Name, age, URLs
Lonnie Emmanuel Tapia, 29 years old
What blogs have you created?
Title of blog #1: YouYams
Concept: Essays and open letters to the world from a 23 year old gay male latino
Started September 2003
Archived URL: http://bit.ly/c4Rc6w
Technology: Self-published and hand-coded
Title of blog #2: Atticus West
Concept: Continued musings of a young gay male
Started June 2004
Archived URL: http://bit.ly/coijQe
Title of blog #3: PopCultureJunkies.com
Contributor in 2005-2006
Archived URL: (now defunct) PopCultureJunkies.com
Technology: Moveable Type
Title of blog #4: Lonnie’s iPhone blog. Web Maven. Truth Teller.
Concept: An iPhone blog about all things Central Phoenix. Roughly 99% of the content is created and uploaded from my phone on the go.
Started in February 2008
Archived URL: http://lonnietapia.com/archive
Current posts: http://lonnietapia.com
Technology: Tumblr, iPhone, iPhone web app, e-mail
Title of blog #5: A Better World through Design
Concept: Stories about changing the world and saving lives through design.
Starting in March 2010.
URL: TBD, check lonnietapia.com for more details
When did you start blogging?
I started blogging in 2003 during college in Tempe. I studied graphic design and web programming, wanted to put my web savvy to use and improve my writing skills. But mostly I was young, naive, horny, had a lot to say! I wanted to share funny stories about the world around me and people loved reading about my life. My website analytics and stalker fan mail told me so.
What is your favorite part about the blogging experience and what do you get out of it?
Blogging over the course of 7 years from early on in college and well into my professional career captured the essence of my life from a young gay twink to a professional adult. Through words, pictures, audio posts, and videos I’ve been able to capture the growth process over time, remember things from those formative years, see into the workings of my mind and view the progress I’ve made as an individual.
Why do you have the desire to share your thoughts with the world/why is it important for the LGBT voice to be heard?
In some cases, I’m not proud of the cruelty, vulgarity and sensational content I sent out to the world from a younger age. But the story-telling of my gay life in this medium brought my straight family who live across the U.S. into my personal life, along with friends and strangers from just about everywhere.
Looking back at my very first posts, I see the humor, honesty, energy and optimism of gay youth. People noticed that and reacted to it. I’ve received fan mail and hate mail, both of which made it into my blog. The lesson here: don’t mess with bloggers! They can be a fierce bunch.
Each blog incarnation has shown a change in perspective. But I never did it to make my “gay voice” heard. The most important part of blogging is to have an honest, unique point of view. And being gay definitely shapes the content I choose to produce.
Have you won any weblog/writing awards?
Yes, I won “Best of the Blogs” and was profiled in CyberSocket Magazine. They mentioned a few key posts including “How to achieve 3-point lighting in a bar” and “An open letter to web cam boys.” It’s definably not the kind of topics I write about now. But it came from a young gay man who just discovered the world and loved everything about it. It was passionate.
Top 3 favorite blogs you read:
I have a great deal of respect for Chris Guillebeau. He is attempting to visit every country in the world by 2013 and has made amazing progress to date. Alos, Chris turned blogging into a viable living and he did it without any paid advertising on his site.
Tina Roth Eisenberg, a Swiss designer (now living in NYC), maintains a beautifully simple site that profiles all things minimalist from product to interior and web design. She also created a wonderfully simple online web app called teuxdeux.com that I use everyday to organize my own to-do lists.
No one is a informative or passionate about the opening, closings and personalities behind the Valley’s local food scene than the folks at EaterAZ. The entry on the closing of one of my favorite restaurants (Palette) is a must read.
I blog (of course!) almost exclusively from my iPhone about traveling, cooking and eating out in Central Phoenix. I work for a graphic design and website studio in Old Town called Fervor Creative.
Recently, I have been concepting my next blog incarnation which will focus less on my personal life and more on my experience in the world of design. I’ve seen how design can change culture, raise awareness and even save lives. I’ve made it my mission to share these stories with the world and shine some light on the good works going on this world and how people I’ve met are changing the world into a better place.