Elite Blogger: Rendezvous With Avi Abrams

We are running in 2008 and if we sit back and recall the evolution of blogging almost eight-years ago and measure its deliverables then the medium has achieved unrivaled success. And thanks to bloggers who now find themselves addicted to the system. Cherishing the tendency to get addicted to the blogging mechanism, here comes another addictive blog with a difference. Curious what am talking about I am in a addicted mode huh..and to give you a dope is the face behind Dark Roasted Blend (DRB)– Avi Abrams.

Avi, founder and writer, DRB offers a good coffee-break and visually its a feast for those tiring eyes, sick of being glued to PC for long stressful nine-hours. Likewise Jen, associate editor, PCMag is the weird hunter of technology world, it wont be fallacious to christen Avi as the weird hunter of the lively routine world minus politics, religion and celebrities. DRB has an eternal relation with “Thrilling Wonder Stories” science fiction adventure pulp and hence having made up amongst top 300 technorati blogs and standing at No.8 in the compilation of the most popular Blogger powered blogs, it is overt for Avi to be my Weird yet wonderful elite blogger

Roll over to know more about efforts invested for the current appealing form of DRB:

Avi, kindly introduce yourself to my readers’ and take us through your usual day at work.
I am the owner of the website “Dark Roasted Blend“, a fun place online devoted to all things “weird and wonderful” that you can check out during your coffee break – so it’s a safe-for-work, highly visual environment… like a large-format coffee table book. Read here to learn more.

My wife and I have two sons, aged 8 and 2, so my typical day at work consists of finding some actual time to do some actual work. We also travel an awful lot, so finding a place with a good wireless connection is part of the job. In the past I’ve been a computer animator, music video editor, electronics engineer, played in a rock band and wrote some science fiction – so I guess I am used to juggling various activities.

When did you sense an inclination towards blogging? Are you satisfied with the functionality of the blogging eco-system or think there is a need for revamp?
Avi Abrams I wanted to start a site that would provide quality online entertainment, without low-brow profanities and/or haughty agendas.

A happy place, full of the “sense of wonder” and discoveries about our world and beyond. The internet in general is an awesome compendium of fascinating things (take Wikipedia, for example), but many people do not have time to wade through user-submitted content and various aggregator sites. They just need a “daily dose of awesome”, short and sweet. DRB provides just that.

Our articles, however, tend to be more in-depth than just a few links and an image. We provide a new themed article every other day – and in that we are different from link-aggregator sites like BoingBoing or Neatorama.

Elitechoice team is a savvy visitor of “weird and wonderful things” covered here. What made you expand this idea?
The fact that many people today have a broadband connection and can enjoy larger-format images together with a thought-provoking article. We try to combine great textual info and mind-blowing visuals in one package – all on one page. You can call it an “added-value content” concept, with a good measure of fun. It’s certainly fun to put together our daily posts. It’s also fun to read cool and educated comments we get on every article.

How do you define “”weird and wonderful things”?
I don’t. They are weird and wonderful – surprising and wild. You cannot “tame” or define “the sense of wonder”. One thing we guarantee, however – we steer away from crass, profane and idiotic, no matter how sensational it might be. Think of it as large-format “LIFE” magazine, devoid of politics, religion and celebrities, married with “Thrilling Wonder Stories” science fiction adventure pulp.

What remains the criterion of selecting a prospective post on a particular day considering the blog covers diverse random subjects?
I have an associate hamster editor, that gets either excited or not about any particular post. Judging by how agitated it becomes, and the speed of hamster wheel rotation – the post either gets selected or dumped into “Fark /College Humor” pile. I noticed that the hamster does not get excited about various political agendas, cynicism, dark horror or pointless displays of angst. It likes exploration, photography, art, cool technology, beer, cheese and intense deep poetry.

What initiatives do you make to maintain the consistency of the popularity gained by DRB?
We keep posting on a regular basis, looking around various international sites for cool things (not just English-based, but also many Japanese, Russian, Israeli and Dutch sites). If the day would have 48 hours, you would have twice as much cool content on DRB. But we’re also looking at expanding our writer base.

Tell us about your ‘must-read’ or favorite blogs?
I totally love Neatorama, WebUrbanist, DeputyDog, Fogonazos, Modern Mechanix, DamnInteresting. Recently Reddit became more manageable resource, as you can now filter out the content you don’t want, and it moves much faster than Digg. Basically every site on our blogroll is great to visit: some coolest favorites include Bldgblog, Ectoplasmosis, PreSurfer, Treehugger, PaleoFuture and the list is endless.

Provide us with your five favorite posts you have written to date.
Kindly visit Most Popular/Hidden Gems, it lists our favorite DRB articles, and even cites the coolest stuff on internet we discovered during last year. It’s hard to chose, as I strive to make every post “the best” and do not publish it if I’m not completely happy.

What other areas interest you besides blogging?
DRB has sister sites: Science Fiction & Fantasy Reading Experience, also our music recordings, travel photos and surreal writing. I try to play some groovy keyboards regularly and carve out more time for reading.

How would you like to be called as:

* Blogger
* Graphic designer
* 3D artist
* Writer
* Entrepreneur

None of these. I’m just looking for wisdom and beauty, everywhere it takes me. Plus, I am my kid’s dad, ‘enough said.

Quick bites:

Hours you invest digging net: I spend 8 hours a day running the site – it’s important to limit it to only 8 hours.
Biggest blogging mistake you did: Reading too many Reddit and Digg comments.
If not a blogger/writer, then. Song composer in the good old Merseybeat style.
Life without Internet: Ask the Amish, they seem to like it.
Number of bloggers behind DRB: I run the site and write the majority of posts, but we have contributions from 3 to 5 other writers.

What is that weirdest thing you have featured over at DRB?
The one thing too gross and weird to feature on DRB, so we had to publish it elsewhere is “Trepanation open up your mind, or…not!”. That has got to be the most shocking article ever written.

Is there any subject/area left for a prospective blog that a novice blogger can venture into?
Just follow your heart, and all comments / opinions be damned.

Avi AbramsWhom would you recommend as my next EliteBlogger and why?
DeputyDog seems to be an interesting character, or the guy behind WebUrbanist.

Give us your views on EliteChoice.
Good job you do here. A wonderful outlet to feature some internet personalities who all too often remain inside their blogging caves.

You can ask me one question.
The name Zola sounds Italian… do you often visit Europe?

Not very often and I consider blogging addiction as a biggest obstacle to my earlier persona of a Rover. And I feel contented with my present role.

I thank Avi for sparing time for us and wish him luck for taking DRB to new, weird and wonderful levels of success.
Avi Abrams

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