07 March 2009

Blog Improvement Project: Task 5 (and 4.1)

Blog Improvement Project

When I found out that March would be social media month with the B.I.P., I began looking forward to six weeks off. Certainly a holiday was needed as the amount of time spent on Task 4 meant putting reviewing and blog reading on hold. But then Task 4 took longer than two weeks, so I decided to participate this week in order to post an update on the last task.

It’s almost done! All reviews have been added to the index pages, all formatting has been standardised and double-checked. And best of all ... my About Me page is up. I was a JavaScript tyro with no clue as to whether what I had in mind could even work, but it did and I couldn’t be more thrilled with the results. Admittedly I took the script from an answer to someone else’s question in a coding forum, but the idea of combining it with an image map was all my own, as was the customisation involved. (I’m feeling very proud of myself just now!) The only thing left is to add links to the cross-references made in various reviews.

On to the social media. For me, Blogger is it - it would take too much time and use up too much of my monthly download limit to keep up with a Facebook or MySpace or Twitter account as well as this, and I wouldn’t use any of those sites anyway. I take great satisfaction in not following fashions or running with herds, and their enormous popularity is, to me, an excellent reason not to join. (Yes, I joined the blogging bandwagon - because I wanted to slow my rate of reading so as to give more thought to what I read rather than just charging through the chapters. Reviewing books online was the first idea for doing so that occurred to me.) So I’ve taken inspiration from the comments again and done some investigating of the social networking potential of LibraryThing.

I’ve been on LibraryThing for over a year, having bought a lifetime membership as a post-graduation present to myself. My intention being to create a catalogue in case of natural disaster (a storm taking the roof off, for instance) I hadn’t considered this aspect of it before. The first thing I did was add my URL to my profile - you never know, someone might read it. I’ve begun watching a few of the discussion groups in case I ever feel like posting something. And I’ve made a firm mental note to drop by occasionally to post excerpts from reviews here with a link to the full version.

And now I really must get my latest acquisitions added to my catalogue!

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Header image shows detail of A Young Girl Reading by Jean-Honoré Fragonard, c. 1776