Amit Varmas blog is the only Indian entry at the 2008 Weblog Awards
Anyone into reading blogs on a daily basis would have stumbled upon one of the countrys most popular blogs,India Uncut,by Amit Varma. And if you like that blog,heres more reason to cheer: it has been nominated for two categories,Best Asian Blog and Best Political Blog at the 2008 Weblog Awards. For the uninitiated,the Weblog Awards are the biggest awards in the blogosphere,with readers nominating nearly 5,000 blogs under several categories.
Varma isnt new to awards. Since he began writing India Uncut in 2004,it has won the Best Indiblog in 2005 and was nominated for the Best Asian Blog in the 2006 Bloggies Awards as well. Varma,a former journalist who has also won the Bastiat Prize for Journalism in 2007,wrote for Cricinfo,The Wall Street Journal,Guardian and the London Observer before he left journalism and began focusing on writing full-time.
Through his blog,Varma discusses mainly politics and daily news,among other assorted issues. His witty,wry humour has won him many readers and the blog is currently leading the nominations at the Weblog Awards. The Awards choose 10 finalists in different categories. The call for nominations began in October last year but it was only a few days ago that Varma was informed of the nominations. I presume some reader must have nominated me at that time and their judges must have liked what they read. I got to know only after I was short listed when I started getting congratulatory e-mails, says Varma who is also awaiting the release of his debut novel My Friend,Sancho which was long-listed for the Man Asian Literary Prize last year and will be published by Hachette India in April. Varma is being realistic about his chances. Im up against top American blogs like Daily Kos,Politico and Townhall in the Best Political Coverage category. Their traffic is far more than mine and I dont think I stand a chance there. However,I stand a chance in the Best Asian Blog category, says Varma frankly. There is no monetary reward for the Awards,just the respect of your peers which he feels is more valuable than any cash prize.