The Blogging Life

Chris Bowers, Andrew Sullivan, and Ann Althouse muse on the impact blogging is having on their lives.

Steve Bainbridge‘s quoting of Jack Germond notwithstanding, it’s an interesting set of discussions of the life of a semi-public intellectual. Their circumstances are different, though.

Sullivan is the outlier since he was already a well-known writer, editor, and television personality before his blogging career started. Like Michelle Malkin, the blog was simply an extension of his existing life. Since blogging is mere writing–aka, “work”–for him rather than a diversion from his job, he takes vacations from it; most of us blog on vacation.

Bowers is a professional blogger, a rare bird indeed. He’s among the most successful and is able to make a decent living at it. The cost, though, is the same as paid by most entrepreneurs: The blog is the main focus of his life, the source of his identity, both internal and external.

Althouse, meanwhile, is a successful law professor at a major state university. The blog is an outlet for expression to a wider audience that she would not otherwise have. It is also, though, a venturing beyond the insulated life of the academic. Professors generally and law professors particularly are used to pontificating to a captive audience that pays them a respectful deference. Such is not the life of the blogger.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Anderson says:

    Althouse, meanwhile, is a successful law professor and a major state university.

    My god, they haven’t named it after her, have they?

  2. James Joyner says:

    Heh. Not yet. I understand UT-Knoxville is thinking of changing its name to Glenn Reynolds U, though.

  3. Cernig says:

    I’ve never seen the big deal about lawyers’ opinions on matters. On every occasion, 50% of them are wrong.

    Now philosophers…

    Regards, C