Friday, September 08, 2006

On blogs and blogging

I stole this meme from somewhere in the blogosphere and reworked some parts. Thought it might lead to some interesting reading if anyone else wants to give it a try.

Are you satisfied with your blog's content and look?
For the most part, yes. I would like to be able to change the image in my header once in a while, but haven't figured out how to do that yet. I wish I were more comfortable with HTML so that I'd be willing to experiment a bit more. As it is, if I think it looks okay I'm hestitant to change anything. Even adding links to the sidebar makes me anxious. I tend to write about whatever is floating through my mind each day and like to have pics to go with each post. I really enjoy the visual aspect of blogging, and enjoy photos or illustrations on other's blogs as well as my own.

Does your family know about your blog?
Yes, they do. Whether they read it or not is another question.

Do you feel embarrassed to let your friends know about your blog or do you consider it as a private thing?
Embarrassed isn't the right word for it. It does feel a little weird to have certain friends reading this. My boss, for example, who was *alerted* (thanks Deb!) to my rant about work from last week. Luckily, she laughed and didn't write me up for the comment about menopausal coworkers. A few other people from work read that post (thankfully none of the people I was ranting about) and I got some positive feedback from one coworker in particular who feels much the same and was glad to know she wasn't the only one at the end of her rope with it. A blog can hardly be a private thing, but it can almost feel that way when the people reading it regularly are strangers.

Has blogging brought about positive changes for you?
The discipline of writing each day is a good thing for me. I spend way too much time at it, but it beats sitting in front of the television. I read a lot of great blogs each day and enjoy reading other people's perspectives. I'm glad to have encountered people who appreciate some of the same things as I do.

Do you only read blogs of those who comment on your blog or do you also like to find new blogs?
I like to find new blogs, but also visit the folks who comment here.

What are your thoughts on commenting? Is it important to you that people leave comments?
I probably only comment on half of the blogs I read each day. I try to leave good thoughtful comments, but oftentimes I can't think of anything intelligent to say. Of course, I wonder how many people read my blog but never comment. One thing that bugs me are bloggers who don't acknowledge comments. I think it's bad form. Of course, not every comment requires a response, but there are certain blogs that I hesitate to comment on anymore because my comments are ignored every single time. Why allow comments if you're not interested in the feedback you get? The comments I get here are important to me because I like the sense of community and the exchange of ideas.

Does your visitor's counter matter to you?
Not on a daily basis, but I do like to see that I'm not always talking to myself!

Do you try to imagine what fellow bloggers look like?
I admit to having a *picture* in my mind based on the *voice* they use in their blog, yes.

Do you think there is a benefit to blogging?
Well, it's fun for me, so that's a benefit. I'm using my camera a lot more and writing a little each day. Plus, I feel like I've made new friends and gotten to *know* people I otherwise would not have. A lot of the blogs I read relate to natural history in one way or another and it's interesting to me to see how sometimes we're all thinking about the same things. Blogging has also caused me to realize that I have a lot to learn and I've been lucky to find a lot of knowledgeable people.

Does criticism of your blog annoy you?
So far everyone's been really nice. Constructive criticism is good and welcomed!

Are there any types of blogs that you avoid?
I don't know that there are any types that I avoid reading, but I do hestitate to comment on political posts or others where I don't feel capable of contributing anything worthwhile.


Rhea said...

I wanted to say that your blog has a nice, clean look. Very readable. From one (former) New Jerseyite to another!

debbie said...

you are welcome. i love reading your blog. don't worry i am pretty sure no one will ever be able to find your blog again.

John said...

If you would like to change your header, locate the url in your blog template, and replace it with another image of your choice. It is in the CSS portion at the start of the template, under "Header". You can upload your own header image by posting it as a temporary post and then copying the url Blogger assigns to the image into the template. (It's okay to delete the post after adding the image to the template.) If you want to make the blog's title part of the image, make sure to make an appropriate edit further down under 'div id="header"'; otherwise the standard title and description will overwrite the image.

Susan Gets Native said...

I love your blog. (Which all can tell, since I am here like every day!)
Don't change anything! Keep on truckin', Laura dear!

LauraHinNJ said...

Rhea: thanks and thanks for stopping by here. I've only looked at a few NJ blogs. I just had a quick look at the NJ category on yours - fun ideas there I'd like to take more time with.

Deb: I'm sorry to say you're right, but that's probably a good thing. You never know when I'll feel the need to rant again.

John: thanks - glad someone is tech savy. I've played around with the header somewhat, but what I need help with is figuring out the proper size of the image to use so that it fits in the box up at the top. My brother once looked at something up there and was able to tell me how many pixels the image was, but I forget.

Susan: Thanks for saying so and for stopping by each day!

Laura said...

It's me, Laura from Natural Notes. This is the only way Blogger will let me comment, since I'm on the new beta format.

Your blog is one I read regularly, even though I may not always leave a comment. Mostly because I want to sound halfway intelligent when I do...

Keep on blogging!

Maya's Granny said...

I drop by almost every day, sometimes I comment, sometimes I don't. A lot of the time that depends more on how much time I have than it does on what you said -- if I'm in a hurry, I just read. Feels like eating and running, but there it is.

NatureWoman said...

I love your blog! It's appearance is nice and clean, and I enjoy the way you write, and of course the photos. I'm into photos.
Your blog is one that I read every time I see you have a new post in Google Reader.

silverlight said...

I know what you mean. It is rather like: 'is there anyone out there? Does anybody care?'

pablo said...

I'm using this meme in a post for next weekend. I don't usually like blog memes, but this one seemed worthy.

John said...

The header image is 740px by 150px. However, your template instructs the browser to scale the width of the image down to 660px (and a corresponding reduced height of 134px). The line in the code that does this is in the CSS section near the top, within the "#header" brackets, right under the image URL where it says: "width:660px;". You can adjust that number for a larger or smaller image.

LauraHinNJ said...

Thanks, John. Sounds like Greek, but I'll puzzle my way through it.

Pablo: I thought it was interesting, too. I'll look forward to your post next weekend. (Do you really plan your posts that far in advance? Wow.)

Silverlight: We're not always talking to ourselves - sometimes poeple are reading!

Laura: what is up with Blogger lately? New and improved? harummph!

Maya's granny: glad you find the time to drop in - I appreciate your comments when you do!

Naturewoman: Thanks. Photos make a blog (or not). Thanks for reading!

Wayne said...


I'm late to the party because of the last three days but enjoyed your "on blogs and blogging" post.

I tried to find an email address to vent a little more fully, but there was none to be had, and I won't do so here.

Except to say that I agree so completely that you'd be surprised that if a small blogger, who gets just a few comments, isn't going to respond to comments, he or she should just shut the comments down and be a write-only. My parents taught me that that class of thing is just plain rude.

I admit I don't catch every single comment, but I get in excess of 90%. And that's important to me.

LauraHinNJ said...

Important to me too, Wayne.

I guess I can understand the blog that is so popular to get gazillions of comments that a person doesn't have the time, but most of us just have a few comments from friends. I guess if you think that blogging is somewhat about relationships (rather than always just tooting your own horn) then the comments will be worth your time.

Re: my email addy - thought it would be available to you in the comments on your blog? Thanks for stopping in, btw!

dguzman said...

Thanks for this meme. I put it on my blog too. My answers were not as thoughtful as yours, but I'm a little under the weather today.... But Nibble's taking care of me.