Daily Archives: May 30, 2016

Daily Discussion with BQB – Have You Ever Used Another Blogging Website?

Hey 3.5 Readers. You’re in luck.  A second Daily Discussion.

Obviously, you all use WordPress, but I was wondering if anyone out there has ever used another blogging website?

I don’t believe I’ll move Bookshelf Battle off of WordPress.  Too many of my 3.5 readers use it and I would lose them.

But for other websites, I have been thinking about branching out to see what other blogging sites might have to offer.

For example, I am thinking about creating a website that has information about my zombie western book and proposed zombie western book series.

I have my eye on Wix.  They have many pre-made templates, plus the ability to create your own.

They say it is “drag and drop” and they explain that means what it says.  Drag what you want to the place on your site where you want it to appear and voila it appears on your site.

If that actually works, it could save me a lot of hassle.  I hate to knock WordPress because I understand that sometimes it might be my lack of knowledge, but there are times when it won’t do what I want it to do.

WordPress has many nice themes but you are limited to that theme’s layout.  For example, I feel like I could get more Facebook/Twitter hits if I could put my Facebook/Twitter info at the top right of the blog but instead, this theme puts it at the bottom of the blog and few people scroll down that far.

My concern about Wix or another site is I don’t know if they come with the built-in audience that WordPress has.

My readership mainly comes from other bloggers.  If it weren’t for WordPress’ ability to let you tag your posts so they show up for people interested in those tags, I wouldn’t even have 1.5 readers.

Wix will allow comments, but you do have to comment through Facebook or Disquss.  I’m not sure how Disqus works but I know with Facebook you have to identify yourself and I understand many people understandably don’t want to so that could limit your comments.

So it seems there are some trade offs.  I suppose I might investigate more to see what capabilities the other websites have, but due to the built-in audience, I’m not about to leave WordPress anytime soon.

By the way, I’m told (and have seen it myself) this site doesn’t come off the best when you read it on a tablet or a smart phone.

Do you find that is the case?  I think the issue is on a tablet or smartphone people really want your menu to come up as a little button they can push and scroll down through that.

I have mixed feelings on that.  I think when the site is viewed on a laptop, the best option is to have your menu right at the top of the screen, all the choices laid out right there for you.

I have noticed there are some themes that split the difference.  When you view them on a laptop, it is all laid out right there, but then go on a mobile device and the menu turns into the button.

I’m not sure I want to abandon the theme I have now anytime soon.  Frankly, it is what gave me the idea for “Bookshelf Battle.”

When I started, I knew I wanted to blog, I wasn’t sure what about or what I’d call the blog, then as I looked through themes I saw this one with the ability to put a picture right at the top and I was like, “Huh. Well I don’t have much in the way of a graphic design department, but I suppose I could take pictures of my action figure collection and put them at the top and then I could call it umm…Bookshelf War? Huh no, Bookshelf Battle?”

I know. How more women don’t throw themselves at a guy who takes pictures of his action figures is beyond me.

Anyway, I like this theme because of that and also I just feel like it looks very comic-booky.  Add in the silly shutter stock photos and it feels, to me anyway, like you’re reading an online comic book.

So I don’t want to lose the theme anytime soon but I know in the long run I will have to resolve the mobile device issue.

Honestly, I know my menu sucks anyway as I have never really decided what to put up there and I am never able to figure out how to get it all organized.

Long story short, if you can think of an alternate WordPress theme that would fulfill BQB HQ’s needs, let me know.

Further, I have not yet given up on Pop Culture Mysteries.  It is just on hold a bit until I figure out how to streamline it a bit more.

I have been thinking that I need to rework that formula.  In many of Jake’s case files, he’s asked to solve a mystery – so example, if he’s asked something about Star Wars, he’ll start out by hitting on and getting rejected by Ms. Donnelly, then he’ll opine for a long time about some sad memory in his life, then he’ll walk through the neighborhood and complain about how the world has changed, then he bullies Agnes the Librarian into doing the research for him and THEN he’ll finally get to the answer.

I’m thinking the case files need to be shorter – ask the question (Why did Luke do X in Star Wars) then give the answer right away (He did it because…) and then I can take all of Jake’s life story stuff and work it into an ongoing online story.

At any rate, here’s what Pop Culture Mysteries looks like know. I like this theme because it looks like all the posts are files coming across Jake’s desk.

It does not have the “menu turns into a button on mobile devices” option that I suppose could be an issue, but I looked at it on my mobile device and thought it looks good and the menu bar stayed the same, it didn’t move around unlike how Bookshelf Battle’s menu does.

Anyway, give me your opinions on a) my current themes b) alternate themes and c) alternate blogging sites.

Also, give me cookies.  You know you have cookies. Stop holding out on me.

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Daily Discussion with BQB – Happy Memorial Day – Favorite Book/Movie About the Military?

Happy Memorial Day, 3.5 Readers.

Favorite book about the military?  Hmm.  I read Flags of Our Fathers about the soldiers who raised the flag at Iwo Jima, written by one of their sons, and thought it was pretty good.

It stands out to me because I remember a part where the author did some research and determined that few humans are able to comprehend death.  We are aware that everyone dies and we know it will happen to all of us one day, yet all we know is life so our brains keep telling us that we’ll make it through somehow – i.e. despite the evidence to the contrary, many soldiers believe they won’t be killed.

I have no idea if that’s true or not.  I imagine many people in a bad situation (say, being ordered to storm Normandy) know the odds of making it out alive aren’t good but they do it anyway.

But in theory I get it.  When all you know is life, not being alive is difficult to comprehend.

I think about death sometimes but then it makes me so sad I convince my mind to change the subject. I feel like that’s probably what most people do. It’s not that we don’t believe it’s coming, but rather we do our best to avoid thinking about it for as long as we can.

Favorite movie? There have been a lot of good ones. I’d say the one that stands out in my mind is We Were Soldiers (2002) starring Mel Gibson. Learned a lot about the Vietnam War and particularly how it was the first war that depended on helicopters.

Anyway, Happy Memorial Day 3.5 Readers. If you are or were in the military, a guy with a website dedicated to the entertainment of 3.5 readers thanks you.

And which books/movies do you recommend?

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Game of Thrones Recap -Season 6, Episode 6 – “Blood of My Blood”

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Hey 3.5 Readers.

What a great holiday weekend. Got some burgers on the BBQ. Got some brews. Got some Game of Thrones.

SPOILERS!  SO MANY SPOILERS!

This show does excel at making you think one thing will happen then something else happens entirely.

For example:

  • Sam and Gilly – I thought Sam was just going to let Gilly be dissed because he had to attend Maester school and there was nowhere else for the Gillster to go but then out of left field he swipes the family sword. That’ll fetch a pretty penny but they’ll be on the run for the rest of their lives.  Still, with so many beautiful power couples on TV, it is nice to see a couple of dorks find love.
  • High Sparrow Shenanigans – When the High Sparrow said there wouldn’t be a need for a fight then started looking at Margery ominously, I thought he was going to kill her or something. I’m not sure I understand this “Crown and Church” partnership. I thought they already had one but it sounds like Tommen was talked into sharing more power with the church.
  • Bran – Looked like he was about to buy the farm but Uncle Benjen to the rescue. But that the hell?  Is it possible to be half a white walker now?
  • Arya – Seemed like she was on board for killing Lady Crane but she grew a conscience at the last minute.  I’m not sure I understand. I thought the place she was working for was like this band of assassins who assassinate bad people in the name of justice but apparently they can just take jobs to kill people for money for any old reason.
  • Khaleesi’s Big Ass Dragon Speech – Daeny is batting a thousand with her crowd inspiring speeches this season.

What say you, 3.5 readers?

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