It has been four years since the Write Prompts Lens had a new look and almost three years since the sister blog had a theme lift. It seemed like it was about time.
At first I planned to get the woman who has done most of my headers to create one for the Write Prompts blog but she has since moved on to other projects. I put it on hold for a few weeks while I searched and debated on a theme then came across a twitter friend who put a new header up on her blog. I liked it so she put me in contact with the busy artist. We talked about a few ideas but we really could not flesh out a solid look so we parted ways.
I had this red typewriter in my graphics cash for some time for “future use” and one day just started playing with the banner. I ended up with a header that is very simple and straightforward but I really like it. The Write Prompts blog was never very flashy so the change is not incredibly drastic.
The theme I am using is Thematic Theme Framework and it is not like your typical pop in and go theme. The Thematic is used as what is called a “parent” theme for its guts and whistles; then I had to create a “child” theme which controls the finer details like the red titles and dashed lines. The purpose of this type of theme allows you to make changes to a theme safely without them disappearing every time the original theme gets an update. If it sounds convoluted that is because it is. It was a serious headache for this self-taught html/(minimal)css girl. There was definitely a high learning curve and I only made very basic changes in my child theme. I will probably continue to make more tweaks as the year progresses but for the most part I think it will be good for a few more years.
I wanted to use the same typewriter over on the lens so I chopped it and brought it over. The old man in the library was the original image and quite small by Squidoo standards these days. This lens has been getting longer and longer over the years. Squidoo used to have page breaks that helped with loading time but they did away with them last year so basically everything was on one very long page. I decided to split the lens into two.
The first one holds all the writing prompts, a few book recommendations and a few writing related articles that I have expanded on. The second contains the list of writing resources like other prompt websites, more books, and other lenses for us creative writing types. I am still tweaking away at both lenses but I definitely think they load faster split into two and there is left stuff to coast through to get to the writing prompts.
Overall it has been more time consuming than I had planned but I am happy for the learning experience and to have it done.