The Last Spread (for now)

This is the last post in the short series where I recommend blogs that I follow. Well, at least for now, as there may be others worthy of recommendation in the future, so I might have to re-visit this theme. I have not included quite a few of the blogs that I still follow. The main reason for this is not that they lack content, or are not presented with style, in an attractive way. It is just that articles are few and far between, often appearing in twos and threes, then vanishing for months. There is something to be said for this of course. Leave them wanting more, is an old idea, in both marketing, and entertainment. Less is more, in so many cases. Have a look around, and see what you think.

Using ballpoint pens to produce great art is not something you come across every day, or would normally think of doing. Yet this site will show you that it can be done, and done exceptionally well. Jane now resides in the north-east of England. She has had an interesting life so far, including spells as a Park Keeper in Camden, and a Tube-Train Driver on the Northern Line. Her Biro pictures are really magical, and the detail included is often simply breathtaking. Not only that, she also sells and auctions her originals and prints, to benefit very good causes. Endangered species, like tigers and wolves, as well as bears. She is also a great blogging companion, leaving comments, sending e mails, and generally being a valuable part of the community we love. See her pictures via the link, and be sure to enlarge them when you do.

Niall is an Irish ex-pat, currently living in Canada. His witty and versatile blog covers many subjects; Films, Books, Poetry, The Irish Diaspora, TV shows, and much more. Like me, he also seeks publication on other websites and blogs, and he has been very successful with that. Often wryly amusing, always informed, and with just enough touch of the Blarney Stone to make it clear where he comes from. You may find much to enjoy here, but be warned. Bono features quite a lot.

Nandia is undeniably an intellectual. Art historian, knowledgeable about film and cinema, and only posting when she feels the need. Her blog is challenging, educational, and a feast for the brain and eye. Personally, I cannot resist it. Whether it is bitingly accurate comparisons of old paintings with scenes in modern films, or recollections of her youth, it is always quite perfect. Look, and learn.

I have posted many links to this site before. I must confess to an interest, therefore an undoubted bias. Many film websites stick to specific themes, or genres. Some post short, often pointless reviews of terrible films, just because they exist. Some others seek to challenge, educate, discuss, and to promote the work of other film writers, (including me) by allowing them to post guest articles. This is one of those, and undeniably one of the best. Australian James Curnow obviously has a love of film, that can easily be found in his own articles. He has studied the subject extensively, and is currently working towards a PhD. This is a site for the real fans of cinema and film. Those wanting to discover new things, debate old ones, and participate in the overall process. A real favourite of mine.

I don’t follow many blogs written by writers who mostly concentrate on their own work. Not that there is anything wrong with that of course, there are just so many of them. In this electronic age, trying to get published is hard enough, then promoting the work is well-nigh impossible. So, what else can they do? I make an exception with this blog though. With his day job as a policeman, and a family to consider too, Rich Lakin manages to still get to write many excellent short stories, and has even published a book. From his home in the west midlands, a town full of history and industrial heritage, he has gained inspiration for some very entertaining articles and stories. His travels are also well-documented, and he has rightly won awards and prizes for some of his work. He doesn’t post that often, so following his blog is simplicity itself.

Phil Ruggerio lives in Southern California. He has Type 2 Diabetes, and decided to do something about it, by declaring his own personal war on the disease. He has made some remarkable achievements, and he shares his story, together with those of other sufferers, on this blog. He also adds great advice, news on developments and drugs, alongside a few personal anecdotes that make his blog feel friendly and welcoming. He also has the collaboration of a qualified pharmacist, so his drug advice is guaranteed to be accurate. More importantly, he never tries to sell anything, and has no quack remedies, or promises of miracle cures. Just a genuine guy with a mission; I wish there were more like him. My reason for following this blog did not have anything to do with Julie having Diabetes, as she was not diagnosed at the time. I just thought that it was worthwhile, and deserving of support. I appreciate that this is very much a niche blog. However, if you want to know anything about Diabetes, or get sensible advice for someone you care about, then this is the place.

A Yorkshireman married to a Polish lady, and father of one baby girl. Living in rural Poland, trying to build his own house from straw bales, and live an ecologically sound and sustainable lifestyle, all at the same time. Sounds like madness, I know. But if you want to read tales of composting toilets, freezing temperatures, and even the use of ‘humanure’ (yes, it is that…) as fertilizer, then this is the place. Eddy Winko may not be his real name, but it is a great one, nonetheless. He also loves films, music, and Yorkshire (of course). One of my oldest and dearest blogging companions, he does not post so much these days, as farming, house-building, and a new baby keeps him busy. It’s a great read though, even if it sounds like your worst nightmare.

I will leave it at that for now. I hope that everyone finds something to enjoy, and whether you follow these blogs or not, I will continue to enjoy them, for their variety, wit, and intelligence. I will be back with some more, one of these days. Until then, normal service is resumed on this blog.


14 thoughts on “The Last Spread (for now)

  1. Pete, thank you so much for your lovely words! You are extremely kind and I’m a wee bit lost for words. Many, many thanks for all your support and kindness, I thoroughly enjoy your eclectic blog for the great insight and exciting subject matter you write about and look forward to reading your posts. Very best wishes to you, Jane x


  2. Pete, I thoroughly enjoyed this three-part respite from “normal service.” I look forward to checking out all of these blogs, but, of course, I also look forward to the next leg of your literary journey.


  3. Pete,

    Thank you so much for the kind words. Wait, what am I doing sitting in front of this computer? I live in Southern California near several world-class beaches. Shouldn’t I be out surfing? What’s wrong with me? My tan is fading! Call 911! (Emergency Assistance)

    You continue to amaze me with the breadth of your interests. Thank you for exposing me to other blogs and people. I know that I am richer for it. The biro art is amazing.

    “Liking” this post seems terribly self-serving, but I did it anyway.

    With much appreciation,


    1. Thanks Phil, you are right to like the post, and it is not at all self-serving. Your sun and beaches sound enticing today. Constant rain, fog, and early darkness are all we have to look forward to here, at least for the moment.
      Best wishes as always, Pete.


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