This is the official blog of Sgt Ellie Bloggs, a real live police sergeant on the front line of England. It's not the official opinion of my police force, but all the facts I recount are true, and are not secrets. If they don't want me blogging about it, they shouldn't do it. PS If you don't pay tax, you don't pay my salary.


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Monday, June 08, 2009

Anonymity Anonymous

My publisher Dan Collins of Monday Books has written a piece about my book for this publishing blog. I think I also wrote a piece, which according to the blog will be on there next week. I say "I think", because at times I find my life to be a blur of early, late and night shifts, interspersed with requests for interviews, articles and/or photos of the real me. At times I forget I've published a book, and at others I forget I'm a police officer. Sometimes both.*

In actual fact things are strongly weighted towards the late and night shifts, with the interview/article requests coming in bundles when something newsworthy breaks about the police. [Somewhere in between I write the sequel to Diary, study for OSPRE (as and when), and have a fairly active selection of hobbies too.]


The interviews are a double-edged sword. Anyone who reads Dan's blog (you know who you are) will know of his frustration when I do an interview or piece of publicity, and end up voicing about four seconds of opinion with no mention of the blog or book as agreed. The frustration for me is not the fleeting nature of the interview, nor the lack of publicity for my writing. It is the lack of context in which I am interviewed.

As a police blogger/author, and a serving policewoman with very little influence over the machinnations of Blandshire Constabulary, I do not do radio interviews to regurgitate official policy, defend the indefensible, nor lambast the honest British public. If a radio producer needs a police officer on their show to explain why traffic cops have set up a ticketing operation on his route to work, or talk about the use of the baton, every force in the country has a press office that can oblige. If they want the controversial view, there are Fed Reps, and Norman Brennan.

Police officers are supposed to represent their role on and off duty. Bloggers are a slightly different animal. We work only for ourselves, we represent our own opinion, and that is all.

So I'm happy to give interviews, as a police blogger, as long as the people listening to me are aware that's what I am. Whether it means they give me more or less credence than a non-blogging police officer is up to them.

All forms of fame are fleeting. It's best to enjoy them while they exist, relish their memory, but not miss them when they pass.

It is the work I do in my day job that lasts.











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'Diary of an On-Call Girl' is available in some bookstores and online.

* For any PSD reading, the phrase "I forget I'm a police officer" should be read in the spirit in which it was written. Namely, subversion.

3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lets just hope you and those like you keep up the good work. It all helps to educate the public what a mess UK policing has become.

(1st comment on here and gadgets, love RDIL)

10 June, 2009 10:42

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've just bought and read your book Ellie, after a recommendation by a friend. I didn't know you had a blog (I'm not particularly au fait with blogs!) but have found you and wanted to say how much I enjoyed the book.
Looking forward to book 2.

Sarah Cartwright

10 June, 2009 11:44

 
Anonymous Dr Melvin T Gray said...

I can fully support the deletion of obscenity, libel or offensive comment. However, the deletion of my fair right to reply, constituting no more than the short explanatory response to Lawyer type above, is as difficult to justify as it is easy to equate to the police blog equivalent of taser abuse.

Was it not you, Ellie, professing to support and admire free expression and openness with the public?

If it be the case that fair and just comments embarrass a personal agenda sculpted for approval by Radio 4 producers, please qualify your version of openness with the public if it is something other than hypocrisy.

23 June, 2009 20:39

 

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