Here are some links and free resources that I've used. I am absolutely NOT an expert, but am just inspired by what could be in this space!
Here is a great video I came across on the Bakery Blog a couple of weeks ago. I have watched about 2/3 so far, and it's really interesting. It is quite long, but sit down with a cup of tea or coffee and you'll be fine (if you get the chance, go to the Bakery website and click on the blogs and blogging tags. More great information there.)
Need to tweak the look of your blog? Try these to spice things up:
1. Infoserve Media has HEAPS of interesting backgrounds, (plus give away the html code for you to use, as well as instructions on how to use it.)
2. Travis Beckham from Squidfingers also has lots of interesting patterns (and gives permission to use for free).
3. Kevin and Amanda have a great tutorial on how to change blogger post titles to a font you like. If you're not so good with html code, then follow the instructions and you will be fine. If I can do it, anyone can!
4. Made by Madeline also has some cute templates you might like to browse through.
And on writing, pro-blogger has some good resources:
Anyhow, Ellie and I are off to have lunch and chat crafting with family today. Hope you find these useful :o)