New to the Series? Start with Part One
Blogosphere: A series
Part Forty-Six: Choosing a Format That Works for You
As promised, today we’re going to look at picking one of the many, many themes available for your Blog.
A format theme, not to be confused with the content theme of your blog, is the physical setup, the number of columns, the number of widgets supported, the general look and feel of your blog.
Currently WordPress is offering a great many formats you can use, but which one you choose can have some serious effects on how you show up to the world.
Some of the decisions you will need to make are:
Will you have a “home-made” banner, or will you just take whatever is available with the theme?
Do you prefer a wide area for your blogging text, or is it OK to have a smaller (narrower) area so you can accommodate more widgets (special features)?
Are you planning on moving your WordPress hosted blog to a paid host so you can support advertising?
The first Theme for Uphill Writing had four columns. It had one widgets column to the left, a slightly wider text column next, and two additional text widgets to the right. Foolishly I did not choose the theme for its utility, but rather because I liked the way it sliced the banner image into for pieces. I thought it looked cool. The problem was that the blogging text, the posts, were hard to read.
The second theme is the one you see today. It is called Digg 3 Column, and let me tell you, having a wider area for text and graphics has made a great deal of difference.
I would certainly not suggest more than three columns, and would recommend for a new blogger that they consider only two. One wide one for posting, and one narrow, to the left OR the right, for widgets.
There are a few that are two-column, but have a restricted length, and have additional room at the bottom for widgets such as calendars, lists of tags, and so-forth.
The great thing about the WordPress system is that if you don’t like the theme you’ve chosen down the line, you can make a switch, mid-stream, without much extra fiddling around, and in fact, often with no additional work at all.