Review 970

“I have lots to think about but nothing
to say.”

So proclaims the sub-heading of
The Rock Pool. I would beg to differ,
however. I think Simone has plenty
to say, although I’m not sure who her
intended audience is. While reading
through this blog I became
increasingly of the opinion that she
writes more for her own benefit than
for the entertainment of others.

This is not meant as a criticism,
simply an observation. Simone’s
writing is, for the most part, lucid and
intelligent. It’s just that I had a hard
time really getting into this blog, and
getting a feel for her life. There are
too many insular references and
assumptions of the reader’s
familiarity with what has gone before.
I will hazard a guess, and suggest
that perhaps this style has been
adopted because Simone knows the
vast majority of her audience are
friends and regulars.

And there’s nothing wrong with that.
It does mean, however, that I cannot
recommend The Rock Pool to the
casual reader. The site itself is well
designed, complete with obligatory
biographical and gallery sections,
but it just wasn’t for me. And I would
suggest that, unless you know
Simone personally, it probably isn’t
for you either.The Rock Pool

Review 953

Kerry is a gifted teenager who has been writing her blog since May of last year. She claims to have been tested as cognitively gifted, and indeed this is reflected well her many entries which describe her daily activities in details becoming of her. Living in a small village, she writes under the name of Guppy. In her own words these are “small, very vulnerable fish. As a species, they’ve been through a lot. In the beginning they were free and adaptable, but then they got domesticated, and now they have to be kept in bowls or tanks.”

When one sees this blog for the first time, it is not quite clear what the relationship is between the beautiful Ventura clockwork that appears at the top of the page and a Guppy. However, what does immediately impress the reader is the quantity that has been written. There is tons of stuff covering just about everything imaginable in the life of this dynamic teenager.

It is quickly apparent that Kerry is one who can write about everything without any problems. One imagines what it would be like actually being in the same room as she, her talkativeness being translated into volumes of text. She loves to write, that is for sure. Sometimes it can get a little long-winded and too specific, but the spontaneity of her writing style makes up for this potential wordiness.

The design of her site is simple and straightforward. There are the usual standard links available at the top of the page for: archives, bio, site, village, etc. For someone as young and dynamic as Kerry, one would expect brighter colors, as her choice does not really reflect the intensity of her thoughts. One notch darker text would make it stand out better. Also, the separate days and links are difficult to stand out clearly enough. Considering the length of some entries, this would be a nice visual breather.

Kerry does a good job and brings well to light the daily life of an American girl growing up as a teenage Guppy, breaking away from domestication, and discovering the world outside the fish bowl of her life.Most Definitely

Review 969

This is a daily journal type of blog by Elissa, an interesting mix of part Creek Indian and part Irish. As the graphics and personal poses at the top introduce, she is more than likely a rather rambunctious high school teenager with a lot to say. The name of this blog is One Moment which comes from the film “The Mists of Avalon.” In one scene where Merlin is dying, Elissa is especially moved. She is rightfully inspired by Merlin’s final breath “find one moment of happiness that belongs just to you.” In her very own words, this is a fitting title to use for her “personal-collective-type site.”

When you first see the dancing girl pictures in various poses at the top of this blog, you are not quite sure what to expect. Is this the author? In her bio she says she is blond, so maybe not. What is this blog about? Life, passions, poetry and other writings are included, and Elissa says she loves music as well. The design of the page and the rampant, daring use of red pull the reader downwards in search of more.

This is no less than her fifth attempt at a suitable layout for the site that she first started last year. The previous layouts lead up in an interesting way to the current one, but there remains a slight air of impatience with constant changing emotions and ideas that provide an underlying theme throughout the blog. This is the diary of a teenage girl with lots and lots of ideas, ups and downs like anyone her age.

The blog is described as “It’s all about me” which accurately describes the contents. Some readers may bore easily of so much ME flying around: I did this, I did that, I feel like, I saw them, I, et cetera. The navigation is a bit awkward at times. There are enough links to get the visitor around quickly, but you can get lost sometimes. One is not quite sure where the main website ends and the blog starts, and vice versa. There are plenty of good graphics here. The first time one visits the blog it may be hard going if one has a slow connection.

One very refreshing idea is her guestbook. There the visitor can enter one’s own website and apply for a site award by signing the guestbook. It is a curious and creative technique, how Elissa gives you the freedom to define your own made-up title for the award. She even adds it to her growing list of site awards, which is done pretty cleverly with screenshots of the so-called award winning sites.

For a junior in high school, this site is in general entertaining, spunky, and roundabout in more ways than one.One Moment

Review 865

I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from this site when I came to it. It had a webcam shot and below some quick “current” info on the author, some archives and a reader poll. The orange and black layout didn’t appeal to me right away, but after I was on the site for a while, it grew on me.

Nick’s a high school student from Michigan who writes with a sarcastic twist, which I liked. In one of his most recent posts, he said that he hadn’t written for a while because he had rediscovered his bongo drums and took off to on a tour with some Jamaicans to do a world tour. He goes on from there to tell a funny little story with a camera shot of him jamming on his bongo drums just to make it seem a little more “realistic.”

In addition to his blog, he has some poetry, which you can comment on, a bio page, which gives you some background on him and other links to news or other blogs.

I didn’t totally dig all of his posts, but if you like reading blogs with a touch of sarcasm, you might like this site.SheepShirts Blog

Review 844

Here’s Britt’s “journal of a starving artist”, and here is an enjoyable blog – all in the same. You can’t beat that.

Britt’s a multi-jobbed aspiring actor that lives a life just like anybody else. What Britt does manage to do between working all her different shifts is to keep the public entertained via her weblog. And entertaining is a wonderful word to describe “the journal of a starving artist”.

I like the list of six different “currents” Britt keeps along the side of her site, including the oversaid expression, addiction, or CD in player that she’s currently got going on.

I was disappointed to see a generic Blogger template used, but I guess that’s what happens when you’re on the go as much as Britt.

And finally the actual weblog. I liked it, and feel like it could easily become a daily diversion to anyone. Of course, the weblog is going to be enjoyed more by people in the 17-25 year old range, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

Britt’s very colorful in her descriptions of what goes on in her life, and it makes each post fun and easy to read. Her writing is very conversational, and that’s what people like when trying to read someone’s weblog.the journal of a starving artist