Tuesday, May 22, 2007

My First Interview

At least in the blog world. My nephew interviewed me once for a school project. He discovered my gift of gab. I was interviewed once on my hobby of collecting baseball memorabilia - no link to all of it - but I do have an autographed Joe Dimaggio baseball - they don't make those anymore :) and I am a hopeless baseball junkie. I visited a 5th grade class a couple years back in my role as "works for a newspaper" and answered a few questions - although that might be considered more a grilling than an interview.
Diogenes at Quasi Fictional asks a series of questions on blogging. Not sure how he picked my email though it is readily available to all readers of this blog. These are questions we've all though about and answered in various degrees at various times. Considering I'm coming up on a year since my first post, this is a good time to reflect.

Warning: Unlike most of my posts, this one is pretty "link loaded".

Here are Dio's questions and my responses:

How you blog, Why?

How is simple - taking time to sit and write. Blogging is a little bit like painting and drawing to me. Its a creative outlet. Time must be carved out. And we all have 24 hours and I break mine down in chunks - but have never blogged about it. Pretty boring stuff explaining how hours are spent :) Writing a post is comparable to sitting in a studio and staring at a blank canvas. Or watching a baseball game, grass grow or paint dry. Its an investment. There are days when I seemingly think of things to blog about during most waking moments. Unfortunately - or maybe fortunately - many of the ideas I imagine drift away sooner than I can put them into concrete terms. Why I blog is another story completely. I answered it initially for CK's collage. I blog to learn - about marketing, about others and about myself - pretty much in that order. I'm fascinated with the ability to reach across boundaries. To try new things. To add to the challenges each day presents. To use all the dimensions of human nature. As Robyn McMaster puts it - "to celebrate more intelligences". How do you pick topics day after day? Why blog is one of those questions that will always fuel One Reader at a Time. In answering the question "why"? it is important to recognize the value of building community. We have a natural inclination to be part of something bigger. Community through conversation helps fill this need. Plus, like everyone, I want to change the world! Finally, stating it simply as possible, to blog is to feel good.
What do you think about blog template, promotion tools and how you promote yours, your networking and community?
I use Blogger and have considered switching to TypePad - but I'm basically lazy. The templates available in Blogger are adequate for me at this time. Redesigning would take a big time commitment. I've been through a few redesigns in my life - lots of details. While I'm something of a detail freak, maybe one day I'll be motivated enough to switch. I play with a number of widgets as promotion tools - if you visit One Reader you'll see them. The best promotion - and community building - tool I've found is commenting on other blogs. Too often people visit blogs and leave without comment. When you find a post that's worthy of a comment - say it! Trust me when I say the poster will appreciate and honor you. The true conversation architect will respond. I like the Daily Fix at MarketingProfs for inspiration - I'm a marketer :) Believe me, there are many fine blogs on which to leave comments. Another good way to promote your blog is participate in a project - like "Advice for Graduates" or "The Age of Conversation". Of course, the "Z-List" has taken on a world of its own :) And Dio's Fine Art of Blogging is a worthy path of promotion.
Why blogging matters?
Blogging matters to me because it is a form of exploration. Organizations are in a state of constant motion. Think of them as part of the ever expanding universe. They are organic in my view. They either grow or enclose on themselves. In order to grow, an organization must reach out - leave the shore that is comfortable. Blogging for organizations is still new when you take a long view - back and forward - of organizational life. My blog viewpoints are mine alone. In a general way, I will post on current topics in my industry. They are in now way intended to be taken as news or a reflection of organization's views. The only connection is I work here. I have been part of this system and culture for over 20 years.
Personal high blogging points in your blog life.
Any comment to a post gets me "high". I think that could be assumed for all conversationalists. There are 3 posts that stand out. First one is probably here - wherein I discover the magic of conversation with David Armano at Logic+Emotion, Mack Collier at The Viral Garden and Gavin Heaton at Servant of Chaos. Second is combination posts. The value of community is recognized in these posts. Meeting Liz Strauss at Successful-Blog as a mystery unfolds plus being named an official SOB. Thirdly, would have to be the fun of the Turtle Meme. The lesson and value of blog sharing is evident in this little game. Fourth - I know I said 3 but the beauty is in breaking the rules - is the book review here on "A Whole New Mind - Why Right-Brainers will Rule the Future".
How do you make money by blogging (if you do)?
I don't. I've thought about it Google text ads. I've thought about Amazon book links. Never figured out exactly where any of them would fit. I've determined the few pennies aren't worth the effort. I could be wrong :)
You, too can complete this interview. Answer the questions in a post and send them to Dio in a word doc - include a photo if you want along with links from your blog. Share your knowledge and discovery plus what is important to you - we all win in this "Age of Conversation".

Special thanks to Diogenes for posting this at Quasi-Fictional. (post is up - go leave a comment - Dio's got a nice blog going)


Robyn McMaster said...

Hi Bob, I answered these questions a little earlier and I enjoyed the opportunity to reflect deeply on the joys of blogging. Quite frankly once I launched, writing and interacting with others online became quite addictive.

By the way, Bob, are you really set for the bike race?

BobG said...

I saw yours Robyn - and one of the reasons I responded to Dio. Initially, I wasn't sure how his email landed in my in box. Then put it off and finally took action by visiting his blog. He's happened onto pretty creative way to gather information for a book. And blogging does have aspects of addiction - for the most part a healthy one, don't you think?

Thank you for asking about my ride across Iowa. Yes, I am ready. I will likely update in the next few days. Right now I'm gearing up to peddle 50 miles in a fund raiser for Cancer Patient Care.

Mack Collier said...

Bob you just keep becoming more of a blogging celebrity every day!

BobG said...

Thanks Mack - your check is in the mail :) I'm thinking of a nom de plume...

Seriously, its the comments from this little community that keeps my brain fueled. That in addition to following the great blogs and posts from my favorites - you and yours among them. If that's celebrity, then bring it on.

Hajj said...

I enjoyed your perspective on blogging. Everybody has a different motivation, for why they do what they do.

BobG said...

Thanks Hajj - whats intriguing is that the motivations continue to change and evolve. I appreciate your comment.