Over the last few weeks I’ve been interacting a bit more with other bloggers. It’s been really interesting to see what other people are doing around the world. It’s also very nice that people are liking and commenting on A Dude’s work, so I’m trying to step up my game and return the favor as I’m able, which takes more time than one would expect.
Also, last night, I again attended the monthly event where writers read one page from a work in progress that’s held in my town. Not only did I find more inspiration there, some fairly well-known folks were in attendance. So here’s a blog about blogging and writing and all that jazz.
The United Colors of Bloggertown
Here are the bloggers I’ve come across and who are actually and following me. I doubt they’re all reading everything I post, and maybe some aren’t reading anything. That’s understandable — A Dude hasn’t figured out how to keep up with his own stuff, much less everyone else’s stuff. And I only have 32 followers. What about those with 5,000 or more? (There are others who don’t blog but just signed up to follow me, but I appreciate them too!) Anyway, you should go to WordPress Reader, plug in their names, and check them out!
|Best Mens Health Products @chucksmenshealth|
|Genuine Love and Happiness @genuinelove4all|
|Live Longer – Live Stronger @mitjao|
|Neil Morrison @thesultrysinglespeeder|
|Scott Jangro @sjangro|
|Valley Redd @ryzeog|
Some have incredible stories – the mother who lost five children. There’s the Scottish cyclist who was about to do a 24-hour ride til he got sick. A Spanish erotic writer whose words are like butter in the brain. A South African poet and prose writer who is intriguing. An Australian chanteuse, vixen, goofball storyteller. A sci fi guy with tons of followers who’s just in college. Health food folks. A local writer of many things including books. And more. So here’s a collective thank you to them for their bravery at writing their stories and appreciation for liking or commenting on my posts, and also an apology for being new to the game and not following, liking or commenting on every single thing.
One Page Salon: A Wealth of Talent in One Room
The monthly author gathering is fun. The readings are vastly different. From poignant to hilarious, profound to simple, moving to terrifying, you never know what you’re going to get. Owen asks the readers three questions, assigns a phrase to each, and otherwise is a pretty hilarious host.
But the best part of OPS is the time spent before, at intermish, and after the readings, where you actually talk to people. So I spoke with @PNRHauser who gave me some great tips, and David Perkins, a prolific writer, lover of history and real estate agent and nice guy with a Chicago accent who gave me a ride so I didn’t have to bicycle in the cold and wet.
Here are five conversations I had:
#1. I’m standing at the bar while David talks to gnomish but charming host, Owen Egerton, a multi-hyphenate if ever there were one. He’s a: comedian, author, director, screenwriter, host, teacher, radio guy, blogger, dad, wife, gnome. I interject a hello and tell Owen “I’ve been blogging my butt off this year, partially because of OPS!”. He then turns to me and, beer in hand, red watch cap pulled down a bit on his forehead, not quite covering his reddish locks, and genuinely (I hope!) said: “Yes, I read your blog! You’re out there DOING stuff, not just offering you’re opinion.” That floored me, because again, who has the time? Wowza. Thanks, man!
Then there’s some guy who asked, “Are you a writer?” I replied, “I’m going to say… yes! I am a writer.” I say my name and he says, “Hi, I’m Tate.” And in my mind I’m like, screaming to myself, “Wait! This is Tate Donovan! He’s been in movies and on TV! I later find out he’s a four-time Emmy-winning actor and now is a director for a Netflix show. He’s a legit celebrity! And he’s shaking my hand! OMG! Do I tell him I know who who he is? Too late, I didn’t! What do I do? I guess I’ll just keep talking to him!” And then I realized that I had stopped freaking out because he’s so… at ease, which put me at ease. We go on to talk about bicycling which he did alot in New York, but he’s now too scared to do it here. I tell him about my bike guide idea, and he thinks it’s a good one. Except he lives where it’s just not safe. Still, very cool. Was it an act? I’ll never know.
#3. I was standing around the merch tables after and said hello to a musician I’d met before, Jeff Johnston. He plays a beautiful electric saw, yes, a saw, often with painter and musician Ethan Azarian who is formerly of the band Orange Mothers. I knew him because I used to work with and for his wife. Anyway, Jeff remembered me, which I found flattering, because I was in a group of people listening to him play at East Austin Studio Tour and before that at an Austin institution, Hole in the Wall. He played with Lindsey Verrill, who goes by the band name Little Mazarn and who plays a mean electric, lit-up banjo and sings like a wounded, beautiful bluebird. I reminded her she made the print of Ethan’s design that’s a cow and the words SURVIVE YOURSELF which hangs in my room. Very nice, unassuming, creative, and quirky people.
#4 & #5 One of the readers was standing there, in fact nationally known musician Bob Schneider. He translated some popular songs into poetry. If I’d known the lyrics better I probably would have gotten it better, but it was amusing. We chatted a bit about my blog. I said, “If you’re sitting on the toilet with your phone and nothing better to read, that’s when you should look at http://www.ADudeAbikes.com.” He said I should come see him play his weekly Monday gig at the Saxon Pub. I said, “I’m not cool enough to be allowed into South Austin,” and he laughed, “Of course you are!” Before that, I had a longer talk with his wife, Laura Moore-Schneider, who read a hilarious thing about serial killers. She totally loved my bike guide idea too and said no one was doing it so I should. Nice, talented, funny people.
Well, it was a good night. Not because I was hanging out with celebrities. But because I put myself out there and was part of something bigger than I. In my own way, I guess I’m doing my tiny bit to be part of a larger community. And meanwhile, the blog likes and comments keep coming in. I’ll try to keep up, but no promises. Now that I’m hanging out with Tate and Bob and you know, the beautiful people!
Do you know any well-known people? What’s it like talking to them?
If you’re a blogger, what advice do you have for A Dude to make his blog better?
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