Monday, June 25, 2012

Blogging for the same purpose with a new look

While searching for inspiration for this week’s blog, I ran across this painting by an unknown artist available as a free download for wallpaper  Yes, of course the picture made me think of Ali in Born a Refugee, but it made me think of my own reasons for starting this blog—my belief that the pen (or the keyboard) is mightier than the sword (or stones).  Not everyone chooses to fight with stones, not everyone can fight with stones, and Mahmoud, Ali’s brother, will tell you that not everyone should fight with stones.  Maybe he’d even say no one should fight with stones.
After thinking about this, I gave the blog has a new look and a new name, one that is more descriptive of the content.  Originally, I thought the blog would draw from two different groups of readers.  One group were readers who had enjoyed my novels and would like to learn more about Palestine; the other group I hoped to attract were people already interested in Palestine who might want to read the novels.  In short, the blog was to focus on my two passions:  books and Palestine.
Along the way, the message of Palestine broadened.  Whenever possible, I combined the two, as when I blogged about Naji al-Ali’s Handala in A Child in Palestine, or the wonderful poetry of Lisa Suhair Majaj in Geographies of Light.  I again blended the two topics when I heard about possible censorship of legally sold ebooks.  Censorship of books is something that raises the ire of most writers, just as censorship of the art of Palestinian children raised the ire of art lovers and Palestinians alike.
The discovery of an Amazon widget meant I could concentrate the blog on different aspects of Palestine and let the widget take care of the books—and I’m going to broaden the horizons of the blog.
Next week I’m going to stand things front to back and start with "Z" -- and tell you about zatar—real thyme that tastes wonderful and can be eaten for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. 
I am also inviting others to participate as guest bloggers.  Anyone who has something to say concerning Palestine is welcome to contact me.

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