Archive for April, 2009

Apr 06 2009

pitchy

An (online) acquaintance pointed out ProBlogger’s 31 Days to Build a Better Blog Challenge, and my intention is to follow along all month and apply the lessons to this blog and my much more popular World of Warcraft website. Today’s tip is to write an elevator pitch for your blog. An elevator pitch should be, obviously, short, descriptive, and intriguing enough to stir up interest.

My WoW blog is easy, as it has a focus and a goal. When I first put up the site I included the bit: “Herding Cats is written by Liore, a stubborn holy priest who has been leading the ragtag guild Machiavellis Cat since May, 2005. She tends to write about healing, priests, raiding, guild leadership, and anything else that strikes her fancy.” (If you don’t play WoW or another MMO, that will mean very little to you so don’t worry about it.) That’s not short enough to be a tagline, but I think it’s elevator-appropriate and it gets across the topics of the blog, a reason why you should read it (4 years leading a guild), and a little bit of my personality.

Pith and Vinegar is obviously a little more esoteric in scope. Plus, it’s a personal site, and one where I fiercely value my independence to write on almost anything I want. And really, it’s not as though I tend to advertise the site anywhere anyway. But having a focus is good, so let’s think. I’ve been quite fond of “Blogging about crap since 1999″, which I used on my previous design and a few before that. It shows longevity and a sassy attitude. (It would be better as “Blogging about shit since 1999″, but I am Canadian and being that blatant about swearing makes me nervous.) Back in the heyday it was “A weblog for the surly and underemployed.” Both are cute and bursting with personality, but neither give any idea of the topics covered.

“Pith and Vinegar: a decade of zombies, pop culture, web stuff, and other crap. Still surly, now slightly more employed.” Hey. That’s not bad.

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Next weekend I am going to Norwescon! Well, actually, I am going to a hotel around Norwescon, although not to the con itself. No, I shall not be joining interesting debates about fantasy fiction writing, or hobnobbing with collectors. Instead I am pretty much solely going to drink and party with my friends in the Merchants of Deva (their website is out of date). Does going to a con just to party make me a nerdjock? I am going to beat myself up for my lunch.

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How to tell if a movie is going to suck: count the number of helicopters in the trailer.

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Apr 02 2009

and you want to be my latex salesman

This Toothpaste for Dinner cartoon hits a little too close to home. Hey, dude, that was my idea first, okay?! Get your own venture capital, Mr. Popular Smooshed-Head Web Cartoonist.

Lately I’ve been re-watching Seinfeld, still in eternal syndication on pretty much any channel higher than 30. It’s been a few years, and I’m once again struck by how clever the show is. Most shows have an A Plot and a B Plot, and never the twain shall meet. In most Seinfeld episodes you have both plots, and they all tie together in a neat little bow at the end.

I think my favorite episode is The Betrayal, or “the backwards one”, although of course the internets has its own varied opinion. (I like this Yahoo Answers page on the topic, but mainly because that dude with the labeled Best Answer protests too much.) Anyway, fellow Seinfeldians will enjoy this poster of 99 Seinfeld References. I was pleased to see muffin stumps represented.

Tracking the historical rise and fall of swear words in The Guardian: “Wank is massively underperforming over the last decade.”

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