We don't know how we missed this but Pamela Paul's essay in the December 18, 2005 edition of the New York Times ("What Are They Saying About Me?") explores the interesting and sometimes uneasy relationship between authors and blogs. About two-thirds through the piece, Paul writes:
At best, blogs can be the electronic version of word-of-mouth selling. Luis Alberto Urrea has written more than 10 books, but it wasn't until he published his novel "The Hummingbird's Daughter" earlier this year that he experienced the joys of being blogged (sympathetically) on sites like Bookslut and La Bloga. "I had never paid attention to that whole world before," said Urrea. Now, he has his wife comb the Web every morning, filtering out anything too harsh. "You're always braced for bad news," he said, "but blogs have been so friendly." Urrea (who said he responded to every e-mail message he got) compares the blog world to a country store with a cracker barrel, where he and his readers are playing checkers. "It's so immediate and informal."
Thank you, Ms. Paul and Mr. Urrea for the kind nod to La Bloga. One good turn deserves another: Paul's latest book is Pornified : How Pornography Is Transforming Our Lives, Our Relationships, and Our Families (Times Books, 2005). And Urrea's magnificent 2005 novel, The Hummingbird's Daughter, will be out in paperback this April from Back Bay Books. (Photo is of Urrea.)