Obviously, BlogHer provided a lot of new and interesting ideas to consider regarding blogging, the why and how of it, the monetary aspect, and the mainstream-ness of it all. I don't think I actually have all my new ideas sorted yet, but we'll just start typing and see what happens.
Why do I blog? 'In the beginning, it was a way of keeping in touch with friends and family back home. Here's what's happening down here; how are things back at the ranch?' I said this a few times while I was away. I'm not sure that it's totally true, and I'm positive that's not why I blog now. The Ranch is a record, a memory, an outlet. My family and friends from home still read it, although I am less aware of them when I'm writing than I was; I certainly use more f-words than some of them would like. I include things which keep them up-to-date, but those same things are a memory for me.
Will I become rich? I do have BlogHer ads on my blog. I don't know how to log in and check how much my huge cheque will equal, but I can tell you it won't be much. Maybe enough for a milkshake once a month. Possibly. I don't know. I'm ok with whatever, really. I would love it if someone wanted to pay me to write, because then I would write so much better and more consistently. But since I'm not doing that to start with, it's unlikely anyone will offer me that. Y'know? Which is fine. As long as I'm happy with what I'm writing, I'm happy with whatever BlogHer ads gives me for it.
What do I want for ...
... the way I read blogs? I read blogs through Bloglines. I have been making an effort to Blog The Recession and click through. As far as I'm concerned, if I can't visualise the author/blog in my reader, why bother reading at all? I have a bajillion new blogs to read since BlogHer, and I'm trying to be okay with deleting some of them. It's nothing personal; not every blog is for me. Or you. Categorising my Bloglines has helped me to prioritise my blog-reading, as well. Basically, I most enjoy blogs when I feel like I recognise/know the blog/blogger.
... my blog? Right now, I've been making some small changes to my blog. Older buttons are all in one place and not cluttering up my sidebar, I'm going to start work on my About Me page, I've started using spell-check, little things like that. I'm thinking of changing the colour scheme / design - nothing too drastic, but just to make it a little cleaner or something.
... my writing? I wish The Ranch was more consistent. I developed a huge wordiness during most of my BlogHer posts, and then suddenly posted three big pictures with hardly any words. I want my style to show clearly on everything I post. I want every post to say what I wanted it to say. I want to be proud of every post I write; I want to be proud to submit them to things like the Community Keynote (no, we're not too ambitious AT ALL). You know those posts where people point out the awesome posts they've read that week? I want mine to be among them. I don't imagine that these things happen without effort - who even knows if effort and planning are blogging aspects that will make me happy to publish things here, but it's worth finding out.
Where are you at with your blog at the moment?
What direction would you like to see The Ranch take?
What are the essential aspects required for an About Page?