Thursday, 4 November 2010

But Who Are Doris and Tony?

It is time to start to write again, before the few but faithful readers of this blog completely forget that it exists. It is also time to start experimenting, to create something new.

About a week ago I received a request to start blogging in Catalan on one of the digital newspapers here. Since I want to reach a bigger audience I said yes right away, but realized that I will not have the time for it, unless I streamline my writing. I need to find a form where I can start with a text in Swedish, and then simply translate into English and Catalan. This implicates that I must not write news summaries, since Catalans already have access to better ones than I can compile. Nor can I focus my reports about local culture merely on describing it, since then I will always be one or two steps behind my local readers.

In order to contribute with something unique, I need to add more of my own – let us say Swedish - perspective to the texts. And to make the reading more enjoyable, I need a less formal style. The solution I have found is to address the blog posts to two different people, essentially fictional, to achieve coherence from one text to another.

My first reader is Swedish, an elder school teacher named Doris. She loves everything which has to do with foreign cultures and wants to make sure that I work on integrating myself into the society where we have moved. The posts which lately have had the title Wirdheim in Vilanova will be reshaped to fit her expectations.

My second reader is a Brit called Tony. He knows a lot about politics in general and sometimes has a quite firm opinion, but wants to know how I see the situation in Catalonia and Spain. Since he is not from my native country, I will have to explain all comparisons with Sweden for him. (Very suitable since my prospective Catalan readers will need the same help!) The news summaries which recently have had the title E-CAT-BCN will disappear and instead I will write letters to Tony.

This idea of having two readers might seem silly and maybe I will be able to leave out the names in the future. But to get me started they are under all circumstances needed.

What will remain as until today are my informational blog posts. These I write in order to learn new things and, possibly, at the same time help readers born outside Catalonia to do the same. It is not my intention to publish Catalan versions of these texts since they, by definition, deal with topics which local people can be expected to already know.

In the weeks to come, I will give this new approach a try and if and when I feel that it works in two languages, I will add Catalan as well. I hereby wish myself good luck!

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Up-date January 16, 2011: Regular readers of this blog will notice that Doris and Tony have disappeared from the posts once written to them, respectively. Thanks to the experiment with these fictional personalities, I believe to have found a new editorial line in my writing. However, since their presence would only confuse new readers who have not followed my development, I have decided to remove them from all old posts, except for this one.

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