A new look for LifeLines:
3 questions

A few weeks ago, I surveyed readers to find out how I could improve both the content and the delivery of my weekly posts. Your responses indicated that I might want to consider tweaking my format—so I did!

UPDATE: At the time, I was still on WordPress.com, but since then, I’ve moved to WordPress.ORG. So some of the details below are out-of-date. But you might still find the thought process interesting!

Is bigger better?

I started using a new theme, called “Spectrum.” The main reason I chose Spectrum is that the default type size is larger, which I think will be more readable. Of course, having a large-print blog means that everything takes more room, which can look more crowded. So let me know what your overall impression is: more inviting, or less?

(One thing to note: When you change the theme of a blog, you change all your posts. That is, it’s not like you can look back at a post from a few weeks ago to compare the old theme to the new theme. No, the whole blog gets changed. I can always change it back, but there’s no way to have some posts in one theme and other posts in a different theme.)

Are two columns too cluttered?

The Spectrum theme has just two columns. (My previous one had three.) So that meant I had to do some housekeeping and rearranging. This main column is where the posts and illustrations appear each week, and I like to use the side column for “maintenance” types of things. I usually put the Subscription field at the top because I want to make it easy to find and use. (If you’re not already subscribing, please do!) I also put the Search field in a convenient place for people who want use it to find a specific topic.

LifeLines is about “helping you share your story.” A lot of people don’t realize that I help people share personal stories (like memoirs) as well as business stories (like fundraising letters and business cards). Usually people need either one or the other, and they don’t realize I do both. That’s why I included links to samples of different kinds of writing in my sidebar. What do you think—is all this information cluttering up my sidebar?

Are comments complicated?

Another thing you might notice about this new theme: At the top of each post, right under the title, you’ll see some text about comments. That text is a link. If you click on it, you’ll go right to the comment area. If you see a comment you want to reply to, click the “Reply” link and a new comment field will open up. Type in your comment and click the “Post comment” button, and your comment will appear, and it will be indented under the other person’s comment. That means you’ve specifically replied to that person.

Of course you can post a comment that is not a reply to another commenter—just scroll down to the end of the comments to find the existing comment box. When you post a comment there, it will appear under the other comments, but not indented.

If you like the post, but you don’t have anything to say about it, you can click the Facebook button—that will post it to your Facebook wall and let your friends know that you thought it was worth sharing.

I do hope this new look makes it easier for you to comment. I LOVE hearing from you! I depend on your feedback to make me not only a better writer but also a more thoughtful person.

4 thoughts on “A new look for LifeLines: <br/>3 questions”

  1. Mel,
    I think I subscribed to your blog but am not sure? Could you let me know. I like the format alot but wasn’t very familiar with the old. It’s so very thoughtful of you to take the time to make things easier, even though that may, at times, make things more difficult for you. Thanks for being you. God bless you in the new year!


    • Hi Michelle, nice to hear from you! I was actually thinking about you last night because I went into the Munster Target and remembered the time we reconnected there. That was about a year ago, wasn’t it? It was good to see you.

      I did not see your email address in my list of subscribers, so I took the liberty of subscribing you. You should receive an email from WordPress that will have a link in it, which you’ll have to click to confirm your subscription. That’s that!

      Thanks for your kind words. And blessings on you in the new year as well!

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