Would you please tell us something about you and your site?
My blog is simply a snapshot of what appears on my personal radar, ie, what provokes thought in my daily life. My posts are comment pieces I guess but not necessarily that serious. From rants to reviews I cover things from TV to politics, music to sport and anything in between that tickles my fancy. I feel I don’t readily fit into any particular category and that, for me, is just fine!
Me personally? I guess I’m a man of the world with a variety of interests and a desire to express myself. I’m opinionated and curious in equal measure and that I suppose is where my blog stems from.
Do you feel that you continue to grow in your writing the longer you write? Why is that important to you?
Yes, most definitely. My blog is only finding it’s feet and I’m only beginning to find a voice and that’s an exciting process for me. Initially I hadn’t been the most consistent or prolific blogger. I didn’t really know where to begin but by interacting with other blogs I found new ways to express myself and just took it from there.
I’m wondering what some of your memorable experiences are with blogging?
When my stat counter began to increase with time and when people started visiting regularly and commenting that’s where the real excitement for me kicked in. Plus the first time I saw someone else link to my site from their own was quite memorable. It all kind of justifies what you do as a blogger I suppose.
What do you do in order to keep up your communication with other bloggers?
I visit a variety of different blogs every day and comment on posts that grab my attention. That helps to draw people to your own blog via clickthroughs. So people visit if they like your comments or if they provoke interest. And so the cycle develops. You start to develop relationships with like-minded people and a blogging community develops. In Ireland there is a particularly vibrant and varied blogging community and I’m slowly but surely beginning to feel part of that.
What do you think is the most exciting or most innovative use of technology in politics right now?
Any random person can have their voice heard thanks to the beauty of the internet. Forums, blogs etc are easily accessible, and better still easy to set up. The discussion and spreading of opinions on blogs and forums is very exciting and a great addition to the democratic process. Information makes the world go around.
Do you think that these new technologies are effective in making people more responsive?
Most definitely. The instantaneous spreading of information and dissemination of ideas are the defining features of the times we now live in. Technology allows politicians and citizens to connect in ways they never have before. Better still technological advance allow citizens to connect with each other in ways they never have before and that can only be healthy.
What do you think sets Your site apart from others?
I’m not sure. Perhaps the randomness of it all?!?
If you could choose one characteristic you have that brought you success in life, what would it be?
What was the happiest and gloomiest moment of your life?
Happiest was when I figured out I had a future with the girl I love!
Gloomiest was when the Republic of Ireland got knocked out of the World Cup in Japan 2002 by Spain. A tragic moment.
If you could pick a travel destination, anywhere in the world, with no worries about how it’s paid for - what would your top 3 choices be?
What is your favorite book and why?
The Lord of the Flies by William Golding. A stunning book on so many levels. Such a brilliant narrative. Tense, thrilling and one of the finest comments on the nature of civilisation and the fragility of our humanity. A remarkable allegory.
What’s the first thing you notice about a person (whether you know them or not)?
Good question! Their shoes. You can tell a lot about a man (or woman) from their shoes.
Is there anyone from your past that once told you you couldn’t write?
Not that I can think of. Although plenty of my school reports did suggest I could do better!
How bloggers can benefit from blogs financially?
There are a variety of ways bloggers can benefit financially from their blogs.
Bloggers can, and often do, become published authors on the back of their blog content.
Bloggers can sell advertising space on their sites.
Bloggers can engage in a form of product placement.
Bloggers can be hired for work in relation to what they blog about (ie, by mainstream newspapers).
Bloggers can become known for their output and be hired for TV appearances as analysts, commentators, personalities etc.
These are just some of the possible ways in which bloggers can benefit financially from their blogs. Unfortunately I am unlikely to ever avail of any of these options!
Is it true that who has a successful blog has an awful lot of time on their hands?
Successful blogging does, in my experience, require a lot of time. Right from the generation of ideas through to proofreading and site maintenance… it all takes time. So to answer your question, yes!
What role can bloggers of the world play to make this world more friendlier and less hostile?
Blog and let blog. Support (and spread) new ideas and freedom of information.
Who are your top five favourite bloggers?
and a collective called The Blog Pound (theblogpound.wordpress.com/)
Is there one observation or column or post that has gotten the most powerful reaction from people?
Of mine? Not particularly. Well nothing majorly powerful, as such, springs to mind. Not yet anyway.
What is your perception about Pakistan and its people?
I know Pakistan is a very diverse, fast growing nation with quite a large population. And like Ireland, Pakistan was once a British colonial outpost. And thankfully that is not the case any more.
I know Pakistan lies between India and Afghanistan and that you have nuclear capabilities. I just hope no-one in power in Pakistan ever gets the urge to press the button.
I do believe you also drive on the left!
My perception of the people of Pakistan is that they are passionate and partisan. Especially when it comes to cricket. Possibly overly passionate about cricket!
I once worked in a restaurant in Toronto, Canada where the majority of the staff were Pakistani. I’ve never met more reasonable, disciplined and harder working people in all my life.
Have you ever become stunned by the uniqueness of any blogger?
Perhaps not stunned. Not yet anyway. But I am constantly challenged, surprised and delighted by what I discover. I admire honesty and good writing in equal measure and thankfully am regularly impressed by the amount of both I come across when trawling through my favourite blogs.
What is the most striking difference between a developed country and a developing country?
That’s a difficult question to answer in such broad terms. Access to education perhaps. In some cases basic human rights. In others democracy and freedom of speech.
What is the future of blogging?
For blogging, the future is now. I really believe that.
You have also got a blogging life, how has it directly affected both your personal and professional life?
It hasn’t radically altered my professional life as I blog anonymously. Therefore my blogging doesn’t influence my working life as such.
Personally, it has opened my eyes to many talented, varied and passionate writers. It has also given me the opportunity to have a voice in the wider world and to express my opinions and thoughts in a new and challenging way.
What are your future plans?
To keep doing what I’m doing and maybe become more consistent and prolific. Oh and eventually take over the world!
Any Message you want to give to the readers of The Pakistani Spectator?
Life goes by pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.