Self-publicity, Kindle, blogging, and other embarrassments

>> Friday, 18 November 2011

Sitting at the Boys' school yesterday, fruitlessly trying to sell tickets for a forthcoming event (yes, I AM that masochist you see sitting in the hallway with a fixed grin and an empty cash-box in front of them), I was chatting with a friend. "Do you still blog?" she asked - more to fill the time than anything else, I suspect. "Yes, I do, actually." "And how's it going?" "Well enough. It keeps me busy, what with my normal blog (The Potty Diaries) and the blog I have over at The Moscow Times."

Mention any newspaper and it seems to pique people's interest. Suddenly, blogging is less of a self-indulgent solitary pleasure and seems more glamorous, for some reason. (For me, too, if I'm honest).

"Really? Do you blog over at The Moscow Times? I was just on their site yesterday - funny, I didn't see you on it."

"Well, I don't blog as myself. Obviously. I use a pen name."

She looked at me suspiciously. "Well, I did see a blog on there by a mum in Moscow, but it wasn't you."

"It was, actually." (I was fairly certain on this point, having just checked the Times blog roll that morning).

"No, no. She had another name. I can't quite remember it now..."

"It was me, really. I use the name Clare Taylor on there."

"Was that it...? She wrote a post about politeness, or something. And having been in London this weekend. Oh my god - you were in London this weekend! It WAS you! I can see it now..."

It's interesting, being caught up in a situation like that. Within my circle of friends in Moscow, I don't hugely publicise the fact that I blog here at The Potty Diaries, but I'm happy to mention what I do for The Moscow Times, since what I write there is even less reflective of our family life than what I write here. Since I've never been very good at self-pr, however, I don't even mention that very often.

If someone asks me what I do with my time (other than being a mum - which as we all know leaves us with endless hours in which we do nothing but sit around chatting, drinking coffee and eating chocolate, with the odd flower-arranging class thrown in for good measure) my answer usually involves mumbled references to blogs, writing for other sites, proof-reading, writing for myself and sometimes - sometimes - The Moscow Times.

But, having been inspired by Emily over at More Than Just a Mother to sell this blog on Kindle (it will be an interesting experiment, if not anything else), I need to start publicising that fact. Imagine, then, the following paragraph as being written through metaphorical gritted teeth;

I've just put my blog up for sale on Kindle. I know that if you read it here, the chances of your wanting to pay the princely sum of £0.99 a month to do so on your Kindle reader are slim - and I wouldn't expect, or indeed want, any different. However, if you are inclined to at least take a look, I would be very appreciative of some positive review comments on Amazon.

There. That wasn't so hard, was it PM?

*PM pulls her head out of her hands and, blushing furiously, slinks out of the door...*


Gorilla Bananas 19 November 2011 at 13:48  

You blog for 'The Moscow Times'? How interesting. Are you allowed too say anything cheeky about Mr Putin? Suppose you wrote "I imagine my husband is Vladmir Putin when he makes loves to me." Would you get away with it?

Russia Lite 19 November 2011 at 14:03  

God you so perfectly captured the anghst (how on earth do you spell that???) of selling raffle tickets! But to your bigger and more important is interesting how the anonymous blogging profile requires very strict discipline and a certain detatchment. I've never managed it....but kudos to you for doing it. I like the Moscow Times stuff you do. Keep up the great work! BTW you were SO SO SO right both about the XMAS trees and the Downton Abbey 2 at LHR.

Potty Mummy 20 November 2011 at 16:19  

GB, well, obviously now that you've put that in the comments box my blog will come up if anyone googles that phrase - so I guess I should thank you... But as for on The Moscow Times, I'm not sure. I suspect that I would - as long as it was in context, of course.

RL, that fixed grin - gives you jaw ache, doesn't it. And I'm glad the dvd worked out - have you started watching it yet? (Or were VERY controlled, and walked away from it vowing only to watch week by week on tv?)

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