Monday, August 17, 2009

Want Me To Read Your Blog?

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.


Anonymous said...

Some blogs have the various options available even if they don't have the Email badge displayed.

One my blog, for example, if you click on the RSS link it will take you to the feed where it has all the options; like Email, and the web-based news readers on homepages like Yahoo, MY AOL, Google Reader and all the others.

If I remember correctly all those options had to be chosen by hand because they weren't the defaults in FeedBurner.

Kylee Baumle said...

mrbrownthumbNow see, how would I know that? I've been blogging for more than 2½ years and use Feedburner and didn't know that. Not everyone is internet savvy so I figure we should make things as easy for our readers as we can. Heck, I consider myself to be very comfortable finding my way around the blogosphere, yet I'm not likely to spend a lot of time messing around on stuff like this if I don't find what I want right there on the page.

So thanks for telling me I could subscribe to your blog by e-mail. I would never have known that if you hadn't just told me. :-)

Anonymous said...

You're right about making thing easier and back when I had less clutter in my sidebar(s) I had the Email subscription gadget. One of these days I'm going to complete the modifications to my template and I'll be able to put everything back where it is easy to find.

One of these days...

I like this post I'm going to link to it from

Kylee Baumle said...

mrbrownthumb Thanks for the link love! :-)

Oh, there are soooo very many things I'm going to do, one of these days...

CanadianGardenJoy said...

Kylee ... I absolutely love the cat pajamas and the cat queen holding court in this picture ! LOL
I have to kick my blog up a few notches .. thanks for the spark girl !
Joy : )

Diana Studer said...

And then there is Blotanical's "Posts from my faved blogs" which is why I am reading your blog ...

Janet, The Queen of Seaford said...

Hi Kylee, thanks for reading my blog. :-D It makes me happy. I know there are some that I miss out on reading because I like seeing the blog on their redoes the format a least it does for me.

Dave said...

Good post! I'm not sure that it's because you're lazy. I think there are just too many good blogs out there to catch them all especially in the busy gardening season. It's much easier if they come to you.

Kylee Baumle said...

Joy ~ I love my kitty jammies! :-)

Elephant's Eye ~ I tried to make this post a general one, but you're absolutely right - Blotanical makes it easy to keep track of your faves! Thank you for reading mine!

Janet ~ Yes, I prefer the format of the blog rather than the simple blog post that arrives by e-mail, but I'd rather not miss the blog posts altogether. Plus, it's easy to go to the blog itself from the e-mail - just click on the blog title or the blog post title.

Dave ~ Absolutely! This summer seems to have been pulling me this way and that more than usual and I know I've missed out on some very good blog posts. :-( But I always read my e-mail! :-)

MILLIE said...

Kylee--what a good post about following blogs. I consider blogging a luxury and actually try to spend less time doing it. I love reading everyone's stuff and am blown away with all the creativity that is just out there for free. You for example have ohmigosh--127 followers. You could spend a couple of hours just trying to keep up with their stuff. I do love it when people read my rambling on, and I hate not having time to do it right. Take the pics and get the words right. So many of you really really do an awesome job.

Anonymous said...

Great ideas, Kylee -- I'd never taken advantage of the e-mail subscription before, but have installed this option at the top of my sidebar. It's a text link to Feedburner, but it works well. :) I hope you'll continue to visit regularly.

Chris Kreussling (Flatbush Gardener) said...

I employ all those options. But the most important is to keep writing stuff that others want to read. I'm amiss in following this advice myself, as I don't publish on a regular schedule. Life just gets in the way: full-time job, night classes, community activism ... and even some actual gardening! All leave little time for me to keep up my own blog, and keep up with others.

Jean Campbell said...

I have the RSS feed option in the sidebar. The advantage of a feed over marking Favorites is that your feed list will always indicate which blogs have new posts. I read too many to run look every day to see if they updated.

Every now and then I got through my feed list and delete those who stopped posting.

Kylee Baumle said...

mlc ~ Since most of us don't make a dime from our writings and do it for our own enjoyment (and read others for that same reason), it could be looked upon as a luxury, just like anything else we do for fun.

You are absolutely right, in that if we all read each and every one of the blog posts of those that we follow and follow us, we'd never get anything else done.

I have to remind myself of the real reason I blog - to keep my family up on what we're doing out here, to exercise my writing muscles, to interact with other gardeners, and because I just like to talk. LOL.

Sometimes ideas just spill out over the edge of my brain, there are so many. Other times, I got nuttin'.

I really enjoy people, and blogging allows me to interact with so many wonderful people of varied interests, yet many are of the same gardening mind, too. I love learning new things too, and have learned so much from other bloggers. Isn't it wonderful?

Nancy ~ Obviously, if I subscribed by e-mail to every blog I follow, I'd have no life. LOL. But at least it makes it a little easier to read them on a semi-regular basis. When I first started writing Our Little Acre, there weren't so many garden blogs. The numbers have exploded over the last couple of years! So many talented and interesting people out there! And you are one of them, my dear friend. :-)

Xris ~ Boy do I hear that. As I said to Nancy, garden blogging has just exploded in the last couple of years. It used to not take up so much of my time, reading and writing. I enjoy doing it and I'll continue to do so, but I find it hard, as you do, to juggle it all. We just do what we can do! If we were making a living from it, it might be different.

Kylee Baumle said...

NellJean ~ See, that's what I'm talking about. I also have that option for Our Little Acre, but the feed readers are just too overwhelming for me. First of all, I have to open a whole new window for the reader and when it opens, there are a GAZILLION new posts all at once, staring me in the face. I've heard (on Twitter) that many people are overwhelmed by all the unread posts as I am, and simply mark them all as "Read" without reading them when it gets to be too much.

That's why I prefer e-mail. They come as they are posted (or shortly after), and I can read them directly from e-mail, which I always read and always have open anyway.

But, as I said, everyone is different and has to find the way that works best for them. I'm glad you've found your way, too! :-)

Diana said...

Very informative, Kylee, and you're right, everyone likes a different format for both incoming and outgoing "things" these days. I'll try to figure out if I can make that happen for you. Like you, I'm a little overwhelmed and not as savvy as some, but I like a challenge, so what the heck...sometime...!

Jean Campbell said...

Okay, I made it happen.-

Feedburner claims they're going to let me know if you really subscribe.

TC said...

I'm lazy too Ms. Kylee. But do find time via Blogger's "Reading List" to see the words of my favorite blogs. You're one of them. ;~)

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

I need to figure out a way to keep all the blogs I read in one place. I haven't figured out a way to keep them organized yet, email may be a good way to do it. I have joined yours as a follower (awhile ago) and also have it on my sidebar where I keep the ones I read the most frequently.
I do have the subscribe by email on my blog, but it seems most people use subscribe by the google reader for mine.
Informative post!

Jean Campbell said...

Thanks to your post, Kylee, I added the email option and restored the Follower option, which I had disabled because of a couple of spammers. I took the time to figure out how to block the spammers, who shouldn't be allowed to spoil the fun for others.

Following your question about whether I lived in or near Dothan, AL and might know your friend, I revamped my sidebar to better indicate my location without showing my exact address. Thank you for letting me know indirectly that it was not clear at all that none of the 3 towns I linked were where I live, just handy to visit from here.

Muum said...

Errkk! technology terror! I'll give it a try.........

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

Email is an interesting option. Right now I like Blogger's Follow function.

Linda aka Crafty Gardener said...

I find that there are just way too many blogs to keep up with now. I click to follow lots, but don't really keep up with that option, I don't have time for all sorts of emails coming in, I don't always check my bookmarks/favourites, but I do keep a list of those blogs I visit on a regular basis on my sidebar and try to visit them every couple of days. If I get a new visitor I really try hard to visit them back. I have a Feedjit traffic feed that lets me know who has been visiting. I tend to blog hop when I'm at a favourite blog and sometimes discover one I enjoy that way. I'm forever changing my bloglists .. maybe to suit my moods, or my interests for that day. I do blog for me now, and not to keep up with others or with sites with lots of expectations.

Pat said...

I try to follow the bloggers on my list but it sure does take time.
Funny how followers change...I guess our interest change from time to time.

v said...

How about adding the link to the blog you love onto your own blog list? The most updated post will automatically sit on top of the list.


Katie said...

Yep, MBT beat me to the punch. You can use the RSS icon to subscribe via email!

Kylee Baumle said...

Diana ~ I have no doubt you can do this! :-)

NellJean ~ I've never had Feedburner tell me when someone became an e-mail subscriber, although you can see who is by looking at your Feedburner stat page. They do let you know when someone unsubscribes though, if you choose the option to be notified.

TC ~ Thank you, TC! And I enjoy receiving your blog posts by e-mail as well!

Catherine ~ I'm one of your e-mail subscribers. :-) You could make a file for blog posts if you wanted. There are several ways to do this, which I think is a good thing, because this post proves what I already knew - everyone is different and likes a different way!

Muum ~ LOL! You can do it!

MMD ~ Well, I finally found where I can subscribe by e-mail to your blog! Yay!

Crafty Gardener ~ Boy, you said it! Sometimes my "blog clutter" looks very much like my paper clutter at home. I don't want to throw something out because I just know it has something I want to see in it. It did used to be so much easier to keep up with things, but there are just too many garden blogs now and so many of them EXCELLENT. It's like trying to read all the good books.

Patsi ~ That's right, Patsi. But for me, it's a case of there being so many that I like. I can't keep up!

Blossom ~ I do have links, but not in that way. I might check that one out, though!

Katie ~ I was surprised to learn that, however not all RSS Feedburner accounts have that option. It might be that as a blog owner, you have to offer that option in Feedburner settings somewhere. For example.

Eric Indiana said...

Hi Kylee,

I hope you have time to come by & visit my blog. I have a lot of fun writing it. Many of my posts are just words I've invented or redefined. Some posts are filled with observations that have been swimming around in my head & before blogging had no place to go.

And yes, I have a subscribe by email option on my page!


Kylee Baumle said...

Hey there, Eric Indiana! You convinced me. Subscribed! This is going to be fun, I can just tell. :-)

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