Shawn Collins of http://blog.affiliatetip.com answers a question about getting started with Google AdSense.
Q: I am a newbie to Internet marketing. I want to get a quick, easy Web site set up and running with Google AdSense. What is the best software to use, and is it safe to use templates?
A: One of the quickest and easiest ways to get set up is to go with a blog. My personal favorite is WordPress, and it's free to use, and you just install it on your hosting account.
The company I use for hosting blogs is LivingDot. The offer a few packages, and they start at $10 or so per month.
LivingDot will install WordPress into your account for you and they'll also perform free upgrades of WordPress upon request.
They also support Movable Type, another platform for blogs.
I've experienced very good support from LivingDot, and WordPress is easy to use.
As far as templates, there are tons of free "themes" (templates) available for WordPress, and they're very easy to install on a WordPress blog.
If you decide to have your own non-blog site with a template, I don't see any harm in that.
It's all about the content on your site. So long as you're creating original content, you'll trigger relevant ads from Google AdSense and all will be well.
The peril is in making a "Made for AdSense" site of MFA that doesn't really serve a purpose beyond taking other people's content and trying to get visitors to click your ads.
In that case, it doesn't matter if you have a template or not -- the site will be garbage.
Just create quality content and the clicks will come.