Sunday, February 25, 2007

blogging 2.0

Considering the element of time, I would have to say that ideally a good blogger would update at least once a week. However, "ideally" rarely works in practice and that said, I'm of the opinion that not even updating once a week will save you, if it's uninspired crap.

The actual having time to do so of blogging is something that I have and continue to struggle with. It's just so easy for me to fall off the face of updating for months at a time. I'm not entirely sure why. Possibly because when it comes down to it I am a shy person. Possibly because while I'm not short on things to write about, I do run short on the belief that people really care to read about them sometimes. Possibly because I'm somewhat of a hermit and going missing is nothing new for me.

I am beginning to think that perhaps it is good to make yourself sit down and write something on a semi regular basis just for the sake of writing something. Anything. And with any luck once there's some words there, I won't think it's un-postable crap, and will proceed to update with it.

So many Chucks, so few places to go.

Alright, here's the set up: you need this.

A good blog posts consists of a few different things. There are (I think) as follows:

1) Interest.
Let's be honest, if it's boring, nobody cares. If it's themed, or funny, or just... je ne c'est qoui... people are more likely to read it.

"I had an okay day. Had popcorn for breakfast and root beer for lunch."

Not going to get a lot of readers.

2) Good spelling, grammar, punctuation and everything that goes with it.

Because people LOVE it when writers know what the hell they're doing.

if u dont no wut im talking about then nvrmind.

3) Pictures!

Because everyone likes a good image.

(oh look!)

4) Other things.
You know what? I'm not sure, exactly. I think after my first three on the list, it's all very reader oriented. I know what I like, and I'm sure you guys know what you like--and I'm willing to bet that they aren't exactly the same things.

Friday, February 23, 2007

subject lines lines, like shoes, are for the weak

I find myself at a loss for words, moreover a loss of motivation here. Not just here, but pretty much everywhere. Have you guys ever felt like that? Like the whole world is just...meh.
Contrary to what Ashley posted earlier, this will not be a very good blog post. It will be honest, sure, and have as much correct spelling and grammar as I can muster, yes. But it won't be very good.
Like Frost, I didn't, and still don't understand what the point of the class blog was if we were doing D2L already anyway, so I'm just going to treat this as (yet another) personal blog. Well, slightly less personal as it's out there for the whole world to read, but Ashely and Frost pretty much know what's going on anyway.
I am, however, going to change tangents of this post now, and instead of talking about how not very good a blog post this is going to be (because there is an intense lack of passion in it, again, because I'm just in a meh sort of mood and have been for awhile now) and talk about another form of internet communication.
The Webcomic.
There are, if I'm counting correctly about 324970250983429 million webcomics floating around the internets as we speak, or type, rather. Most of them just fly under the radar and aren't that good, but there are some (IE Megatokyo etc) that achieve actual popularity in the world. So why, then, have Frost and I decided to endeavor to start our own webcomic? Other than the opportunity to make a visual commentary on real life issues in an environment that is, mostly, safe for us to express ourselves in, of course. It's simple.
Frost's an art major and I'm a creative writer, so why not combine our forces and CONQUER THE WORLD1? That and it's just another level of nerd. I'll post the link here when we get it up and running and set up a posting schedule of sorts for that as well.
Wish us luck oh few people that actually read this blog. We're probably going to need it.

1 See that, Ashely? Now that was Cruise Control for Cool.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

post post posting revolution(s)

RE: What elements doth a good blog post make?

First of all I think it is worth noting that "good" is ultimately a question of oh-so-subjective value judgments. What one person may consider a good post, the very next may consider trash.

That said, I am of the opinion that above all a good blog post is one that the blogger enjoyed writing. If one isn't enjoying blogging, it's likely that this will shine through in the tone of his writing.

A good post should fulfill the blogger's desire for self expression.

The blogger's personality should shine through in the tone of the writing.

Ideally a good blog post would be read by a fair sized audience but popularity is not always an indicator of quality and a small faithful audience is just as worthy as a larger one.

Humor always helps.

If you're discussing anything you wouldn't want people you know in real life to stumble across, it would be wise to place that entry under a security lock, making it viewable to only those you wish to have viewing it.

Separation between paragraphs make it so much easier on the reader's eyes. I'm far more likely to read a post with them than without them.

A good blog post does not include TYpInG LiEk ThIs.

Likewise, CAPSLOCK IS CRUISE CONTROL FOR COOL. Use it sparingly.

Simply put, a good post is written using one's own common sense about reasonable grammar and punctuation. The reader should not have to struggle to translate entries written in their own language.

I think it's pretty silly to go into what kind of content makes for a good post considering all the different kinds of blogs out there. I think it's enough to say the content can be whatever the writer chooses as long as he or she is interested in it.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

a day late and a dollar short

You know, I'd apologise for being a day late on the update schedule, but it would seem that I wasn't the only one who 'forgot'1. As it turns out we were supposed to update, I think, about the readings we were supposed to be doing for Monday. Academic blogs and what not. And while that's all fine and dandy, I sat back and thought about it and realized that there wasn't any real point in doing that. Message boards are, essentially, blogging in a forum like setting2.

So while we're already doing a D2L posting on this, it's hard to imagine that we should have to be so lazy as to essentially copy/paste (because who is going to want to retype the same post all over again) the information into a blog instead? "Not I," said the little brown dog.

Here's what I propose then. If we have to update this blog, then so be it! I have no problem with maintaining now...too many areas for communication with the outside world via a digital medium. The problem I do have is with redundancy. The class is open and flexible enough, why not simply use the blog for good or for awesome or for whatever the mood strikes us to write about?

In the spirit of at least posting some links, like Rebecca Blood says we ought to be doing, and entirely not in the same vein as the rest of this post. The Yarn Harlot has an awesome Valentine's Day post that I think the two of you would get a kick out of even if Frost already has read it.

1 - Okay, I didn't forget. I ended up sitting staring at an empty white box for an hour before I went, 'I have no idea what to write' and closed it.
2 - Or blogging is just message boarding by yourself, take your pick.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Introductions are overrated.

What happens when three hardcore LiveJournal users whose personalities are as different as their journals get together to make a group blog, actually on blogger for a class?

Ashley is the sort of gal who keeps a personal blog. She posts updates whenever she feels it necessary about her life, her problems, and the occasional link that amuses her. She would like, one day, to be better at updating on a regular basis, and so far that only seems to be working with some prodding from her peers to do so.

Frost posts her art bi-weekly. These also come with a little story to go with them. The stories range from cute little drabbles to deeply personal and revealing anecdotes about her life and the people in it. Frost's art varies from simple line art pieces in pencil to markered works to things coloured in Photoshop. From time to time, she takes requests "if they're interesting enough".

Meanwhile, Reg doesn't trust her hit or miss art skills to draw things to go with her updates. Instead, she takes prompts from things like her writing books, the prompt_a_day community on LJ, and suggestions from her friends and writes creatively for a few hundred words. They're always one shot stories, but seem to switch from fiction to non-fiction on a pretty consistent basis. Reg, much like Ashley, updates whenever the muse strikes her to write because she feels that it would be unproductive to force creativity.

So what does happen when these three get together to write a class blog?

Only time will tell.

This Journal will be updated on Wednesdays and Fridays, and comments will be checked on Tuesdays and Thursdays as well as whenever we remember to as Blogger doesn't have a very good comment reply notification system.