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Blog Exercises: How to Write about Something Someone Else Wrote

In the early development of the web, blogs were classified as echo chambers, vessels of redundant content as every original idea was shared, reshared, quoted, and spread across the web at rapid speed. Some estimates state that less than 2% of all the content on the web is original. It’s mostly regurgitation of the same […]

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: Dissecting Post Categories

In a recent article, Noah Weiss shared his struggle to figure out categories and tags on his personal site. I know many of you following these Blog Exercises have also struggled to figure out your categories, so I thought Noah’s site would be a perfect example, He has gratefully given me permission to rip his […]

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: Fools, Pranks, and Jokers

April 1st is April Fool’s Day in many countries. Also called “All Fools’ Day,” it is a chance to pick on people, to play pranks, jokes, and hoaxes on friends and family. Historians say that the concept of a Fool’s Day has been a part of European History and other cultures for hundreds, possibly over […]

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 […]

Blog Exercises: Sex Changes and Age Matters

I often get comments that say “Thank you, sir” or emails through my contact forms addressed to Mr. Lorelle. In France, “Lorelle” is a last name as popular as Johnson in English countries. I understand that “Lorelle” is a tough name to identify with a sex. Not the point. I live online in a world […]

Blog Exercises: Speed Blogging with CoLT

I’d like to introduce you to the work horse I use for speed blogging. It’s a web browser add-on for Firefox called CoLT. It stands for Copy Link Text. I will be offering a variety of web browser tips and tools to make blogging faster and easier throughout these Blog Exercises, and of all of […]

Blog Exercises: Check Your Site Title Tag

Do you know what the title of your site is? Not the name of your site or the title of your post, but the HTML <title> tag for your site buried in the source code. In HTML, every website is required to have the <title> tag in the <head> of the source code HTML structure. […]

Writing for the Web Course Starts June 3, 1013

I will be teaching “Writing for the Web” at Clark College Corporate and Continuing Education in Vancouver, Washington, Tuesdays and Thursdays, June 3 – July 8, 2013. The class will be at the West Coast Bank Building in downtown Vancouver, Washington, just a few minutes from downtown Portland, Oregon. Writing on the web is now […]

Blog Exercises: How to Publish Code

I blog about the technical side of blogging, about WordPress, WordPress Plugins, WordPress Themes, HTML, CSS, web design – code. I often blog about code. And people ask me code questions. I’ve become an expert in writing code so it looks like code on web pages. The time may come, or you may have already […]

Blog Exercises: Trackbacks

Trackbacks are like an invitation to a party. It is also like legitimate gossip. Trackbacks are notes telling you that someone is talking about you. Trackbacks are part of the important connections that form the true sense of the “web” on the Internet. WordPress and most modern publishing platforms generate trackbacks automatically. As common as […]

Blog Exercises: Backlinks

Known as incoming links or referrer links, backlinks are links pointing from an external site to your site, directing their readers to you as a resource. Timethief of “one cool site blogging tips” describes backlinks as: Backlinks to your content are like votes for your blog. The more backlinks your blog receives the higher it […]

Blog Exercises: Comments and The Blog Bullies

No matter what we do or say, there will always be bullies and mean people. Some are mean intentionally, some can hurt unintentionally. And then there are those moments when we read the black letters on the white screen too much in-between the lines and come away feeling sick to your stomach. Welcome to the […]

Classes and Workshops

The following are classes and workshops offered by Lorelle VanFossen. Workshops and Courses Lorelle offers a wide range of WordPress, web publishing, web writing, social media, and blogging courses, along with some other related topics such as family history on the web, photography, and Scrivener. Here are some of the latest offerings. Introduction to WordPress: […]