Blog Brand Audit 1.0

Okay, this is a tough one. It takes time and looking around to thoroughly audit one’s blog brand, especially if you’ve never done it before. I titled this as 1.0 since this is the first time I’m doing anything like this, and I guess its something every blogger should do now and then to just go over what they’ve been projecting lately through their blog.

So starting at the top, my blog theme ‘Editor’ does not allow a header. In a way it is a good thing since I always had trouble finding and/or making a header image that was both eloquently conveying the message I want my blog to convey, and also of the right size. I may stumble into such a header some day and that will be the day I change my theme.

Speaking of the theme, I feel the ‘Editor’ theme is very minimal. I like minimal. It is also very clean and makes the content shout. It doesn’t look cluttered. It is also responsive, and is mobile-friendly. There aren’t a lot of free colour-palettes and I would prefer a colour scheme that was not so washed-out but it isn’t so bad to demand a theme change right away. I kinda like the light-toned, light-on-the-eyes approach.

Another thing that’s light toned and shares the shades of the theme is my blog logo or Blavatar, or whatever its being called. The background photo in the logo is a high-res stock photo I found somewhere and I printed the initials of my blog onto it with a web photo editing software. In the sidebar, the logo kinda fades into the blog’s background colour at one end and it doesn’t look out of place because the colour pattern is very similar to the theme’s. There were two reasons for choosing the background stock photo that I’ve chosen. One was the aforementioned matching colour pattern. The other was that the photo completely spells out serenity and that’s something I like and desire very much. Although almost no aspect of my life is remotely close to serene.

I already have a pithy description of my blog in the sidebar that I’m content with at the moment.

Speaking of contentment, I feel like I can come up with something better for the tagline and probably even for the title. Problem is I’ve not come up with anything good yet. Maybe I feel this way because I’ve had the same title and tagline for a while now and feel the need to change it. But that’s not top priority right now but I will give it sufficient thought and try to come up with something. You guys, too, please tell me if something does strike you when you’re reading my blog and you feel, “This should be up there in the tagline,” or “Oh this would make for a rad title!” or something along those lines. DO NOT HESITATE.

I’ve customised and tweaked with my widget names several times now. Not very recently, but again, I’m contented with it the way it is. I feel the same about my customised comment prompt.

Now all I’ve basically said so far is that everything is fine, I’m at peace with my blog brand and its all good. But there’s something that needs to change. Two things in fact.

I have my own email ID, but that’s my personal email. So I’m going to set up a personalised email ID especially for this blog very soon. Preferably in the name of this blog, provided it hasn’t already been taken. Seriously, in another twenty years, the most difficult thing for our kids to do is going to be picking a username that hasn’t already been taken.

The other thing is social media. I have Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr accounts. I’ve also linked my StumbleUpon and Instagram accounts. Its obviously difficult keeping up with all of this. I don’t use Facebook very often, simply because nobody else uses it as much as we used to a few years back. It was a fad. I’ve had a Tumblr account for a while and I’m just beginning to really use it. StumbleUpon is more of site discovery so that’s done once in a while. And Instagram is also a once in a while thing. Twitter I feel has the most potential at the moment. Not just to get traffic but to give traffic as well. It can be a great tool to discover new stuff that I might like. The only hurdle is the sheer volume of tweets one may have to filter through to actually find what one is looking for. And I’m making it a goal to start using Twitter more productively, gain followers, and create better outreach for my blog along the way. You can check out all my social media accounts through my sidebar.


Thank you guys very much for reading through this grand, lengthy, first official thesis of the Blog Brand Audit for Jai Vyas Writes!

I hope I’ve let my readers know, in the previous post what I’m striving to achieve in the next couple of months on this blog. And in this post, what my blog is all about, why I’ve made it the way it is and what I’m looking to change about it.

I’m sure some of you may have some inputs about the look, feel, or content on this blog. Please let me know through the comments. Your opinions and inputs are invaluable to me.

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Hair – Raising. Period.

This is amazing. Put on your headphones and see this. Even if you’ve already seen it. I can’t wait for the movie to arrive.

Photos I Took on a Morning Walk One Day

Today’s Blogging 101 assignment is to try a post format that I don’t normally use.

So, I’ve used the ‘Image’ format to show you guys the photos I’d taken on an early morning walk maybe a week back.

True that.
True that.
This poor thing has his spot on the pavement outside a bakery near my house.
This poor thing has his spot on the pavement outside a bakery near my house.
A snap I took while on a morning walk. This is just outside the Mayor's Bungalow.
Just outside the Mayor’s Bungalow.

The Key

The door stared at him expectantly. The keyhole was the equivalent of a blank page to a writer, prying into his brain. The key was in his hand, golden and shining, but he couldn’t raise that hand and put the key to the keyhole.

Continue reading “The Key”

Taking Inspiration from the Community

Today’s Blogging 101 assignment is to write a post based on the inspiration I got from one of the posts on others’ blogs on which I left a comment yesterday.

It is difficult to choose a particular post because I liked all of them very much. So, I’m going to choose two.


THE FIRST ONE

The first one is inspired by a post on The Epic Blog.

The post is a quote:

“Every villain is a hero in his own mind.”

– Tom Hiddleston

The post leaves you with this at the end:

“Loki is the best villain in the Marvel world. Period. Any disputes?”

loki

Absolutely not!

Confession coming up!

I am a HUGE movie and TV show buff. If I like a movie I will most certainly download it and rewatch it again and again until I know most of the lines by heart. If I like a TV show, I will, in most cases, watch EACH and EVERY episode there is to watch. That’s what happened with The Big Bang Theory, Suits, Friends and Arrow. Now its happening with The Flash.

And I love superheroes and movies and TV shows based on them. And I love Marvel AND DC. They’re both unique in their own ways but I’m going to have to take Marvel’s side here. And there is no doubt that so far, on screen, Loki is their best villain. I’m dying to see what (if anything) happens to him in Avengers: Age of Ultron (whether Thor realises he impersonates his father Odin at the end of Thor: The Dark World, or do they leave that for Thor 3?).

But, coming to the point, this post got me thinking about villains and superheroes and Marvel and then I saw my phone lying in front of me so I randomly started doing stuff on it and then I probably went to check for something to munch on in the refrigerator but all the while I was thinking about this post, at the back of my mind.

Now, I haven’t read a lot of Marvel comics (I was mostly restricted to Spider – Man as a kid and later a couple of Iron Man and Deadpool ones). Frankly, I am a comic book noob when it comes to Marvel or any comics really. But when I found out that the next X – Men movie is titled as X – Men: Apocalypse I was instantly excited because I’d heard of this Apocalypse character somewhere and I googled him and WOAH! he’s a hell of a villain too. He’s practically invincible and obviously the X – Men’s greatest enemy (foe, if you want to be dramatic and poetic).

So yes, a teensy little bit of a dispute here, but again, Loki is the best villain on screen so far, and X – Men is technically under another roof.

I stumbled into this definitive guide of Marvel's character movie rights
I stumbled into this definitive guide of Marvel’s character movie rights

Moreover, I’ve always loved a little depth in characters (especially superhero characters), in terms of a little good in a bad character or vice versa. I’ve loved it when the portrayal of such a character trait is pulled off well, as it was for Loki (which was heavily dependent on the high amount of screen time over the large number of movies he appeared in).

So another character who I’ve noticed who has such a character trait is Bruce Banner AKA The Hulk. Granted he’s not had the best of times on screen but I think in The Incredible Hulk (Edward Norton) and of course the role in The Avengers (Mark Ruffalo) were pretty awesome.

In both (and even in the first Hulk movie, I think), Bruce Banner acknowledges and admits that he is not in control of ‘the other guy’, and the damage ‘he’ can cause is not something Banner wants. In The Incredible Hulk he actively tries to rid himself of the abomination he can become and in The Avengers there are a lot of moments where you can see Banner apprehensive about Fury, Romanoff and the whole idea of The Avengers Initiative.

This doesn’t make Banner a villain per se because he is after all an Avenger (though he was hunted like an animal (because he partly was) and was almost killed numerous times in the Hulk movies). What it does, though, is make Banner human, despite his turning into ‘a huge green rage monster’. But it is that little bit of villainy inside this extraordinary hero that makes him really appeal to me. You won’t find a lot of Hulk fanboys, Iron Man, yes, Captain America definitely, even Loki, but probably not Hulk. But you have one here.


THE SECOND ONE

The second one is inspired by a post on Pan – American Perros.

The post is based on an assignment in Photography 101 – What is Solitude?

That’s a profound question. But it can have a very simple answer. In fact, as pointed out in the post, Solitude can be Bliss. It definitely can and in most cases (at least for me) it is.

I’ve been called quiet ever since I can remember. I’ve been called an introvert too. But that’s never hurt me, or made me hate them. People have told me they don’t feel particularly good when people call them introverts. I, however, feel that being an introvert, or shy or quiet for that matter, aren’t things one can’t or shouldn’t be. I guess I’ve always known that and that’s probably why I never felt bad when I was called those things. I think that a lot of people don’t truly understand introverts and introversion and how it really works and at times that can hurt.


I wrote a blog post on introversion fairly recently. Click here to check it out.

Blogging 101 Assignment: Be a Good Neighbour

Yesterday’s assignment was to ‘be a good (virtual) neighbour’.

Blogging is of course heavily dependent on the writing and posting part but it definitely isn’t restricted to that. A big chunk of viewership (at least in the initial stages of the blog) depends on socialising and contributing to others’ blogs. This includes liking, commenting and sharing. Somewhere, I knew this when I started my blog but I never got around to doing any part of the socialising for various reasons.

The courses that Blogging U offers, are amazing ways to meet new people and through Blogging 101 I’ve already met quite a few awesome fellow bloggers, and the course isn’t even over yet!

So here are four blogs I would like to recommend.

Behold the Infinite

Amazing short stories, great style of writing, and a unique way with words. Plus I love the tagline.

The Epic Blog

First person I’ve come across who is into mythology, does Bollywood movie reviews and has a great taste in poetry.

Pan – American Perros

I’ve always wanted to do a lot of travelling once I grow up. This blog satisfies that urge to see the world, for it has great photos, great writing and DOGS!!!

Shachi Shetty

This one belongs to a friend from college. She has just begun blogging but writes some wonderful poetry.

Revamped About Page

These Blogging U assignments are sort of getting away from me a little here.

Anyways, an assignment I had a couple of days ago was to create (or re-create) my ‘About’ page in the best way I could because the About page of a blog can be one that generates most views. It is only on reading a person’s bio do others connect to him or her. There isn’t any connection formed if you don’t know anything about the face behind all these posts.

I had been meaning to revamp my About page for a long time but I didn’t get around to it until this assignment came by.

So, those of you haven’t already checked out my About page, go over and do so. You will also find a brief little summary of it in the About Me widget in the sidebar to the left. (At the top of the sidebar you’ll see three icons and clicking on the one that looks like a folder will display the widgets).

How To NOT Follow Up With a Publisher/Editor

Hi there!

Its me again.

Well, I know you told me to get back to you once I ‘tweaked’ my plot the way you told me to, and since I haven’t done it yet you must be thinking why exactly is it that I’ve sent you a seventh e-mail in two days. No, I did hear you when you were listing the things that needed to be changed but uhm…

About-sums-up-how-this-year-of-school-is-going-for-me

I know I’ve got a good story here but this below is actually how my ideas are.

writer spring cleaning

Okay, I’m just going to say it. I’ve had this thought for a while now and I didn’t speak up because, well, you’re my publisher (not to mention intimidating).

I’m going through a bit of a…creative block right now.

But you probably figured that out.

You see, I really like to write. Its one of my great passions and it shares a very great place with things like good movies, ice-cream, beaches, coffee, Dire Straits and 9gag. But the thing is, I have realised, I don’t do a lot of justice to the writing part when a deadline looms over me like Eddie watching Chandler sleep.

So… get back to me maybe? With some ideas?