This is topic Blog Advice in forum Open Discussions About Writing at Hatrack River Writers Workshop.

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Posted by rcmann (Member # 9757) on :
As in, design suggestions. I am about to make one (a simple one, on blogspot) and I welcome any input on where to access free graphics, advice, layouts, etc that might help keep it from looking like excrement. All input welcome.
Posted by AWSullivan (Member # 8059) on :
I don't know much about Blogspot. I'm more of a Wordpress guy myself. You should give them a look. There is a huge community and thousands upon thousands of free themes floating around out there.
Posted by MartinV (Member # 5512) on :
Whichever you choose (blogspot or wordpress), go for simplicity. Overly complex blog or a blog that jabs at one's eyes will not be popular.

You can always check the Hatrack Groups section where there's a thread about blogs and check out some of our blogs.
Posted by EmilyS (Member # 9447) on :
I recently put together a wordpress site for myself, and while I probably made it harder than it had to be (I'm a bit of a perfectionist), the ready-made themes are a good way to make an easy, good-looking blog.

You could check out Webtreats for seamless backgrounds, if you don't want a solid color. Simple searches should get you matching social media icons if you want them, and there are some free graphics out there, though you may have to dig. I ended up making my own (since I happen to have Photoshop and a vector-graphics program–like I said, I made it harder than I had to [Wink] ).

I definitely looked at a lot of blogs, both Hatrackers and published authors, to figure out the look I wanted. The wordpress support pages and forums were very helpful; I don't know if blogspot has something similar.

I second Martin on simplicity. And maybe it's just my preference, but go for black text on white, with the sidebar on the right—black backgrounds hurt my eyes, and left sidebars are annoying on a mobile device.

Good luck!

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