I love blogs. I love blogs almost as much as I love coffee. Reading blogs while drinking coffee? Well, that’s just heaven on earth for me.
I subscribe to all of my blogs in Google Reader. All 100+ of them. Google Reader makes me very happy, because if I had to go through bookmarks or favorites or any other method to read my favorite blogs, I would never ever make it through them.
But, there’s one teensy weensy thing I don’t like about Google Reader.
Here is what you see in your reader …
And here is what you see when you read the blog post on the site …
Ohhhh, look. There is pretty stuff over there on the right!
You see, blogs are pretty. Google Reader is not.
Blogs are a reflection of that blogger’s personality. Google Reader is a reflection of using Arial font in a boring white space.
Bloggers pay designers to create logos and color schemes and blog designs for their blogs.
Bloggers work hard to create beautiful headers and sidebars and footers.
Advertisers pay good money to advertise on blogs.
Google Reader ignores all of that.
Now, I’m not bashing Google Reader … I really do love it so much. I would not read blogs without it. But the bottom line is that it just doesn’t acknowledge the work that bloggers put into making their blogs look good.
I love Sheye Rosemeyer’s blog. Her words and images are all breathtaking. But even more spectacular is the blog itself. In one word … magical. I get so used to going to my Google Reader and clicking through each blog post that I don’t often visit the blog itself.
Yes, I realize that if I commented on every blog post I read, I would see the amazing blogs that I’m reading. But I just don’t always have the time or brain power to comment like I should. Also? It’s not very easy to comment through Google Reader. Or on my phone, which is how I usually read through my Reader.
Enter the “Next” button. This is a magical sparkly button that lets you read through your Google Reader at the site of each blog. [Okay, it’s not really sparkly, but it totally should be.]
So how do you enter this Magical Sparkly Land of Next?
Get yourself a Google Reader account if you don’t already have one. If you need help with this, there are You Tube videos that walk you through it.
Go HERE and then click on the “Goodies” tab.
Scroll down to the section, “Put Reader in a Bookmark.”
Click and drag that “Next” link up to your toolbar.
For Google Chrome users [holla!!], having a toolbar isn’t a default setting, so you might have to show your bookmarks bar to get this to work … Ctrl+Shift+B for Windows, ⌘-Shift-B for Mac.
This is what it will look like once you have it installed …
The best part is that you don’t have to be IN your Google Reader to do it. You can be on Twitter and decide that you want to read some blogs, and all you have to do is click on that “Next” button, and it will start at the beginning of your unread items. It’s a great way to catch up on a few blogs here and there without getting sucked into your entire reader.
From a photography standpoint [since this is a photography blog, after all], I love using this button simply for the eye candy of scrolling through my favorite photographer’s blogs as is.
See how different they all are? They reflect the photographer’s personality, and I love being able to get to know them on that level, as well.
Now go forth and NEXT!
Note from I Heart Faces: Keli just figured out how to make this work on an iPad as well! You can read through the comments section below for her quick iPad Tutorial. Thanks Keli!
Keli Hoskins is a momma to two girls and is surrounded by pink and purple and princesses. She loves coffee, yellow, talking about her kids, sweet tea, and shooting wide open. She doesn’t love frogs, wearing heels, orange vegetables or the dentist. She changes her bio with every post she writes, and she thinks talking in the third person is weird. And narcissistic. And kind of fun. She might start doing this in everyday conversation. She blogs at Kidnapped by Suburbia and actually uses “tweet” as a verb.