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Features


Taking blogazine to the readers

The online presence of many a publication indicates that many readers have are now utilising both paper and bandwidth, and those numbers are growing. After all, besides being convenient and cheap, what’s there not to love about having all your information only a click away?

Tan Yet Mee, founder and editor of the blogazine (blog + magazine) Emmagem.com, is well aware of the impact the Internet has had on the publishing industry. After all, it’s the open-to-public nature of the Internet that contributed to the existence of Emmagem.

Founder, Tan Yet Mee Founder, Tan Yet Mee

As Tan recalls, “it was the evolution of technology that made us a blog magazine,” adding that when Emmagem first started, weblogs were gaining prominence. The popularity of blogs, combined with the fact that its user-friendly interface made it possible for laymen to generate decent, even good-looking, material, was the catalyst for the conception of Emmagem.

Emmagem, as well as other blog publications, form a melting pot where traditional print publication and blogging world meld together to create a new genre: The blogazine. This is where a team of people put together a magazine publication which is published in blog format to build a network of readers.

Independent writing

Blog magazines, like their print counterparts, are often backed by media companies and as such have more clout, shares Tan; however, there are some that run independently, like Emmagem and its recent addition – Emm-A-Man, a blogazine aimed specifically at men.

Independence has its share of pros and cons, though: Cons include an uphill struggle to be heard and taken seriously, as well as a marked lack of funding and manpower. As Tan puts it, “Everybody wants to join the bigger organisation,” – which can make life a little difficult, business-wise.

Writing-wise, though, the pros include the freedom to write what the writers want to write. While bigger publications may have advertisers to appease, independent ones have no one to “kowtow” to, according to Tan.

There’s definitely something to be said about the kind of flexibility one gains from independence, and not having to submit to the sometimes blatant manipulation of the market by some brands.

Emmagem’s mark on the world

It may not be the coolest and trendiest blogazine around, but Emmagem’s biggest draw, as well as that of its sister (brother?) site - Emm-A-Man, is its down-to-earth content, combined with its quirky articles that touch on everything from fashion to food.

Driven by motivation and not numbers, Tan believes that this philosophy is what allows them to explore their socially responsible side and passion for getting real, honest information out to the people out there.

Writing as a career

Writing can be a very rewarding career – besides having one’s finger on the pulse of society at all times, the sheer joy of crafting a piece of art in the form of words can be all the rewards one needs.

Pay-wise, the idea of writers living in garrets and being half-starved is very much passé. With career paths that can lead to the editor’s desk, or to a life of freelancing, surely writing shouldn’t be relegated to “back-up job” status.

“The pen is mightier than the sword,” Tan says emphatically, adding that writing is “a very important job.” And she would know - Emmagem being the product of her love with the written word, as well as her passion for making a difference through writing.

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