I was very surprised, and not a little pleased, to hear this morning that I had been nominated for a Stylish Blogger Award. The recommendation was nice, not because of the award itself, but because of who recommended me.
Bob Cordery is a prolific blogger, and I check out his blog at least once or twice a week
I am not really interested in his period, as I tend to be very single minded about Napoleonic wargaming. But he does have a lot of interesting ideas, many of which are much too clever for me.
But he was one of the first to contact me when I started the blog back in March 2009. He offered me some advice and some encouragement, both of which were very welcome.
Hearing from him again made me consider what a big influence the blog has had over my wargame activities over the past couple of years. When we moved to Spain in 2006 I gave up painting, which had been my main leisure activity for the previous 30 years. In retrospect it seems strange to stop painting when I retired, but I had painted my armies again and again over that time, always replacing the existing army with newer figures. Each time it took me about two years to complete, and I just could not face it all again. I decided that instead of painting all the time, I would try to actually wargame more.
So I created my solo 1813 campaign. It has proved very effective at creating wargames for Jan and I to play, which was my sole intention when I designed it. I started the blog about the same time that I started the campaign. I have always kept a personal diary, and the blog was a sort of wargame personal diary. I never really thought anyone would be interested in reading it, and as a result I have always done it for my own satisfaction – just like the diary.
But I soon found that having announced to the world, or at least the few readers of my blog, that I was going to start a campaign, I felt obliged to keep at it. Over the years I have found that the campaign needed “fine tuning”. Without the blog I would probably have just started a new campaign, but because of the blog I stuck with the original and did the “fine tuning”.
And now that I have taken the first steps to convert the campaign from solo to PBEM the blog is still the centre of the whole thing. My 1813 Campaign Diary is the record of both the campaign and the PBEM phase. And the discipline of doing one helps me with the other.
And what about the Stylish Blogger Award. It seems to be a similar to the old “round robin” letter. Once nominated you post a link to the person kind enough to nominate you, and then you nominate another seven Blogs and so on. I suspect that within a short time pretty well everyone who publishes a blog will have been nominated for a Stylish Blogger Award. And of course the more popular ones will have been nominated many, many times.
I don’t mean to sound cynical about the Stylish Blogger Award. I think it’s a great idea to tell people you like their blog, and in doing so to provide a link to another seven Blogs. I sat and tried to think of my seven favourite Blogs, but to be honest I could not do so. The truth is that I rarely read other Blogs, and when I do they are always the most popular ones – who will already have received more nominations than they know what to do with. For example when Bob nominated me he had already received four nominations – and I am quite sure that the number will have increased by now.
But I do appreciate his nomination. And even more I do appreciate his help and encouragement back in March 2009. Thanks Bob!