The first of two topics at Armchair BEA today is "Keeping it Real, Fresh, and Fun." I myself prefer to be real, fresh, and fun (vs false, stale, and boring), but how does one do this?
"Real" is perhaps the hardest part. I dunno what "real" is, and I wonder about my authenticity on a daily basis, as I move from role to role (mother, wife, worker, reader, person hiding in a quiet corner). And when you project your "self" into the void of the internet, it all gets fuzzy around the edges.
I do try to be real, though (I think). I'm not shy about using personal pronouns. I try to avoid meaningless adjectives. I allow myself to write what I feel about particular books, as well as what I think (critically, on a good day, which of course isn't the same as negatively). I express political opinions from time to time, but I try to do so matter of factly, not stridently. I do not deliberately deceive.
Though I might question my own reality, I can't think of any blogger I read who I don't think of as "real." And I don't think it's because all the bloggers I read are spinning veils of illusion.
Short answer to self: just write what you want to write, how you want to write it, and don't get your knickers in a twist about reality.
"Fresh" and "Fun" are easy. Fresh and fun are all about not falling into a rut. I kind of know when I'm not Tremendously Excited about reviewing a book when I default to my standard of summary followed by commentary. For instance, I had a great time reviewing River of Time recently, and did so in a "fresh" and "fun" way. It was fresh and fun to me, that is. There are lots of blogs I love that I don't think of as "fun," but which are worthwhile...I think "fun" is more important to the blog writer, than the blog reader.
Short answer: only read books that you are really excited about writing about. Only blog when your mind is fully of zesty words that will spill playfully onto the page.
Problem: yeah, right.
(here's my Armchair BEA giveaway post; ends next Wednesday night)