I've wanted to try blogging ever since Lane at my publisher told me about weblogs late last summer. As soon as I got back home from my trip to NYC that evening, I logged into the internet, summoned a cornucopia of literary, author, rant and very funny blogs--the latter oddly originating mostly from England or written by English people or Anglophiles-- and was hooked, possessed if you will.
Having just finished the circuit of bookstore readings and promotions for the A SON CALLED GABRIEL hardcover and, absolutely looking for an excuse, any excuse, not to return at once to the completion of my next novel, I busied myself for months scouring and reading blogs for fresh scandals and interesting tidbits. It's been a delicious, hedonistic ride but, as inevitably happens in my case, the tolling of the guilt bell in my head grew louder and louder until its clanging fury forced me to reign in my surfing addiction, create my own blog, and return to my next novel. (As time goes on and I become proficient in blog navigation, I'll link to my much culled list of blogs.)
So what I've decided to do on the blog is write about whatever's on my mind, real or imagined. I plan to update every few days, sometimes every day if I'm in the mood. I'll write about the highs and frustrations experienced as I write my next novel and about the writing life from my perspective. Of course, I'll also go on about living in America from an Irishman's perspective, as well as refer to the goings on in other places I've lived like Northern Ireland, Germany and England. There'll also be the odd rants and some 'posts' will just be plain crap because I've had a late night or partied too much and the guilt bell will have clanged at an ungodly hour so persistently I've risen from bed just to get it done and assuage my conscience. Oh, and I'll do some book reviews. As an author I thought long and hard about that one because what happens if the book's bad or I hate it. Can one review one's peers dispassionately? Might the reviewed author think it's a vendetta? Ultimately, I decided it's permissible for one author to review another. After all, many of them are already doing that in the Sunday review sections. My philosophy is the work must stand on its own and that's how I'll judge any work I decide to review.
So with that, let the blog unfurl. Already, I have a suspicion that frequent posting will quickly become a non-negotiable demand by my alter ego, in much the same way that I'm compelled, due to an Irish Catholic upbringing, to say my prayers before going to sleep--though in the case of my "posts," I'll try not to rush them.