”The time has come”, the Walrus said…
My, how time does fly! And so does Superman... or should I say - SUPER AUSSIE PETE!! - OK, OK... Perhaps I should explain!
After having ‘stepped down’ this year (the fifth of the annual OMY Singapore Blog Awards), I was watching the hive of activity and keen interest via the blog awards website. In fact, I was following with some degree of sadness and perhaps even ‘withdrawal’ at not playing my part.
Of course, I have been mainly focused on what’s been happening in my category – Best What The Hell Blog – and wondering just who my successor may be. But at the same time, with so many very good friends involved once again, I have been very interested in how every blogger in the Top 10 will fare in their respective categories.
I was hoping all along that I would perhaps be honoured with an invitation to the Awards ceremony, which is always one of the ‘must attend’ events of the Singapore cyberspace calendar. It’s always alive with the “who’s who” of the SG blogosphere - This year will be no exception, and the quality of bloggers looks like the talent will be the best yet to be vying to take out the crowns.
Well, herein lies my complete surprise!! More-so for me then anyone else…
Some weeks back, I received communication from the Awards organizers, to tell me that I was being honoured (along with four other talented writers in their own right – and very great friends - Catherine, Yong Wei, Eunice and Christine), with a ‘Super Blogger’ award!!
What the??!! – I won an award without even entering?
All jokes aside – of course I am once again more than humbly taken aback. Being recognized for something that I enjoy doing, is almost like highway robbery right?
According to OMY, I am being honoured with this ‘Super Blogger’ award, for being an “exemplar of the value of information- and experience-sharing via your blog content”. In short, I think it’s kind of the reason behind why so many people seem to enjoy reading my blog. :)
So my wish was granted – not only will Sammi and I be attending the Awards ceremony again, but there will be a special segment in which I will receive the accolades.
The Awards this year will be happening this Saturday afternoon, 21st July at the Singapore Food Trail at the Singapore Flyer. The GOH will be Mr. Heng Swee Keat, Minister for Education and theme is ‘Superheroes’, but like I told the organizers, do NOT expect me to attend wearing my underpants on the outside… eeeewwww – actually the thought is quite gross, right?
Good luck to all of the finalists – remember, you are all already winners!! Look forward to seeing you there.
Following below, are the answers that I gave to the OMY when they reached out to let me know about the ‘Super Blogger’ award. The same responses can also be found on their official blog site here.
How do you feel about receiving the Super Blogger Award?
Of course, I’m absolutely honoured to be recognized as one of Singapore’s ‘Super Bloggers’, but I guess that goes without saying… after a lengthy association with OMY, I have shared in many amazing and exciting adventures online and off – moments that will forever be etched in my memories. After collecting first place in my category in both the 2010 and 2011 blog awards, I thought it would be impossible to top such success and recognition, so opted to ’step down’ in 2012 to allow others the opportunities that I have been afforded. To be recognized as a ‘Super Blogger’ as part of this year’s blog awards and for the impact that I have had on the Singapore Blogosphere over the past five years, although it is very surprising, I think it also reflects the hard work and dedication that I have made over this last half decade – albeit a huge enjoyment at the same time. The biggest honour comes from seeing so many readers coming back to my website day in and day out – I must be doing something right with my content :p
What did you gain most during these years of blogging? How did you counter-attack any weariness that deters you from blogging? (if any at all)
Aside from the buzz that I get from making friends (once again online and off), some of them life long strong associations, to see my readership grow so exponentially over the years is an absolute blast. Interestingly enough, and many thanks to OMY, blogging over recent years has taken me to different countries, has seen me partake in dozens and dozens of media events, has put me on TV on many occasions – both recorded and live, I have appeared in every major newspaper in Singapore (English and Chinese) numerous times for my opinions and insights, numerous magazines have covered my articles, my family and me, I have filmed vodcasts, participated in too many photoshoots to even count, participated in live radio interviews, I have been guest writer for and been quoted on hundreds of websites and of course, I have been rewarded many times over financially and with invaluable awards and prizes from just about every kind of industry imaginable (and this is just in Singapore – dozens of the largest global media organizations aggregate my work every day, quote my articles and writings and conduct interviews for my advice or opinion). The problem is how to keep up with life as a ‘pseudo-celebrity’, while maintaining a very demanding professional career, spending quality time with a beautiful and loving young family and also dedicating thousands of hours to community volunteer work and grassroots activities.
The answer to this for me, is blogging has always been my ‘escape’… my means to unwinding and de-stressing. My professional life sees me dealing with other regions, so late night work and conference calls are often the norm (and have been for more than a decade) – this has taught me to survive on very little sleep. It may surprise many to know that on weeknights I often don’t sleep until around 3am and arise for the new workday around 7:00am (an average of just 4-hours shut-eye every week night). Then my wonderful wife usually let’s me recharge with a late sleep in on Saturday morning. Blogging usually occurs when everyone else in my household (and many people all over Singapore) are safely snug and sleeping in their beds. Like I said, it’s not a chore… it’s a way to relax – the day it becomes a chore, is the day I stop blogging.
How do you think bloggers can play a part in contributing to society, either in general or in any specific area?
As I’ve written before, bloggers and aspiring writers should always remain true to themselves. Write about what you are passionate about, what you know. There is so much information that everyone has (whether they know it or not) that others may want to tap in to. Share your experiences, offer advice, but always, always – remain humble. Of course, aside from just writing, I cannot recommend enough that so much self-fulfillment comes from volunteer and charity community work.
Given the many other social media platforms available these days, what do you think is/are the most valuable aspect(s) about blogs that the other channels not able to surpass/replace?
Nothing can be as unique as blogging when it comes to social media (at least not with the platforms available today) – Facebook is generally only going to attract your FB friends (unless you are competent with running viral campaigns), Twitter is always restricted to 140 characters, many apps and platforms will keep track of where you are and where you check-in. The list goes on of course, and there is always a place for every platform… mostly the integration of them all. But at the end of the day, a blog is your own personal journal – you own the content, you own the design. it is very personal… and with dedication and a little hard work, you can corner a very real sizeable chunk of the search engine traffic as well as obtain loyalty from regular readers and subscribers base (with your very own website). This can also lead to attention from other websites, other social media users and can offer some amount of credibility from others around what you write, what you think and how you portray it. If having a voice that wants to be heard is your reason for blogging – then you are on the right platform.
If you are a Superhero, who do you think you will be and why? What kind of Superpower do you think you will possess? (If none of the existing superheroes match what you have in mind, create your own and tell us!)
Haha – I’d like to believe it would be someone cool and strong… to be honest, given my ‘dual’ (or even more) personalities and often contradicting activities, I’d have to be a little boring and say ‘Superman’. The reason is that the huge difference between the unassuming mild-mannered Clark Kent and the crime fighting strength and confidence of Superman, perhaps best reflects the difference between a senior vice president in a bank by day, and a sometimes ‘wannabe’ pseudo-celebrity that mixes it up with the very cool people and culture that the Singapore Blogosphere has now become – these are worlds apart. Never do these two personas meet… and any time they do come close, I always do my best to divert the attention. So yes, mild manner Clark Kent and superhero, Superman (but don’t ask me to wear my undies on the outside – eeewww, what a horrible thought) :p
Of course, my wife Sammi is my very own Lois Lane – although she is completely aware and familiar with (and tolerant of) all of the multiple personalities.