Monday Meme time rolls around again, and those are all I seem to have been posting for a few weeks. I haven’t really felt like doing the fashion thing during those weeks, and I’ve never stuck rigidly to a posting schedule anyway. Sometimes you might get multiple updates per week, other times the meme is the only thing that pokes me into blogging. This one’s a lot of questions that’ll need a lot of answers, so I’m starting it before work (yes, Mum, the time on my computer clock right now reads 04:50am) and I’ll be finishing it after I get home.
This week, Berry’s asking about blogging. Given that it’s almost a year since I started Virtual Bloke, I guess I can answer these questions with some sense of retrospective by now.
Which electronic devices do you use to blog with?
For the actual posts, just my desktop computer. Given that I never make a post without including an image, and my image-editing software is all on the desktop, that’s the logical place to do it. I do have the WordPress app on my phone, but the security plugins that I run on the site mean that most of the time I can’t use it! So I’m probably going to uninstall it.
Do you have a mission statement for your blog, if so, what is it?
Not specifically, no. I just waffle on, have fun with SL fashion, bitch a little bit about other SL-related stuff, and generally post whatever I feel like posting, whenever I feel like posting it. Perhaps not having a posting schedule means that I’m never going to be a ‘popular’ blog, but I’m not really bothered. I just enjoy doing what I do. So I guess that could be my mission statement :p
How do you feel about blogs that use their platforms to spread negativity?
Drama llamas can keep it. I may click once, but never again, once I realise a blogger is being a little shit-stirrer.
Are you a grammar junkie? Do you thoroughly check your blog for errors before posting and/or do you judge other people’s posts if they contain errors?
Oh, hell yes. I’m terrible for wanting my posts to be written proper ;-)
If I’m looking back over an old post and spot a typo or a grammatical error I cringe and think to myself, “Oh god, how many people read that?!”, and I can’t go on without editing to correct it. That said, my writing is very much what I call ‘headflow’, in that I write as I’m thinking and as I might speak. I’ll give it a once-over to ensure that it all makes sense, and while I’m at it I’ll also proof-read at the same time. You may also have noticed (well, the grammar junkies among you) that I’m a stickler for the Oxford comma. Can’t help it!
If you could switch blogs with another blogger who would it be?
Nobody. I’m me, and I wouldn’t want to be anyone else. Everyone else does their own thing really well, and I do my thing (I hope) really well. That’s good enough for me :-)
Has your blog/blogging style evolved over the year(s)? How?
Possibly? I don’t know. I’ve actually been blogging online for years, but it was more of the ‘shared personal journal’ kind of thing, rather than the focused specificity of an SL fashion and blatherings blog. So I don’t think my style has changed or evolved, but maybe someone who’s been reading from the start might say differently. I’ve no idea.
What is the most extraordinary thing that has happened to you because of blogging?
Someone popping up in the Sn@tch group chat after I’d said something in that same chat, and who piped up with, “Skell Dagger? I feel like I’ve just seen a celebrity!” I was kind of O_____o and then kind of “Huh?”. I didn’t know how to feel about that. ‘Weird’ mostly described it. I’m not a celebrity or a SLebrity, and I don’t want to be one. I’m quite happy sitting over here, yammering away about fashion, bitchin’ about silly folder names, and doin’ my thang, y’all.
When it comes to Second Life blogs, there are different styles: Fashion bloggers, Lifestyle & Travel bloggers, Informative bloggers, and more. Which style do you prefer and where do you feel your blog fits in?
You could call my style “six of one and half a dozen of the other”. I don’t do pigeonholes, so I’m a little bit of everything. I guess some people would class me as a fashion blogger, because I post quite a bit of fashion, but then I also post memes and ranty stuff , which is one reason (the other is my frequent use of fuckin’ profanity, my sartorial darlings) why I don’t get onto the major fashion feeds. That doesn’t bother me (the fashion feed thing) in the slightest, incidentally. I won’t change the way I do things just to be considered acceptable to the people running a feed. If you like the blog, great! If the occasional f-bomb causes your panties to knot up, then well… there are plenty more blogs out there.
What has blogging taught you?
- That I’ve got an even bigger mouth than I thought.
- That I need to expand my vocabulary of positive descriptors
- That putting together full, linked credit lists is a pain in the arse
Share your top 3 tips for new bloggers.
1. Write about more than one thing. If you only blog about one thing, eventually you’ll get burned out. Having another topic to fall back on will give you a boost whenever you’ve hit that burned-out point on your usual subject.
2. Don’t worry too much about visitors and stats, and don’t pushpushpush to get yourself out there, making a nuisance of yourself (and looking desperate, to boot). Just keep posting and readers will eventually come, and they’ll interact. Or maybe they won’t. When I was running a stats program on this blog most of my readers never commented or anything. Consider this: how many blogs and articles do you read in a day that you never comment on? Everyone else is pretty much the same as you. It’s not a contest. Just enjoy blogging, and if you stop enjoying it, take a break. Simple :-)
3. Don’t change the way you write just to please someone else (example: I won’t curb my propensity to swear just so that I can get onto the fashion feeds that don’t allow profanity). Of course, if someone has pointed out to you that you’ve been offensive or rude, then step back, look at what you wrote, and then maybe that needs to be something you have to work on. But, in general, you’ll find your style and when you have? Stick to it.
4. Next (yes, four; I like bending rules), be honest but don’t be rude. If you blog fashion, don’t Photoshop bad clothing to look good because the designer is your friend, or in the hope that you might get onto blogger lists. And don’t be afraid to be open about faults with an item (although, for the love of all things you hold dear, there’s a way to do that without being rude. Tempering the critique with praise for other things about the item is a good way to do that). And, if you can find nothing to like about an item then don’t blog it just to rip the shit out of it; simply don’t blog it at all. Ditch it and move on.
5. Then (um, okay, five) learn how to take good pictures. Lighting is important, so make sure you have one good Windlight preset for your shots. If your computer allows it (I know many don’t) then try to make your snapshots as high-resolution as possible, so that resizing them in image-editing software will get rid of the jagged edges. Although your writing is what speaks for you, your images are as much a part of the overall presentation of the blog, so don’t let them let you down. As you go along so your image-taking will improve.
6. Lastly (okay, six; I like breaking rules, too), don’t expect to get lots of stuff for free (unless you’re a freebie blogger, but that kind of goes without saying). As in #2, just keep posting, taking good pictures, submit them to the relevant designers’ Flickr groups (if they have one) and remember to tag all the designers’ store names on Flickr. You may get noticed, you might not. In the main, you’re writing a blog for you and for anyone else who cares to read. If you’re only writing it to Get Free Stuff, then the designers of that Stuff will see through you right away.
Okay, blatherings out of the way, onto the fashion stuff. I’m late blogging Menswear Fashion Week (which is ongoing until May 3rd) but this look comes from one of my favourite stores at the event: E-Clipse. They have some fabulous hippie flares and around-the-waist denim jackets, and I’ve paired those up with some sandals (for Slink mesh feet) by Pure Poison, and dreads from Tableau Vivant (currently at the soon-to-change-around April Mens Dept collection).
Since I was listening to Hendrix at the Miami Pop Festival last night, a little Hendrix-themed music seemed just the ticket, especially for this look. Sadly, that album isn’t on YouTube (it’s here on Spotify, though, if you have an account there) but you can preview tracks briefly here on Amazon. The audio quality of this 2013 release is absolutely stupendous and well worth getting hold of. I had ‘Red House’ on repeat last night; that’s some beauuuutiful blues right there.
Ha! This font is too much fun :p
This is the ‘Woodstock’ shade of the jeans so, naturally, they’re going to be grubby and grungy.
Bracelet: Redgrave – Armlet Leather Cord (dark) [ emilia.redgrave ]
Glasses: BY-Design – Lennon Glasses [ partly.falta ]
Necklace: KOSH – Infinity Necklace [ lynaja.bade ]
Earring: KOSH – Infinity Earring [ lynaja.bade ]
Feet: Slink – Mens Natural Barefeet [ siddean.munro ]
Hands: Slink – AvEnhance Male Hands (relax) [ siddean.munro ]
Arm Tattoos: Little Pricks – Ride the Waves [ syn.beresford ]
Clavicle Tattoo: Aitui – Cover Music – It Was for Freedom [ jesseaitui.petion ]
Belly Tattoo: Corvus – Destruction Tattoo [ lori.stanton ]
Skin: Belleza – Jacob (tan) [ tricky.boucher ]
Eyes: IKON – Ardent Eyes (bone) [ ikon.innovia ]
Flag: Flag Factory – Hippie Peace Flag [ frenchy.kazan ]
VW Combi Van – Apolon Motors [ apolon.obscure ]
Deckchair & Guitar: What Next – Woodstock Deckchair [ winter.thorn ]
And while I don’t think you’ll find a better audio quality version of ‘Red House’ than the one on the Miami Pop Festival album, this one’s pretty damn good: