About this blog...

Foreword ¡Bienvenidos a todos! I’m Jonathan Holland, the main contributor to the Puerta del Sol Blog, and thank you for dropping by. In brief: I’m a university teacher and film and travel journalist, I’ve published several short stories and a novel, and since 2000 I’ve been the editor of the Puerta del Sol audiomagazine (more biog info below). Having taken an interest in blogging recently, and having been impressed by what blogging can do if it’s done well, I started the PdS Blog on April 21st, 2003 for several reasons. Firstly, there’s the simple fact that I love Spain and love writing about it. As a long-term resident of Spain (I’ve been here since 1990), I still have thoughts about, and reactions to, the place which I thought it would be good to get down in written form. After all, there’s so much happening every day--why should it all just disappear into the ether? The blog is also an attempt to retain some distance on Hispanic life and culture before Madrid finally swallows me wholesale (the city has a tendency to do that), and to remind myself of why it was that I came here in the first place. Those are my personal reasons for doing the PdS Blog. There’s also the fact that I do quite a bit of research for the magazine, but that not all of it fits into the magazine’s pages. The PdS Blog is just the place for all those random, rootless bits of information and opinion that don’t fit elsewhere but which, when united, might (I hope) resemble something whole. A kind of random information and opinion service, if you will. What’s great about blogging is that there’s room for everything, and the only limitation I’ve set myself is that what appears on the blog should be interesting to anyone interested in Hispanic matters--anyone who lives in a Spanish-speaking country, anyone who’d like to, and anyone who just has a passing interest. Some of the material will be in Spanish, so it may even be of some linguistic use to language learners. The aim is to go a little bit deeper than you can normally go if you’re not actually in a place, to provide a flavor of what’s happening here now--and, of course, to provoke thought and comment. Blogging is all about making online friends and acquaintances, so please call by often if you like what you read--most days there’ll be something new--and please feel free to post any comments you like. ¡Hasta pronto! Jonathan Holland

The Contributors

The main writers to the Puerta del Sol Blog are:

Jonathan Holland, writer and journalist (The Guardian, Variety, Condé Nast Traveller, Fodor, AA City Guides). Jonathan Holland has lived in Madrid since 1990. A university lecturer in language and literature and a film reviewer for Variety in the U.S., he has also published a novel, The Escape Artist, as well as a travel guide to Spain and many articles about Spanish and Hispanic life.

Frank Smith, senior producer with BBC radio in London for nearly 20 years, moved to Madrid in 1992, as BBC correspondent in Spain, from where he has also written for The Times and The Observer. He is now head of Modern Languages at San Pablo-CEU University in Madrid.


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