Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Q & A

I don't have much to add to this week's SBQ, so I thought I would answer these questions instead.

Why did you start your blog?

I've been stitching for many years, but on a very haphazard basis. I could say I had lots of UFOs, even though I thought of them as very slow WiPS, and not many finishes. I started listening to podcasts and thought about starting one of my own, but when it comes right down to it, stitching is a visual hobby. I thought that a blog with lots of pictures was the perfect way to both encourage me to stitch on a more regular basis and to share what I was stitching with others. It has worked like a charm.

How did you come up with your blog name?

I knew I wanted to finish some cross stitch, but I also do needlepoint and sew. I wanted a name that would encompass everything that you could do with fabric and thread. I also wanted to celebrate my passion, so using the word "desire" points up both the activity of stitching and the passion to expand my stash. I am a sucker for beautiful patterns and beautiful fabric.

Do your friends and family know about your blog and if so, what do they think of it?

Neither my family nor my in-laws are very computer literate. My mother is a extremely talented needlepoint stitcher and designer, but is suffering from macular degeneration which makes seeing anything on the computer screen difficult. My mother-in-law is also a talented needlepointer, but refuses to own a computer. Most of my friends do not stitch, but I do have one friend in Florida who reads (and comments) on my posts anyway.

How do you write posts?

I usually wait until I have some visible progress on a project to show, then post my progress, and possibly a little more about the other things that are going on in my life. This is a life blog, so I might make a post about my new iPhone (still love it) or other things that I am passionate about. Overall, I do try to focus on stitching. I use Facebook for general life status and LibraryThing for book reviews.

Have you ever had a troll or had someone leave unkind comments?

Trolls, no, spam, YES. I use Google Reader to subscribe to 68 stitching and sewing blogs. I also subscribe to comments on my own blog. About a month ago I noticed an odd comment, basically just a link to a website that seemed to be pushing antivirus software, but seemed more like a virus itself. I deleted the comment immediately and reported the blog to Blogger. I got a few more spam/phishing comments, but they seem to have gone away recently.

Do you check your stats?

I used to use BlogFlux mapstats to check where people were coming from and what keywords they were using to find pages in my blog. Now I use Google Analytics, which has a much more interesting set of stats and better maps. When I set up Trade for a Sheep to pass on some of my unused patterns and kits, I wanted to know if people who were reading Threads of Desire were clicking over to the new blog. I am still fascinated with what keywords, rightly or wrongly, point to my blog, but I probably don't check my stats more than once a month.

Do you care how many people read your blog?

Not particularly, but I guess I do get a bit discouraged if my readers seem to have decreased. I am never going to be hugely popular like a political or technology blog. I just remind myself that this is mostly for my own encouragement.

What kind of blogs/posts interest you?

I have sections in Google Reader on Technology, especially Apple; Stitching; a few Political Blogs; and some writing blogs. The only blogs I read on a daily basis are the Stitching blogs. I am interested in blogs that have a "voice", a point of view. I read some sewing blogs by people with interesting lives (though they might not think so). I also read an Australian blog on crazy quilting/creativity, even though I don't crazy quilt myself. I love progress pictures, even just a few stitches. We have all been there, just those first dozen stitches that point to a new start. I like to know what is going on in peoples' lives, though I don't have children and don't have much to contribute on posts about them.

What do you like and dislike about blogging?

Sometimes my husband thinks I spend too much time blogging or too much time trying to finish a section of stitching so that I can blog about it. I just like the pace of reading blogs first thing in the morning, doing some stitching, and catching up on more blogging in the evening. I don't like the pressure of blogging every day, but I don't think a week will go by without a couple of posts from me.


Barbeeque4 said...

What super Q&A - so much of it also describes me and my blog!!

Anonymous said...

well...i enjoy your blogs AND your work!

Ruth said...

Thank heavens I'm not the only one trying to make progress so I have something to picture and blog about. lol

Kathryn, this is a great series of questions. And we all love your blog.... those of use not out looking at the tech and Brittany blogs that is. ;-)