does it matter where i write?

For the most part, I don't crosspost the things I write here. Once in awhile I'll do it on Medium, but I usually forget. Pretty much everyone I know is on Facebook, and that's where I'll find my biggest audience, if a big audience is what I'm after.

A week or so ago, a friend invited me to join the party, where we choose our 20 favorite albums. I've been posting to FB once or twice a day ... by the time I post this, I'll probably be through 19 of the 20. I might crosspost in reverse, still those FB posts onto the blog, one by one. Point is, on Facebook, the things I write, which are often quite similar to what ends up on this blog, get a lot more audience interaction.

Of course, on Facebook, we pretend we aren't writing for an audience. We're talking to our Friends. But I'm not sure the difference is all that great.

My first post, which included the first and second of the twenty, received 6 "Likes" and one comment. Next post had 8 Likes and 5 comments. The next post had 18 Likes, a couple of which were "Loves", and 4 comments. The 18th post had 9 likes, 7 comments. You get the idea.

I have no idea what this means.

 


music friday: happy birthday, steven rubio's online life

This blog turns 15 years old today.

I was 48 years old when I started.

The first music post (second post overall), from that first day on January 6, 2002, had a picture of Robin I called “The Cowgirl and the Cactus”, and a link to the Bruce Springsteen song, “Used Cars”. There was no apparent connection between Robin and the song.

Here is what I wrote on the occasion of the 14th birthday:

There is something old-fashioned about persisting in a format that has long been overtaken by other forms of online presentation.

And there is something odd about continuing to write for the smallest of audiences.

But think of this: my blog has never had advertising. I’ve never made any money from it, unless you count published writing that had its root here (i.e. I was “discovered” via my blog writing ... of course, much of my published writing has been unpaid/academic). This allows me to pretend my writing is “pure”.

Changes have occurred over time. I used to write about a broader area. I hesitate now to write about things where I know people who can do better jobs, so I rarely write about politics, and I write less about sports than I did in the past. The blog has become an arts site, where I write about TV, movies, and music ... and admittedly, when someone has asked me to write for publication, it’s those areas that come up.

I know there is some good writing buried in the past fourteen years, pieces where I happen to read them by accident and don’t always know they are mine until I’m finished, and I think, “I am good enough”. The published stuff, which doesn’t appear here, is of varying quality ... I think my piece on punk cinema for Nick Rombes was good, ditto for my Bugs Bunny Meets Picasso essay for Michael Berube. My Battlestar Galactica and King Kong essays might be the best of my Smart Pop work. Point is, the form is shorter, but I occasionally reach those heights on this blog. Maybe for 2016 I should find a way to foreground Past Classics.

What I hope to avoid as much as possible is the type of naked confessional I am far too capable of indulging in. It’s worth repeating every once in awhile the motto for this blog, Kael’s “I’m frequently asked why I don’t write my memoirs. I think I have.”


throwback this blog

These are rough figures, done very quickly and unscientifically by hand.

Just under 50% of the posts on this blog in 2016 carried the Film label. This compares to Music (about 1/3 of the posts), Television (1/7 of the posts), and Current Affairs (less than 1% of the posts).

I may be compulsive, but I am not going to look prior to 2016. But I think I can say a few things about the above numbers.

I write more about film than anything else.

I write a lot about music, but this is primarily because it’s the one category with a built-in schedule (Music Fridays).

I write less about television than I used to.

I hardly ever write about current affairs, which used to be one of my most frequently-used tags (108 posts in 2003, the first full year of this blog, compared to 7 this year).

I think the main reason for this is that I have no confidence any longer in my ability to bring something new to the table regarding current affairs. My opinions haven’t changed very much over the years, so if anyone wants to know what I think, they can just look into the archives. But more importantly, there are so many excellent writers and thinkers about current affairs that I don’t think I can match them. My approach to writing in general is extremely subjective, but I’d like my approach to writing about politics to be grounded in reality, and again, others do this better than I do.

When it comes to the arts, I am even more subjective than usual, but I believe that is the best approach, and so I have something new to say with every movie or TV show or concert or book. And since the only reason this blog still exists is so I have an outlet for the writing that I am apparently incapable of quitting, the blog gets more arts oriented and less real-life oriented.

Here’s a link to the very first “current affairs” post on this blog, from January 24, 2002:

http://begonias.typepad.com/srubio/2002/01/_the_apotheosis.html

Perhaps it’s a sign of things to come that it also carries a “Sleater-Kinney” tag. Another sign of its age (15 years): I had to remove two dead links from the original post.


happy birthday, steven rubio's online life

This blog began 14 years ago today.

Who the hell does anything for fourteen years?

There is something old-fashioned about persisting in a format that has long been overtaken by other forms of online presentation.

And there is something odd about continuing to write for the smallest of audiences.

But think of this: my blog has never had advertising. I’ve never made any money from it, unless you count published writing that had its root here (i.e. I was “discovered” via my blog writing ... of course, much of my published writing has been unpaid/academic). This allows me to pretend my writing is “pure”.

Changes have occurred over time. I used to write about a broader area. I hesitate now to write about things where I know people who can do better jobs, so I rarely write about politics, and I write less about sports than I did in the past. The blog has become an arts site, where I write about TV, movies, and music ... and admittedly, when someone has asked me to write for publication, it’s those areas that come up.

I know there is some good writing buried in the past fourteen years, pieces where I happen to read them by accident and don’t always know they are mine until I’m finished, and I think, “I am good enough”. The published stuff, which doesn’t appear here, is of varying quality ... I think my piece on punk cinema for Nick Rombes was good, ditto for my Bugs Bunny Meets Picasso essay for Michael Berube. My Battlestar Galactica and King Kong essays might be the best of my Smart Pop work. Point is, the form is shorter, but I occasionally reach those heights on this blog. Maybe for 2016 I should find a way to foreground Past Classics.

What I hope to avoid as much as possible is the type of naked confessional I am far too capable of indulging in. It’s worth repeating every once in awhile the motto for this blog, Kael’s “I’m frequently asked why I don’t write my memoirs. I think I have.”

Right now, the thing that has me most excited is catching up with The 100 before Season Three begins. I might have a pretty good post about that surprisingly fine show, which made #9 on my Top Ten List even though I only started watching it a short time ago.

 


notes from a smart phone

It couldn't be worse timing. My hard drive died just as this blog turned 13. Whenever I reach one of these anniversaries, I start wondering why I continue. The absence of an actual keyboard doesn't exactly make me want to compose a post. Smart phones are better served by Twitter, where we only have to type 140 characters. (It's funny that I say "type", when I'm using SwiftKey, which only requires that I swipe my finger.) But when I don't post, it's as if nothing happened. I'm watching some new TV shows, but no post, didn't happen. The grandkid does something cute... Well, that happened because it shows up on Google Plus. But my usual blogging topics just disappear. And I'm already tired of writing on my phone, so all this post really is, is a reminder that I am still alive.

temporary thing

Just a note: my computer is acting up, I'm worried the hard drive is dying, so things will be a bit spare around here for a bit. Yes, I know, I missed Music Friday, which was partly blog burnout, but also computer anxiety.

To make up for yesterday, I'll attach a music video to this post. Hadn't intended it to be this one, but I'm inspired by the title of the post.