Friday, November 9, 2012
A visit from the Blog Master
Like many bloggers, when I first began I hadn't a clue. Sure, I understood it was a means to publish some stuff, but that's as far as it went. I didn't know about followers, or layouts, or widgets, or running articles as a series, or photos, or sidebars, or stat-counters, or awards, or comment moderation...
So it was supremely fortunate that a Google search for something like 'Wiltshire Blogs' returned Veg Plotting at the top of the list. It's been one of my blogging inspirations ever since, and by coincidence, its author lives literally up the road. Over the last few years, we've gradually progressed from commenting to emails, to visiting my garden, swapping jam, working on charity projects... Last night, when I gave VP (or the Blog Fairy as I sometimes call her) a copy of my book, I wrote in friendship on the inside cover.
For nearly three hours we nattered about blogs, drank a bottle of wine and sampled my quince cheese. Veg Plotting is hugely successful and deservedly so - it's one of the best gardening blogs in the UK and I'm in awe of its flow of ideas and projects. VP said she wished she could write like the Bike Shed; I said I wish I'd interviewed David Attenborough and Ringo Star!
After more wine and cheese we agreed that we each 'do what we do', and we're both happy with that. Or almost - because I'm not beyond pinching a good idea when I see one. And if you look at the top of the sidebar on the right you'll see a new link to Magazine Style.
VP showed me how to do this, and whilst I don't want magazine to be the Bike Shed's standard form, it's a nice alternative to offer. Once you're reading in the new format, you can play around with other view-options by clicking the top left of the black menu bar - go on, give it a go.
So thank you, yet again VP. This blog is nearly five years old - I'll be celebrating its birthday shortly. But I'm certain it wouldn't have got there, had it not been for that happenstance Google search. VP has long been my Blog Fairy - a benign guide, looking over me - but really, I ought to call her the Blog Master.
Oh, and she makes darn good apple jelly too!