In case you hadn’t caught on by now, a bit theme in the Blogging 101 challenge is that community is key. Interacting with other bloggers (and readers, of course) is a huge and very important part of blogging. And for that reason, having a blogroll can be a boon. What is a blogroll? Put simply, it’s a list of links to other blogs you enjoy that you share on your own blog for other people to peruse. It doesn’t have to just be blogs, of course. You can share whatever sites you love, whatever nonsense you think is fun and worth sharing.
So day thirteen’s assignment is to share links you love with a widget.
Why exactly is it so important to share links on your blog? Well, for one thing, people are information consumers. They love to jump from one thing they enjoy to another thing they enjoy, and to yet another thing they enjoy. If you provide fun stuff to enjoy, that’s just one more reason to visit your blog. Another reason to share links is that it shows a little bit more about you and your personality, and you can find yourself gaining readers because of it. If I, for instance, link to a dozen different Star Wars-related websites, fellow Star Wars geeks might stumble across me and start up a conversation or two. Then they might stick around because they realize that they enjoy talking to me and hearing what I have to say. Win!
Now, on this assignment I’m going to cheat a little, because personally I am not a fan of link widgets. As I’ve mentioned before, I like websites and blogs to be neat, streamlined, easy to look at, and I find that widgets that display a bunch of links are a little messy and too busy for my liking. That’s not to say that they’re a bad thing, and I’m sure that lots of people like them, but they’re just not my cup of tea.
Myself, I prefer a link page. That is, a separate page (like the “About” page) that is set aside specifically for links and stuff I want to share. My such page can be found on the black tab bar underneath my header. It’s labeled as “Linkables” because sometimes I think I’m cute. On that page I’ve broken the stuff I want to share up into categories. At the moment that I’m writing this there are only two categories, but those categories help people who are checking out the page to more quickly find what might be interesting to them, so keep that in mind.
Currently my “Linkables” page is limited to a small list of my favorite blogs, along with a small list of resources for writers that I’ve found to be interesting. In light of the assignment, I’ve decided to add a third category for things (or people) that I just find to be super fun. Check it out!