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Blog Exercises: Are You a Victim of the Past?

Have you seen the fun video released to promote the then new television show, Portlandia on IFC, recently renewed for another year or two? It’s called “Dream of the 90s” and is part of your homework for this blog exercise. The story is that Jason went on a trip from Los Angles to Portland, Oregon, […]

Nelson Mandela Tribute

In January 2011, Nelson Mandela became a trending topic on Twitter as false rumors of his death circulated the world. He was 92 at the time and this was one in a long string of stories shaking the world’s confidence in his survival. Today, at age 94, those rumors seem more prophetic as the world […]

Blog Exercise: When Was the Last Time You Got Personal

I walked into a friend’s home and found the fridge covered with refrigerator art from her seven year old. The traditional home often features such childhood artwork but this was extremely precious as the child has learning disabilities and drawing. The artwork was beautiful. I stood there transfixed at the crude scribbles, trying to find […]

Blog Exercises: Blog Work Flows

In “A Sample Blogging Workflow” by my friend, Chris Brogan, he talks about the process of blogging with consistency and determination in mind. Your company has decided to launch a blog, and you’re the lucky blogger. Maybe you’ve even asked for this pleasure, suggested it to the boss yourself. Only now, you have to deliver, […]

Blog Exercises: Battling the Blue Funk

My mother just sent an email saying she was in a funk. Ten minutes later I got a phone call from a friend asking to visit to help her get over the “winter funk – summer blues” – her words. I just got over my blue funk a couple weeks ago. Funks are mini-depressions, short […]

Blog Exercises: I Thought You Would Appreciate This Gratuitous Picture

For many years it was thought that every post published on a blog had to feature a gratuitous image, some photograph that would lure people to click through and read the article. The myth perpetuated itself, which myths tend to do, and many still publish content with gratuitous imagery. A gratuitous image is one that […]

Blog Exercise: Take Yourself on a Bloggy Vacation

Writer’s block is a tool — use it. When asked why you haven’t produced anything lately, just say, “I’m blocked.” Since most people think that writing is some mystical process where characters “talk to you” and you can hear their voices in your head, being blocked is the perfect cover for when you just don’t […]

Blog Exercises: Backups and Alternatives

I didn’t expect to return home after a meeting this morning to find I have no telephone or Internet access on this bright sunshine, calm weather May day. I’ve got classes to prep for, sites to review for students and clients, article deadlines, these blog exercises to publish and keep to my year long commitment, […]

WordPress Anniversary: Comment Spam Lessons

It’s hard to believe that I’ve learned much from comment spammers over the years. I’ve learned that they are among the most hated folks in the world, yet you have to respect them as well. As I look back on ten years of blogging with WordPress on this 10th Anniversary year, I realized that comment […]

Blog Exercises: Writing Poetry and Recipes in Your Blog

Do you publish poetry on your site? Feature many quotes? Share recipes? Addresses? If so, you may need to learn how to publish content with single lines instead of double. In WordPress and other publishing platforms with a WYSIWYMG interface, hit the Enter (Return) key and a wide or double space will appear. Each line […]

Blog Exercises: How to Link to Comments

Do you have brilliantly intelligent and thoughtful commenters? I do. I often find something someone’s left in a post comment worth writing a blog post about and quoting. In this Blog Exercise we’ll look at how to link to comments on your site and how to properly reference them and cite the original author in […]

Blog Exercises: What Are Your Reasons For Blogging

We all have our reasons for blogging. Having our say, sharing our experience, teaching, learning, creative outlet, money, reputation, because they told you to…all of these are good reasons to blog, but to keep blogging you need something more. In this blog exercise, I want you to consider the more. It is the answer to […]

The Secret Recipe of Comment Spam Comments

Mr. Louis Vuitton just sent me a message in my blog comments I’d like to share with you. I share this touching message because it is highly educational when it comes to the art of spam comments, and serves to remind us of why we love having Akismet, the best comment spam fighter, on our […]

Blog Exercises: Experiment with Emptiness

In “Meditation on Emptiness,” the author writes of the Buddha nature: The Prasangikas say that this teaching is an example of giving to the ’cause’ the name of the effect, for the emptiness of the mind of each sentient being is what allows for change of that person’s mind, and this emptiness is being called […]

Blog Exercises: Feed Readers

Without the feed reader, my blogging life would be seriously hard work. Feed, commonly misidentified as RSS, is the proper name for the contextual version of your site as distributed through various feed types such as RSS, Atom, XML, etc. They are basically your posts stripped of your website design, read like articles in a […]

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