Warigia Bowman is a Visiting Assistant Professor at the American University in Cairo & holds a doctorate in public policy from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.
The 411…: Can you tell us a little about yourself?
Warigia: I am half Kenyan, half American. I think of myself as African-American, though. I am married to a Kenyan. I am trying to learn better Swahili. I am a dedicated mother, a devoted wife and an enthusiastic professor. I am a pretty good cook, and a decent gardener. What else can I tell you?
The 411…: How did you get into blogging?
Warigia: Michael, I just had so much to say about the situation in Egypt, I needed an outlet for my writing.
The 411…: Why did you decide to start a blog?
Warigia: I decided to start my blog so I could keep American friends and family posted about my experiences during the Egyptian Revolution.
The 411…: What was the name of your first blog?
Warigia: Well, my very first blog was mikonogamumama which I started a few years ago about my frugal living tips. Have not done that much with it, but it got me started.
The 411…: What blogging platform did you use to start with? What are you using now and why?
Warigia: I am using Blogspot. It has some good points and some bad points. I like it that it is connected with Gmail and Picasa. I use Picasa a lot, so that is convenient. I do not like it that it only allows you to do ten pages. It seems like word press is more sophisticated, but Blogspot is a good place to start for a non-technical person like myself.
The 411…: What makes a good blog post?
Warigia: Ha ha Michael, I think you know that better than I do, you are a more experienced blogger than I am. My readers seem to love my students’ blog post on the situation of women in Egypt. They also seem very interested in my tracking of the debate about Qadaffi as a Pan-Africanist. I think a good blog post is less than 1200 words, provides a perspective you cannot find elsewhere, and is either very insightful, very funny, or very touching. On a good day, a post may be all three.
The 411…: What would you prioritize? Content? S.E.O.? Traffic? Readers?
Warigia: I am all about content. I would like to see more readers, and more blog traffic, personally.
The 411…: What’s the best thing a blogger can give to his readers?
Warigia: The best thing a blogger can give to his or her readers is a perspective that no one else can provide.
The 411…: List your three favorite blogs (the ones that you read the most).
Warigia: The 411!!! Shout out to my homie Michael Kipsang Bullut! Security4Development by Carl Levan, and Sibilant Egypt, by Abdel-Rahman Hussein.
The 411…: If someone was interested in blogging, what would be a few things you would suggest?
Warigia: To start blogging I would say start writing, and read the suggestions on Gmail for blogging. Also, ask fellow bloggers as many questions as you can, and be reciprocal!
1) Your favorite browser?
~ Google Chrome .
2) Your favorite search engine?
3) Best thing about the Net?
~ The Net helps me find friends and relatives I have lost.
4) Worst thing about the Net?
~ The worst thing about the Net is that people do not meet in person or talk on the phone enough anymore. Note to youngsters, don’t date over text, Bad idea.
5) What is your favorite instant messaging software?
~ Gchat, wow, I am a googleslut!