If you’ve ever talked to me about books and reading, then there’s chance that I’ve brought up GoodReads and how I’m pretty active there. I can’t claim so active that I’m updating daily. I do, however, make sure to keep my current book statuses accurate.

On the flip-side, as highlighted by my site here, I do also like owning my own data when I can manage. I’ve been mulling about the fact that GoodReads-like book status tracking could be pretty easily done within WordPress. It wasn’t until just this week that I started to actively pursue that idea.

There was a recent IndieWebCamp West session regarding books and reading and various challenges faced by people similar to me. It was during this video that I was watching, that I finally started looking at a given GoodReads status and book listing in relation to myself, that I began mapping out how and where to store all my interested data. The video can be seen here for those interested: https://archive.org/details/iwc-west-2020-books-and-reading

I won’t go into details for each part, but I found that a mix of post details, post meta, custom taxonomies, and comments will meet my needs pretty well. These will cover if I’m reading, want to read, have read, associated shelves, current pages out of total pages, start and end dates, ISBN, genres, book authors and other various parts. Comments will serve as reviews, rating meta, and annotations. Featured images are perfect for book covers.

All in all, and fully in theme, I’ve named this custom plugin “Pirate Book Chest” cause of course as a “pirate” I would keep them in various chests, and not shelves. Shelves on a pirate ship…please.

Thus far, I’ve only published one book and filled in what details I have. It can be found at https://apiratelifefor.me/book/lurking/. I also have not yet started working on styling/templating, so it’s very much raw data. It’s a work in progress, and that’s fine.

Based on structures and content types I’ve set up, I foresee a lot of potential archives and ways to browse my listings, likely in more ways than offered by GoodReads themselves. These include current reading status, by shelf, by dates read, genre, rating, book author, and potentially more.

Up next definitely needs to be the templating and styling. I also want to make sure that each area is rich in microformat data in every appropriate way possible..

We’ll see how this goes.

Also posted on IndieNews

It is commonplace to see multitudes of people praising the arrival of a weekend. Even more so when it’s an extended holiday weekend like for Memorial Day. This year, I’m no different.

It’s been a long week with a handful of trying moments and frustrations with my day job. Some days didn’t feel too bad, others felt like I couldn’t do much right.

This is largely in part to internal changes and processes that we’re trying to move towards, and rightfully so, to help streamline as much as we can for our clients. However, it seems like I inherently, though not necessarily intentionally, fight against that proverbial current at least a little bit. This has caused undue frustrations for some people.

Even with the long weekend, I know they end quicker than ever desired, and I will once again be back at work, in the same potential situations, fighting my same struggles.

There’s only so many times one can apologize and say “I’ll do better!” before it’ll invoke reactions of “Uh huh, sure, heard that one before.” and start to mean nothing. I know it’s legitimately on me to actually do better. Actions speak louder than words, and whether I like it or not, sometimes I seem to have action laryngitis.