A Request For Feedback On My Blog

I have been blogging for a little over half a year now. In that time I have had my successes, but also my mistakes. I think it is time for me to take a step back, and reassess exactly how my blog is going. What am I doing right? What can I improve?

In many ways, I feel this blog has been successful. It has forced me to overcome my inherent laziness and actually put pen to paper (so to speak), and I feel my writing skills have improved because of it. Heck, the speed with which I can write is drastically better!

On other indicators, however, I feel I have not done as well as I should, and this is where I want your help.

Essentially I want to know how to improve. What I’m doing wrong, and what I could be doing better. Because I want to move beyond just being a forum for my rambling rants, and actually contribute to debate. As nice as comments giving me standing ovations are for my ego, they are hardly useful for me to improve. So, I request your brutal, honest, opinion. Seriously, please criticise me. Please. Be harsh. I can’t improve otherwise.

Here are some of my thoughts so far though.

I think blog posts can be broken down into several categories:

Link-posts: This is simply when I post something I find funny/interesting/amusing. I think I’m doing okay in this regard.

Rants: This is where I simply vent my opinion on a matter. This is where I get my most hits by far, and I think I can rant rather prolifically, although it really isn’t that constructive. I really need feedback on how to improve the quality of my writing here. Because even rants need to be constructive.

Original Thought: Actually coming up with something no-one has thought of previously. I think I fall down on this one. Other than a few posts (eg double dissolution predictions) I think I’m failing in this category. This is obviously a problem, as original thought is what really stimulates good discussion. So I think I really need to work on coming up with original ideas. Not sure how, or but I need to try at least.

Building The Conversation: Actually interacting with other bloggers, particularly those who disagree with me. And I really sux at this. I really do. I can’t actually think of an example I have seriously grappled with something another blogger has put up. And this not only stunts my own blog and intellectual development, but I think that it fosters the echo chamber mentality that is so dangerous to political movements. Rather ironic really, as – if you know me personally – you’d know how many of my friends are from the left and how much I love engaging with them. So I think this should be my first priority for now.

So, these are my thoughts. But, I am just one person. You’re my readers, you know more than me, what do you think? Dispersed knowledge is what makes the market work after all, so advice really is welcome. And again, please, please, please be critical. If you don’t want to put it up here, email me. But I’ll never learn or improve without it, so rip me to shreds, I won’t feel offended, and hopefully we’ll all come out the better because of it! 🙂

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18 Responses to “A Request For Feedback On My Blog”

  1. Otto - The L Party Says:

    Interesting, I am going to give some thought to what you ask before commenting again. For now let me write this though, you are asking the same questions I did and continually do for my L Party and previous to this, my American Interests blog. It’s a good thing to do … more another time …

  2. Ben Raue Says:

    I find when you write stuff on a topic I’m interested in (election, etc) I find it well-written and interesting. But most of your stuff doesn’t interest me from an ideological perspective.

  3. Tim Andrews Says:

    Ben, thanks, fair comment. Tell me though, what Australian political blogs do you read though (other than pollbludger and antony green)

  4. jamesp Says:

    No more babegate repeats. Otherwise good.

  5. Iain Hall Says:

    Tim
    I think that the secret of blogging is having light and shade in what you write and I think that you are probably doing OK in that respect But also now that you have been doing it for a year or so perhaps the time has come to think a little about the appearance of your page a little .Even just adding a header image will make a big difference.
    Also I think that it helps to use more images in your posts and adding a blog roll encourages others to link back to you at their own pages which will improve your traffic and get you more comments and make the discussion more lively
    Most important is the thing that you have already alluded to, the more you write the better that you get at the craft of blogging, and even if in retrospect you see some dross in what you have produced (speaking hypothetically here) you will learn from the bad as much as you do from the good.
    Cheers
    Iain

  6. Tim Humphries Says:

    Content is fine. My only suggestion is cross post more of ur blogs onto mainstream media sites, the ATR stuff is good, but if you can make onto fox or cnn that’d be the go! heh

  7. RobertC Says:

    I think the content is pretty good, but I think the blog needs to be freshened up. It looks a bit boring. Also, you really need to put everything into a spell-checker before publishing.

  8. RobertC Says:

    Also, posts about sexy women get you into the Telegraph on page 3. Not the type of publicity that you or the Liberal Party really needs.

  9. Tim Andrews Says:

    Well it’s not my fault if the Tele decided to flagrantly breach intellectual property law and steal the photos!

    I agree re spell c heck and that I need to spruce it up though – I will do so once I think up a proper domain name etc and migrate to a wordpress.org blog

  10. Jake the Muss Says:

    Tim Andrews you puss. Look at you lay down and supplicate yourself. Begging for forgiveness for your terrible babegate mistake. Long gone is the defiant self defense. Long gone is the rhetoric that you did nothing wrong.

    You betray yourself again, and in doing so you achieve nothing. Sell out!

    Post something raw nigga, then your blog will be good.

  11. Tim Andrews Says:

    Rubbish. I never admitted any wrongdoing

  12. Igor Palmer Says:

    Since you have invited some feedback, i trust you are prepared to handle the feedbacks whichever way they strike.

    1. Don’t try to be a pop-blogger. Popularity leads to shallowness.
    2. Don’t seek engagement through requests. The price of such engagement is mediocrity.
    3. Don’t worry about being “original” If you genuinely believe what you have penned down is yours, that’s fine, but do check the www first.
    4. Contrary to the popular perception, the left elite it not an intellectually sharp crowd. Most are crude, rude, dull, coarse and cognitively lazy. Unless you descend to their low level, your efforts for meaningful conversation will be unrewarding not only to you but to your audience as well.
    5. You do have quite a following, so you are doing better than most. For a dynamic discussion however, blogging is not the way to go. Form or join a discussion forum.

    http://rightambiance.blogspot.com/2009/08/retro-dems.html

  13. Jake the Muss Says:

    You don’t need to come out and say it in black and white Tim, that you make yourself peoples bitch about it is clear enough.

  14. Ben Raue Says:

    You don’t need to move away from wordpress.com to change themes. Now that I think about it you should definitely get a fancier theme.

  15. Otto - The L Party Says:

    Ok here is what comes to mind. A good blog relies on its content to generate success and from this angle content is fine; however, I would suggest that you speak with a stronger or unequivocal voice. In the absence of your stating a goal for the blog, it hard to make too many judgments but if it’s supposed to merely be a place of ’involvement’ toward Lib Party power then you are already succeeding. If on the other hand, you’re seeking to contribute, well then that’s another matter. Stay committed, stir the pot, seek original content where possible, and strike hard. By way of example, if one’s goal or battle was with the ‘left’, exposing secular progressives and the licentious nihilism then one has to make them hate your guts or literally want to kill you, this is what I mean by ‘strike hard’. Blogging is a saturated arena populated by many conservative types competing for eyeballs. These days one is even competing with seasoned journalists who run their own blogs in between op-ed’s. This has created virtual gatekeepers within blogosphere that maintain hierarchies of prestige and makes it daunting for a newbie to have impact. Simply reworking current affairs and issues is not enough that is, not unless you wish to be a regular 9th tier blogger, http://burkeanreflections.blogspot.com/2007/09/power-of-9th-tier-bloggers.html . On the question of presentation, the theme is fine but you could make the banner more string by altering the font and moving away from the light blue to a navy dark blue. You can make the blog more dynamic by drawing more commentary. One way to achieve this is to comment yourself on sites of interest, in most cases other bloggers will reciprocate. Oh and about the Lib ‘hotties’ post, I actually applauded it, you were in effect employing a rule from ‘How to get a million hits on your blog in less than a year’ http://rsmccain.blogspot.com/2009/02/how-to-get-million-hits-on-your-blog-in.html. Visit link and scroll to Rule 5 then read the whole post anyway. I also suggest that you publicize your blogs RSS feed (not just a feed to twitter as you have done). I would also have permanent links to what you deem are best of or important posts, for example, wasn’t this important to you? https://insidethemindoftim.wordpress.com/2009/07/01/how-to-achieve-free-market-success-in-australia/ and I am sure there are others. Good luck Tim …

  16. TerjeP (say tay-a) Says:

    This is obviously a problem, as original thought is what really stimulates good discussion.

    I’m not sure that orginal thoughts actually exist. However every time I think I have one I do learn something.

  17. TerjeP (say tay-a) Says:

    p.s. I agree that you should change your wordpress theme. It takes 30 seconds and it will make the blog feel all new and exciting.

  18. Kurtis Bonser Says:

    Vous avez r�ussi � transformer ce blog en quelque chose de sp�cial.

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