I started my very first actual blog called Jäniksenselkäläisen kirjallisuuden seura (Rabbit Back Literature Society) when my first novel (you guess which one) was about to be published. I wanted to market my novel in Finland and draw some media attention to it. (It worked and I was invited to a talk show and I was interviewed in national radio.) It’s very hard to make people notice and buy your books in Finland; there are too many writers in here and way too many new titles are published every single week and the biggest bookstore chain of Finland picks only some of them to be sold in stores and leaves majority of all new books (not to mention the older ones) to be found from internet stores – which doesn’t necessarily happen at all because of the great number of new titles (etc). But yeah, I wrote blogposts about issues like “what is it like being a brand new novelist”, “oh how easy it would be to sell books as a beautiful female writer” (actually this one was mainly self ironic reflection of the envy among the published writers) and “what is this book actually about”. I continued bloggin for several years because it was a good way to promote my books – Finnish publishers don’t advertise litterature that much, because adverts are expensive and, because of the things mentioned above, the increase of sales usually doesn’t cover the costs.
And now, when end is near (go away, Frank Sinatra / Sid Vicious), I mean, now, when that very first novel of mine has been published abroad and everything in a way starts again from the square one (in a good way, of course), I saw fit to start blogging in English in case my new international audience happens to be interested in communicating with the author of TRBLS himself (like my Finnish audience was). But I think it’s one thing to blog for domestic readers and another thing to blog for people abroad. Of course I feel like I’m walking on thin ice when expressing my thoughts in any language other than Finnish. That is one thing. And then there is this question of choosing topics to write about. What do my foreign readers possibly want to know about my books, my work (and life) as a writer, Finnish literature etc – that is the question. In my Finnish blog I mainly explored the issues – and especially hardships – of being a novelist in Finland (in other words, I have complained about everything because it’s a sacred Finnish tradition) but those things probably wouldn’t be found interesting by any other than Finnish people and Finnish fellow writers, if even by them…
If you speak Finnish, visit my Finnish blog. Everything is in there. Even (and especially) things you don’t want to know. But if reading Finnish is a problem for you, this new(ish) blog is for you. Please feel free to tell what kind of things you would like to know about me, my books, Finnish literature etc.