“You’ll have to comb the blogger’s archive to find out when it started, and to get an overall sense of the direction of the blog, the topics and style of the posts – personal or even confessional, or more public and distant – and to get a sense of where it went and where it seems to be going. In a series of posts, consider how the blogger uses narrative.” -Dr. Michael Morgan
Yesterday, I began my exploration of author and mother Kiersten White’s blog, considering things like whether or not it’s goal-oriented and what kind of narrative it is, according to Rettburg’s definitions. Today I took an even closer look at the posts themselves and what White provides for us.
While she does not link back to prior posts, she does often refer to prior events. This is most seen in her personal publications, especially concerning a time of loss for her and her family, which is something she talks about once a year. Though Kiersten doesn’t use tags or categories at all, I’m generally not left piecing it together sequentially myself. She does use narrative devices such as a flashback.
An example of this is a post she shared on a trip she and her husband took to Romania while telling us about her new book deal, which is relevant to Rettburg’s mention of a sequential narrative in a blog (separate narratives that cover time-limited events such as a vacation or a sabbatical or a project). She also describes her book tours. So, yes, these sequential narratives are very much present.
Because Kiersten is such a successful author and so well-known, she’s built quite a following for her blog. Every single post has comments from her readers. Especially when it comes to personal triumphs or losses, I noticed. However, I also observed that she doesn’t ever incorporate these comments into the narrative. What she does take the time to incorporate is external links. Oftentimes they’re for venues she’ll be at for a signing or an event, sites where you can buy her books, or sales that are going on for them. It’s admirable that the only content she provides to actually leave her page draws them right back again.
And I know that even if it weren’t for this assignment, I’d go back tomorrow.