The Hang Fire Books Blog

The rantings of a bookdealer in Brooklyn, New York.

Friday, March 21, 2008

DIY Google Reader Webring

I just added a Google Reader widget to my sidebar to promote select headlines from bookish blogs. If other bloggers want to add the widget as well, I'm thinking it could be a good way to get some cross-promotional mojo going.

If you're interested:
  1. Sign up for Google Reader
  2. Add a handful of RSS feeds to your blog subscriptions
  3. Click "share" in the footer of any post you'd like to promote (I did 1 from each blog)
  4. In the "your shared items" tab select "Put a clip on your site or blog" and paste the code into your blog template. There are some customization options you can play with (number of posts featured, text color) but please check the "show item sources" box so the posts have a credit line
  5. Once it's active, invite other bloggers and periodically go into Google Reader and refresh your shared items (I plan to do it every week or so).
--I Think-- this is relatively easy to set up but I've heard the code doesn't work with every template.

I've already suckered convinced Book Trout to share headlines and I've got room for another 9 (or more if I rotate content).

So do you write about bookstores, pulp fiction, vintage smut, zombies? Want to exchange headlines? Let me know. I reserve the right to refuse a link exchange if I don't feel it's a good match.

Some of you might recognize this as similar to the Blogrush model, but after experimenting with Blogrush for 3-4 months I found I was barely getting any hits and the headlines it served to my blog (even in the "books" category) were so non-specific that they didn't inspire clicking. This Google Reader method is a little more labor intensive but I think hand-picked material will work better.

Check out my shared headlines at the right and read and subscribe to the worthy blogs.

If you run into any glitches or have questions, please leave them in the comments field of this post.

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