Buon Anno! Not only is it 2012, but it’s also near as dammit to six months since I (re)started blogging properly, a good time to take stock and set some goals for the year ahead.
I started www.in-the-back-of-the.net in November 2009 (at http://www.in-the-back-of-the-net.blogspot.com/) and after an initial flurry, like many bloggers do, for a variety of reasons, I kind of ran out of oomph for a while. In June last year, for a variety of other reasons, I picked it back up and have been enjoying it very much ever since.
I’m not breaking any world records in reader numbers here and that’s ok with me. I love writing and I love football. This gives me an outlet to indulge both passions and regardless of whether or not it takes off (even though it would be quite nice if it did) I am and always will be writing for an audience of one.
However if I had a ‘target demographic’, I suppose it would be the people who used to buy New Zealand football magazines before they were rendered ‘unprofitable’. A decline and fall that was brought about in large part by the drop in viability and eventual extinction of our National League, in turn due largely to the end of tobacco sponsorship. The truth is though, that even if the National League was still going strong, it only would have prolonged the inevitable with regard to local mags. All around the world and across genres, new media is slowly but surely replacing print. The beauty of blogging is you don’t have to be ‘commercial’. When local newspapers cover football, they cover the English Premier League and they cover the clubs with the biggest international fan bases and hence the biggest capacity to sell copies. We almost never read about Serie A here because the ex-pat Italian community is small. I am likely to continue to write about Italian football a lot, simply because it’s where my passion lies.
But more importantly, a yawning gap exists in all sectors of the media where local New Zealand football should be. I’m only one person and I have other commitments, but my aim in 2012 is to get to at least one local game per fortnight. I continue to believe, given the current worldwide trendiness of ‘lower league football’, that our local football is of interest internationally as well as at home.
One of the areas I hope to improve on is my photography. My biggest handicap last year, as I found the blog was driving a developing interest in sports photography, was that my Sony Cybershot compact was woefully inadequate – mostly due to speed issues. You had to push the button a good couple of seconds before something happened in order to capture it. With a lag like that, it’s a wonder I caught anything in action. So this Christmas I treated myself to a Sony Alpha 65 which boasts a ten frames per second burst rate. I’m confident this alone will provide a real improvement in the blog.
Another aim for 2012 is to begin to do the occasional interview with prominent New Zealand football figures. I have already begun trying to secure my first subject. Watch this space.
I try to more or less post weekly. I understand the need to be reliable. Readers who visit a blog hoping to find something new, only to discover the cyberspace equivalent of a stagnant pond tend not to come back. This goal is not always achievable as I do live a pretty busy life. And sometimes, let’s be honest, I just can’t be bothered. Please bear with me if I’m less than clockworky.
A final goal for 2012 is to maybe find some other contributors. When I began in 2009, I had a co-blogger. But sadly, his interest waned faster than mine. I wanted www.in-the-back-of-the.net to eventually be a group blog at that time. I’m not particularly welded to the idea anymore but having said that, if you think your voice would fit in well with what I’m trying to do here, please get in touch. I would welcome contributions for guest posts and if I like the cut of your jib, would love to bring you on board as a regular author. My e-mail address is casagiordani @ orcon dot net dot nz.
The first new year’s resolution I had for the blog has already been achieved – find a new theme. I hope you like it. Twenty Ten was annoying me a bit because it was too ‘default’ for my taste. I try to be different wherever possible – I hope that also comes out in my writing.
On that successful note, all that remains is to wish you and your family well for 2012. May your manager last until June, may your transfer window be prolific and may all your strikers find form. I hope to enjoy your company all year and beyond and I look forward to reading your comments. Ciao!
A grassroots football enthusiast based in Auckland, New Zealand, and a fan of the most magnificent club on earth - A.S. Roma. More info (including e-mail address) can be found here: http://in-the-back-of-the.net/about/