Thursday, December 09, 2010

We Have a Winner!

First of all, a thousand thanks to all who took my little survey. This is the first time I've polled my readers in any formal way, and I was thrilled and flattered to receive 41 responses! (Especially since the majority of y'all didn't even enter the contest - you're so selfless!) Naturally, I loved reading the nice things you had to say about my writing (personable), my dogs (adorable), my photography (not too shabby), and my optimism and enthusiasm for life (aw, shucks!). What I loved even more, however, were the suggestions some of you gave for improvement.

The New Me is, like everything in life, a work in progress. While I blog for fun, I do take it seriously. Writing is my passion and I hope to one day make it my career, so I don't take the words I publish on the Internets lightly. I want to offer my readers a reason for returning, whether it's a recipe, a recommendation, a little inspiration, or a funny story.  My about page says the following, and I think it sums up the mission of my home on the Internet well (not surprising, since I wrote it!):
The purpose of this blog is to collect evidence of and inspiration for a life well lived. To me, that means good friends, good food, ambitious projects, constant goal setting (and achieving!), adventure and travel (when possible), and lots of pretty photographs.
One of my goals for 2011 is to help my blog mature and deepen the sense of community and camaraderie that we've got going on. Some of these ideas have been kicking around my head for a while, but I haven't had time to implement them. Others stem from suggestions made in the survey. While this list will grow and adapt as we go, here are just a few of the things y'all can look forward to in the coming months.
  •  A blog redesign. I want to streamline my navigation and have a simpler, elegant and more user-friendly space. I've been tweaking it here and there, but it's time for an overhaul.
  • More thoughtful posts. I tried this out with my recent post about veganism, and loved the conversation it stemmed. These posts take more time to craft, but I think they're worth the effort. It's just a matter of making the time!
  • More photos of things other than dogs and food. My friends are all so good looking! I need to show them off more. ;)
  • Book reviews and writing posts. A few of you suggested book reviews and I think it's a great idea. I love to read and talk about books, but don't do it nearly enough. And while I mention writing in an off-handed way, I don't go into much detail about the process. I'm not sure how to write about this and keep it interesting, but it would be fun to try.
  • How-to's. This includes recipes (y'all love recipes, which is great because so do I!), crafty adventures and home improvement projects. I really enjoyed blogging about our side yard makeover, and looking at those projects as blog fodder motivates me to get them done. (Sad, but true!) 
    So what will change at The New Me? Nothing, really. I'm going to keep doing what I've been doing for the last six years - blogging about my life, my interests, and my adventures - only I'm going to do it better. I'm honored to have you as readers, and I want to write a blog and create a space that will make all of us proud. Thank you so much for following along!

    And now, for the moment you've all been waiting for - the winner of a shiny new copy of Veganomicon!

    Comment Number 15 - Erica! Erica, I will get the book to you ASAP. Congratulations, and thanks again to everyone for playing along!