Saturday, December 19, 2009

To Blog or Not to Blog?

This past week I've been trying some new ideas on my blog. For one thing, I changed the background. I've been blog hopping, looking at other blogs and trying to get some ideas on where I wanted to go with mine. In the process I discovered a lot of bloggers out there are still sporting the Blogspot template they picked when they set up their blog. For some that may be okay and exactly what you want, but for me it was down right BORING! While searching for a background that I liked, I came across some fun sites I thought I'd share with you. They are easy to load under customize/add gadget/html. All the instructions are on the sites and are very easy to follow:

Delightful Dots

Shabby Blogs

My Style Backgrounds

The Cutest Blog on the Block


Aqua Poppy Designs

Most of those have a "scrapbook" look to them. There are others like, PYZAM.COM, that offer a huge variety, but installing the code is a little bit tricky for the novice blogger.

Something else you'll want to do when sprucing up your blog, is add some fun stuff to your sidebar. You can get tons of ideas by just clicking around from one blog to another. You'll want a good picture of yourself and a short bio, too.

In trying to create more traffic on mine, I've also come up with some ideas to bring other bloggers on board. I have a theme for most of the days, like:

Music Monday - I post a song and the lyrics along with a brief reason why I like it. Does it fit my mood? Does it go with the book I'm writing? And so forth.

Tagalong Tuesday - I search through all my blogging friends sites who have posted within the past 24 hours and pick a sentence or two to quote on my blog. Then I link it back to their story, so they will get some traffic as well.

Writing Wednesday - I try to put something writerly on there, but not always.

Thursday - Is just a misc. day.

Friendly Friday - I have a guest blogger, post a picture, short bio and their story along with links back to their blog, again creating more traffic for them. This week it was Valerie Ipson. Her post was great if you want to check it out HERE.

Saturday - I usually post the same thing I post here. (okay, I'm lazy, what can I say)

Sunday - Don't usually post anything unless it's spiritual.

So that's it. I know I won't be perfect and I'm sure I'll miss a day here and there, but picking themes will help me know what to write and help create a buzz so when my book gets published I will already have readers lined up. Just in the past 4 days, I've picked up 3 more followers and have had over 100 visitors.

Hope this helps those that are just starting out or who may not have a blog yet. And for those that are pros, leave us a comment about how you blog or where you get your ideas.


  1. I spend a lot of time visiting blogs to learn more about the craft of writing. I'm also a full-time quote collector. I post quotes most often that inspire an essay or just on their own when I'm out of the steam to post anything else.

    I'm a very visual person, so I seek out art work that fits the look and feel of my blog. It's always an adventure to see what I'll find and who I'll meet.

    Happy blogging, all!!

  2. Chris, wow, thank you for posting this. I have been struggling with what I should write on my blog since I still consider myself a newbie. From church callings, to volunteering in my community, to writing, to editing, to critiquing to reading, to kids, to husband, to household to MY needs (showers, eating, feeding my spirit, etc.)--I feel like blogging is tipping me over. Maybe? I have been praying for guidance on the topics and schedules. I like your schedule and how you outlined it so clearly. Thank you for sharing!

  3. OOh! I love this post Christine! AWESOME! And so cool! I've never even heard of half the links you have up here.

    Definitely checking them out!

  4. I've enjoyed your week of structure on your blog. It's fun to have themes because, like you said, it takes some of that "idea" pressure off. I recently started doing themes as well and it's helped a lot. I'm not as ambitious though and still only blog 3 times a week. It's all I can handle without resenting it. I do enjoy your ideas. I want to know how you make the header of your blog all pretty. I still haven't figured that out after all this time (what can I say, I'm a little bit technologically challenged. I'm surprised I even get posts up half the time).

  5. Thanks guys. Hope you enjoy browsing the backgrounds. There's really too many to choose from.

    Kasie, the header on my blog was just a picture I liked. I cropped it on Photoshop and added the lettering there too, then put it on my blog as the header. Easy stuff. I've seen a lot of digital scrapbookers do similar things with theirs. A few of the links I left above for backgrounds also have free headers to match, so make sure you check them out.



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