Saturday, November 05, 2005

Viewfinder BLUES: One Year In

WARNING! The following passage is one of those narcissistic anniversary postings so easily disparaged by the non-blogging public. If rambling critique and half-baked introspection isn’t your idea of a good read, check back tomorrow. Otherwise, the navel gazing begins in five seconds. 5..4..3..2..1...

A False Start

Back in June of 2004, I stumbled onto Blogger, chose a template and named it Viewfinder BLUES. After dropping in a couple of short stories from my stash of drivel, I sat back and waited for the magic to happen. When it did not, I promptly forgot about it and went back to contributing to my favorite message board, emphatically underwhelmed by what I’d even yet to hear referred to as ‘the blogosphere‘. But four moths later I revisited my dusty little shelf and quite by accident, hit the ’Next Blog’ icon in the right-hand top of the screen. Great Gutenberg! With the twitch of the fingertip I reeled through a universe I never really knew existed, an endless stream of homemade web-pages screeching thought and opinion on subjects as diverse as the internet itself. The speed of it all blurred my vision and as I rubbed my eyes to regain focus, I considered the implications: free and friendly software like this had already enabled the citizenry to join the conversation, if it hit critical mass it would change the face of communication, or at least be the most significant development in The Media’s history since the invention of the printing press. Or maybe not. Whatever the case, I was reinvigorated - manifestly destined to forge a place on the web for my own particular point of view. Since that momentous day, precisely twelve months have passed.

Kindness of Strangers

Much to most people’s surprise, I am not the least bit technically adept. My brain spews over-baked prose at a frightening clip, but don’t ask it to read an instruction manual. I’d rather summon a 700 word epistle on the joys of electricity than change a light bulb, rather re-categorize my library than reprogram my cell phone. Thus, my launch into the blogosphere was with my typical lack of schematic acumen. Luckily, I ascended into a most promising patch of local cyberspace. Through the magic of Google, I staggered into my first aggregator - a site understandably entitled Greensboro is Talking. There, a mysterious figure named The Shu graciously aided me in my quest, quietly answering my quizzical e-mails and turning me onto a true gentleman with the meekest of monikers, Patrick Eakes. Patrick pointed to the bearded fellow in the paper, and soon I fell in with the revolutionaries. No one was more surprised than I when I attended the first of many meet-ups, coffee house rendezvous with poets, geeks and madmen. These monthly summits soon congealed into a scene of sorts and before I knew it, a whole bunch of new friends were reading my work and sharing theirs. Recently, these insatiable communicators attracted far-off pioneers and local attention with a landmark symposium, ConvergeSouth - an inaugural conference sure to be dissected, embellished and best of all, repeated. I can hardly wait.

With the Help of Weaver

Not only has push-button publishing introduced me to intriguing strangers, but its helped me get to know some familiar faces a whole lot better. Many of these were co-workers, people I passed in the halls who, suddenly privy to my late night thoughts, now stopped to talk. More than a few of them have reciprocated with excited dispatches of their own, proving that its far easier to start a blog than keep one going. I’ve enjoyed reading every word of it - even when they only number in the dozens. But this paragraph isn’t about output analysis, its about saying thanks. Aside from my lovely bride, who openly abides my electronic mistress, Chris Weaver deserves my unending gratitude, for this fellow shooter/blogger/auteur has saved this flimsy craft from crashing into the horizon more times than I can count. Whether he’s uncovering errors in my source code or tweaking a difficult non-linear edit, the Mighty Weave has hooked a brother up time and time again. Why exactly, I don’t know, but if you like this site do me a favor and go visit tvphotogblog himself. Just don’t ride shotgun in his news unit without strapping in snugly. The man races through the breakdown lane of life, logging each breakneck mile with the same clever, affable vibe - whether he’s hurtling toward a gory plane crash a Nascar race or a Taco Bell drive-thru. He is Southern Photog: Defined, and a true Friend of the Show.

Habits of the Obsessed

Enough of my accomplices, let’s examine the mechanics. At the outset of my experiment, I vowed to file a post EVERY DAY. This was easy in the beginning, when I was pulling pieces from my collection of b-roll rants. This material; idioms, allegories and anecdotes compiled from a year or two of message board binging set the tone for what I wanted to blog about: the Perils of Electronic Newsgathering. But when that well went dry, my stale repository turned into a live blogcast and I was forced to log quality time with my keyboard, the very reason I started this site to begin with. Since then, I’ve averaged five posts a week, mostly composing screeds in the midnight hours or early morning light, sometimes on my laptop in the den, but mostly in my upstairs lair - the one filled with nautical knickknacks, dusty hardbacks and broadcast bric-a-brac. When I write, I often enjoy Guatemalan coffee, Kentucky Bourbon, the electric Blues and the squawking, large-billed bird that sits atop the old dead tree outside my window. I’m a great speller, a vociferous reader and a lousy typist. My wife calls me ‘Peck-Peck’, a most dubious nickname based on the clickety-clack sound emanating from my late night sessions. Having learned never to ignore The Voice, I tend to work in furious spurts, usually hitting ’Publish’ without the first revision. Sometimes I delve back into the text to tweak phrasing, but mostly I leave it alone once its online. This, I hope, helps to explain the many misspellings, deluded second references and twisted metaphors that populate my prose. Hey, you get what you pay for.

A Dearth of Dead Presidents

Speaking of funding, I’ve studiously avoided spending money on my yearlong obsession. Minus the purchase of my now-battered digital camera and a monthly DSL bill, I’ve dropped no coin on Viewfinder BLUES, determined all along to do it all on the fly. Instead, a recent check of $5.24 hangs above my flat screen, profits reamed from the AltMedia101 advertising scheme I have a small part in. Like a framed dollar bill at a Chinese Buffet, said check represents the beginning of my empire and I thus have no plans of ever cashing it. Sorry, Roch. As for content analysis, I ain’t done much but most of my postings do fall into a few basic categories. Most are picture safaris, visual souvenirs fresh from the daily hunt with narratives fresh from my burbling brain-pan. These are the easiest to write, as they are impressions only hours old. Harder to conjure but equally rewarding are the recollected epics-in-waiting I’ve managed to record, virtual transcripts of half-forgotten tales I’ve recounted over crime tape or cocktails. By far though, the biggest readership spikes have come from the occasional ’think piece’ I’ve posted, partly due to the work’s timeliness but mostly due to my habit of pimping out the work I’m proudest of. Much of the rest is comprised of thoughts wrapped around a particular link, easy enough fodder for a guy who surfs 40 to 50 different sites pretty religiously. In the future, I hope to master the daily quote, occasional cartoon and Top Ten list, as these things translate well to title-based linking. Speaking of numbers...

Stats and Spikes

If you’re still reading this, you’re either really bored or still fairly intrigued. If it’s the latter, I’d advised you have that condition checked by a trained physician. For now though, merely adjust your safety goggles, as we are entering the Site Meter Zone. It’s an amazing tool, really - one that allows me to track my readership quite closely. At this sitting, there have been 43,278 visits to my site, barely a ripple in the cyber-sea, but respectable numbers considering a year ago the only people reading my mind were the hearty denizens of b-roll.net. Currently I average 125 hits a day, though I have logged mind boggling spikes of a few thousand daily readers, once after uber-blogger Jeff Jarvis linked to my essay, ’Birth of the Personal Journalist’, on his well-traveled site ‘Buzz Machine‘. I enjoyed another dizzying 24 hour tally when a Hungarian website featured ‘my ‘Maximum Overdrive’ video one day, proving the delightful sight of cameramen scrambling for cover transcends all language barriers. Geographically speaking, most of my readers hail from the same continent, but a few clicks on the Site Meter tells me I have regular readers in Chile, Kuwait, Warsaw and inexplicably, New Zealand. For a guy can still remember floundering on a seventh grade world map quiz, this is pretty heady stuff. Of course my favorite aspect of traffic analysis is knowing what website my readers leave to get to mine. This tells me what links live and which ones die on the vine. I’m especially delighted to report an uptick in Google hits, visits resulting from someone typing in ’Lenslinger’ and hitting search. If I can increase these instances by a few million, I might finally be able to swing that speedboat.

More To Come

Until such time, I’ll keeping swinging a camera by day and babbling about it by night. It’s quite the paradox: As a blue-collar schlub who dreams of leaving the workaday woes for literary greatness, my primary muse is the job I love to hate. In other words, if I ever do escape this thankless gig, what the hell am I gonna write about…gardening? Not likely. Maybe one day I’ll conquer the world of fiction, but for now, I can't remember the last novel I read. I’m far too busy, scanning blogs, scribbling phrases and indulging my notebook fetish. I’ve thought for years now about getting published before I turned 40. At 38 and 9/12ths, I’d better get crackin’. For now, I plan to keep on plugging away, propping up a title I always thought would be the name of my memoir, not some amorphous blob cloaked in pixels and vinegar. Oh well, it beats my earlier attempts at meditating on page. For years I only half-listened to the crusty commentator in my head. Sharing my inner narrator with others in this living compendium has been one of the most rewarding acts of creativity I’ve ever managed to stick with. It may never line my pockets with silver, but it’s already paid off in more ways than I can mention. If nothing else, being a photographer known primarily for his writing is a pretty deep kick in and of itself. Thanks, as always, for reading...

53 comments:

Anonymous said...

Nice blog. Your posts were interesting reading. I have a natural cancer supplements site. It covers everything about natural cancer supplements as well as colon cancer prevention, warning signs, and the treatment for colon cancer. You'll find it very informative. Please try and visit it, see what you think.
Rod

Anonymous said...

Ambitious young pols blog it out on the Net
Letters from lawyers are flying in a controversy pitting some of Montana's young and ambitious political operatives from both parties against each other.
Find out how to buy and sell anything, like things related to road construction of pa on interest free credit and pay back whenever you want! Exchange FREE ads on any topic, like road construction of pa!

Anonymous said...

I've Made My First Affiliate Commission!

See How I Did It Here - It's Quick And Easy!

dairy product

Anonymous said...

Be prepared for the next hurricane picture or find another one that's similar. As the Boy Scouts say: "Be Prepared"!

port hole mirror said...

Hi there,

I just ran across your site and enjoyed reading through everything.

I'm trying to get a blog going on my site too. But I dont think i have the patience to do it!

--Amy
My fish nets Site

Anonymous said...

NASCAR PATCHES that can be ironed onto leather or fabric for a tight bond that will not peel. The backing and the stitching is of materials that resist fading from the sun, and is completely washable. $6.00 each.
(There is a PayPal link on the "car badge" page, Or you may mail a check.)
**NASCAR**

Anonymous said...

Greatest Blog Post. Please visit this site on long distance relationship
long distance relationship

used surfboard said...

Well, is there something a little weird going on here? I don't know about you Lenslinger, but my blog gets pretty cluttered with spammy comments from people. My advice to you as one blog owner to another, is to be patient and focus on the great things about having a blog, instead of all the junk that goes on. You do have a quality blog and appears that you enjoy it. My favorite web project so far is a new surfboards site, because I have total control and it makes me a couple dollars here and there. It's pretty hard to find new information on new surfboards stuff though. Hey, keep up your excellent job Lenslinger, and good luck with your projects..

See ya ~

Anonymous said...

Great Blog! Ilike it.But here you can find woman looking for sexTake a look if you have a minute. Thanks and have a good one!

cheap surf board said...

Lenslinger, I need a little inspiration... I've read your post 'Viewfinder BLUES: One Year In', I enjoyed it so I decided to comment. I've been thinking about my blog and how there are all these people posting strange comments there. Maybe you understand, I'm not sure, but it's tiring to read the numbers of comments that don't have much to do with my stuff. My normal used surfboards website never suffers this because it just sells used surfboards and isn't a blog. Do you have any ideas for how to stop the cluttering of non-relevant comments? Thanks for your great blog. Tips are always welcome...

good day -

used surf boards said...

Hey Lenslinger...
How did you get your blog to be so good? Originally I was out trying to locate surf boards related information, but your post ' Viewfinder BLUES: One Year In ' got my attention and stopped me in my tracks :) Glad I found you because I'm trying to improve my site about surf boards and your blog here gave me some excellent ideas. Thanks Lenslinger for the good read and I think I'll mention your blog to my cousin (if that's okay...)

Keep up your effort ~ and good job.

Photographic Equipment Repairers said...

Hey Lenslinger,

Your blog "Viewfinder BLUES: One Year In", leads me to believe you will find my information on our Best Career Wages site to be very beneficial.

Some of the not so common searches that found our extensive wages site included ...

Aircraft Mechanics Wages
Aircraft Service Technicians Wages
Automotive Body Repairers Wages
Automotive Glass Installers Wages
Automotive Glass Repairers Wages
Automotive Service Technicians Wages
Automotive Mechanics Wages
Avionics Technicians Wages.


We have many hundreds of "essential to read" articles on wages and career topics in addition to many other popular subjects in our Average Career Wages site.

Best Wishes
Emily

prospects said...

I’ve been researching the subject phone broadcasting and found your site to be resourceful. Although it may not be supporting my Viewfinder BLUES: One Year In project, it certainly does provide a fine service and got my attention while I was searching for phone broadcasting related information. With a fine site like this one and belonging to Lenslinger, I’m sure you’ll achieve your goals. Thanks for reading this.

surf board said...

Hi, you almost lost me for one second there... but I'm glad I didn't click away. First, I enjoyed your post, and second, maybe you can help. I don't know how much blog spam you get but I get tons on my blog. Most of the time I'm talking about new surfboards stuff because I have a new surfboards website, and people post all this junk with their links and stuff. As blog owners, I guess we'll always be subject to the unethical and inconsiderate. Well, hopefully it's not driving you to crazy... Good luck partner, enjoy the positives friend.

Bye ~

new surf boards said...

Howdy Lenslinger,
I'm impressed with what you wrote here in your Viewfinder BLUES: One Year In post. I gave up my search for used surf boards information and wanted to hang out here on your blog - well done. I might make a blog like yours about used surf boards, but I wouldn't try to compete with you. You're doing a great job Lenslinger.
You got a great thing going... by friend.

Pamela said...


relationship tip 101 Ways to Build Happy, Lasting Relationships.

Multilingual : English - Chinese Simplified - Chinese Traditional - Dutch - French - German - Greek - Italian - Japanese - Korean - Portuguese - Russian - Spanish

Dinner by the Fire : Order in some of your favorite food, open a bottle of fine wine, light some candles. relationship tip

sarafisher7268 said...

I read over your blog, and i found it inquisitive, you may find My Blog interesting. My blog is just about my day to day life, as a park ranger. So please Click Here To Read My Blog

detectors said...

Radar detectors come in all shapes and sizes, but may not be effective enough to work to protect you against costly speeding tickets. Many motorists choose to invest in radar jamming devices instead of radar detectors that may leave your car unaware of potential speed traps, police officers, or state troopers waiting to ticket speeding. Find out more about brand model laser detectors uniden radar detector

petindex said...

Great blog. I really like it. You may like my blog about saltwater aquarium fish . Please take a look and leave a comment about it.

cmeltifa said...

Hi my friend! This is a good blog. I just got back home from shopping with the wife and decided to log in and do some internet surfing.(needed some time to myself if you know what I mean) I came across your blog and really enjoyed it. Not many people keep their blogs up to date and most of the blogs I do fine are not even relevant to the blog topic. I bookmarked your blog for future use.
Anyways keep up the awesome work and if you don�t mind I will forward your blog off to a few of my buddies. Thanks a bunch!discount london hotel

thomas said...

Sad to say I just got back from a dart tournament and decided to log in and do some surfing. I love your blog. It had some very good laughs. I am doing a paper on computer laptop laptop lt lt notebook pc pc power and have been downloading information for the last two hours. I don�t know how I came across your blog but I am sure glad I did. It has set me back a little because I have spent the last 2 hours reading your archives. If you don�t mind I would like to add you to my favorites so I can back again and read some more. Well I need to get back to computer laptop laptop lt lt notebook pc pc power. I am almost finished with it. Great job.

p.s some great points on your site

kevinjones79810594 said...

I read over your blog, and i found it inquisitive, you may find My Blog interesting. So please Click Here To Read My Blog

http://pennystockinvestment.blogspot.com

coin collecting said...

Hi there
I was out blogging and came across this one. A very fine written piece of work.

Thanks for the great reading
morgan dollars

Sam said...

While searching for as seen on tv trimmer I just have not had the best search results. Maybe I need to create my own blog and let others post so I can get better info on as seen on tv trimmer.

Shawn T Lippert said...

Thank you for the informative blog
Here Is some additional
Contact Lens Resources for daily wear,dipsposable, and color contact lense if you or your readers are interested.

David said...

Have you seen any information on fashion as seen on tv ? I just have not had the best results when blog surfing today. Anywho back to my endless search for fashion as seen on tv .

breast cancer bracelet said...

Hi,
I was searching through Blogger to see if I can find some information on breast cancer bracelet. I stumbled on your blog, as this was not quite what I was looking for about breast cancer bracelet. I did however read your blog and found it quite interesting, keep up the good work and hopefully I will visit it again.
Regards,

SEO said...

Cool Blog Here! I have a pixel web site If want to promote your web site on my http://www.pixelhurricane.com website the cost is $497.00 for a 100 block of pixels but it will get your site listed in the top of the search engines. SEO

website promotion said...

Cool Blog Here! I have a pixel web site If want to promote your web site on my http://www.pixelhurricane.com website the cost is $497.00 for a 100 block of pixels but it will get your site listed in the top of the search engines. website promotion

Derek said...

Valuable points, but the real question is how come.Have to get back to my studies on notebook personal computer.Thank you so much,notebook personal computer.

promotion said...

Cool Blog Here! I have a pixel web site If want to promote your web site on my http://www.pixelhurricane.com website the cost is $497.00 for a 100 block of pixels but it will get your site listed in the top of the search engines. promotion

Anonymous said...

Want more content please...
Searching for turbo traffic
http://www.1st-choice-4-website-traffic.com
turbo traffic

James Baker said...

I was just searching blogs,and I found your site, Friend! I like it!
Please accept my compliments and wishes for your happiness and success.
If you have a moment, please take a look at my site:
business portal
It pretty much covers business portal related issues.
All the best!

Expansion Joints said...

Thanks for all the great comments and insights..By the way, are you looking for more information on Industrial Work Benches ..If so here is a fantastic resource for everything related to batteries and Industrial Work Benches with information, products, articles and more..Check it out here...dampex.com

Pantyhoser said...

Wow, this is a nice blog! I have a fetish foot forum blog with hot erotic stories and pictures related to pantyhose and foot fetish. Take a look at Pantyhosed Feet Gallery Viewer

Search engine optimization said...

Cool Blog Here! I have a pixel web site If want to promote your web site on my http://www.pixelhurricane.com website the cost is $497.00 for a 100 block of pixels but it will get your site listed in the top of the search engines. Search engine optimization

Pantyhoser said...

I must say I really enjoyed reading your blog. I have a fetish foot movie blog with hot erotic stories and pictures related to pantyhose and foot fetish. Take a look at Pantyhosed Feet Gallery Viewer

list said...

Cool Blog Here! I have a pixel web site If want to promote your web site on my http://www.pixelhurricane.com website the cost is $497.00 for a 100 block of pixels but it will get your site listed in the top of the search engines. list

Online Degree Adviser said...

Hi, I was surfing the internet and here I am at your blog. I'm quite impressed , with how you have put it all together.

I'll be coming back again.

Cheers,

condo

Clothing Specialist said...

Interesting blog, be sure and check out my site / blog when you get a chance at www.shoes-apparel-discount-fashion.com Thanks and have a great day.

speed reading said...

That was a wonderful blog. Thank you so much for sharing it.

speed reading

TomP said...

Well I have a few vacation days this week and what better way to spend it surfing through blogs! I actually do this a ton to get ideas for my own blog site that I run on notebook personal computer. It seems that you keep your blog up to date and get some very good posts from users all over the place. If you don�t mind I added you to my web favorites and you may want to grab my website and do the same. I am a real busy dad but I do try to keep my site up to date with useful information and informative articles for you to read. Well back to blog surfing. Have a great day and thanks again from, notebook personal computer

mandylando46024461 said...

Get any Desired College Degree, In less then 2 weeks.

Call this number now 24 hours a day 7 days a week (413) 208-3069

Get these Degrees NOW!!!

"BA", "BSc", "MA", "MSc", "MBA", "PHD",

Get everything within 2 weeks.
100% verifiable, this is a real deal

Act now you owe it to your future.

(413) 208-3069 call now 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Anonymous said...

Hi I was searching for some information on Aquariums - some tips and Tricks and sites which have great resources and came across yours.
Great site - I will bookmark it !

Thanks
http://hckpublishing.com/aquarium/

Anonymous said...

Hi I was searching for some information on Aquariums - some tips and Tricks and sites which have great resources and came across yours.
Great site - I will bookmark it !

Thanks
http://hckpublishing.com/aquarium/

Anonymous said...

Great site loved it alot, will come back and visit again.
»

Anonymous said...

Great site loved it alot, will come back and visit again.
»

Anonymous said...

I find some information here.

Anonymous said...

[b]its here [/b]

[url=http://phentermine.myeasyseek.info]phentermine search ENGINE [/url]
[url=http://phentermine.worksearchuk.info]phentermine[/url]
[url=http://tramadol.themysearch.info]tramadol[/url]
[url=http://tramadol.eworksearch.info]Farm Search Engine[/url]

Anonymous said...

Wonderful and informative web site. I used information from that site its great. Pharmacy technician jobs california Amatuar shaved pussy http://www.t-shirts-5.info/block-h-online-r-services-tax.html Wellskin skin care products easy tax arizona tax lien sale Sales tax in tampa florida Audi tt quattro 2003 used 32a strapless bra Antidepressant comparison treatment opti Indoor window awnings

Anonymous said...

Keep up the good work »

Anonymous said...

Cool blog, interesting information... Keep it UP » »

online pharmacy said...

Thanks for taking the time to share this, I feel strongly about it and love reading more on this topic. If possible, as you gain knowledge, would you mind updating your blog with more information? It is extremely helpful for me.