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WordPress For Writers

I will be speaking this year at several workshops and conferences on the subject of “WordPress for Writers.” The workshop covers the basic elements of WordPress content structure and organization, then adds the complexities of a site for writers and authors. This is one of a series of articles on WordPress for Writers and Authors. […]

Blog Exercises: Intentional Blogging

One of the things I work with in teaching writing for the web and blogging is to blog intentionally. I call it “content with intent.” Content with Intent From the very first of these Blog Exercises I’ve preached content with intent, blogging with every intention filled with purpose, goals, and incentive. Specifically self-incentive, a self-motivated […]

Blog Exercises: To Comment or Not to Comment

In the September 20, 2013, issue of the New York Times, an article caught my eye called “No Comments.” It is also available on Umano via mobile app or desktop for a listen. The article by Michael Erard discusses comments on the web, including a long look back at the history of interactivity on the […]

Blog Exercises: Mashups

One of my favorite odd-ball mashups is the movie Moulin Rouge! Released in 2001, the movie features Nicole Kidman, Ewan McGregor, and an outstanding cast of top notch actors singing their way through a Bollywood-style production set in a 1899 France cabaret. There are few original songs in the film. Instead they used pop songs […]

Blog Exercises: Creating Influential Connections

In “Why a Link Post Should Be Like Mingling at a Party,” my friend Jan of Circular Communication described it this way. Imagine you are at a party. You mingle and meet someone you know. You do not know her well, but well enough to appreciate her. You also have an idea what interests her, […]

Blog Exercises: What Makes You Special?

A client greeted me with an over-enthusiastic hug yesterday. “I’m so glad to be working with you! You made me find myself again.” “Were you lost?” “You have no idea how lost I was.” I was confused. He lives in my neighborhood, walking distance from my front door. “Here.” He handed me a huge stack […]

Blog Exercises: How to Respond to a Copyright Violation

While I know that you would never violate anyone’s copyright and publish other people’s content without proper citation or permission, there are hundreds of thousands who think that if it is on the web, it’s free to use and abuse. Accusations of copyright violations are big deals. Some top journalists, writers, photographers, musicians, software developers, […]

Blog Exercises: Protect Your Privacy

The web world thinks my birthday is January 1. Does the web know your birthday? Among the many Blog Exercises so far this year, I’ve mostly focused on your blog. Today, I want to talk about something related to your blog but mostly to your exposure and presence on the web: your private and personal […]

Blog Exercises: How Long Are Your Paragraphs?

How long are your paragraphs? Have you measured them lately? One of the telling differences between traditional writing and writing for the web is the length of the paragraph. Look at the example below. Which is easier to read? On the left, the paragraphs are huge, long blocks of text. On the right, the paragraphs […]

Blog Exercises: Stand Up For Freedom of Speech

There are 400,000 words in the English language, and there are seven you can’t say on television. What a ratio that is! 399,993 to 7. They must really be baaaad. They must be OUTRAGEOUS to be separated from a group that large. “All of you words over here, you seven…baaaad words.” That’s what they told […]

Blog Exercises: Site Policies and Bloggers Code of Ethics

It’s time to start working on all of your site policies, one by one. So far, we’ve touched on some of these in Blog Exercises: The Don’ts of Blogging, Blog Exercise: Taking a Risk With What You Blog About, Blog Exercises: Comments and The Blog Bullies, and Blog Exercises: Quoting and Blockquotes. The basic policies […]

Fight Against Trackback Death

I’ve heard the many threats of trackbacks and pingbacks dying over the years, going the way of the virtual dinosaur, but I’m terrified to hear from Andraz Tori that Typepad is killing pingback functionality and stating that WordPress might be considering it, removing the joy of getting a notification that someone online is talking about […]

Welcome to the New Blog Exercises

Your doctor tells you to exercise. You tell yourself you need some exercise. You play Sudoku and other mind games to flex the brain. We all need exercise, even bloggers. In the past, my Blog Challenges have been well received but its time to update them. I used to call them challenges, then prompts, but […]

Exploring the Alignment of the Planets in the Night Sky

In anticipation of the planets alignment, I went digging for some cool Android apps to see the stars, and some awesome astronomy blogs to keep myself updated. Let’s start with the awesome astronomy bloggers. Blogging the Stars When I think about those blogging the stars, I don’t think Perez Hilton. I think about those truly […]

Banned, Blocked, and Censored Bloggers

According to the American Library Association, September 30 through October 6, 2012, is a salute to Banned Books week. Banned Books Week is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read. Typically held during the last week of September, it highlights the value of free and open access to information. Banned Books Week brings together […]

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