Compare: Blog vs Magazine
My love of writing and reading evocative articles began in the glossy pages of magazines such as Elle. The mixture of beautiful photographs and thought-provoking pieces of writing is a monthly treat to myself, that I look forward to as soon as I’ve finished my current magazine. As time has gone on and everybody and their dog are now blogging, I feel like there are certain similarities between blogs and magazines and wonder if there will ever be a time when there is no longer a need for Elle. I don’t think so, and I hope not, being an avid reader of Elle myself. For me, blogs are an extension of my favourite glossies. No longer is the final page ‘final’, instead within a few clicks I can saturate my desire for photographs and personal posts through Bloglovin’ and Pinterest.
One thing that I prefer over blogs, is that the writers chosen for magazines are usually well-regarded and have a colourful past or career with many stories to tell. To use just one example, Lynn Barber is a sharp interviewer and has a life story so movie-worthy that it really was made into a movie: An Education. In 2010, listeners to BBC Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs heard Barber admit to sleeping with “probably 50 men” during two terms at Oxford. “It was quite good going – I was just jamming them in.” She is quite a woman – and quite a journalist. Read one of her interviews and you will see what I mean: they may be long, but you are hanging onto her every word.
You don’t always get people like this writing blog posts. Yes the blog may receive thousands upon thousands of hits, but that’s because a very beautiful, well-off young woman is posting her daily purchases or what she’s eaten for dinner. Sometimes people get a lot of airtime and I don’t think it is always justified, but that’s just my opinion. I like the integrity that my magazine has – as silly as it sounds, I trust it and I’m never disappointed by the memoirs I read or essays written by travel writers.
On the other hand, there are many wonderful writers out there and for one reason or another, not everybody can turn this into a career. In most cases, blogging allows this talent to shine through and showcases photography and writing that is worthy of being published in a newspaper. Instead of being confined to just a few pages, blogs are endless and, even better, they are free. If you don’t like a certain blog, you can scour Bloglovin’ until you find one that you do and it’s guaranteed that you won’t be disappointed. Blogs allow the writer to publish heart-wrenching posts if they want to, and in turn, this reaches out to and can help many readers who are suffering in silence behind their computer screen. Conversely, people with fantastic interiors tips or make up secrets can share them with people with similar interests and you suddenly feel like you are part of a community, albeit an online one.
I think there will be a place for magazines and blogs for a long time to come – allowing journalists to keep their day jobs and keeping open the avenue for those who are lucky enough to have a great career and the photography skills to be blogging on the side.