W2 — Blogs

Blogging: Sharing Your Story

blogsA blog (short for web log) is a website that hosts entries, or “posts,” in reverse chronological order, newest at the top. But one person’s writing on the website can be a blog, too, and that’s the more common meaning as a noun. Sometimes “blog” is a verb, as in “I’m going to blog about krl2pt0.”

Some blogs are like journals, in either the sense of “Dear Diary” (although in this case it’s more like “Dear Diary and friends who are following my life”), or in the sense of journalism, with a writer’s thoughts on important issues and events. More and more library workers are writing blogs, either recording their experiences working in a library, like the anonymous Tales from the “Liberry,” or on a library website, like McKinney Memorial Public Library. If you wrote a blog for KRL (internal or external) what would it be about, what stories would you tell?

blogger buttonThere are many blogging sites out there, but we recommend Blogger if you’re new to blogging.

You should’ve already set up a gmail account, which means you’re now in the Google family and it’ll be easier to access Google services. So put in your gmail address and follow the rest of the instructions on the sign-up page. Then name your blog. And choose a template (a look for your blog). That’s all there is to it, you now have a blog!

Want some tips, tutorials, maybe a video or two to help you get started? Check out Tips on blogging.

When you set up your blog, it will be assigned a URL (Universal Resource Locator). This is your web address. (Yes, you are now officially on the web!) Make sure to write this down and then post it in the tracking log along with the name of your blog.

Here’s a link to the Wikipedia article on blogging if you want some background information. This link to another Wikipedia article has a list of free blog hosting sites.

So, what are you going to post? Or you may be asking, how are you going to post? Blogger makes it easy for you. Click on “create” to be taken right to the composition box, which looks a lot like Word, including font options. You’ll notice a small text box at the bottom called “labels,” which are lot like “tags” (more about those later). If your post falls under certain categories, like “snags” or “the future,” feel free to label it with those terms.

Write your post, then click on “publish post.” You’re welcome to edit it later, and be sure to check for readers’ comments.

Using a different blogging site? The steps will be similar although the look and terminology of the site may be very different. Feel free to ask questions. Heck, post your questions in your blog!

blogger tabsIf you are looking for more ideas or inspiration, check out some of these additional links to other library blogs and blogs by librarians. If you want some statistics on how big the blogosphere has grown, check out BlogWorld.

Assignments for Week 2:

  1. Set up your blog and enter your first post. Write about your thoughts on one of the articles or podcasts you looked at last week. Your posts don’t have to be long, but should be a minimum of 150 – 200 words.
  2. Send an email to krl2pt0 with your name and the name of your blog. (We won’t publish your name with the name of your blog anywhere. We will keep it in a super-secret kryptonite-protected lockbox offline for tracking purposes).
  3. Enter the name of your blog, and its address (URL) to the tracking log.
  4. Once you’ve entered your post, select a blog by one of your colleagues from the Blogroll and add a comment to it. Add the URL of your comment into the tracking log. How do I do this?

Next up — Week 3: Folksonomies, Tagging and del.ic.ious

17 Responses

  1. Kim, when we hired you I remember you were an “open mic” nights star, and now we get to use those talents in the podcast arena – nice intro!

  2. Ok, Kim. What is this about “open mic” nights? Dish, girl!

  3. Sh, I’m supposed to be an impersonal voice. Don’t give me away!

  4. ok, I’m completely confuzzled…am I supposed to go to Blogger and use that site to set up my blog….? Can you tell I’ve never done this before?!

  5. Hi Mary:

    Don’t want you to be confuzzled — you’ve got it right, go to the Blogger site (https://www.blogger.com/start) to get started.

    Let us know if you’ve got more questions, we’ll get help to ya’.

    Bob Christensen

  6. ok, Bob, I’ll give it a shot…

  7. Bob – I have added some posts on my blogs regarding last weeks assignment, to read and log a couple of of articles, etc.. and this weeks assignment to talke about them on my blog. [Just so you know I am doing the assignments, even though I am really OUT THERE enjoying cybersurfing with my latest tools.]

  8. Hannah:
    I look forward to reading your posts.

    Also, I understand congratulations are in order. I’m sure it was an outstanding group of candidates that you were selected from. Congrats to you and all of your colleagues who also interviewed for the position.

  9. OMG, I made a blog! I think I need to put my head betrween my knees for awhile…

  10. Mary! CONGRATS to you for making your blog. Are you finding it fun yet?

    Thanks to you, Bob, for the congrats. I think my fellow employees support tipped the balance, but perhaps the blogs helped because they found encouragement in them. I am jazzed and really GRATEFUL to the selection team and to the other candidates; they made me step up my game a bit. Looks like it may have worked!

  11. Mary:
    Flotation devices are available in the overhead compartments and air bags are in the seat backs — just in case….

    Way to hang in there!

    Bob C.

  12. Bob, I think I have set up my blog…sailing. What I am having trouble finding is how to link to the tracking site. Am I just mislooking on the home page. Wouldn’t it be great if it were a tag so I could just click on it when I needed to enter something?

  13. Hi Gail:

    It would be easier if we could just add a link to the Tracking Log. But, since it isn’t a public document (you need the invitation you received in your Gmail account to have access to it), we aren’t able to do that.

    There is an easy way to get there, however. Here’s what to do:
    1) Log in to your Gmail account
    2) At the top of the page you’ll see a link labeled “Documents.” Click on this link.
    3) This will open a new page titled “Google Docs.” This will have the Tracking Log listed on it. Just click on the link to the Log and you’re there.

    Let me know if you have any other questions.

    Bob Christensen

  14. Well, earlier today I tried to post a comment re: putting the comment URL into the Blog tracking sheet, I must not have clicked on “submit comment”, because there’s nothing here!..I will try to quell my frustration with everything computer and re-post. (…and I REALLY am feeling frustrated!)

    I have pretty marginal computer skills at this point, so I need everything spelled out to me…so today i posted a comment in the “blog” tracker . I really wasn’t sure I had done it right so I went back to week 2 to look arounfd some more and THEN I noticed the link with the instructions…ok, so I understand the “cut” part, but not the “paste” part. It seems i have to have multiple windows open to fully accomplish this task? I would appreciate a little more info…
    Many thanks!

  15. Mary:

    See the Q&A just before yours here on this page. It gives the steps to cut & paste your comment URL into the tracking log.

    If you still have trouble trying to put the URL into the Tracking Log, don’t sweat it — just type in the blog name where you left your comment. We’ll find it.

    Bob C.

  16. When I go to my Blog page and look under the “About me” heading on the left and click on “View my complete profile”, my blog name appears along with the categories “Accounting” and “Afghanistan”. !!! Why is this????? I didn’t put either of those in my profile — why does it show that???

  17. To wildsoles, unfortunately Blogger defaults to the first options alphabetically. To change the setttings, sign in to Blogger. Then go to “dashboard.” On the upper right, click on “edit profile.” You’ll see drop-down menus for location, work, etc. (There is a “museums and libraries” selection.) Save profile. Please let us know if it gives you more trouble.

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