'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Monday 20 September 2010

Cath Crowley Guest Post: Waving at the Internet Train

We are thrilled to welcome our Behing the Books featured author, Cath Crowley - with this sensational guest post....

So I like the idea of blogging. I do. My life would not be as good without the blogs I’ve bookmarked. They’re funny and cool and they have great stories. I read them and I think, okay, yeah, I’d like to be on that blogging train. But I get on and I sit for maybe five minutes and then I get off.

Because I’d really rather be writing my novel.
Or watching Buffy.
Or reading my book.
Or listening to music (tonight it’s Tony Bennett).
Or googling to see what fish I would get if I could convince myself that fish really could be happy in little bowls.
Or anything really.

Except blogging. And I’m a writer. So I should like it.

But I don’t and I’ve thought a lot – maybe too much – about why. I think I’ve worked it out. It’s about using your own voice, your actual voice. And I write because I want to be someone else. I don’t want to be me. I’m not entirely sure how to do it consistently. One should follow the other, my writing voice should translate but it doesn’t really. Not like it does for other people.

The blogs I love are the ones where people seem to be themselves. Maybe they’re not really, how would I know for sure? But there’s ease in their writing. Possibly that’s the key.

So. This piece is about some blogs that I love because (to me) the voice seems kind of genuine. (And there’s one website thrown in, not really a blog, but there are lots of people being themselves on there.)

I can’t even take complete credit for the topic. It half belongs to Megan Burke, the author of Literary Life - ramblings of a book nerd. She made a comment at a book launch that went something along the lines of – I like that person’s site because it is her. She was talking about Simmone Howell, and I happened to agree.

Simmone Howell
post-teen trauma
It’s effortlessly cool and welcoming, like Simmone. In the past week I have read about Janet Fitch's 10 Rules for Writers, visited a boot fair and indulged my lust for Johnny Depp.

Christopher Miles
I like this for a lot of reasons. One, it’s a very nifty design. It’s completely functional but it’s stylish and original and the content reads like this too. Here’s a voice that’s genuinely left of centre. I can read about Doctor Who, or someone else’s embarrassments (that are very funny), or learn new words. Today I learnt ‘obnubilatory’. I still don’t know exactly what it means but I’m pretty excited that it’s out there.

Janet Fitch
She’s confident. I read this blog and consistently wish I knew as much as she does. Sometimes I wish I were Janet Fitch.

The Moth
It’s not a blog. It’s better than a blog. Because there are all sorts of stories on here and you get to listen to them. The real voices I hear on this site inspire me to create characters.

Once Upon a Book Blog
A fifteen year old boy documenting his readings, writings and life
This writer has a voice I would kill for. I wish I’d made him up.

Gabrielle Wang
Australian children’s author and illustrator
Gabrielle Wang just seems to know things. Like how to put a book trailer together or where I can find the latest YA information. I know Gabrielle and I love her blog because I feel like I’m having a coffee with her, talking about writing. This site is comfort food. Her voice is like wise chocolate.

Fiona Wood
I like her politics, I like her food, and I like her book. Her voice is funny and smart.

Megan Frost
Because sometimes, I want a voice without having to read words. Sometimes I just want a picture of animals looking thoughtful.

I could mention other great blogs that I go to regularly (Bean There Read That, The Hiding Spot, Steph Su Reads, The Book Owl). People are out there writing lines that make me laugh and give me ideas for writing. I want them to keep moving past me in their Internet train that has very cool things written on the side and on the windows. I’ll give them a little wave as they go past.

Be sure to visit Cath's website and blog.