Tag Archives: Tools

For When You Don’t Feel Like Blogging

19 Jan

Writing a blog post shouldn’t be a big deal, especially if you’re serious about blogging. That said, there are going to be days when you just don’t feel like it.


Check out the full series of blogging-themed images
I created over at Flickr and feel free to use them on your own blog.

Having done this for over a year now, a couple times per week steadily, I can fully attest to the occasional lack of motivation – but I always fight through and deliver the goods. Along the way, I’ve picked up these tips for those dark moments when you might not feel like keeping up with your own blog.

1. Have some posts in the bank

In those spells when you feel like writing, or when an idea hits, try to go with it. Take two minutes to get your thoughts into a few sentences or headings you can easily expand upon later. I’ve found the best tool for doing this is dictation software, or at the very least, the drafts feature in WordPress. I’ll even email some ideas to myself as a way of quickly capturing a subject or notion I know can be expanded upon down the road. That way, when the time is right, the content is ready to go.

Language Is A Virus

Another great site for
writing inspiration: LanguageIsAVirus.com

2. Know your inspiration

Have some role models or examples of sites you enjoy on hand to get you thinking about material for your own blog. Or, as Janet Aronica aptly states over at Shareaholic (among the many other excellent tips there):

“Consume the content you want to create.”

By being able to easily refer to your sources of inspiration, you’ll be more likely to generate your own material with your unique perspective – which is the very best part of having your own blog. Set up some bookmarks, feeds, subscriptions, or whatever aggregation method works best for you so you can get inspired and have your own creative juices flowing.

3. Keep it simple, genius

A blog post does not have to be 10,000 words, nor should it be. In fact, brief is often better. I’ve found some of my most popular posts are sometimes the ones with just a compelling image and only a few sentences. Being handy with the phone cam and always on the lookout for quality visuals to share is something I enjoy, and also something I recommend for having interesting blog fodder at the ready.

What do you think? Are these suggestions useful? What tips would you suggest for drumming up motivation or inspiration in blogging? Let us hear from you in the comments.

How to Turn Off Comments in WordPress Pages

10 Jul

The WordPress platform makes many things about a website or blog easy, and customizing your visitors’ experience by choosing to turn comments off or to allow comments for any given page on your site is no exception. Here’s a quick tutorial:

How to Disable Comments In WordPress

  1. Go to the main list of pages in your dashboard
  2. Hover over a title and click “Quick Edit”
  3. Uncheck the “Allow Comments” button
How To Disable Comments In WordPress

How To Disable Comments In WordPress:
Go to Quick Edit, click Allow Comments. Boom, done.

That’s all there is to it!

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WordPress is Best

11 Jan
Click for free blog-themed images

Get free blog-themed images at the rsmithing Flickr page.

I don’t work for WordPress, and there are certainly other great blogging platforms, but I emphatically agree with the points noted recently at ShoutMeLoud, where Mr. Harsh Agrawal lists key reasons why WordPress is the best blogging platform. And Mr. Agrawal would certainly know — see his journey in the Related Articles at the end of this post on how he actually developed income and was presented with his first car through blogging.

I do this for personal development and creative fun, but the idea of making some spare cash or (cue Price is Right voice) A New Car (!!!) is pretty cool. Along with Agrawal’s observations on the WordPress platform, I’ll add:

  • Intuitiveness – through years of refinement, WordPress’s interface is simple for a beginner to understand, yet fluid enough not to slow down those more experienced.
  • Cross-functionality – whether you start with a free WordPress.com blog or go for a self-hosted site via WordPress.org, the interface remains similar enough so that your knowledge of how to use the system easily transfers.

But What Do I Know, Right?

I’ve designed custom WordPress themes; created self-hosted sites with WordPress as content management system; incorporated WordPress blogs into private non-WordPress sites; and of course, run this humble site you’re reading now through WordPress.com (but with my own rsmithing.com domain). I’ve developed code and managed several sites with other CMSs including Ektron, Joomla, and a slew of straight-up hard-coded sites run via good ol’ Dreamweaver or even PageMill. That said, even having used other publishing platforms like Blogger or LiveJournal (no disrespect to any of these), it’s still WordPress for the win in my book.

You have found the best. Welcome. We’re glad you made it. Enjoy.

What’s your favorite blogging platform and why? If WordPress, what made you give it a try? Have you used others and had better or worse experiences? Let us hear from you in the comments!
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