Quite a bit of publicity this week for the Blooker Prize, which highlights the best books that started life as blogs.
It's always very nice to get some sort of authoritative pat on the back, of course, even if the recent Oscars proved yet again that the award-givers are quite capable of egregious error. But doesn't the existence of the Blooker just prove that, despite all the blarney about blogging being the future of journalism, a product still isn't taken seriously until it's printed, bound and in a 3-for-2 promotion at Waterstone's?
And, like any low-overheads, self-supporting, not-for-profit purveyors of cultural content (see also fanzine editors, buskers, stand-up comics at open-mic slots), aren't rather a lot of serious bloggers doing this thing chiefly to raise their own profiles? To reach a wider market and to reach a point at which they might possibly be able to make a living from what they like and/or do best; writing stuff about things and things about stuff. In fact, to keep their heads above the drift of (if it's not labouring the point too much) cultural snow? Otherwise, what's their (my/your/our) motivation? Joel? Bob? Spinster? Alistair? Curve? Anyone?
And in case anybody thinks I'm being hypocritically pious here; six-figure book deals to the usual address, please.