It’s About That Time

Ever since I was a kid, positive change has brought me great happiness.  To this day, I delight in drastically changing my hair style, color, or cut and love rearranging the furniture or reorganizing my cabinets.  Being static–or stagnant–just isn’t my thing.

Which explains why if you stopped by Book, Line, and Sinker yesterday you might have been treated to bizarre new layouts and themes that looked a bit wonky.  I’m trying out some new ideas for my book blog and hope you’ll bear with me during the next few weeks.

Image from crazyleafdesign.com

I’m looking for a more dynamic and attractive layout with some nifty features for readers and lurkers.  I’ve also been hunting around for professional help–no, not that kind–to bring a nice aesthetic to my slice of the web.  If you have any recommendations, let me know!

I want to keep my layout clean and as uncluttered as possible, but would love to add some fancier features.  I’m thinking about a Flash header that will slowly scroll through a few photos associated with my blog or my posts, snapshots of posts instead of lengthy posts taking up the entire front page, and other goodies.  Of course I had to doodle out design ideas…here’s my favorite:

I’m toying with the idea of accepting book related advertisements but am not sure that there’s actually a market for it.  I don’t want Google ads or anything like that but might be inclined to accept small buttons for a ‘Sponsors’ section in my sidebar that would turnover on a monthly basis.  99% of the book blogs I visit don’t have adverts, but I don’t mind the ones that do.  Are adverts a deal-breaker for you? Are they the ultimate sign of a blogger selling out?

For now, there are only three things you can bank on: My blog name will stay the same, I’ll still rant, rave, and carry on about books and life, and I will not, under any circumstances, assault you with my iPod playlist when you stop by for a visit.  Everything else is being left up to the Muses.

13 Comments

  • At 2010.10.11 01:56, Jess - A Book Hoarder said:

    I have to admit that I am complete creature of habit and change terrifies me but I love the ideas you have drawn up and I am really excited to see how it turns out.

    My favorite part in your doodle is the “Hello! Blah Blah.”
    Jess – A Book Hoarder´s last blog post ..The Red Queen – Philippa Gregory

    • At 2010.10.11 02:22, rhapsodyinbooks said:

      Adverts aren’t a TOTAL deal breaker in my opinion, but come a bit close. I don’t care about the “selling out” thing, but it’s usually just that most ads don’t sit quietly on the sidelines, but rather interfere with one’s ability to stick to reading just the meat of the post.
      rhapsodyinbooks´s last blog post ..October 9- 1940 – Birthday of John Winston Lennon

      • At 2010.10.11 02:58, J.C. Montgomery said:

        Great minds? hehe…I just changed my blog and have been elbow deep in CSS trying to adjust my stylesheet.

        I’m also looking for widget like thingies (I think that’s the technical term) that will fit with my blog and what I’d like to convey.

        I started blogging in November of 2007 and as far as I’m concerned it’s a work in progress. Always.

        One thing I have not done, or figured out how to do tastefully without losing readers is using advertising. And it’s one of the reasons I read many of the blogs I follow in a feed reader, seeing a lot of advertising turns me off. But that’s me.

        I love what you do no matter the blog style. The most important *style* is *you* – and that’s why I follow your blog.
        J.C. Montgomery´s last blog post ..Frankenstein in Modern Times

        • At 2010.10.11 08:23, vivienne said:

          I have never thought about having advertising on my blog. I don’t think I get enough visitors for it to be worthwhile to the publisher.

          Look forward to seeing your new look.
          vivienne´s last blog post ..The Chosen Book Was

          • At 2010.10.11 14:25, Coffee and a Book Chick said:

            I’m going through the same thing — I hired a wonderful company to do a “blogover” on my site, and so far, it should be at the end of October! I’m the same as you — clean, uncluttered, and minimal on the advertisements. I’m not a huge fan of them at all, but if you do small buttons that are more like the sponsor idea, then I say, go for that instead!
            Coffee and a Book Chick´s last blog post ..Monday- Monday! What Are You Reading

            • At 2010.10.11 20:16, Jenners said:

              I usually end up doing a blog overhaul about once a year. I just can’t keep it stagnant longer than that. I love the ideas that you are playing with, and I’m sure you’ll come up with something fantastic. Have fun!
              Jenners´s last blog post ..Musashi Readalong-Book 2- Water

              • At 2010.10.11 21:02, Heather @ Book Addiction said:

                I am totally with you – I am constantly changing my theme. I haven’t gone to self-hosting yet so I just play around with the wordpress themes, and as I’ve yet to find one I LOVE I still change it out every 3-6 months.
                Heather @ Book Addiction´s last blog post ..The Recipe Club by Andrea Israel &amp Nancy Garfinkel

                • At 2010.10.12 04:31, Mystica said:

                  I think book related ads are fine. I know you have readers all over but what about ads for your particular state.
                  Mystica´s last blog post ..Review – Ordinary Families – E Arnot Robertson

                  • At 2010.10.12 08:42, Susan (Bloggin' 'bout Books) said:

                    Ooooh, sounds like fun! I had a designer do mine and I absolutely love it. Cost me a little bit of money, but it was soooo worth it. Her name is at the bottom of my blog, if you’re interested.

                    Personally, I can’t stand having ads on my blog. I don’t consider it a “sellout,” just distracting. If you’re looking for advertisers, you shouldn’t have trouble getting them – I’ve turned away at least 10 in the last few years.

                    Oh, and I HATE music on blogs. Glad you do, too 🙂

                    • At 2010.10.12 14:14, Meg said:

                      Woo! Will look forward to the debut of a new look, though I’ve always loved your current look (and header), too!

                      I don’t mind ads on a site as long as they’re not obnoxious (i.e., gif files in neon colors) and preferably book-related. But that’s totally your call, not mine — and I’ll be here no matter what!
                      Meg´s last blog post ..Book review &amp giveaway- ‘The Itteh Bitteh Book Of Kittehs’

                      • At 2010.10.15 00:24, Gwen said:

                        I have ads on my site, but am working on getting actual sponsors. It is fun to play around with layouts and all that, but I am at the point where I need to really sit down and sketch it all out like you did. I have a picture in my mind and realize that the making of it is a wee bit over my head code wise…..now to pay a designer and cough up that dough from those lovely “sponsors”! LOL

                        • At 2010.10.15 10:01, Ti said:

                          I really do not like ads but I’ve seen some blogs recently that incorporated them and they aren’t too obvious. They sort of have there own section and don’t flash at me or scream “Look at me!” while I am trying to read a post. If it’s any comfort, I will read your blog even if you stuck ads right in the middle of the page cause I am loyal like that.

                          I think it’s fun to play with the layout too. Lately I just haven’t had the time but last time you changed yours I followed suit and I didn’t have time then either.
                          Ti´s last blog post ..Man Booker 2010 Winner Will you read it

                          • At 2010.10.16 09:00, Dishy said:

                            Had to laugh when I saw this, Nat. We must be on the same cyber wavelength. I have been tweaking my own site and love the new layout for yours (though I like the current one just fine too). As for ads, as long as they’re innocuous, who cares? Can’t wait to see what you decide on!
                            Dishy´s last blog post ..Next week

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