even on a local BBC radio live call in show). I was unemployed when I started the blog, I was stuck on the computer a lot applying for jobs and kept drifting off looking at eco-friendly sites and doing research, I thought it might be useful to share anything I found, in case it was useful for someone else, it was also motivation for myself, to live the greener lifestyle I aspired to and maybe inspire others to make small changes to live more eco-sustainable lives too. I was really nervous to start posting more personal stuff, I was happy to write about eco-things I was doing but I didn’t really want to write about what I was up to or my life in general…but it’s sort of crept in as I’ve become more comfortable with blogging, and it doesn’t seem to have harmed the blog.
also wanted to ask you about the audience for your blog. When you post, who is it you primarily write for? Is it people you know off-line, or is it mainly for an online community? Is there a particular activist community that you’ve communicated with through your blog? How does their feedback shape your experience with the blog?I don’t really, consciously, think about my audience that much when I write (is that a terrible thing for a blogger to say!)…I do something and think ‘this is interesting I’ll post it on my blog’ and then post it, I’m still surprised people read the things I write…of course I do know that I have group of people that regularly read and comment on my blog…usually they are other bloggers who have interests in green issues or crafts, and I enjoy reading their blogs too… and I really appreciate that, so I suppose I’m writing for them…but I never think ‘oh, this will interest whoever, I’ll write it so they’ll comment on it and I’ll get lots of hits’ It’s nice when a post gets lots of comments or a discussion going, but I don’t mind if it doesn’t…I also write for myself, I enjoy it and I like having a record of what I’ve been doing and it gives me motivation to keep on finding new ways of lessening my impact on the planet. Only a handful of people I know offline know I have a blog, I’ll tell anyone who asks about it specifically or if it comes up in conversation, but otherwise it’s not something I really talk about, why would they need to go online and read about my life when I’m there in person to tell them about it!
How does the blog form (short posts, links, pictures) shape your decisions about what to include on the blog?Again, I don’t really think about this too much either…I have a really short attention span, so I like to read blogs that are broken up with lots of pictures and not just a big block of text (I can guarantee no matter how interesting a blog post is, if it is one big block of text I just cannot bring myself to read it!)…I would never be able to write a big block of text either, because my attention span is not long enough to write one! I reflect that in my own blogging, but I try not to feel pressure from what everyone else is doing and write posts how I like them to be.
Finally, what do most appreciate about the experience of blogging, personally? What influence that you hope your blog will have on others?When I was a child I used to make my own newspapers on my little typewriter, and try to get my family to read it...writing a blog is a bit like that, except people actually read it this time! I enjoy the actual process of writing a post and taking photos for it, I enjoy the fact that writing this blog keeps me motivated to try to live more sustainably, and I like the blogging community, that there are certain blogs and bloggers that I visit and who visit me back and who I like as far as you can like anyone you ‘know’ online. I have always hoped that if my blog doesn influence people it would be to show them that making small changes to their lifestyles is possible and can lead to big eco-changes and to raise awareness of green issues, especially ones that are takle-able by normal people, but if people just enjoy any part of my blog that’s enough for me!I hope any of that was helpful to you, Tamara! Thanks for your interest in my blog!
Wow, Sooz!! :))This was really interesting to read!! :) Didn't know you didn't like long posts! *akhem* This explains some things!! :)) /looks away, whistling innocently, &makes a note: shorter posts+more pics!/YAY for moving!! and /views pink guitar with envy!/ Woo, you've had so many guitars!! Where did you get'em?? /Had to give 'mine' back to its rightful owner, so now only have 1 guitar and definitely wish for at least one more!! ideally eco friendly, easy to tune & not easy to de-tune!!/<3 Marylin & Elvis, lol!!! <3 <3 <3WOW, you've been on BBC too!! am amazed!!You're so brave!! :))PS Just checking what you guys wrote to see how to reply to Tamara myself too! :)
But Layla...I do always read your long posts...just sometimes I have to have a cp a couple of goes at it!! I do try though! My poor attention span is my only excuse!My poor guitars are currently in my mums bedroom, there's no room in my new room! I'll sort them out eventaully thoguh...the pink guitar was a birthday present from my mum when I was about 19, and my friend at uni was teaching me to play on her 12 string, which really hurt beginner fingers! I bought the blue one from a market stall for cheap to take with me when I worked at a campsite, so I wouldn't mind if it got bashed about, but it's actaully my favourite one...the brown one was my Dads and the red one someone gave to me cos they weren't using it...I hope those two make some money for charity and go to good homes cos I never really used them. What kind is your guitar?Also, I was forced on the BBC, my friend arranged it then decided to go shy when all these peoplpe phoned in asking difficult/aggressive questions, so I had to do all the talking! I did enjoy it though once I got into it...there's a tape of it somewhere that I've never been able to bring myself to listen to!
lol I'll take your word for it then! :) I know posts with pics get more responses, generally! :) Lovely stories about your guitars, I just have one, it's rather plain, had it since primary school (had a smaller one before, but my fingers got too long!! mum donated/sold it to someone)I still think you were super-BRAVE!! :) Would LOVE to hear it if you ever come round to posting it!
Well, it's not all about the responses anyway, you should write how you want to write, it's your blog! (and I do honestly (try) to read your long posts!)I don't know if the BBC recording will ever surface again after the house move, it's probably in the garage somewhere, which is possibly the best place for it!