Community Pool

The Community Pool is for those of you looking for input, whether on post ideas, writing, blog design and layout,…

The Community Pool is for those of you looking for input, whether on post ideas, writing, blog design and layout, or anything else. If you have a post, page, or idea you want to bounce off someone, leave a comment. Your fellow bloggers can then click through and offer input either on your site, or in the comments here (feel free to indicate which you’d prefer).

Read on for the ground rules and to leave a comment . .

  • You’ll get the best feedback if you can be as specific as possible about what you’d like people to respond to or where you’re struggling.
  • Please keep all comments civil and constructive. We’re here to help and support one another, not to beat anyone down.
  • If you haven’t looked at our Commenting Guidelines in a while, now might be a good time.
  • To keep from losing your place in the comment thread while you visit others’ blogs, right-click on a link to open it in a new tab or window.
  • No running on the deck.

Photo by t_a_i_s.

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    1. You must be doing something right, or else how you have gotten 1479 followers in two months?!! Seriously, I’d say you’re on the right path. Congrats. If you don’t mind sharing if you had a strategy, or if it’s from tagging, sharing with FB friends… how did you initially get so many followers right off the bat?

      1. Ohh i have included Publicise so it connects with my facebook and google+ friends and since i have around 1k odd it shows like that, but honestly not many of my real friends are interested in blogging so thats almost useless! But i have got 50 blogger friends following me in 2 months and i am more than happy for their confidence in me!!

      2. oooooh! I didn’t realize that’s what Publicise is for! Thx for the tip. We have FB links, Pinterest, etc on our blog so I thought we were covered. Thx for tip on that. If you have 50 blogger friends following in 2 months that sounds really great! Kat and I go through lots of work (enjoyable work, but still work) trying to read and like and follow and comment on other sites. I think that’s built up our following, but it is exhausting none the less. I know what you mean about other friends actually reading or following our blogs – not much interest, lol.
        Although, if Kat puts a link to a photo article she did on her FB rather than uploading albums there, then she gets lots more hits. Best wishes for future!! ~SueBee

    2. I really like your blog! The theme is very nice, simple, and makes the text easy to read. I love your posts too! I like how you do the WordPress Daily Post, but I’d also love to see posts other than the Daily Post ones. Keep writing! :)

    3. Check out your blog, It is interesting. But do concentrate other than prompts. Don’t depend on them. Just a friendly feedback.

    4. Heeey, you seem pretty amazing actually so I am going to follow you, don’t mind me, just another weirdo on the internet, I guess. I really do fancy writers. And could you just see my blog, I mean, I dont know, could I get some feedback? x Thanks

      1. I read a couple of your posts , its good but you can improve a lot :) 2 things i noticed , first your post should rule your blog so it would be better if all the recent articles come fully on the homepage instead of just small paraphs which refer to your article. People love the home page and lot of them just read the articles on your homepage instead of going to the article and reading it there, Lastly you write in one voice , your own :) While that’s really good but you can improve by trying out to write in a different perspective. People would love to read that.
        I know you are 16 something so you have a long long way to go. So sit back relax and enjoy writing :)
        Very good theme and i love the customization.
        You have a long way to go and am sure you will do pretty awesome.

      2. Thanks so much for that, I really do need a push here and there. Yes I am 16, lucky guess there. And Yes, I’ll make the necessary change, thank you so much for the confidence you have in me, even I don’t believe in myself that much :D
        THANK YOU AGAIN :)

      3. OH MY, THANKYOU SO MUCH. I really always try so hard to EMPHASIZE some words, and feelings. And it always scares me, that NO ONE understands what I’m trying to say but me. And well, Your reply has really made my day. Thanks so much, once again. :D

    5. Love your URL “Thinkerscap.” Immediately, you can get right to the content in this site. It is so simple, and peaceful. I was once taught that a poem should be applicable to a broad range of people, and I think that this recent poem is very helpful to many. Thanks for sharing.

  1. Should I be adding a proprietary line at the beginning or end of my posts? Something like, “this post was first published on Prayers and Piazzas”. Thanks for the feedback, all.

    1. I also like your first post. Writing about yourself, what makes you “you” is a good way to start. Also your theme is nice – understated, soothing. What theme are you using?

      1. Hi there! Thank you for reviewing SoundEagle’s blog and for the compliments.

        Like SoundEagle’s blog, yours is also quite eclectic, consisting of Book Reviews, Fiction, Haiku, Others, Photography, Poems, Reminiscence of childhood and Travel. The coverage is quite extensive considering that your blog is still fairly new. The colour scheme of your blog is simple and pleasing.

        SoundEagle has a couple of suggestions for you:
        (1) Compose an “About” page to help and orientate your readers.

        (2) Your blog name in URL is “maniparna5002″, which is different from the blog title, “Scattered Thoughts”. Ideally they should be the same. Otherwise, you might want to consider explaining the difference in your “About” page.

        All in all, your personal blog has a promising start and a pleasing, calming design. :)

      1. Hi Almaas,
        Welcome to WordPress as you adjust yourself from Tumblr. To begin with, you have picked a very nice theme to dress up your blog with a background of a flowering tree, and have provided the important “About” page to help and orientate your readers. Good on you! There is room for improvement in your English writing skill, considering that English is probably not your first language.

        It is a good start, Almaas! :)

    1. If I were you, I’d get rid of the background image. It detracts from the photos and makes it hard to tell that links to your posts appear on the home page. I’d suggest a plain white, black, or other low-key color instead.

    1. Your style is beautiful, very flowing. I also was intrigued by the ideas you presented – people who populate our dreams that are only of our dreams – although sometimes we dream about real people too. But I know what you mean. Sometimes in a dream there is someone who isn’t quite someone we know, they sort of remain in the shadows yet are very important in the dream; and sometimes I dream very vivid dreams about people I’ve never seen before – as if I were creating a whole story in my mind, with its own setting and characters.

      I read a few of your other posts as well. You clearly are a natural writer, with appropriate word choice and not wordy. Even though you’ve written prose, it feels poetic.

      1. I am truly honored that you think so and I want to thank you for taking the time in which to read my blog and provide such insightfully kind feedback. It is much appreciated and has made my day!

    2. OH MY, I am in absolute love with the way your ideas flow, I hope I’m making sense, but your placing of words is FANTASTIC. Have you been writing a long time? x And I would really appreciate, and actually be quite honored if you would have a glimpse at my blog, and read a post or two, thankyou x

      1. Thank you for your kind words – they mean so much & I am glad you enjoyed my work!
        The first thing I noticed upon visiting your blog is your layout–I ADORE it! It’s well organized, unique, and very pleasing to the eye. Your posts are well-written & are able to make a genuine connection with your readers, and therefore I hope to see more posts from you in the future!

      2. hey there, thanks so much. I really do need a little motivation from every now and then, and of course I will post soon. Thanks again. All the very best for all your works and again, for your interest, and confidence in me

    1. It’s a great photo – and not at all what I expected! I like that you explained what you were trying to show in the photo and your comments about how it turned out. One word I would use is “striking” and another is “contrast.” The eyebrows and eye makeup, her hair and its contrast with her bright pink scarf. Your use of color is very striking.

    2. I am new in WordPress, I have not any goals yet, but I was glad to find some great photographs in your page. Very willing to share in Pinterest. Enjoyable for eyes and relaxing for the soul x

    1. First impression: I think the background design may be too busy and/or colorful – seems to take away from the photos you posted, and perhaps contrasts too much with theme of your content. ~SueBee

      1. Thank you for your reply. Always open to try different ideas. Background was actually a tile of one of my art pieces, so wanted to use something personal, but I understand your point. ~ Linda

      2. Awww! It’s a really pretty design, no question about that. We had a busy design on our background at first till we were told same. Now our block wall is simple and doesn’t overpower blog content I think. ~SueBee

    2. This is an interesting topic. Might I suggest that you make the pictures smaller and set them into the text (wrap the text to one side or the other of the picture) to integrate the pictures and text.

      1. Thank you for your reply. On some pages I have wrapped the text, normally when the picture is ‘portrait’. Usually have one large picture at the top and then occasionally some smaller ones around which the text is wrapped. However, I do take your point ~ Linda

    3. I have had a love for colours, so your blog is appealing and very beautiful at first look. Your posts would be a whole lot better if you become a bit less personalized with them. Like, post something that others have had an experience of, just a suggestion. So, Keep Writing x

      1. Thank you for your encouraging comments. I started the blog as a personal journey record, and I do try to include a generalised thought or comment. I suspect as I develop it it may become a bit more about general experiences as well. ~ Linda

      2. Well personal blogs have their own great feel, so cant argue with you on that. I’d love to see more of your writing later on. It makes me feel like a part of someone’s life, so cheers x

    4. I read the post entitled “A Bible Is For Life, Not Just For Sundays?” Your writing is accessible, and you make points in a good rhythm here. It would be great to have a story or 2 sprinkled in– thematic stories that help the reader to remember the post, like the story of Sally who had a Bible but never read it, or the story of John who had memorized it all his life and during a key life moment had a verse in mind to utilize. (I see opinions differ, but I like the illustration used as your wallpaper).

      1. Thank you Meg for your lovely comments and points for improvement. The background is actually a piece of my artwork, tiled – another commentator thought it might be a ‘bit busy’ so you are a right about opinions differing but that’s okay ~ Linda

  2. My blog traffic has slowed significantly, so I’m trying to figure out why. I get positive feedback on my content, but maybe that’s not the problem? Thoughts on content, blog design and layout welcomed. Thank you!

      1. I think it more about the changes in the WordPress reader which has stopped many bloggers to visit the blogs by opening up a pop up window.

    1. I think your blog is quite nicely done in content and design/layout. The tone is light and casual without trying too hard. You actually come across as an experienced blogger, don’t know if you are one, but that’s how it looks.

    1. I just checked out your blog and really love it! It is very well organized and pleasing to look at. Your color scheme is very attractive. The best feature for me was that you tabs at the top with the different categories of the things you blog about. I’m an “everything” blogger, so I would like to do this too, but don’t know how!
      My favorite part of your site is the haiku. I have always loved this form of poetry, and you have captured the spirit of the pictures that accompany your haiku. Beautiful work!

      1. Thank you so much and I’m really feeling honoured that you liked my blog. To include those tabs just go to the ”Category” section ,click “add Category” and type according to your wish.
        I visited your blog too. Excellent content and the photographs clicked by you are amazing !.Best wishes and keep blogging :-)

      1. Thank you for visiting my blog. I prefer a colourful background .hehe.:-D.

        Your blog was a pleasant experience for me. The ” Red Carpet to Reality” series ..I enjoyed it most. Great content..nice photos. Best wishes for your future posts. Keep blogging.

    1. Christie, I’ve enjoyed reading your posts. Touching and true, they speak to the heart. I especially like ‘An Ode to You…’ My only suggestion targets the overall visual feel of your blog. I feel like the double side bar on the right shoves your content too far to the left. It minimizes its importance, for me at least. Maybe try a single side bar or one to the left and one to the right, keeping the content down the center…or not. It’s your baby. And I wish you well.

    1. I like the rant page. I agree, I don’t like to do it all the time on my blog, but every once in a while you need to get things off your chest. I personally love the BitStrips. I don’t think it looks ridiculous!

  3. We’re 3 girls, new to the blogging world and would be grateful for any feedback/tips! Our blog about online dating is sure to give you a chuckle or two, so take a look if you fancy.

    1. Hey there! I checked your blog. I think it would be great if you include a page that tells a little about you three girls and why you planned on writing about internet dating advice. good luck!

  4. Anybody have thoughts on why my readers don’t click out to the websites I link to? I put special care into the outbound links on my blog and use them to convey part of the meaning of what I write.

    1. Too many links. Even if you only do one or two links per post, there’s no guarantee people will click.

      Also, very few of the links offer enough explanation to pique a reader’s interest. You’re interesting, but you’re not telling people why the links might be interesting to them.

      1. I don’t even always remember to put the labels on and I never look at them unless a link is vague. So, I’d say explanations belong in the text but they should look like regular blog content that would be interesting to a reader.

      1. Hi Minnie!
        Thank you so much for the nice feedback on my blog =) Just keep writing and I know for sure you’re blog will be where you want it. I follow your blog already so I already love it! <3 Have a great week!

    1. I’m more of a Northern California kind of guy but your blog is amazing! The photos are really stunning. I love the theme as well, with all of your posts laid out on the page, I may try this when I have more content. Keep it up, you have another follower!

      1. Thanks so much for the compliment and for the follow! That really means a lot. :) By the way, Kat and I switched to this theme (Delicious) after just 2 weeks of joining WordPress, if I remember correctly. We like the magazine style, but then we dressed it up with color so it wouldn’t look so sterile. It was quite a challenge getting it like we wanted it to look… still don’t have our custom header uploaded – that’s kinda tricky and we gave up! I like the layout and now that we’ve figured it out, it has flexibility. Best wishes. I’ll be back over to visit your blog too. ~SueBee

    1. I could be wrong, but I got the sense that you are putting so much loving effort into your blog that you are (paradoxically) too anxious about being relaxed. You perhaps should feel more confidence that if anybody is there to read about editing, they really do want to be there with you. Editing can be hard work and a lot of people don’t know how to do it correctly, so perhaps a gentler, slightly coaxing tone would be less intimidating than a fun tone.

      1. Thanks for your feedback :) Yes, editing is hard work so I want my readers to feel comfortable during the process. I was trying to find a tone that would put them at ease, but yes you are right about me feeling anxious in doing so. I’ll get back to how I was writing my posts before that one. Don’t fix it if it’s not broken right? :)

    1. Wow, I absolutely adore this “Selfie” post. It was perfect. I did not find a grammatical mistake. It was the perfect length. It offered great information, including the 17 thousand percent increase in the use of “selfie.” I loved how you started the post by expressing a passion for the language, and felt disgusted with this word of the year selection. You are a great writer–so rare to find this kind of quality on the web.

  5. I have recently published a few pieces that are quite personal. One being on the topic of depression and motherhood and the other being on surviving childhood abuse. Since these posts, I feel like my ideas and thoughts are so much clearer. I do not regret putting that information out there and actually just the opposite; however, I worry about any backlash in the future with employment, etc. Has anyone had this happen to them and how did it happen? Also, I have only been blogging for about two months now and any feedback on my writings and/or page would be greatly appreciated.

    1. I don’t have any experience with blog backlash (my blog is anonymous and quite new), but my immediate thought is: Would you actually want to work for someone who would discriminate against you, so that you whenever you are feeling bad, you have to scramble to pretend you are fine?

  6. Wondering about having a static front page, linking to topics such as poetry, philosophy, and anything else I add over the next few months. Would a static front page put you off clicking through to read more?

      1. The more I think about it, the more I think you would benefit from a blogroll. I know for a fact that the readers of one of my friends click the links in his very long blogroll, because when he put my blog on it, I got some hits. So think about doing it that way — your links are visible to your readers all the time that way.

    1. Great blog! Your articles are really quirky and different and the format definitely caught my attention as I could see right off the bat a few articles that I wanted to read – which meant i wanted to hang out on your site.
      Your catch line “an attempt to delve into….” is great however I would probably take out “an attempt” to make it more punchy – because you’re not attempting to you’re actually doing it :)

    2. Great post about the need for silence. I don’t like to talk to anyone in the mornings! I keep trying to tell my family that but they don’t seem to catch on :P

  7. I’ve been doing family genealogy research since June. I would like to blog about the process. Does that sound like a good idea? I’m thinking about a title like this: “The Best and the Brightest: The Story of my Search for my Ancestors.” Any ideas?

    1. Hi there! I think that’s a great idea for a blog post. It will definitely be an interesting process and I believe your readers will love it too. It might inspire others to research their family lines too! I hope this helps! =)

  8. My site was increasing with followers every time I put articles up, however now it is at 92 and it seems stuck. Not sure how to get more followers. If anyone would be interested in taking a look at my site and giving me some pointers on how to increase traffic I would be very grateful :)

    1. Loved “Want something? Just ask!” I don’t have any advice on getting more followers, as I’m new to blogging, but I will help you out with a follow :) I like your blog!

  9. My friends and I just started a blog, please check it out and leave lots of feedback. We don’t wanna publish it all over Facebook for some obvious reasons. Thank you!!

  10. You are all so brave, asking for feedback. Is it embarrassing that feedback is one of my biggest fears and something that nearly stopped me from writing my blog in the first place! Kudos to you all.

  11. I have written a short story but I’m not sure how well written it is. I’m not fully finished with the story… however I am really struggling with getting feedback. Can anyone read my story and give me advice on how I could improve?

    1. I really like your humor and writing style. Your last post for today was a good one, because I felt like I was there. Italian food is my favorite :) I think your blog would really benefit from having a more intimate design. The one you currently have is sort of hard to connect with your content because it’s largely formatted, most likely for more pictures. But overall your content is great!

    2. I saw your previous comment about being afraid of feedback. That’s not foolish to be afraid because you become vulnerable to what people think. And you should never let that stop you from doing something that you’re great at. I really like your blog.

      1. Ha! I’m such a loser. One of my personal goals is to take myself out of my comfort zone. Who likes any kind of criticism?! I usually run from it whether it’s good or bad. Which is odd because I am anything but shy. Thank you for your feedback and stopping by my blog :)

      1. You’re welcome!
        Oh, and I forgot to say that i love game nights with friends and recently played Cards against Humanity…very funny and definitely an interesting card game! =D

    1. What’s the resolution on those photos? Those took forever to load and they’re not even big. That might impact how much return traffic you get.

      Outside of that, blog themes do exist that will let your photos be bigger. I’ve seen “Untitled” work really well for photography blogs, but there are other possibilities.

      1. Which photos are you referring to? They are sized to the lowest percentage. The photography blog themes I’ll have to look into but I like displaying the other areas of interest on my blog as well. My blog is not just a photography blog but thanks for your input.

      2. I am referring to any and all photos, pictures, or whatever is taking so long to load.

        Also, size percentage is not the same as image resolution or file size. A visually small picture can have a huge file size if the resolution is too high.

      3. I know the difference lol The resolution size is always set to compliment the photo Resizing it too much can distort the image I set them as small as they will go but I will look into that more You’re the first to say that, but I would love to hear other opinions of my site thx

    1. I like the look and feel of your blog design. I would suggest to continue to write about what you feel. Current events and the effects it may have on you or those around you are always a good place to start :) Good luck!

  12. I’ve just started in the blogging world and I’m trying to find my style. Any feedback on my writing style and topics would be great. Also the frequency in which I’ve been posting and any general comments are greatly appreciated. Finally does the quality of your photos make a big difference even if you’re trying to focus more on the writing content? Thanks muchly, Sophia

  13. Hi! I’m new to wordpress and to blogging. I was wondering how I can get my blog hooked up to facebook? Any other feedback would be greatly appreciated as well! Thanks!!