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Community Pool

Feedback, camaraderie, and free popsicles! (Free popsicles: not included.)

Have you just published a new post and are dying for some feedback? Did you recently start your blog and could use some layout or design advice from your more seasoned peers?

Tap into the wisdom of The Daily Post blogging community and leave your question here in the comments. Others can then click through and offer input either on your site, or in the comments here (feel free to indicate which you’d prefer).

To help us make the Community Pool a productive space for discussion, here are some tips you might find useful:

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.

  • While you’re not required to, we encourage everyone who requests feedback to also reply to at least one or two other bloggers who need some help. Spread the love!
  • The Community Pool comments section can get quite big — and starting duplicate threads doesn’t help. Thanks for not posting the same question more than once!
  • If you’re looking for quality feedback, be as specific as you can. Questions about a particular post tend to draw more comments than ones about entire blogs. Questions about specific design elements are more likely to be answered than ones asking for general layout advice.
  • We discourage leaving links without a more substantive message or question. These are often overlooked by other bloggers, and we frequently remove them to make the comment reading experience smother.
  • Please keep all comments civil and constructive. The idea is to have fun — it’s a pool, after all!
  • 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 Brian Cantoni.

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  1. Hi everyone, I added a new post on Saturday, which has several links added. I am not very computer literate, and have added the links by copying and pasting. Some of these links are very long, but do work. I have read blogs that use as little as one word to take you to an external site. This is much more clean and professional. My question is, how do I go about it?
    Thank you so much! 🙂

    My blog address is http://theoldfellowgoesrunning.com/

    Like

    1. Ok, here’s the trick:
      1. Type the text that you’d like to have appear in the body of your blog. Let’s say it’s “My Favorite Kale Soup Recipe.”
      2. Highlight/Select “My Favorite Kale Soup Recipe” onscreen.
      3. There’s a little button just above the text-entry area in WordPress that looks like a chain link. That’s the “Add/Edit Link” button. Select that to open the Add/Edit Link window.
      4. You’ll see a field for the url entry. Put the web address there. (e.g., http://www.kalesouprecipe99.com). You can also add a title that will appear when users scroll over the link, if you wish. (e.g., Kale) Click the “Add Link” button, and you’re golden. 🙂

      Liked by 4 people

    1. I really like your post! Those are some diverse products, your photography is lovely, and you are brief but informative. You have me listening to Troye Sivan, haha. I’ve never heard of this person before.
      (No need to return the favor for me, by the way, we have very different blogs. I just wanted to let you know I liked your post!)

      Like

    2. I enjoyed reading your post. I love your pictures and the tone it gives to your post, some natural and comfy feeling. I also checked on your Café section, couldn’t believe you are actually apologizing for the quality of your picts! seriously, they are awesome! Plus you have a De Longhi too, all perfect here 🙂 Keep it up!

      Like

    3. I really liked the layout of your blog– I’m not very into lifestyle based blogs but I think your elegant photos and concise posts manage to get me quite interested. 🙂 The videography is pretty good too. 😀 Strive on!

      Like

  2. I’m looking for feedback to improve my layout and visual presentation. I feel that readers don’t have full command of my blog. I would like to improve this part of it before doing a serious evaluation of my topics and writing style.

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    1. Overall, your blog looks great! I like the stark visual presentation. It makes the photos pop without pulling my attention away. I would suggest adding some boldfaced headers here and there to break up the longer blocks of text — particularly when you have a list of points to make.

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      1. Fantastic, thanks very much for the ideas!

        I was concerned about the “starkness” but maybe that’s ok. No doubt a busy page has its drawbacks. Had a look at yours and will reply to your post.

        Like

    1. Hey there! I checked out your blog- it’s easy to follow but just one thing is that I think you shouldn’t be putting yourself down saying that you “suck” at photography! We’re always told in class during critiques to never put ourselves down, we’re all still learning, your technique and style will develop over time. Best of luck!

      Like

  3. I’d love feedback on my blog, which is now 3 weeks old. I’m still trying to hone my message, but I think it’s something like: “Love and divorce suck, but let’s laugh about it.” I’m curious to know if the formatting is weird, and would love some tips about making it more appealing.
    Here’s my last post:

    http://bostonwordnerd.wordpress.com/2014/08/31/i-fail-at-the-girly-things-confessions-of-a-charm-school-dropout/

    Thanks!

    Like

    1. Your style of short posts of spontaneous, funny, sometimes irreverent zingers makes your blog very readable and enjoyable.

      If I had a sidebar list of post headings so that I could access one of your specific posts quickly, I would find it more manageable……something I need to figure out how to do on my own blog.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Wow, just spent a bit of time on your blog. You have done an incredible job to write so many quality posts within a mere 3 weeks.

        I definitely would not say your formatting is weird. It is unique, and written in such a way that draws the reader in. It is fun, honest and unpredictable, so much so that I kept scrolling down and reading more and more of your posts.

        It is a reminder to me, that with all the difficulties we may be having, so important to lighten up and laugh about it, and I sincerely want to thank you.

        Am a new follower. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

    2. From what i read you have got the message right. It says a lot about you bit in a humourous and a relatable way.

      I really enjoyed reading your posts. You deal with a hard topic in a very novel way.

      I am a follower now 😊

      Liked by 1 person

    3. Hi – I think your blog’s already appealing. It flows beautifully. I like the illustrations too – did you draw them? Great title too.

      You asked about the formatting – on the Charm School Drop-out post, it looked as if your text was bumping up against the edge of image borders sometimes – in the ‘Posing for Photos section, ‘terrified’ is being chopped in half and shoved aside by the sharp corners of a picture. ‘Wearing White Clothing’ looks a bit lonely out in the middle when all its mates are lined up to the left margin.

      I hope you keep writing. When you look back on this time in your life from the adventure of the future, you’ll be glad you kept a record of it. Like any traveller.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hello, I am a new blogger who just started his blog in early July. I think that my blog can be appealing to anyone interesting in politics, yet it usually doesn’t receive much attention. It could be that I don’t post very often, but with school and my other tasks It would impossible for me to post consistently. I just published a post earlier this morning and would greatly appreciate if anyone could give me some feedback on how I could improve my work.

    http://obscureecho.wordpress.com/2014/09/01/rand-paul-supports-blacks-from-the-terror-of-big-government/

    Thank you (Just a warning: I am very opinionated in my work)

    Like

  5. Hi everyone! I am a Community Pool virgin and just want to say that this is a great concept!

    My dilemma: I am trying to promote my art, but I have always felt like a smily car salesman trying to pull-one-over on the unsuspecting. I see value in my creations and the things I make, and I want that to come across, gimmick-free.

    My latest post is my first real attempt to try to sell things (the right way, according to the guidelines of wordpress). I am wondering if some of you may be able to provide me some feedback:

    JustBeCreativity.com

    Does my latest blog work?

    Do you think I came off slimy?

    Am I doing something so wrong that you want to click off of my page as fast as you possibly can?

    I am open to all feedback. Contact me through this thread or send me a personal message with your thoughts. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I don’t think this site comes off as “slimy” at all — and I’m another person with major discomfort around anything that seems “sales-y.” I didn’t get that sense on your site — at all.

      One comment — the design/theme overall is nice, but the buttons seem a little out-of-place somehow. Something about those square edges does not seem in keeping with the rest of the site. Could you update with something a bit softer? Maybe a lighter color and rounded edges?

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Hi! I’m new here. I have a blog – “One Writer’s Life” – that got off to a great start, but which was interrupted around the first of February when I had a flare in my chronic illness. My question is – how do I get back on track now that I am feeling much better? Thanks, in advance!

    Like

  7. Hi everyone! I hope you’re all having a good weekend.
    I’m just looking for feedback in general if I’m honest, mainly about my writing, this week. Can I improve my style? Am I covering too many bases? Etc. 🙂 I’m also really interested to know what people use to make blog graphics e.g picmonkey, canva etc
    Thanks in advance! X
    Sare x
    http://www.newteacherlife.wordpress.com

    Like

    1. The only thing you could play with would be to see how centering your pictures might look with the rest of your set up. The overall look and feel of your blogs layout is perfect, Thumbs up!

      Like

  8. Hi there!
    About a month ago, I had started my blog “Imaginationem”. On my blog I post about topics such as DIYs, fashion, beauty, and art. If you could please check out my blog and provide me feedback on the site in general (quality of my posts, layout, etc.) that would be great. Also let me know if you have any post suggestions, such as specific DIYs or how to carry out certain fashion trends!
    –Callie

    http://imaginationem.wordpress.com/

    Like

  9. I’m relatively new too. I tried out a free blog last year, but dropped it. I put up a few posts on my new blog the past few days, changed them, and then took all but two down. Here’s my post about Peetie, a little fledgling robin. My question is what are some good tags to use? This website will be predominately used to introduce and order hard back children’s picture books for a series. Thanks for any help or honest feedback!

    http://furfeathersntales.com/2014/08/29/peetie/

    Like

  10. I cant figure out how to make a new post on a new page that I create. I am pnly able to do the original post and that’s it. All my new posts only appear on the thread on my main page. help?

    Like

    1. Hello! I’d be happy to help with any issue you’re currently having, but I’m not entirely sure I understand what it is you’re trying to accomplish — visiting your blog, I see your posts are published, and can be read on the homepage as well as each in its own single-post page.

      Like

      1. Thanks for helping! So what I either cant figure out or wrap my head around is that my home page I can post new material continually to a news feed type set up. On the new pages that I created for example my Gallery I am unable to create new posts. If I hit the new post button that post will be posted on my home page. If I click the edit button it edits my whole gallery page. I am trying to figure out how to create the same setup as my home page.

        Like

      2. I think I understand better now. What you’re describing is actually a feature, not a bug, of how posts and pages work differently (for a full explanation, we actually have a support page precisely on that topic here: http://en.support.wordpress.com/post-vs-page/)

        While pages are meant to show more static/evergreen content, you can still create pages that showcase specific types of posts — for example, you can create a category page to group together all the posts that share the same category. Similarly, you can update a galleries page with new content regularly, but you’ll have to update it yourself. If you’d like to look at some other ideas for using ideas to organize your long-term content, this post might help:
        https://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/11/20/pages-long-term/

        I hope this helps!

        Like

  11. Hey guys. I starting adding some things to my sidebar and moved some things around. I wanted it to appear more busy, if you know what I mean.

    teenageintrovert.wordpress.com

    There’s also a couple new posts. If you have the time, would you take a look and tell me how the visuals are? Also, content feedback would help greatly. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  12. hi everyone =) I’m dying to get some cricits on my blog. I’ve tried different topics and different layouts. Please let me know which kind of posts is really nice and which one actually no-one wants to read.
    Thanks in advance =)

    Like

    1. Hello! Just wanted to say that you should always blog for yourself and not for other people. You can only attract the right people if you do the things you like. I think layout wise is okay but I’m not too interested in the content PERSONALLY (because I’m more of a lit person 🙂 ) Don’t worry about it, you’ll find your way! 😀

      Like

  13. Hey everyone.
    I just started my blog yesterday, and would love it if some people could look over my introduction post and my “about” page. I want to make sure I have those things done well before I progress too far into my blog, in the hopes that those will help readers feel more connected to me and to my stories/ experiences/ insights.
    http://almostamemory.wordpress.com/
    Any feedback and opinions would be fantastic; I know I don’t have much yet, but I definitely want to grow this blog in the future, so I want to make sure that I have my essentials done well from the get-go.

    Like

    1. I think that the concept behind this is intriguing; I have always had a soft spot for character analyses, but I think the way you’re doing them is both unique and thought-provoking.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks! I’m quite flattered. There is a ‘mini-blog’ section called Color Droplets, for figures that are more…archetypal than distinct and well rounded characters in and of themselves. I’m always looking for another name for that section. Additionally, if you’re not familiar with the Color Pie, reading the home-page before your ‘dive’ into the blogs is recommended.
        Thanks again for your feedback! 🙂
        Charles

        Like

      1. Sing Better English:
        Thank you so much for your kind words!
        You raise an interesting point about the perception of colors across culture. In point of fact, Magic the Gathering seems to be aware to a degree of the different perceptions of color across the globe. For example: In Japan, the color if death is White, as opposed to the Western Black. Hence, in their set dealing with feudal Japan, the villain was White-aligned and the hero was a black-mana user. 🙂

        I’ll keep your suggestions in mind, maybe even do a series on them, you’ve given me a slew of new ideas to explore…

        Charles

        Liked by 1 person

  14. Hi all,

    In the last few days, I have started my first blog, Shooting on a Shoestring:

    https://shootingonashoestring.wordpress.com/

    I would love some constructive criticism in general, and also some specific advice.

    Firstly, I would like to know how frequently it is sensible to blog, to allow readers a chance to read a post? Presumably, the more frequently you post and the further down a blog entry gets, the fewer readers reach it?

    Is there any way of “pinning” a blog entry so that it doesn’t sink, or any way of promoting them? Also – is it possible to have separate entries as separate pages?

    Thanks!

    Like

    1. I think every blogger ends up figuring out the publication frequency that makes most sense to her/him (and to their readers). You’re right that publishing very often decreases your posts’ shelf life, though there are also ways to prolong it and help your archives get their time in the spotlight; here are some ideas:
      https://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/12/03/traffic-to-archives/

      “Pinning” a post to the top of your homepage is called “sticking” here — you create a “sticky post” that stays above the regular stream of posts. Here’s how you create one:
      http://en.support.wordpress.com/posts/post-visibility/#sticky-posts

      Like

  15. Im new to the site and to blogging in general. I would really appreciate any constructive criticism on either the setup and layout of my site, which im not the happiest right now, and with the content and quality of my work so far. Thanks alot

    Like

    1. Great start. Looks a lot like my blog. I try to keep posts to less than 500 words in an opinion piece because people will only give you a small amount of their time. If it is instructional, then it can be longer to get the job done.

      Like

  16. Hey all! I started a blog last week, posted one story that I wrote, but have no clue how to let people see it! I tried to use broad tags and interact with similar blogs but my site still has around 10 views total! Should I have waiting a while after creating the blog before posted a long read? Any advice would be greatly appreciated as I’m currently writing my second post! Thanks 🙂

    Like

    1. Did you try to pitch your post via facebook? tease your friends with an interesting line or a picture, this is actually how I get most of my readers. Personally, I favor short posts, 400 words max. The shorter the best, you don’t give your reader time to be bored 😉

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I would also like to know another thing. Is there any way we can write posts under the same title, like a book sort of? I mean, to put up entries as a continuation to the previous entry, all embedded in a single big post? (I used to think the option ‘Pages’ was for the same’)

      Like