Sunday, January 10, 2010

Bloggiesta Mini Challenge Update - the real ones this time!

So let's start again shall we?

Luckily I did manage to get a couple of the right mini challenges in my previous posts. Just a couple mind.

The first mini challenge for this Bloggiesta is being hosted by Rebecca from The Book Lady's Blog and the idea is to write some goals for 2010. As I mentioned before, I did have a goals post half written, so I have now finished that off, and it will be posted some time today.

The second challenge is being hosted by Pam from MotherReader, and is a whole challenge by itself! The idea is to comment on at least 5 book blogs each day for the next five weeks. Each Thursday participants are to post on their progress. Sounds like fun doesn't it!

Danielle from There's a Book is encouraging us all to cheat, or perhaps it should be use our time more wisely by using templates for those posts that we write regularly. For my regular meme posts like Library Loot and Teaser Tuesday I tend to copy and paste from last week's post each time which works for me, but there are definitely some good ideas in terms of things like passwords and links for all the different networking sites that we all get connected via. Definitely worth checking out. This challenge has also encouraged me to look at how I can use Google docs a bit better, especially for things like the Virtual Advent tour and keeping up with when review books are due to be read by.

Actually, just before I went to bed last night I got all inspired about how I could use Google Docs to assist me with Library Loot, with the Terry Pratchett Challenge and with Historical Tapestry's ABC of Historical Fiction, and then there was something else, but I can't remember what it was! There's a reason you should write things down instead of relying on memory, especially at my age! **wink** It will come to me I am sure. There is a distinct danger that I could get a bit obsessed with these lists!

Pam from has challenged us to add a copyright statement to our blog feeds to help prevent stolen content which I have now done. Now my feed should have the following statement as part of it.

This post was originally posted by Marg from ReadingAdventures. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Copyright 2005-2010.

The next more-than-mini challenge is hosted by Beth from BethFishReads, and is encouraging us to use labels on our posts. I love my labels, but have far too many of them!  I try to have labels for authors, for genres, for series, some for location if I read a lot of books set there (for example Russia or Italy), memes, plus a couple of more generic ones like music or life to cover those occasions when I post about something other than books. One of the things I had done was having separate labels for challenges that have run for a number of years and I need to figure out whether that really works. At the moment it means that I do have multiple labels for the same types of posts. For example for the Chunkster Challenge, at the moment I have Chunkster Challenge 2008, Chunkster Challenge 2009 and Chunkster Challenge 2010 as labels. Would it be more meaningful to just have one Chunkster Challenge label instead?   For some challenges, I don't think that would work. For example I don't think it would work for the Pub 2009 and Pub 2010 challenge. For the Chunkster Challenge, I think that if someone was looking for a chunkster it wouldn't matter when it was read, but if someone looked at the Pub 2010 label they might not want to read about a book published a couple of years before.

I also have a few labels which are for the same thing but just were spelt a little differently, e.g. I have some books labelled 'mystery' and others 'mysteries' so I have fixed those.

If you are just going to start with labels, I would encourage you to think about a couple of things - how many labels do you want to end up with and what your aim for them is. If you want a limited number of labels then you may choose to have one label for all author names A-L and M-Z for example. If you are going to do that, is there going to be another way for people to find reviews about specific authors like an index of reads. At the end of the day, I suspect that the person that uses the labels on my blog the most is me, so make sure that whatever strategy you choose to implement, make sure it is one that works for you!

Just a comment on searches. If you are on a Blogger blog, the search facility provided by Blogger is actually pretty good, so if you don't have a search box on your blog, think about either adding a search widget that is in a prominent place on your blog, or use the generic blogger one. Either way, it is useful to have some way for your reader to have a search box if they are looking for something specific.

Jackie from Farm Lane Books is hosting a mini-challenge to encourage us to back up our blogs. A long time ago I had a couple of panicky moments when things didn't quite look right on my blog and I thought I had lost some content. Just looking at my computer thought it appears as though the last time I did do a backup was a year ago! Whoops. I have now backed up as at today.

Karin from Karin's Book Nook is sending us on a dead link hunt. This is something that I hadn't really thought about doing before, so I am currently using the free link checker at to see how many I have. Given that I have been blogging for quite a long time now, I am sure there are some. I think it is going to take me a week to go through the list of links. I suspect a lot of them are for comments by bloggers who no longer are around, so not sure how I am going to be able to fix a lot of those.

The next mini challenge is hosted by Chelle from Tempting Persephone and asks you to put your best couple of posts forward so that they are in the spotlight! I was going to sit this one out. I mean how many more times can I post my review of The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley without it becoming boring. Actually, this might be a good time to mention that I am participating in the 45th Bookworms Carnival which is being hosted by Cathrin from Secret Dreamworld of a Bookaholic. The theme was series, and the post that I submitted was my recent reviews of Conn Iggulden's Conqueror series.

Moving on, the next mini-challenge is hosted by Kristin from Bookworming in the 21st century and is designed to provide a forum for people to talk about blogging, and maybe mentoring. I am really going to sit this one out, mainly only because I already have far too many forums and groups that I don't visit on a regular enough basis!

The final mini-challenge is hosted by Jenn's Bookshelves and encourages you to plan 10 post ideas! I am going to pass on this one as well. I don't really have problems coming up with post ideas, but I do have trouble getting from the idea to actually posting so I am going to concentrate on that aspect for some of the day today.

So, there are my mini challenges for today. The rest of the day I plan to write a review or two, write a post for the Terry Pratchett challenge I am hosting, create some Google Docs (going to become addicted to these I suspect), oh, and actually do some housework.


  1. Marg, how did you add the copyright thing to your feed? I can't quite figure out how to put it on your feed but not on your web posts themselves. Can you please let me know how you did that?

  2. Hi Aarti, you go into your Dashboard, then Settings>Site Feed> and then put whatever you want in your Site Feed Footer.

  3. Oh, wow! That's easy (blush). Thank you so much!

  4. Great job! What I wish I had done was created some sort of labels glossary when I first started. Usually I just label posts with whatever pops into my head so now I have a ton of random labels. I think I would need a whole bloggiesta weekend just to clean that up!

  5. Oh wow, just reading this post made me feel tired :-)

    I'm not officially taking part in Bloggiesta, but am making note of all these useful tricks for when I have some spare time...

  6. Hi Marg, you've accomplished a lot during the Bloggiesta! I'm in awe :-D

    Thanks for mentioning my Carnival post :-)

  7. Marg - You are so brave for doing all these challenge, and I wish you good luck in your success on it :) I know you can do it!



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