I had the opportunity to chat with our Blogger Of The Month, a blogger who uses the mysterious nickname of The Stiletto.

I have to ask this one, (I’m nosy) why do you use the mysterious pen name? And can you tell us a little about yourself?
 
The Stiletto has a particular interest in the Armenian Genocide and when she writes about it, she often gets vituperative – and sometimes threatening – comments and e-mails from Turks. As much as The Stiletto admires Armenian journalist Hrant Dink, who was assassinated by Turkish nationalists in Istanbul in January 2007, she does not want to share his fate. Hence, the nom de guerre.
 
The Stiletto is a classical or laissez-faire liberal – which means that according to today’s political taxonomy, she is a conservative. Her idealism and beliefs never changed, but the labels did. Anyone who wants to know more about The Stiletto, is welcome to read her bio or these FAQs.
 
Politics seems to be your writing specialty, are you a political animal?
 
The Stiletto is intensely – perhaps insanely – political.  
 
What got you interested in politics?
 
The Stiletto cannot remember ever not being interested in politics. While other kindergarteners were watching cartoons, she was watching the evening news with Walter Cronkite. Perhaps one can’t be a news junkie without also being a political junkie, and vice versa. 
 
How, and why, did you enter the writing business?
 
Before starting The Stiletto Blog, The Stiletto would e-mail articles she found interesting or provocative to her friends, but she eventually wanted to reach – and perhaps influence – a wider circle of people than just the ones she knew. Plus, The Stiletto had been contributing political humor to various Web sites, and decided it was time to strike out on her own. She started The Stiletto Blog to share her thoughts on what she deemed the important issues of the day – but without beating people over the head. For this reason, humor is an important element of The Stiletto Blog. Even if you don’t agree with The Stiletto on an issue – or any of them, for that matter – she can still make you laugh, so there’s no hard feelings.  
 
The writing game is a brutal game, your articles get lots of comments, some are less than complementary. How do you deal with your critics?
 
The First Rule of punditry is: Don’t ever apologize, don’t ever explain. You have to have the courage of your convictions.
 
The Second Rule is: Try never to be wrong, so you don’t have to violate the First Rule. You have to do your homework, and be able to back up your position with facts, figures and supporting documents – which, as a blogger, you can imbed into your narrative so people can check things out for themselves.
 
The Third Rule is: Everyone is entitled to his or her opinion, just like you. The only thing The Stiletto doesn’t abide is ad hominem attacks – she will not allow anyone to define her as a “racist,” “nativist” or some other pejorative a commentor will resort to when (s)he cannot disprove your argument or is too lazy to try.
 
Politics is clearly your favorite arena, but do you write about other things?
 
The Stiletto Blog is about “politics and other stuff.” The Stiletto is also a geek so she also writes about her other interests, which include technology (AI, astrophysics, DNA computing); her attempts to learn to drink scotch (she’s a vodka aficionado); and her love of muscle cars (she actually coaxed a Prius to go 105 mph once). It goes without saying that The Stiletto is mad about shoes, and has quite a collection of them. 
 
You got an Honorable Mention in the Webby awards. That is quite the achievement. Can you tell us about how you got involved?
 
Thank you. Maybe this is chutzpah – or the fact that each category entry carried a $250 fee – but The Stiletto entered in only one category, Political Blogs. Admittedly, the odds were stacked against The Stiletto Blog: It’s  a one-woman operation; it’s done on a shoe-string budget; its political orientation is right of center; and it’s an independent operation, not part of a larger media or corporate entity. The Stiletto was hopeful that the quality of her content would enable her to hold her own against her MSM competitors – but was still pleasantly surprised (shocked!) when she found herself in the same company as CNN, Time magazine, The New York Times and other huge media firms. Being recognized as a Webby Official Honoree shows that Big Media hasn’t completely taken over the blogosphere, and that there is still room for independent bloggers to have their say and make an impact.
  
So whats next in your career?
 
The Stiletto is hoping that The Stiletto Blog becomes one of those blogs – such as, Captain’s Quarters, Betsy’s Page, My DD and The Volokh Conspiracy – that MSM pundits cite in their own columns. Plus, a link on The Drudge Report wouldn’t hurt, either.

Thanks for talking with us today, and good luck with your endevours

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