The truth about blogging

When I sat down to write this evening, I really had no idea of what the topic was going to be so I had a look around my RSS feeds to find something interesting. What I found was actually more annoying than I had expected, so I thought I should make comment even though it has nothing to do with cars.

I’ve noticed lately that TTAC boss, Robert Farago has taken to directing his usual bad boy blah blah blah at fellow bloggers rather than at auto manufacturers. His latest bit of venom is directed towards the folks at Hemmings. So why do I care? Well, the few virtual dealings I’ve had with the folks at Hemmings have left me feeling like I’ve worked with some pretty nice people.

My own limited dealings with Farago have actually been pretty positive too, so rather than add fuel to the fire, I thought it might be a little more constructive to talk a little bit about the nitty gritty of internet marketing. A web site or blog is sort of like a sign in a shop window. You can put it up there, but if you don’t do some additional marketing, your intended market will never find you.
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Hold on, it could be a bumpy ride!

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Over the next couple of days, our IT guru will be upgrading the WordPress software that powers The Garage. This newest version of software should be more or less invisible to all you readers, but it has all sorts of cool tools built into the background to make bringing you cool content all that much easier. The new package will make video loading easier and offer in house galleries rather than relying on outside sources like Flickr.

So if you see some functionality problems over the coming days, have no fear.

Carnival of Wheels: Edition #62

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Life has been so busy around The Garage that the Carnival of Wheels has definitely taken a bit of a back seat lately. I began this edition a couple of weekends ago and now I’m watching the Formula 1 boys paddle their canoes around Monaco. So let’s get going on this hot lap around the auto blogs, because there are LOTS of submissions!

When the media talks about women in motorsports, usually they are referring to drivers as they are the most visible and possibly the most news worthy. The reality is that women are involved at many levels, but few are seen in a team ownership capacity. Sheila Scarborough from The Driving Woman recently sat down with Lori Morgan from JD Motorsports who compete in the Nationwide Series. In this insightful chat we learn about Morgan’s roots on an Ohio farm, being the Mother figure on the team and get some idea of what it costs to run a car at that level. How does 14 grand a weekend just for tires sound?
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Carnival of Wheels: Edition #61

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It seems like forever since we’ve had a morning like this. Here I am, on the deck with a coffee, starting this week’s Carnival of Wheels while the dog tries to decide whether to poo or not. Believe it or not, we still have snow in spots, yet here I am in my shorts enjoying the sunshine, feeling my batteries recharge. This CoW is probably going to come at you in dribs and drabs, as there is still lots of life going on in The Garage, so why don’t we get rolling with a pretty big CoW.

Last week, I bashed Brian Vermette’s grammar and this week, RaceDriven has fired back with a barrage of NBC’s automotive related programming. Can an American version of Top Gear get away with product bashing like the Brits do? Will a full series of the remade Knight Rider create ratings? Perhaps they should have Larry The Cable Guy stand alongside Adam Carolla to give a reel genuine American twist. Maybe cast Gary Coleman as the third spot!
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Carnival of Wheels: Edition #60

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Wow, life has been crazy in the real world lately, which means that the virtual world has been taking a back seat lately. Like the farthest back seat on a big yellow bus. It has been all I can do to create a post here and there every couple of days, let alone put together the Carnival of Wheels. Hopefully, life will return to normal soon, and with it the publishing frequency. For now, let’s share a pint and cruise some of the submission for the CoW that I was supposed to do last Sunday.

First up on the grid today is a newcomer who calls himself mleighto and writes a blog called Car Show Kiosk. mleighto has submitted a post about the care that needs to be taken when purchasing a clone type car. This is a pretty touchy subject with many people and I’m sure our own Gary Faules may have a comment or two on this post.
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Carnival of Wheels: Edition #59

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Here we are in bright, sunny Ontario following yet another giant dump of snow. There is no less than a foot and a half of the white stuff out on the deck! Given that I smoked my shoulder yesterday, there will be no shoveling for me, that’s what 4×4 and snow tires are for. Instead I’m here to take you for a hot lap around the auto blogs, on time for a change! Grab a coffee and get ready for a big one folks!

First up this week we have Niharika from EcoTrekker who has an incredible list of suggestions on how to Hypermile. In other words, some strategies on how to improve your gas mileage. To be honest, I stopped reading after the suggestion (with a disclaimer) that drafting will improve your fuel consumption. Yes, it will decrease the fuel you use when you are dead under the back of a semi.
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Carnival of Wheels: Edition #58

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Well folks, I guess the two week cycle for the CoW is going to be more of a guideline, as I just can’t find the time to sit down and do this much reading in one sitting. I’ve got a couple of free hours this afternoon, so grab me yourself a cold one and let’s strap in and take a hot lap around the auto blogs.

First up, as we’ve done so many times, we have Brian from RaceDriven, who has a bunch of suggestions for the bigwigs at NASCAR. Hellooooo….anybody listening? Mr. V has some good ideas!
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Carnival of Wheels: Edition #57 – Finally!

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Way back when Mark Tapscott decided to shut down the Carnival of Cars, I wondered why he couldn’t fit it into his week. After all, the content is basically handed to you on a plate. All you need to do is read it and write a little review. Right. After working on this thing for the past year, I’ve come to realize how much time it really takes! It’s fun to read what everyone has to say week after week, but it really does take a chunk of time. Edition #56 of the CoW was partially published 3 weeks ago and I haven’t had time to get it finished up. Today’s CoW will be jam packed full of 3 weeks worth of submissions. From the next while, I’m going to try this on a bi-weekly basis and see how it goes. For now, Join me in front of the fire with a nice cold beverage and we’ll take a fast lap around the auto blogs.

First up, let’s visit one of our old faithfuls. Brian Vermette from RaceDriven has been around the CoW from day one. This time around he asks “What did $1 Million dollars get you at the 2008 Barrett-Jackson?” Maybe the bigger question should be: What didn’t fetch as much as was expected? How about Ol Shel’s personal GT500 ragtop that went for just $675,000!
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Bressler has left the building

Jeff Bressler has become a pretty regular fixture around The Garage over the past few months and he’s been a pretty good fit. Not only is Jeff well entrenched in the traditional auto media world, but he’s also a huge race fan and participant. Fortunately for Jeff, unfortunately for us, the time has come for Jeff to take the next step in his auto blogging career. Really, it’s a good deal as the opportunity has come to take over the editorial reins at 4 Drivers Only which is part of the Creative Weblogging network. Jeff, we wish you well, and hope that you’ll continue to be part of the community here in The Garage.

Carnival of Wheels: 1st Anniversary Edition

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Can you believe it? It has been a year since Mark Tapscott put the Carnival of Cars on hold and I decided to start the Carnival of Wheels. That is 52 consecutive Sunday’s of reading some great content from the auto bloggers and mashing it all together for our readers. We’ve met some interesting new bloggers that we wouldn’t have come across otherwise and I’m sure some of their readers have found their way back over to The Garage to share in our automotive ramblings. Ok, enough sappy stuff from me. Let’s strap in and get ready for the last hot lap around the blogosphere for 2008.

First up, as we often do, let’s take a visit to RaceDriven, where Brian presents some possible reasons behind the recent drop in NASCAR’s television ratings. I have a hard time with people or organizations that don’t have the stones to accept responsibility for their own problems, so I find Brian France’s comments unbelievably lame and Brian’s suggestions are far more plausible.
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