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Community Pool

The Community Pool is for those of you looking for feedback, 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.

TIP: 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.

  • 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. If you simply leave a link to your blog, it’s likely to be overlooked.
  • 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.
  • No running on the deck.

Photo by t_a_i_s.

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      1. Hi Intisar — I’m happy to see you chime in with feedback, but could you please avoid adding a plug (a link) to your site on every comment? People who wish to visit your site can do so by clicking directly on your user name.
        Thanks!

    1. I love this post! What great thoughts. If I had one piece of feedback, I might say split it up into 2 posts, somewhere around #11, I just ran through them very quickly and the beautiful words weren’t sinking in. (But that could very well just be me…) Really awesome idea.

    2. I absolutely love this idea. When I stumble across a phrase on the internet, I write them down in a note book. It’s what I turn to when writer’s block takes over. Very good idea!! Loved the post and you can count on one more follower!!

      1. sorry I posted on the wrong place
        I was suppose to say here that your post was both witty and funny! that thing with the M sound got me haha
        sorry for the mismatch again

      1. Hi all. I’m a newbie blogging a book I wrote
        Please visit the site and let me know what you think. Tricks and shortcuts would also be appreciated. Thanks all.

    1. Hello Kate, interesting premise! But I will say that don’t rely on categories for your blog structure. Eventually, it might be best to compile some pages with links and perhaps an introduction to each group of chapters.

      Just a thought, very best of luck with the project!

    2. Excited to read more, very interesting and well written.
      I have been considering doing something like this, although it would be very different from what you are doing as I am thinking of writing it like the field journal of the protagonist of the experiences, ideas etc. that they have in a post apocalyptic world. I want to explore what would happen to the everyday person in Australia if this was to happen.

    3. Excellent idea and a good start! Serialisations are so rare these days but I have no idea why. I guess in the modern world we all want our fixes to order rather than waiting. I am looking forward to future chapters. You’ll have to work hard to keep your followers happy!

  1. Hi guys! I’m writing an article on blogging so what would advice would you give people who are new to it? I’d love to hear some of your personal experiences too! Thanks :)

    1. Try to keep the blog as one genre… Too much of everything is too much for a reader (in my opinion anyway!) And quality not quantity! (Though try to keep it fairly regular). Hope that helps!

      1. Yes I agree, people sometimes get caught up in pleasing others so they write certain things to gain attention though it’s not where their heart lies :) Good advice!

    2. hi
      am fairly new to blogging myself, and am very positively surprised to find such community support here. there is no shit storming (so far?) and real uplifting feedback. i also love diving into the transparent lives of others, its so exotic and inspiring and so enriching to find people all over the world with different lives. my advice would be to give blogging a try, as it is really worth it.

      1. LOVE your blog. Just took a look at the post you linked to, and then couldn’t stop flipping through. Awesome. I’m new, too – just two weeks maybe – and your comment about hitting “publish” resonated!

      2. Thank you for your super encouraging comment! I’m loving the blogging journey – and community. I’m all into all natural cleaning products and taking natural further through the house. You’ve got great scope for your blog there.

      3. Thanks very much! While most of my fam thinks I’m a bit overboard, the truth is, I love learning about this stuff. And I finally decided to blog to have a place to keep all my research- for me, but also for others if they find it helpful. I’ve just made little changes over time to my lifestyle. I def don’t have the time- or money- to do it all at once, but that’s the journey, and the journey is what life’s all about, right? Really, the thing I love about your blog is your voice- you have a real voice and you can tell it’s authentic. I want to achieve that!

    1. Like it! I get what you mean about Matt bringing some silliness to the character… let’s be honest – David Tennant was for sexiness (which totally worked). And the Ponds death episode was awesome! The Angels gave me nightmares for ages when they first appeared!

      1. The Angels first appeared in Blink which was a Tennant episode. But they only featured the once and they really became an enemy for Smith, they really seemed to work more with his Doctor.

        Thanks for commenting!

  2. Hello! I am interested in hosting an “Event” for other bloggers, an event in art journaling. Have any of you run events before? Beyond the message getting to your readers, how do you get the word out about it? Tips are welcome!
    http://creosomnium.org

    1. One piece of advice I got when hosting events and getting the word out: Talk about it. Post on discussion boards. Send out a social network blast: twitter, facebook, facebook groups/pages that are similar, etc.

  3. I am thinking about kicking my tiny unknown blog up a notch. But, I don’t know where to start. Currently I have a free wordpress blog, and it’s the bare minimal of content. If I could snap my fingers, and turn my blog into something more then I like the looks of lifeinlimbo.org —where do I start? what do I need to learn to turn my blog into something similar along those lines?…Thank you!

    1. Start by buying your domain, the costs are fairly cheap. There’s a bunch of webdesign pre made, but if you want a more professional and original look you can hire a web designer. Hope this helps!

  4. Hi all :) I recently started my blog in the hope that it will help school children deal with issues like bullying. It’s told in the form of a miniseries, and the main character goes through various issues that she has to deal with like bullying and peer pressure. I’ve also just posted a poem, if you don’t mind stopping by and letting me know what you think! Thanks :) http://theblossomingfallam.wordpress.com/

    1. This is a really great way of targeting a bullying message for kids (and for everyone) and you are able to keep your posts long enough to contain all the important information, but short enough to keep the interest of younger readers… nicely done.

    2. I can only repeat what has been said before: it’s a rare and very good thing that you have a clear vision for your blog and a specific audience on mind. Keep it up!

  5. Hi :) I started my blog in the hope of helping school children deal with bullying. It’s told in the form of a miniseries, and my main character shows how she gets through her school life dealing with bullying and peer pressure. I’ve also recently posted a poem, please check it out if you don’t mind and let me know what you think! :)

  6. I haven’t been on Community Pool, but I wanted to share how my blog is coming along:

    http://www.playadvantage.com

    I really took to heart all the feedback I got here and elsewhere on WP, as well as what I learned during the Blogging 101 and 201 courses. I went from nothing in early January. Now, I have a very robust site with over 1000 unique visitors a day (pretty good for a niche blog site) and a very strong social media presence.

    So thanks, everyone! Keep building good content and the visits will come.

      1. Unfortunately, the new format is the main reason I don’t really give feedback on CP anymore. Having to type out links, not being able to see all the comments, making a comment and then being dumped back at the top of a 500-comment thread. It became too time consuming.

        At least I’m glad to see they fixed the issue with the names not connecting to your blog…

      1. Sorry for the issues you’re having with the links! It might be best, to be on the safe side, simply to paste your URLs into your message — there’s less margin for error that way.

        Also, we’re aware of the annoyance involved with posting a comment and then being sent back to the top of the (often very long) thread, and we’re working on a fix. Stay tuned, and sorry for the inconvenience in the meantime.

      1. I’m sorry. WordPress doesn’t let you edit links or comments and all of my links are wrong, even though I clearly understand HTML. I would delete it if I could but I’m not allowed to.

        You’ll have to click on my name. It’s the only way I know to get to the site.

        I regret coming back here. :(

    1. It’s very well written because it draws you in from the first line, and is unexpected and unpredictable, which makes it interesting to read.
      I like the bitter-bitter (rather than bitter-sweet) feeling you get at the end, because I tire of HEA endings, although I like them, too, sometimes.
      I thought the last paragraph needed a line break, and visually I didn’t like the layout. I prefer to justify the text and leave a line between paragraphs because it’s easier to read, but of course, that’s up to you…

      1. Thank you so much, so happy you liked it – I totally agree about the layout, I feel the same; I was kind of rushing in getting it posted in the community pool.

    2. Wow, this is really great. I can’t wait to read more – the whiskey bottle at the end…! One thing that threw me a bit was the pic at the top — of the subway. When I read your first few sentences, in my head, I saw him asleep on the train, and her touching him as she sat next to him. It took me until the very end to realize they were in bed, and the rest was reminiscing. I think if this were a book, I wouldn’t have been confused, because I wouldn’t have seen the subway image. But I love the subway image. So, my feedback would be to put something in the first paragraph that tells you they are in bed – e.g., “He was asleep. His neck all kinked up on his favorite down pillow, the sheets all tangled between his legs..” — (I’m not a story-writer, so forgive me!) Anyway, really great beginning in general.

      1. Thank you so much for your comment, very helpful indeed! I’ll go back and make sure it’s clear. I really appreciate your taking time and comment on this, thank you again!

    1. Funny write! (and truthful too). I’m now using a standing desk because between my paying job and my heart job, I’m in front of LCD wayyyy too much.

      1. Thank you! I’ve seen people in doctor’s offices standing with their keyboards on counters or on tall stools. :) I suppose the fluffy cushions wouldn’t look professional.

      2. True. But it would be cool to see them wear them on their heads for a day, just to shake up the clientele a bit. :)
        PS. I used to use actual bed pillows, lol!

  7. Hi everyone! I have recently decided to start this blog giving insights into studying and living in the UK. The main purpose is to support future students with useful information, but sometimes I prefer to write something less prosaic embracing various subjects. If you have any suggestions or possible questions I would be happy to listen to them. Hopefully, my knowledge would be vast enough to answer to your thoughts.

    Many thanks
    http://floresdiane.wordpress.com/

    1. I think it’s a good idea because there are a lot of young people from other EU countries who need the practical advice you offer. I’m an Engish teacher in Spain, and many young people ask me about all these practical matters you mention. The problem is getting the blog out there to people who need it. I don’t know how that could be done…

      1. Dear lucciagray,

        Thank you very much for your feedback. Indeed, promoting the website is the main issue but I am still working on it. I have started advertising it on FB pages related to this subject and I will try to expand on other social platforms as well. At the moment, it is easier for me to inform future student from Romania or the UK. Hopefully, world of mouth will help me making this page known.

  8. Hi fellow bloggers, I would be grateful if any one can delete the second column which appears on my blog. I mean the column with admin staff it looks clumsy with the two columns. Here is the address to the site:- december18blog.wordpress.com. Thank you in anticipation. Mabel.

    1. I’m not a whiz on this kind of thing, but from first glance, it looks as if you have created two different sidebars of the same thing. I don’t think anyone else can ‘fix’ your blog remotely. Try looking under the Appearance tab carefully (found under Dashboard, on the left). See if you can identify where you may have duplicated something.

      Good luck, HTH.

    1. I like the clean look of the page, but I did have difficulty locating where to click to get “into” the post that I wanted to like. Might just be me though :)

      1. Sorayajan, I just figured out it is because there is no title for each poem, so there is nothing to ‘click’ on to take us into the post. HTH.

      2. Thank you. The post you are talking about didn’t have a name did it? That might be it. Clicking on the title of a post is the quickest way to access it. Unfortunately I have trouble coming up with names for what I write. If you click the link for commenting I believe that would take you to the post though. Sorry for the trouble, and thanks again for looking at my blog.

    1. Mine would be “Hate”, I would hope (eternal optimist that I am) that the removal of the word from the world would diminish the occurrences of terrible acts in the name of hate.

    1. You did quite well on that poem!

      I think your change in tone makes you human, warm, and frail, like the rest of us; but something we often neglect to include when assessing a teacher, or even dealing with them, when we have children.

      Your heart is showing…

      1. Thanks so much. I was going to write a little post about a parent that treated me like a real person this week and might add your comment in (if you don’t mind of course!!). I’m glad you’ve enjoyed them and thank you so much for your feedback and taking the time to read my posts. I’ll drop my your blog when I’ve finally finished writing my 400 odd section of reports!! X

      2. You’re more than welcome to use it. And it’s always good to write about the good too (so you can go back and read it to remember it happened at least once!)

        Drop by when you can, good luck on the 400 plus reports!

      1. If you want more followers and views, I would say post everyday. Also, include a lot of tags for searches and make sure you have an interesting title. – franthebookie.wordpress.com

    1. What a great new voice! I look forward to watching you develop your writing skills, while teaching others things we most likely have no true perspective on.

      New follower here.

    1. Nice theme, works well for the music arena. I’d not have all of the lyrics displayed, for a reason or so:

      They take up valuable content space

      Distracts from the nice, clean thematic run you have going at the top of the page

      Really disrupts the symmetry, and leaves one wondering where to click to get to the music

      Good luck!

  9. Hi there everyone.

    I just started blogging almost a month ago, mostly about the evils of partisanship in politics, my question comes in two parts:

    1. If someone were going to make politics interesting for you, how would they do that?

    2. If I’m looking to get more views, comments, likes, etc. what has worked for you?
    (For example – Do you also push your posts through Facebook? [I'm doing that already with limited success]. Is Twitter a better option? Is there an even better way than both of those?)

    Find my blog at http://www.onecenttoanother.wordpress.com, and thanks in advance!

    1. I’m not sure ANYONE could write interestingly on politics for me (grin). However, the centrist approach is a breath of fresh air.

      Growing your audience takes time, unless you’ve oodles of time personally to dedicate to self-promotion (see my reference below to seraireland for someone that is ruthlessly good at that). I’ve only recently moved into the social media arena, choosing to utilize Twitter. I’ll let you know :)

      Interaction with other bloggers has produced the best surge in growth for me, as well as writing more personal, intense posts.

      Good luck – nice crisp theme too, btw.

      1. Ha! Fair enough and challenge accepted! Glad to see I have, perhaps, a convert…potentially.

        As for the advice, subscribing to dimwhit’s “5 Reasons” [http://beholdthedimwhit.com/2014/06/10/top-5-reasons-blogging-makes-you-a-better-person/] below, I’ve drifted from my youth and the careful meditation of find the last red, 2×1 piece that I need to complete my latest engineering marvel. Patience is definitely a virtue that will be tested. But let me know how Twitter goes, and if I ever happen to advert my Facebook page beyond my ‘friends’ I’ll give you the scoop!

        Thanks for the luck, and what can I say…I keep a neat desk, virtually.

    2. I checked out your blog. Here’s a few of my thoughts:
      1. Add photos.
      2. If you want to make politics interesting, make it funny. Or make it personal.
      3. You have a good writing style. Don’t worry about followers, views, etc. Just yet. Focus on creating good content and people will find you
      4. Don’t over-tag your posts. Anything over 13 or 15 won’t show up in the WordPress reader. ( I’m unsure of the limit)
      5. In the post “Critical Thinking Meets Your Inner Cent”, you asked readers to check out two organizations. Provide links.

      1. Thanks for your time and the insights!

        1. Roger and wilco…
        2. Taking this to heart in the next post.
        3. Thanks! I’ve written it on my ‘stickspiration’ wall (inspirational sticky notes on the wall behind my screen).
        4. Will Rogers & Co. (1 Revisited)
        5. Fixing now, simple oversight.

        Thanks again!

    1. I like the theme, although your distorted face kind of creeps me out (but, I’m not in your targeted age group either, so, take that with an ounce of salt).

      Do you, as only you can do.

      Nice voice you have there – I found the ‘grunge’ bedroom recording perspective very authentic.

      Best of luck to you!

  10. Hello every one

    I have resume blogging after a break of year or so. I am now posting regularly over past month or so. I have varied interests and blog on variety of topics. I have also starting to write on daily prompts in order to polish my writing skills. Still a lot to learn when it comes to writing.

    I would like your feedback on my posts and page.
    http://fazalabbaswarraich.wordpress.com

    Thanks a lot !!

    1. Nice, easily read, serves up choices quite nicely. I though your all-through-the-day feedback on the Solstice prompt was an interesting way to participate.

      And welcome back, we all need a break at times!

      1. Thank you very much for taking out time to look at it. I like simplicity in life. I tried to keep the page simple and user friendly.

        Thanks a lot for your feedback. Really appreciate it.

  11. I have started a new blog for health awareness and for those who wanted to a have their own business to start with you can personally pm me, we are existing for 22years and 19 countries are opened

  12. The biggest question I have, is what do you think is the easiest way to get followers to your blog? Beside the same old post often and join link ups? Any advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks

    1. I think the way you’re going to get followers is writing about something that will draw an audience to you. Reaching out to other bloggers and being involved while also using social media to your advantage will help. Linking other bloggers posts to yours and having them do the same with yours will increase your readership along with whoever the other blogger is.

    1. Awesome. Do Americans use the term “grown-ass” a lot, because it’s extraordinary.
      And your blog has beautiful graphics and stuff by the way! Well gel! (Super jealous in English slang)

  13. Top o’ the mornin’ to ya all! Just thought I’d mix up my greeting bit. (I don’t really know where I was going with that) So! here is my question:

    I added a widget to my sidebar of links to my favorite songs at the moment. I’d like to know if you find it useful and if it works for my blog. I just thought it would be something nice to have for my visitors so I added it. But is it something that you would use? Would you click the links to listen to a song or two?

    I’d love to hear what you think, and happy blogging :)

    http://seangreenblogging.wordpress.com

    1. I would, but I’m a serious music junkie. If your blog was of interest, I’d also be interested in all things related to you as a writer.

      It wasn’t immediately apparent where the player was to me; I was looking for the old school kind :)

    1. I think you’ve accomplished your clean, uncomplicated look. Everything is easy to spot with large block letters and separated with different color boxes. I like the color scheme as well, it’s easy on the eyes.

    2. First, your blog is very user friendly! Of course the first thing I look for it the About which I found very easily. I’m a stick for simplicity. Also, I really enjoyed your writing and decided to follow!

      1. Thank you on the ‘user friendly’ label. That’s critical, as I’m ramping up exposure via other mediums. And, glad for the follow. I appreciate you taking the time to drop by and provide a fresh look.

    3. I liked your posts and widgets :) I would have liked a brighter colour in your background though? But that’s just me, because I saw the word sunflower in your title, hehe. Overall I really liked everything, easy to navigate :) awesome job :D

      1. Thank you!.I prevaricated on color vs more subdued – I recently left a more colorful theme because it no longer seemed to flow well, and was a little distracting. I have the option to add color variants (for more $$), and may play with that as time goes on. Thank you for taking the time to have a look and report back!

      2. Nice layout, and the title of the page is what makes it easy to get in there and look at individual posts. I love your graphic at the top. And the poem to your Mom, well, as a Mom, you know… :)

        Well done.

    1. Hey… I just visited your blog and my first impression was awesome. I love the design of your blog. It’s easy and pleasing. You have a wide range of content, and I think you’re doing a good job. Keep writing. :)

    1. This was a really interesting post – it seems like a lot of work needs to go on to aid Indian citizens, but it can’t be easy in a country so big! What else do you plan to post?

      1. Hello, yes it indeed is a real big problem for the Government of India, also it’s an embarrassment for the general public to do nothing but take help from these agents. I mostly write with the perspective of ‘communication’. What about you?

      2. That sounds interesting, I look forward to reading your next posts! I am writing about British society, and how it can become more equal.

      3. That’s nice to know from your end. In a complicated country like India where we have almost 25+ languages and huge population, it becomes very important for the government to reach out to people using effective communication, but that, sadly is not happening.

  14. WORDPRESS: Please delete my earlier comment. I’m unable to edit it or delete myself, and the links are wrong. I keep getting notes letting me know but I can’t fix it and I have a lot going on with the World Cup to have to deal with it. I regret making my comment; I just wanted people to know that the feedback can be put to good effect.

    Please know that I used to be a major feedback-giver until you changed the format. It’s impossible. Links are difficult if not impossible to add, even for those who know HTML. You can’t see all the comments. If I answer someone’s question or go to their site, I get dumped back at the top of a 500 comment thread and have to scroll back and fine where I was to add my reply. That may be why there are mostly questions and not answers.

    I learned my lesson today. I won’t be coming back.

    1. Aw don’t worry about it, Jenna. People can still click on your name if they find the wrong site! WordPress should really consider an edit button though…
      PS love your blog :)

    2. Hi Jenna,
      I replied to your comment upthread. Again, sorry for any inconvenience caused by our new design. We appreciate your feedback and, as I mentioned above, are already working toward fixing some of the issues you mention, like being directed to the top of the thread instead of the comment you just left.

    1. I like the look of your blog but feel that everything is too far apart. It takes a lot of scrolling to go all the way to the bottom of your side-bar. I also think that a section for guest posts is a good idea. I’m not sure what you would want them to write about but I guess you would put that in the section as a description. If you do decide to have some guest posters, I would be happy to give it a try if you’ll have me, my photography work I’ll link here for you see: http://tiny.cc/vgbvhx

      1. Thank you so much for your response. I’ll definitely take your feedback into consideration and try to change the look of my blog to make it more viewer friendly. Also, I’m really glad that you volunteered to write for my blog, and I shall let you know once I finalize things. :)

    2. Hey guys read my blog telelawalxo.wordpress.com have interesting post on sex, black culture, youth culture, religion. I keep it short and sweet with a twist.

  15. Yesterday I posted about redefining what it is to be a man. I am ready to inspired and be inspired! My target is men because as my recent post says it is time for us to step up and be men. Other than that, I aim to motivate through empathy and positive writing. I haven’t yet tried poetry but I think that is next. If anyone has experience with writing poetry, I could definitely use some help.

    http://mykulmitch.wordpress.com/

    1. It’s a great post: I totally agree with what you said; if every man treated a girl the same way he would want his sister to be treated, we wouldn’t have this problem. I would’ve loved it if you made it longer with a few more examples. On a side note, the font makes it really hard to read unless you brighten the screen to the max.

  16. i have been bolgging since 9 months damn and i don’t have a good traffic of comments and likes….i want people to take a look at what i am writing…
    well i have many posts, and i would really like a feedback on them…. check out….

    oh come on i cant paste my links one by one.. you can simply take a look at my blog.. you can find it at…
    http://aimanpeer.wordpress.com/

    1. The color scheme.
      The color scheme.
      The color scheme.

      Colored text on a black background wreaks havoc on people’s ability to read what you write. With some colors, it’s ouch, ouch, and ouch. It’s also hard to read your blog title and tagline.

      Fix the colors and you should get more engagement.

      (In spite of that, the number of likes and comments on your recent posts seems to be above average.)

    1. I think what you are doing now is interesting. I recommend that you update your about page with at least the info from your first introduction post so that people don’t have to scroll to the bottom to find out about you :) I think you can write series posts whenever you want. Write whatever feels right to you. I look forward to seeing more from you :)

      1. wow, thanks a lot. :D I also find your blog interesting, I’ve briefly read your posts and you have some crazy ideas, I’d like to hear more from you too.

      2. Thanks, I’ll take the crazy ideas as a compliment :) It seems that the reasons that we made our blogs are similar, maybe we can do some collaborative work in the future.

    1. Tips:

      1- The tagline is way too long. Make it short and catchy.

      2- Your background image took a long time to load and the interesting parts of it are blocked by your text box. Pick something with a smaller file size and base your selection on what will look good as that small sliver on the side.

      Otherwise, so far so good.