I have added a separate “blog” section of the site, for opinionated rants, items of interest and other editorializing. These posts will not appear on the home (“news”) page with projects and other professional news items.
After messing around with various convoluted plugin schemes, I found a simple way to do this with just a few theme tweaks. Any post in the category “blog” won’t be displayed on the home page; instead, they appear in their own category section. And the “blog” category link displays blog entries not as an archive (as other categories appear), but in a normal post lineup (like the home page).
All comments and social functions should behave normally, and blog entries will be searchable and appear in archives. Blog entries will also be published in feeds and email notifications. They just won’t show up on the front page.