Carnivals...for Lee
What is a blog carnival? I started this post, and then realized there isn't much point to reinventing the wheel, so to speak. I wrote a sort of introduction to blogging last summer for a friend that provides a summary. (Note, if you actually are looking to increase traffic, realize that I am not a high traffic blog so my advice isn't worth a lot. That was written for a beginning blogger who had only just learned what a blog even was.)

And here is a more in depth answer, from Blogcarnival, a good website for those seeking to submit to a carnival, start a carnival or maintain a carnival. A good number of these have been discontinued (and I wish they would find their way off the list), but just check out the number of registered carnivals!

Now, a step-by-step guide to participating:
1. Select a post you really like and want to share. Maybe something on education?
2. Go to Blogcarnival's carnival page and surf. Select a category or type in a keyword. "Education" brings up several. The Education carnival I am hosting does not actually come up there because its theme changes each edition. It is...well. It isn't there. So you will have to go here if you need more information or just email it to me at gottsegnet*at*gmail*dot*com. (Maybe that is why I haven't gotten any submissions from blogcarnival, yet!)
3. Click the links, read the information, check out the carnival's homepage and decide whether your post fits. This is important. You will not really get much targeted traffic if your post does not fit the carnival's theme.
4. Click on that little orange button that says, "Submit your blog article to this carnival."
5. Fill out the form and you should hear back from me, er, the carnival host when I receive it and when the carnival is published.
How much traffic does that generate? It really depends. If you are looking for thousands of hits, that isn't likely to happen. The carnival of homeschooling is a well-promoted carnival with a small following and generally does well in terms of traffic. Enough that I notice a difference in traffic between when I submit and when I don't. Occasionally, a post submitted to a carnival will gain wider attention. My little public school satire, for example, was submitted to a carnival and was noticed by Dr. Helen (instapundit's wife) and generated several more links and traffic which still trickles in now and again. That is rare, but fun.

More importantly, however, is the opportunity to check out several blogs with a similar focus quickly. I like blogging, and I like reading blogs. I don't like surfing through technorati and google to find something to read, however. I have those blogs I read daily, but the carnivals I check out provide a nice sampling of blogs I don't normally read. Since people generally submit their best work or posts with something they want to share, it saves fishing through posts like this one which are a little off topic for the blog in question.

Enjoy! Please always ask any questions you have! I did not really understand what a carnival was until the first time I participated. I learn by doing, and although I read all about what a carnival was, it didn't make a lot of sense to me at first.