Does this blog make me look fat?

July 8, 2009 · 12 comments

I’m getting all pre-pubescent teenager up in this place and feeling a little insecure. I’ve been hitting this blogging thing hard for the last three months and want to make sure I’m doing things right. I’m really pleased with the sites overall growth, but even more pleased with the loyal readers and commenters that have chosen to drop by daily.  Who better to ask for help than the ones I love so much, YOU?!

If you have been following me for the duration of my blogging career you know I have suffered a bit of an identity crisis. I originally started blogging with the domain OneChanceToLive.com, that sucker died quick and the birth of Punch Debt In The Face came nine months later. I have probably had 10 different headers on my site over the last four months, have changed my sidebars frequently, and am constantly tweaking other parts of my site (two days ago I updated my twitter icon with the three stars above its head).

I feel good about the overall look of my site. It is symmetrical, colorful, hopefully easy to read, and fits my personality. But, and there always is a but, I realize I am just one person and my opinion means very little. I am hoping I can engage with my fellow bloggers, readers, and stalkers, and get ideas on how to improve my blog even further. I’m a huge believer in continually seeking growth and do not want to become stagnant. I’m asking, no wait, I’m begging you to drop me a line and give a little insight as to what you like about the blog and what you think could use some changes.

I’ll be my first critic and say some of the things I am not totally happy with.

My blogroll. I need to take 20 minutes out of my day and include all the blogs that I actually read. I have barely updated the thing and there are quite a few new blogs that I love and want to pay respect to. Shoot half of my traffic comes from other websites blogrolls, so I need to return the love. Drop me a line and I’ll add ya in today (assuming your website doesn’t suck).

My content. I’m still in a juggling act on figuring out how big of a finance dork I want to be. I have been trying to keep my posts simple, personal, and informative. I don’t, however, always divulge the nitty gritty on how to go about doing things. For example, I have blogged many times about my Roth IRA, but I have never really explained how one can go about setting one up and what all the restrictions and rules are with them. I have avoided the intricacies because there are plenty of other blogs that explain the stuff I leave out. I guess I try and light the fire, but want the reader to fuel their flame. Sometimes I wonder though, if I used big financial words and talked about more complex issues,  would I see more traffic?

My ambiguity. I chose to blog anonymously for one reason. I am a government employee. I don’t think I would have a problem identifying myself if I worked in a different field, but Uncle Sam scares me so I never want to do anything to upset him. This is mainly why you will rarely, if ever, see me blog about quasi-political issues. I do have my opinions,  but don’t feel comfortable sharing them as government employee. My ambiguity sometimes prevents me from being able to lay it all out there and tell ya how I really feel.

Well there ya have it, these are some of the areas that I want to work on and improve over the life of this blog. (Now is the part where I resume begging you for any and all input you have.) If you hate the banner let me know, if you think my colors are fugly, my content is unreadable, or just have any other insight let me know. Don’t be shy I got some thick skin. Heck you can even comment as an “anonymous” individual so I wont know who said what :)

Thanks mi amigos,

{ 12 comments }

1 Jake Stichler

1. *sniffle* You've been on my blogroll for a while but I'm not on yours *sniffle*

2. Like you said, there are plenty of other blogs that explain the stuff you leave out. They bore me to tears, but they also have huge readerships. Which annoys me.

3. People should not be afraid of the government, government should be afraid of the people. But I guess that puts you in a catch-22 where you're afraid of yourself half the time.

2 Josh

Ninja, you're being too critical of yourself there. The reason I keep coming back to read your blog is because it has that gansta flava. It's why I read BudgetsAreSexy as well. You and J. Money have a very similar blogging style.

I find alot of the other finance blogs pretty dry while you keep yours fresh. So keep on doing what you are doing.

Oh yeah, one criticism, the header graphic for 'Punch Debt in the Face' displays too far to the right of the browser screen, so it gets cut of a bit. Is there a way to centre it?

3 FB @ FabulouslyBroke.com

NO to staying dry on PF.

Please please please don't lose your personality throughout this page.

I'd rather read about PF journeys and anecdotes than about how to get out of debt etc.. tooooo many blogs (including mine) already talk about that ish.

Stick to what you're doing and you'll see.. traffic will go up :)

Heck, this was going to be a surprise but you're going to be featured in one of my blog features (in August) and that should send some traffic your way…

4 Frugal Urbanite

I agree with everyone else, don't get all preachy, dry and boring on me.

The only layout related suggestion I have is to maybe make the sidebars a little more separated from the content with a border. You've got enough white space that it's not an issue, but it could help on smaller resolutions.

(I feel you on the 'gov't employee' issues. I don't work for the man, but Mr. does and I've had to decline to have some interviews published because they wanted more info than I could or wanted to give.

5 calquist

I don;t have any trouble viewing the graphic header (I use firefox).

Anyway, keep up what you are doing. I love the tone of the blog and I appreciate not seeing the 500,000th "what is a mutual fund?" post. I think you have a good balance of personal information (we know you play tennis, what you watch on tv), but we aren't bogged down with crap like how much you spent on toilet paper.

6 MoneyFunk

I like your blog just the way it is! Um…but you could add me to your blogroll. ;)

Trying to get feedback is hard, huh? I changed my blog a bit ago and couldn't get good solid advice. Then I changed it again cuz my readership didn't climb back up and only then did I find out what was wrong with the previous site. LOL.

I change site formats like my daughter changes her clothes. LOL.

Love your blog the way it is. Leave it alone. (OH wait, maybe I am talking to myself in that last sentence)

7 Punch Debt In The Face

You guys and gals are too freakin' nice. Making my blush a little bit. I added each of you to my blogroll, sorry it took me so darn long to get to :)

@ Jake – Dude, I'm scared of the government. I don't mind bashing about state governments (see my posts about California), but I will never talk smack about the Fed. What if my boss somehow reads my blog and identifies me? I might get shipped away to China and have all sorts of bad things done to me…oops…I've already said too much.

@ Josh – I guess I was being to hard on myself, but aren't we always our biggest critics? I don't know why you are having header issues? I have checked in firefox/safari/internet explorer and it looked fine. Are you using a different browser? P.S. When are you gonna write an article for me!?

@ FB- Because you begged, I will keep my personality :) I'm looking forward to August. Thanks for stopping my homegirl!

@ Frugal Urbanite – I guess I will refrain from preaching and I'll stick with the fundamentals. I guess you have first hand experience with THE MAN. They're always watching

@ Calquist – I guess I will be deleting my post tomorrow. It was titled "The 500,000th post on mutual funds".

@ MoneyFunk – You've been added sucka! It sounds like we have both suffered from blogging identity crises, maybe we should start a support group?

Thanks again everyone, look forward to your future comments! They are like cocaine to me.

8 gwenavyre

I think people read you for your writing for its style and content. That's why I do. You seem to be of the younger generation and that is nice to read, being part of it. I also read the more serious financial blogs, but there is only so much of the you can handle.

9 Jake Stichler

I for one think you have far too many readers.

*thump* *thump* *thump* *thump* *thump*

Yes sir, yes sir, you'll blow your bandwidth budget like that

*thump* *thump* *thump* *thump* *thump*

You should send some of them my way

*thump* *thump* *thump* *thump* *thump*

Then your site wouldn't be bogged down by all these comments

*thump* *thump* *thump* *thump* *thump*

10 Punch Debt In The Face

For those of you with Internet explorer…

Does my site look jacked up. I have received a few comments that the Punch Debt In the Face banner is skewed way to the right and that my blogroll is barely noticeable. I opened up IE and had no formatting issues.

Anyone else had any problems?

11 Josh

Ninja,

Now when I open your blog in IE it's displaying fine, the header is centred and no longer way off to the right. Looks like you fixed the issue :)

12 Kely

A little bit of introspection never hurts.
I love your blogging style, and much like you have not updated my blogroll in a LONG while. Off to add you to my 'roll, and would be honored if you would do the same. (I'm hoping I pass the "PunchDebtinThe Face thinks I don't suck bar!)

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