How To Build and Design A Blog- What I Learned

Dr. Seuss Should Have Been a Dad Blogger

Oh The Places You'll Go

I never realized that rebuilding a car would provide valuable lessons in how to build and design a blog.

My first car was a 1969 Dodge Dart Swinger. It was a hunk of metal placed around a simple Slant 6 engine. I bought it in the Fall of 1986 for $300.00 and then spent hours fixing it up. More than a few moments of my time was spent cruising through old junk yards looking for things like transmissions, deck lid, headlights and other parts that I couldn’t afford to purchase new.

Those hours in the yard and in the garage helped me build a skill set that I applied to the building and redesign of this blog. That was when I learned about the value in creating a list of things to be done and the need to create a sketch of what I wanted the final product to look like.

It is also where I learned that sometimes you could blow off steam by using a hammer or crow bar to beat the hell out of some junker that was already semi destroyed. Unfortunately you can’t do that in blogging. It is considered juvenile, unprofessional and foolish to use a hammer on your laptop. Nor are you allowed to defenestrate it.

Ok, let me take a step back and share some reality with you. I really did all those things I mentioned above but I didn’t do them with the redesign of this blog. That was a mistake.

What I Should Have Done

What I should have done is taken few minutes to write down a paragraph or two about what I wanted the new blog to look like and the kind of functions I wanted to have. What I should have done is drawn a simple sketch or created some sort of mockup of what I wanted it to look like.

Then I could have conducted a simple search to see if there are any blogs out there that had design elements I wanted to replicate or modify. After that it would have been a simple process to find out what sort of work was necessary to make those things happen.

But I didn’t do those things.

What I Did

What I did is wing it. What I did was build and design by Braille. I purchased a new theme and blew everything up here. Then I took the fragments and slowly pieced them together to see what sort of creation I could build. Never did get my Doc. Frankenstein moment of shouting “IT IS ALIVE” but I did use some other colorful words.

The end product and I use that term loosely is better than what I had when I started. There are still changes to be made and some adjustments here and there but overall I am pleased with what I see.

So now I can return to making content the primary focus and design will move back to the number two position.

If you have any comments, criticism or thoughts in general please feel free to leave them in the comments.

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  1. Bill Dorman October 25, 2011 at 6:46 am

    If you were looking at other blogs, I’m kind of surprised it doesn’t look exactly like mine………

    I like it; and I do remember the Swinger, that was actually a pretty cool ride.

    Here’s to number two and blog design; get back to what you do best and that is writing.

  2. Adrienne October 24, 2011 at 8:33 am

    Hey Jack,

    Personally, I think if you are happy with it then that’s all that really matters. If there are parts of it you don’t like and need opinions then I would ask. Otherwise, run with it.

    I think you’ve done a good job with the new look.

  3. Betsy Cross October 24, 2011 at 4:48 am

    Glad that you like what you see and feel like you can go back to what you love doing. That has to be a great feeling!

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