August is a busy, busy month, but not more busy than June or July. Come to think of it, May was pretty full, too. There's just lots to do - preparing the ground, planting, weeding, watering, deadheading - and for those of us that blog, we write about it all. Throw in a full- or part-time job and it's an awful lot to keep up with.
Part of the fun of blogging (for me, anyway) is not just writing one, but reading those written by others. I mostly read garden blogs, but I never miss Daisy the Curly Cat. The reason I never miss that one is because I have subscribed by e-mail and each time a new post is published, it magically appears in my Inbox, requiring no other effort from me other than opening the e-mail and reading it. Our cat Luna likes that one, too.
Let's look at some of the ways we can follow a blog:
- Blogger Follow - this one is a widget that you can add to your Blogger blog that allows readers to become a follower, listing those blogs they follow on their Blogger profile.
- Aggregate Reader - there are several of these out there (Bloglines, Google Reader, Feedreader, etc.) and they automatically receive the latest publication of those blogs you want to follow and have subscribed to. You simply open your feed reader and voila! All new blog posts will be there for you to read.
- Bookmarks (or Favorites) - this one is probably the most familiar method you can use. Find a favorite blog, bookmark it, then go to your bookmark when you want to read it.
- E-Mail - Subscribe by e-mail (if the blogger makes this option available) and each time a blog post is published it will be sent to your e-mail for you to read right then and there, without having to actually go to the blog itself. If you're a blog author and want to add this free service to your blog readers, Feedburner offers it through Google. FeedBlitz has one too, but it will cost you, once you're past the 30-day trial period. I use Feedburner because I like free.
- Twitter - many bloggers are also now on Twitter and most will tweet a link to any new blog post they publish. If you happen to be tweeting at the time they publish, this works. If not, you may miss it.
- Facebook - many publish a link to their latest blog post on their profile. A few have created fan pages specifically for their blogs so as to keep their blogs separate from their personal Facebook page. Facebook also has a follow feature for blogs that is handy.
Just as there are many ways to follow a blog, there are many kinds of readers out there. There is no one perfect way to follow a blog you enjoy, but there are enough ways to do it that you are sure to find one that works for you.
If you'd like me to follow your blog faithfully, I prefer to subscribe by e-mail. If you don't offer that option, I'll still read your blog, but I may not read it as often. Seldom do I have enough time to sit down and go through my list of favorite blogs and read them all. With e-mail updates, they arrive sporadically throughout the day and I'm not as overwhelmed.
So really, this is a plea to please make the "Subscribe by E-mail" option available for your blog. I want to read you, but I'm lazy.