Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Those changes I keep talking about

2011 seems to be ushering in lots of changes; many of them unexpected but in a good way (for me--hopefully it's the same for you too!). Once I put the blog aside to go on hiatus, I found myself enjoying not concerning myself with the blog. But of course, after a short period of time, I started to think about it and that train of thought led me to my disatisfaction about how I ran certain things on PPR. If anyone recalls, I had a survey on one of my sidebars (I got rid of the other one. I started feeling like the page was getting too cluttered) that asked if my readers/lurkers liked my layout and these were the results:

Do you like the penguin layout?
-Yes! It's cute and unique: 32 votes (78%)
-Noooo: 3 votes (7%)
-I'm neutral about it: 6 votes (14%)
votes in total: 41.

(By the way, thanks to everyone who participated...especially to those honest enough to say NO about the layout, haha)

A good amount of you said that you LIKED the layout and I'm happy you did. I thought I could keep it up for a while longer but the more time passed, the more I kept thinking, "Gah, I need change!" and so I took down the falling penguins background and opted to use one of the free blogger templates. I know it's very sudden of me to just CHANGE the layout but I actually really like how my site looks at the moment. It feels more clean-cut, more refreshing (and it's easy on the eyes). I hope it wasn't too much of shock for the regular visitors to see my site with a new layout!

But anyways, back to the subject of change.

After much deliberation, here's what to expect from now on from PPR:
  • I'm getting rid of my rating system. I know that most of the time readers look more at the number tagged onto a book than the actual written review but sometimes numbers can be misleading. Rather than discouraging anyone by a mere number, I'm just going to give a written review and hopefully readers will be okay with that.
  • I'm not writing negative reviews anymore. This one was especially hard for me to decide on but after waffling over it for, uh, WEEKS, I decided to follow the golden rule and to be nice. So no more negative reviews will be coming from me. However, that doesn't mean I won't be analytical--I just won't review books that I absolutely disliked. I think it's more honest this way (I know, that sounds kinds of backwards but hear me out!) because whatever I decide to post/discuss on my blog, you'll know it'll be because I honestly liked/loved it. I don't want to falsely advertise or dissuade anyone from picking up a certain novel. And I'm not saying that I won't dislike or have any problems with the books I read in the future... you just won't hear me say anything about them.
  • Reviews in general. I'm changing my usual format; from now on, I'll have two types of reviews: mini-reviews & full reviews. More info about that can be read on my review policy.
  • Layout change. Clearly I changed some stuff around here! Again, I'm glad everyone liked the old layout but after seeing the same thing for two years, I was starting to get tired of it.* So I contacted Jessica for some help & she was able to get me a new banner. So thank you, Jessica. :) While I am lovin' my new banner, I'm still a little iffy about my background. It may or may not change....who knows, I'm feeling a bit fickle towards it right now.
  • Writer interviews. This is still in the works but I'm thinking about doing a series of interviews where I invite writers (who are considering publication) to discuss their work and their writing habits. They can have agents, be on submissions, or could just be looking for an agent. It doesn't matter. This is an interest of mine so it may be included on the blog. Not totally sure yet but we'll see.
So there you have it! It's a lot to process and hopefully I haven't lost anyone because of these changes O_O

*Even though I took down my old layout, I would still like to commend Laina for creating and then giving me such a great layout. She took an idea of mine and gave it a face, a fun personality and I will always be grateful. Thank you, Laina.

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