Saturday, 14 November 2009


November 3, 2009...2:56 pm

The Daily Politics – Defence Correspondent

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That’s me that is!

This is how it happened. Ages ago, I contacted the blog and said:

“Please plug my book, blah, blah, blah.”

Swiss Bob, the editor said,


Then I had lunch with a girlfriend and said, “I need to raise my profile as a writer and communicator.”

she said, “start a blog.”

I went away and the blog was born.

I emailed Swiss Bob, as I figured he had to be a more experienced blogger than I was and asked him this,

“Thanks for featuring Immediate Response on your site. I have just started blogging and you seem integrated into a vocal community. I wondered if you would mind giving me some top tips on spreading my blog about a bit. Would you mind checking it out and sharing some of your wisdom?”

To which he replied,

“Find some blogs that you like, comment on them using your blog profile, an avatar/picture will help (mine is the Matterhorn for ‘Swiss Bob’), if it’s of you and it’s attractive even better, but the usual warnings about the Internet apply, as the blog is in your own name, you might as well. People can find you through your comments. (Update: I just visited your blog, you’re no horror show J put your picture on the main page)

Create profiles for CiF, the Telegraph, Coffee House, the most popular sites, leaving comments and occasionally links back to your own blog, these may be frowned upon but you need people to find you. Try to be inventive and amusing, not just “I’ve posted this: xxxx”.

Blogger has the ‘Blogroll’, see righthand sidebar above the archive at the bottom of the blog, these are sites I link to, other people link to me. Lots of people go round asking to be linked, I don’t bother, if they do they do. Old Holborn has just linked me again, being a base and popular fellow, he sends me quite a few visitors, as does Mr Theo Spark of ‘Last of the Few’. (Update II. I’ve just added you to TDP)

Add yourself as a ‘follower’ on blogs you like or that cover relevant subjects. Does WordPress have a widget like this? Check out what widgets are available to you.

If you’re interested I would be happy to post anything you have and link to your blog. I can’t say you’ll get tons of visitors but it’s a start. We have an opening for a defence correspondent.”

I said,

“Thanks for the advice – I really appreciate. It’s like a whole new world. I am have never considered myself a techno biff but for some reason I can’t seem to work out how to get that pic on the front page! I ‘ll keep trying. Thanks for adding me to TDP – I have added you to mine too, which means that you, as my only reader, can now click back to your own blog! Viral marketing at it’s best!

Did you waft the Defence Correspondent carrot under my nose to see if I was interested in taking the gig? I would be interested if you did. I don’t suppose there would be any money involved would there? Do you have a definition of what you expect from your DC?

BTW – I googled CiF, as I am such a luddite I didn’t know what it was and the result was:

California Interscholastic Federation
Construction Industry Federation
Common Intermediate Format
Cum in Face (internet Escort Slang)

None of these seem particularly linked to blogging! C”

He said,

“Very funny. CiF is Comment is Free (except it’s not, unlike The Daily Politics), the Guardian’s ‘blog’ pages, actually not the best place to attract visitors from but depending on your politics, it’s fun to bait the loonies. Telegraph Politics blogs can provide hundreds of visitors, as can Coffee House . Guido Fawkes is good for quite a few, as is that mad old bugger Old Holborn. There are obviously many others, like Mrs Dale.

The post of Defence Correspondent really is an offer, you could do it under your own name, or a pseudonym, I really don’t know the identities of some of my authors, and no there’s no money in it, because there’s no revenue to speak of (six months Google ad revenue wouldn’t buy us a decent dinner). This may change, I’ll let you know if it does. What I would like is inside info, and I don’t mean secret, little stories from the front line, what’s happening in Afghanistan on the ground, what problems the troops are facing etc. And feel free to come up with your own ideas.”

I said,

“That sounds great – I am in. The inside story from my perspective I can give you. I am quite active on the military forum ARRSE – I am not sure if you have heard of it but I will plug the fact that I am now your defence correspondent, which will drive people to your blog. I’ll think about what I think the opening gambit is going to be and I’ll make it a good opener.”

And I went onto ARRSE and started this,

And the Bob announced it to the world. So that is how it happened…….cogitating now. I am about to draft my debut post for and annoyingly I don’t think it’s going to include any of the ideas from the ARRSE which means they are going to berate me and hand my “arrse” to me if they even bother to read it! Oh well, I can’t live my blogging life worrying about what anonymous bunch of folk on a mentalist military forum think of me.

Women Know Your Limits!!!!


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Elby The Beserk said...

Sorry - I can't make head or tail of what this post is about! Some book being published, and, and, and?

Anonymous said...

Absolute shite

MrsMacnaughty said...

It's irony. Let's see what happens - perhaps if I work really hard I can make it prophetic.

Hello Mr Ishmael - cup of tea and a slice of cake sometime? Thanks for the plug though. I am 9 views up on yesterday.

love and light, x

call me ishmael said...

I know, mr elby, how sheltered you are, down there in the West Country, nothing to mar your joy but a rise in the price of cider and the odd bust from the dope squad and I thought you and la L. might be interested in learning of the cut-and-thrust of cyber publishing, movers, you know, and shakers.

MrsMacnaughty said...

"The only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about" Oscar Wilde

I am genuinely flattered. Was a just barely a mere blot on the landscape before this posting and now have been catapulted to the dizzy height of just barely a mere blot still. Thank you for the posting. It was a bit of a surprise but as I am not bright enough to read between the lines, I am simply touched to evoke emotion within you.

Have you seen Chorlton and the Wheelies? I am the happiness dragon. I hope you are not Fenella?

Elby The Beserk said...

Howling gales down here, Mr. Smith, at the moment. Sheltered I surely am - just couldn't make head or tail of the posting. It makes the Mail Online's front page look like the perfect model of web publishing.

Am sure it is all in a good cause tho' :-)

call me ishmael said...

Gales up here, too, mr elby but only about five weeks to the shortest day. We keep the solstice here, the bonfire goes straight up for about five metres until the gale catches it and then the sparks shoot off at ninety degrees; Scotland, best part of England.

I am sure that many things are in a good cause, even if the benison is not immediately apparent.

MrsMacnaughty said...

White caps on the harbour, and the trees stripped bare from the bluster. 39 sleeps until the pagan feast.

The Jacobites would have your head for that Mr Ishmael but my father says 'that it was a Yorkshire man that taught the Scottsih to be tight.' I guess that's why I married one from Scotland, and so far I think he was right.

Blessings, you say and I say, indeed. One way or another, time will tell. If it even matters.