Monday, May 30, 2005

Some of my best friends are sub-genre specific horror blogs...

With the recent proliferation of horror blogs, The Groovy Age of Horror has written an incredible post on finding your specific niche, and though it's directed at horror specifically, I imagine it would apply to just about anything. It's an absolutely compelling and persuasive argument which I hope you take the time to read. Oh, and I disagree with large chunks of it.

One effect of the article, for both myself and others, is to prompt us to re-examine our intentions with blogging. My main difference in opinion stems, I guess, from my own decision to examine horror as a whole. There are at least two reasons I can think of why potential horror bloggers may not want to find a niche, no matter how potentially lucrative it may be. One, they may not have or wish to acquire the specialized knowledge required to run such a blog. I know that Corpse Eaters would be quite sparse if I focused on only one aspect of horror. And the second reason is simple boredom. Corpse Eaters is my hobby, and even though I could take a stab at condensing my writing to certain topics, that would inevitably result in disinterest with the blog as a whole.

Also, as I related in my initial post on Corpse Eaters, my reason for starting the blog was to more closely examine my affection for a subject I know very little about. I'd say I'm the least knowledgeable person among the Pajama Brigade, and for me, delving into the world of Horror and seeing what makes it tick is half the fun. If I had a blog that was tailored to a specific area which I did have more expertise in, I wouldn't feel as much of the thrill of discovery which lead me to start it in the first place.

Blogs still have a stigma attached to them of being primarily about a person's personal life. Like anything fairly new, their use as a source for information and healthy debate is often derided by more established mediums that share the same goals. Among the advantages blogs have in comparison to more mainstream avenues is that they are often more cohesive and less likely to be answerable to higher-ups (though to be fair there are obviously some disadvantages to go with this freedom). Even if a blog has a diverse range of subject matter, a blogger's style of writing, persistence in making updates and what the blogger chooses or chooses not to focus on can create success both personally and, if you're interested, in page hits. I think a well-maintained general horror blog or three would be a boon to everyone, including those who choose to become more specialized.

Once again, I'd like to point out that the post linked to at the start is a great read (no need for justifications), and I hope it helps future horror bloggers in determining their intent, if any. Most of my favourite blogs are, like The Groovy Age, very specific in their topics and I certainly hope to see many more of them in the future. The Groovy Age's example of a giallo-based blog has certainly whet my appetite.

9 Comments:

Blogger HP said...

I don't know if M Valdemar always comes off like this, but I, too, have found my interest in horror has been sort of an off and on thing over the years. I loved the "Chiller Theater" movies on TV when I was a kid, and then I found the "splatstick" movies in the 80s (Evil Dead, Re-animator, etc.). But I can't say that I'm a horror expert like some people are. And I've not yet begun to specialize. Mostly, what I'm interested in is, "Why am I interested in horror right now? What is it about the times we live in that I've gotten so involved in horror?" And I think the best way for me to deal with that in my blog is to blog about whatever horror interests me, and look for patterns in retrospect.

4:21 pm  
Blogger Carnacki said...

I originally began mine as a New Year's resolution to let more friends read my manuscript and give me feedback on it.

One point I think might be lost in the overall debate, but you certainly touch on is the personal nature of it. It's not like this is a revenue producing operation. It's a hobby (OK, I put ads up, but that was more because I thought it'd make the site look cooler).

5:08 pm  
Blogger Curt said...

Great post, Steven! You, HP, Benjamin and others have given interesting and insightful feedback that will definitely help me when I get around to writing Part II. Oh, and you've got a great blog going here. Keep it up! Thanks!

7:36 am  
Blogger Steven said...

Thanks for visiting, everyone. I was delevoping an ulcer over my response. I keep forgetting that blogs tend to be more reasonable then message boards. Basically, I agree completely that creating a niche blog from the get-go can help the blogger immensely. I had an anything-goes blog before this, and it went nowhere quick. Focusing on horror has certainly helped me out. I think it's just a matter of intent. I'm not interested in writing for an audience, though I acknowledge they might be out there when I write. I'm doing this largely to see where I finally end up, without restrictions.

Looking forward to future installments, Curt.

11:34 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I recently checked out the "Night of the Living Dead Survivor's Cut." It's very cool, of course if you're one of those people that just doesn't like anything to be re-done then maybe it's not for you.

For me, a person that likes the original yet is looking for something more contemporary. This film is a must. I'm waiting to see it on DVD or Cable TV, etc. Hope this happens!

PS: I'm an old Sir Graves Ghastly fan...

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