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Lori Smith
Posted on Thursday, August 16, 2007 - 06:28 am:   

Hey Andy! What happened to your official website? It seems to have gone all generic (or something).
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Andrew Fox
Posted on Thursday, August 16, 2007 - 01:25 pm:   

My bad. . . I let its registration expire. It was getting pretty out-of-date, anyway. I'll resurrect it if and when I have another book coming out. I'll probably include most of the original pieces and add a bunch of new stuff, possibly an edited compendium of my Katrina-related posts here on the Night Shade boards. My biggest problem with the old site, and the reason I stopped paying it any attention or updating it, was that my web master Gary left the area after Katrina, when his home was flooded, and we lost touch with each other. That pretty much locked up the site to me.

Chalk it up as one more Katrina loss. I'll start over fresh, when it makes sense to invest the time and money.

Hope you're doing well, Lori! Thanks for checking in.
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Nathan Ballingrud
Posted on Thursday, August 16, 2007 - 03:34 pm:   

Have you ever thought about keeping a blog, Andy? It'd be a great format for chronicling the changes New Orleans is going through, including offering the ability to post pictures, and a good way to stay in regular contact with friends. It'd also make you easier to find than these message boards, for someone who doesn't know anything about them. I started one up to kind of keep my toe in the water, and have found it both useful and fun. It also helps when you can get verification every once in a while that there actually are people out there who know and anticipate your writing. Do it, Andy, do it!
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Lori Smith
Posted on Friday, August 17, 2007 - 06:10 am:   

I agree with Nathan. You should consider doing a blog in one of the more traditional blogging venues. If it hadn't been for the link from your defunct web site to this site, I doubt I would have found you here.

I also still recommend that you create a profile on MySpace. You could use a lot of the material from your old site to "pimp" your profile. You could also do your blog there.

And, while I'm assigning you web-related tasks, you might want to think about updating your entry in Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrew_Fox. Whoever created the entry has missed a change or two in your day job. :-)
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Andrew Fox
Posted on Friday, August 17, 2007 - 08:14 am:   

Thanks, guys, for all the suggestions. I'm of two minds about the blog thing. On the one hand, it offers all the benefits that Nathan describes. On the other hand, its existence encourages you to offer up a written opinion on the major and minor news events of the day, and to do so fairly consistently.

I've often been tempted to "go off" on local political shenanigans, scandals, and ineptitude, or to mouth off regarding stuff going on in the office or the publishing field, posting it here on these boards. But the last few months, I've been resisting the temptation, for a few reasons. A lot of the people and institutions I'd be tempted to comment on are people and institutions that I need to maintain a decent working relationship with. Writing up an instant "cry of the heart" may temporarily feel good and satisfying, but it often serves mainly to stoke negative feelings for the remainder of the day. Also, anything you post on the Web essentially sticks around, in some form or another, forever. You can get pretty badly "zinged" months or years later for an offhand comment inspired by a fleeting burst of anger, indignation, jealousy, or sadness.

This is a danger with any form of writing, of course. But it's a bigger danger with blogging, because the writer feels "obligated" to keep the blog up to date with regular infusions of new material, and most entries get posted with little or no editing or "cool down time."

My Katrina and post-Katrina related posts on this site were a type of blog. More importantly, they were a lifeline that connected me to friends and family during one of the highest stress periods in my life. I'm mostly proud of what I wrote and shared with everyone, but there are a few remarks and observations scattered in there that I wish I could take back. I've witnessed too many colleagues shoot themselves in the foot with blogs not to feel cautious about them.

Comments, anyone?

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