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Former Shepherd student pursues online writing passion

By Staff | Jun 10, 2011

This article has been updated from a previous online version and the printed version that ran in the June 10, 2011 edition of The Shepherdstown Chronicle.


After graduating with an regents bachelor of arts from Shepherd University, Shepherdstown native Naber Bouberhan is self-publishing via The Useless Critic, an online pop-culture blog he has contributed to for the past two years.

Bouberhan is moving to Anchorage, Ala., to school this summer at Alaska Pacific University to pursue his degree in Cultural Studies. Right now Bouberhan works in online advertising; however, his main focus is on The Useless Critic, where he is self-publishing two novels under pen names.

“The material we currently feature would have been very difficult to market to publishers not because of quality, but because of things like printing costs, concerns about language, censorship and finding a target audience. Our target audience is anyone that uses the Internet,” Bouberhan said in an email interview.

Through his novels he hopes to cause what he describes as “laugh riots.”

“When I go to the theatre, I like to see the laugh riots. I like to see the plays that make me unstable with laughter. I want to be in a state where I need recovery. I like material that pushes the extremes of humanity,” Bouberhan said.

Right now Bouberhan is working on a new work called “All American Pick-up Lines.”

“It is exactly what it sounds like – pick up lines for each state in the U.S. and possibly Canada,” Bouberhan said, “The pick up line forSouth Carolina: ‘Yes, I will date you even if your daddy wasa clansman’.”

Bouberhan and his fellow contributors have goals from television to European comedic tours for expansions of The Useless Critic, which gets thousands of viewer monthly.

“There is no other website on the planet earth that features our styles of humor and views on pop culture. Some people might say it’s weird, and I could simply say it’s different, but that is a little too boring. We are different because we cross into so many genres. We feature music mixes that consist of everything from indie and pop to the traditional music of Japan,” Bouberhan said.

The Useless Critic was founded in January 2009 by Brittany Kemp who met Bouberhan at Edinboro University. Bouberhan transferred to Shepherd University, but they still work together along with contributors who span from Pittsburgh, Pa.; Washington, D.C.; Los Angeles; South Korea and soon to be Chicago.

To read and/or purchase Bouberhan’s work and view the blog, visit www.theuselesscritic.com.