Beyond Narcissism – a better class of blogger?

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Source: Creative Commons

There’s no denying it: we bloggers generally tend to be self-absorbed and self-promoting. I can hardly claim that the thought-bubbles I blow on this website are much of an exception. Although what I post here isn’t always about me and my writings, the topics and opinions reflect shamelessly (or should that be shamefully?) who I am. And there’s something brazen about the notion that anyone out there might have the slightest interest in what another person thinks on the subject of writing or anything else.

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Source: Creative Commons

Yet despite the presumptuous and tendentious nature of all such on-line activity, some of its exponents – a better class of blogger? – manage to be less narrowly narcissistic than others. One literary blog that I admire for its generous hospitality to other writers is Amanda Curtin’s Looking Up, Looking Down. Of course her site is informative about her own work and interests, among other things, but she also makes a point of regularly inviting guests aboard – providing an introductory comment on some author she knows and a simple structure of questions (“2, 2 and 2”) to which the guest responds. So it functions like a set of prompts for a mini-interview, usually focusing on a newly published book.

I’m delighted that her latest post gives me a publicity platform for a few remarks about my novel The Mind’s Own Place. Thank you, Amanda!

5 thoughts on “Beyond Narcissism – a better class of blogger?

  1. Thanks for the interesting blog Ian. I am searching for the ‘Like’ button. Also thanks for introducing me to Amanda’s blog, where I am now follower 194.

  2. Nice to get your comments, Amanda and Pat – and to have put one of you in touch with the other’s blog. As for a “Like” button, yes, I suppose I should instal it. I’ve noticed that quite a few people who see my blog via Linked-In have been “liking” some of the posts there.

  3. No, I don’t really want a like button; it’s just an fb habit. It’s much better to have real comments to read. Cheers!

  4. Oh good – I confess I don’t LIKE “like” buttons much, and I share your preference for an exchange of thoughts. If you don’t know Jonathan Franzen’s book of essays Farther Away, you may like to read the first piece – his speech to some college students in 2011, where he deplores fb’s transformation of the verb to like “from a state of mind to an action you perform with your computer mouse: from a feeling to an assertion of consumer choice. And liking, in general, is commercial culture’s substitute for loving.”.

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