The comment feature of blogs can be completely overlooked. It is probably one of the most exciting features of a blog. Let's face it. Artists and writers yearn for readership and feedback. The comment box provides this.
When someone comments on your blog you receive an email notification. If you hit reply you can begin communicating with the person who has enjoyed your work. If some nasty toad has written an unpleasant comment you can delete it. This is rare. Alternatively you can have fun, edit their comment and make it sound like you are a superstar. Giggle! Naughty children in schools are put off when they find out that their teacher can do this.
Aside from this I have seen teachers put up an exercise on a blog and have their class respond using the comment tool. There is so much you can do within this world.
Here at Soul Food members are encouraged to email a link to a new post to the group. Then community members can trot in and comment. Personally I find the feedback on my fledgling art encourages me and inspires me to do more.
Virginia Wolf had independent means and a room of her own. Well you can have a room of your own at Riversleigh and a category all of your own as well.
At Riversleigh Manor residents create categories of their own. For example mine is Sibyl's Scrapbook. The system files all work I save under this category so that I can easily find it all again. I could have a blog just for Sibyl but for now I am happy to store it all here.
Remember that to make a category you can either make it when you are doing a post
or you can go to the Manage section and create your categories there.
Of course, to have a room of you own at Riversleigh, you have to have been added as a USER on the Riversleigh Manor Blog. All we need is the email address you have used to sign up with WordPress and an expression of sincere interest. You did sign up for the Yahoo Groups and you did introduce yourself didn't you? Go back to Day 2 and do this if you have not done so already. It would not be a good idea to miss the opportunity to have your finger right on the pulse.
"OH, and another thing, I was soaking in the tub a little while ago and it popped into my head that my psychic world is very much like Coleridge's poem "Kubla Khan". "In Xanadu did Kubla Khan a stately pleasure dome decree....." I fancy my world to be somewhere along the Silk Road in the foothills of the Tian Shan Mountains, but in another dimension or time........." Lori Gloyd dreaming up a new niche blog.
Priscilla admiring her new blog
image courtesy of Mari Mann
"Okay, I am convinced?" you say. "I want what they have."
A scene from 'When Sally Met Harry' springs to mind. It is so obvious really. Everyone seems to be having such a good time and you want what everyone else is having? But what is your niche?
One of the incredible things about working at Soul Food is being able to witness the everyday reinventions that take place. A comment appeared on one of my posts. It was from Soul Food Bloggist, Lori Gloyd. She was enthused about an article that talked about creating a psychic space and she wrote a comment on the 'Sibyl Goes Shamanic' post saying "I created not only a place but a whole world with other people with specific roles. I had a specific role in this world. In brief, I am a warrior-scholar residing in a manor/fortress surrounded by a wild and untamed land. I am protecting the the fortress but spend my time studying the literature and history of the land. The whole imaginary scenario is loaded with metaphors."
Being wired in the way I am wired I immediately wrote to Lori saying that I would love to see what she built around this idea. I could see a whole blog filled with writing and art. But then I am like that. I see things like this.
So your big decision today is to decide what you are going to do with your blog. Of course, if nothing springs straight to mind you can work on a garden and have it added to the Wild Garden. That is what so many have done here at Soul Food. Intuitively they know that it is sensible to do a set project and then head off in to that wilderness to find their own special niche. This is why Soul Food is so addictive.
Heather Blakey - Creator and Webmaster of The Soul Food Cafe
The Magic Garden is a Wild Garden project designed to show educators and their students how good curriculum can be delivered and the outcomes published, using new technology such as blogs, writeboard, photo board and many other exciting applications.
Cora Zon, a professional storyteller and Heather Blakey, an experienced web publisher and webmaster of the Soul Food Cafe, work collaboratively and demonstrate how educators can marry the ancient craft of storytelling, apply current curriculum and publish using state of the art blogging software. Cora tells the enchanting Kazakha story of the ‘The Magic Garden’ while Heather Blakey delivers a curriculum package that climaxes with self publication on a constellation of Global Teacher, Global Student blogs. The Magic Garden is an example of delivering curriculum in an IT rich, WEB2 environment without discarding tried and true practice.
A good way to learn to blog and to test your creative wings is to participate in this project and become a team member on the Wild Garden blog.
Check out the story and the curriculum sheets again and have a think about what kind of garden you would like to have. Remember that, because it is a virtual garden you can trip right outside the square and come up with something really quite eclectic.
Read all about Sustainability City and consider the quirky nature of Monika Roleff's concept. This is such an empowering idea and it will be wonderful to watch this whole project evolve and develop.
Joanne, who established this delightful garden says that "I tend to think a lot of my creative ideas are rubbish, and the result is that I don’t do anything more with them. But I’ve decided to stop looking at them like rubbish and start looking at them as compost.
Yes, compost. Gardeners put all kinds of yucky things–peels, shells, pits, leaves, other unmentionables–into a big pile. They cover this all up with earth, and stir everything once in a while, add more yuckiness to them, and eventually get black gold: the richest earth in which to grow plants.
Those ideas I have now: they’re potential black gold. As long as I keep stirring them up and adding to them, I might have the stuff to create a beautiful garden."
Wonderful concept! Don't you just love the idea of composting?"
Well here at Soul Food we are happy to have Joanne's blog to read. Fresh approaches always capture Enchanteur's imagination.
Plant the seeds today. Begin planting your blog and use the Yahoo Groups that you have joined (you did join Yahoo back on Day 2 now didn't you?) to notify us that it is under construction.