Monday, June 21, 2010

Where are you going? Where have you been?

Last week I asked fellow Christian Bloggers why they blog. I was surprised by how relatable the response was. Granted, I don't have the reach to have best-selling authors or famous Pastors frequent this site, but it was still surprising to see that others are blogging simply because they have convictions they want to share.

Marshall Jones Jr brought up another point: "I think blogs by themselves are on the decline. There's so much info out there, that simply putting up more info isn't that amazing anymore." That was an initial fear when I started to blog- that I was just another voice in the din. There are countless Christian blogs out there. There are widgets/subscription services that rank Christian blogs like which presently counts up to 330 sites. High Calling Blogs, which is the circle of bloggers I've found myself most closely associated with consists of 120 diverse bloggers. Other networks likely see similar numbers.

Sadly, there just aren't enough hours in the day to read everything. So my question this week is, how do you browse for blogs and how do you prioritize what you read? On the first, I've found my biggest source of traffic is SumbledUpon. I know others are very effective with Twitter or Facebook. I don't know if networks like HCB are helpful or not. I have noticed that no one really checks "blog rolls" on your sidebar, but I have been visited via links in other blogs' comments. When I first started blogging, I would find a site (sometimes by Googling a topic) and then follow their blog roll or comments down a seemingly infinite rabbit hole. I would get so far that I would forget where I began. And since I didn't see the value in bookmarking the hundreds of Christian blogs I was finding, I'd be lucky if I could find and return to a site that I actually liked.

So I'm curious:

How do you browse for blogs (blog rolls, comments, StubledUpon, etc)?
How do you prioritize what you read (most recent, most commented)?
What's one Christian blog that's off the beaten path that others might not know about?

"Jesus did many other things as well. If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole [internet] would not have room for the [blogs] that would be written." (John 21:25)


Glynn said...

I use four (overlapping) sources for reading blogs: my RSS feed, my own blog follow list, Twitter referrals/links and links from the High Calling Blogs. It's a lot, and it takes constant "management."

I prioritize by the writer -- the ones you just know will be consistently good.

One of my favorite off-the-beaten paths blogs is a poetry blog by a guy who calls himself Justinian and blogs at . It's not his real name. I think he lives in Alabama. He writes both epic poems (and no one does that any more) and contemporary poetry.

Fatha Frank said...

Thanks, Glynn, for the reply. I'm curious because I'm always eager to find new blogs and just linking through a blog roll seems incredibly inefficient.

I'm glad you mentioned an RSS feed. I'm going to bring that up in next week's question.

For me presently, I mostly link to whatever is tweeted by those I follow on Twitter. I'm going through an old blog roll though to re-establish some of those links.

Epic poetry? I'll have to check that out!

My out of the way blog is Christian Unity ( Alan Rouse is an Elder in Atlanta and blogs about the history of the Restoration Movement (Stone-Campbell) as well as some expository studies here and there.

Duane Scott said...

I use Twitter. That's about it. I have a stumbleupon account and I still haven't figured out what its' purpose it. Maybe you can write a post on that!

I use an RSS reader. I have a folder that I label "Faithfuls" and these are the people that either A. comment on my blog all the time or B. I really like their writing.

What that does is it builds a community.

Also, every time someone leaves a comment on my blog, I try to follow them back to theirs and interact. This does well to build a community. Interesting topic! Thanks...

Fatha Frank said...

Duane, "building community". That's exactly what I'm getting at. Thanks for the feedback!