I must admit that I am very excited to give out my first prize for this puzzle blog. It is a milestone for the blog, and a fun thing to do. It is also a good spring-board for reflecting on this internet endeavor of mine, and upon self-review, I have discovered one truth about Puzzling New York City. I am pretty good at the puzzling part of puzzle blogging, and not so good at the blogging part.
Creating puzzles has been the relatively easy part of this shindig. Of the 21 puzzles that have appeared so far, only two or three have been caused me stress in creation. I am better at some puzzle forms than others, but by in large I like the puzzle construction, and this is the “work that doesn’t feel like work”.
The blogging part has been much more difficult for me. The technical aspects of blogging have caused me innumerable headaches, and the relentless march of time has made posting things on time more difficult than I had anticipated. I find that I am a good writer, but a bad editor. So even if I have a puzzle ready to be posted for a given week, the actual posting takes much longer than the time I have budgeted to post it. I am also a bad marketer of the blog, as I do not yet get how to get my blog linked to others. I mean how do you do this without being totally rude?
“Love your blog Bob, BTW could you mention my utterly fabulous blog?”
I know from past experience with a theatre company that the creating part of what you like to do, be it painting, theatre, writing etc., is always the easy part of the job. Getting your name out in front of people, finding the time or getting paid to do it, and finding an audience are the real chores. It has been said to me that a big problem is that creative people just aren’t wired to do the “grunt” work. I have thought about that, and that assessment does have a ring of truth to me. I think that more accurately though is that the grunt work to get out your creative work is just plain more time-consuming. What bloggers and artists do have very little financial return initially, if ever, and the time needed to promote is time taken away from earning a living or actually living.
I wish I knew the “tricks” that get one’s blog noticed. Oh well, I’m afraid that I will have to just keep producing puzzles, expand some ideas for interaction, and try to find a core audience. I am not too distraught over readership levels, since I enjoy making the puzzles. If nothing else, I am getting good practice in puzzle construction.
QUIZES AND YANKEE FANS
An interesting thing happened when I gave my Ends of the Earth quiz at Rocky Sullivan’s on Thursday. The event coincided with the Yankees/Angels playoff series Game 5. The Yanks were up 3-1 and a win would wend them back the to World Series after an “agonizing” six-year drought for Bomber fans. One of the teams that participated in the quiz was a band of boisterous Yankee fans, who expressed their displeasure with Yankees starting pitcher A.J. Burnett with the team name “Burnett Sucks Clocks”. They lived and died the game loudly, as was their right, but here’s the interesting thing. I had a Yankee question on my quiz, “What Yankee won the AL MVP in 1963?”. This team did not get the answer, Elston Howard, correct. Now to be fair, the team also did not pick up on the theme of my quiz which was all answers had the initials E.H., but still Elston Howard does have his number retired by the Yankees. He was the first African-American Yankee. He is kind of a big deal, and not one of the Yankee fans could come up with that one. The Yankees always go on and on about their fans being the best and most knowledgeable fans in the game. Well, I can point to one instance where best is shown in passion, but not in knowledge of a team’s truly rich and fascinating history.
FREE DRINK ANSWER
I hid the free drink question that I had asked at Rocky’s in the answers to the pub quiz. The answer is: