Crossfire: Blooks Are Low Quality Anyway

rubbish.jpgIt was only a matter of time before we started asking questions. Blooks are low quality, are new, are amateurish.

James over at Progression writes on the appalling lack of quality in the Blooker prize nominees – despite it being the benchmark in the industry: ‘our’ Booker prize. Betsy then comments in her blog and adds the following story:

A philosophy professor I’d had for a few classes came into the Writing Center where I was working, and asked me whether I was doing a thesis, so I summarized what I was doing. He asked, “Are any of these blogs any good?” Well, no, I answered him …

It somewhat mirrors a debate I had a couple of months back: in it we talked about how the Blooker winners can never qualify for the Booker. I argued that the Blooker represents the best of what is currently on offer on the Internet – which isn’t much at the moment. And I even contacted Paul Jones (chair of the judges for this year’s Blooker) for his thoughts on the issue.

But now I’m having second thoughts. And I believe this to be a good time for me to take a step back and evaluate objectively that thorny issue of quality that blooking has.

Why do people blook?

  1. To improve their writing
  2. To gain recognition
  3. As an experiment
  4. To get published

1 means the blogosphere gets littered by slush-pile works – only worthy of reading if you want to torture yourself.

2 is better – authors who want to gain recognition would have to put up stories worth reading … but I believe this is tied to 4, getting published (or discovered).

And as for 3 … well. I believe blooking needs more of these kind of people. People who are already established authors, or who have a good story to tell and the means to tell it. Now all they need to do is to set up a blog, flex their fingers and start typing – something terribly easy to do considering the two minutes it takes to set up a new blog at Blogger.

This post doesn’t answer anything, really, but I’m trying to force myself to think – and this I ask of you, too.

How can literature on the net be improved?

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Category: Writing Web Fiction