Blogging – Blog Writing Style Tips

Blog Writing Style Checklist

Blog Writing Style Checklist

 Blog Writing Style Checklist

While finishing another post, I stumbled across this Blogging Writing Style Guide, which I started once upon a time. So, I have made a few quick updates and thought I would share this checklist, in case it might be useful for someone else.

Blog Post Style

Here are a few basic guidelines to help you with your blog post structure. These are fairly obvious things, but it never hurts to make sure you cover the basics.

Blog Post Structure

your blog post structure is highly important. One must keep in mind that your post is likely to be read in multiple formats especially mobile formats on phones and iPads. Additionally, everyone’s busy these days and has information overload; so, it’s important to organize your content in a way that people can get the valuable information quickly and easily without filtering through too much excess fluff. Basic items to check are:

  • Format for Scanability
  • Use paragraph headers (usually, levels 1 -3)
  • Paragraph headers should be within 15-60 characters in length for best SEO performance
  • Add tables to organize lists
  • Add Related Reference link at the bottom of the article.

Photo and Graphics

it’s long been known that nearly everyone is visual and that pictures speak more than words in a compact way. So, paying attention to your pictures and your infographics to quickly and efficiently communicate your main points is essential. These items should be helpful:

  • Always add pictures to an article
  • Add process step picture to clarify written instructions
  • Add infographics, if you have them
  • Populate the Caption, Alternate text, and Image Title Attribute properties on Photos
  • Always set the open in separate tab property

SEO Essentials For Writing Blogs and Pages

SEO is a critical part of any blog post. However, no one can be an expert on all the search engines out there. So here are a few quick things that are appropriate to almost any search engine:

  • Use Hierarchical categories and sub-categories to relate topics
  • Add Menu should only hold essential categories organized for shallow logical navigation (minimal clicking)
  • Menu should contain both page and category structures
  • Periodically review and update menu to ensure recent changes, if appropriate, included

Driving Blog Visits

the reason most of us write blogs is to disseminate information, ideas, and help others. So is essential that people be able to find our blog and want to come back to our blog. Here are a few quick tips:

  • Publish new blog posts on social media (twitter, etc.)
  • Revise blog posts as they age and add additional content (e.g., new pictures,  infographic, more current information, expand essential facts, etc.)
  • Republish revised blog post to social media (twitter, etc.)

Content Strategies

blogs are all about content so you need a strategy to make sure that you can publish regularly and that you publish when your blog is likely to have the most interest to your reading community. Here are some ideas:

  • Keep a list of articles to be published
  • Pay attention to seasonal opportunities, if they apply to your blog’s content
  • Read site comments and address issues
  • Use blogs to document questions and answers from your readers. Also, be sure to answer the reader’s comment directly.

Related References

PDF Printable Version of Article

 

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WordPress – How To Get A Long URL to Wrap in a Table

Wordpress

WordPress

I’ve been having a challenge with a couple of my blog sites where long URLs have not been wrapping when enclosed in the table.  Therefore,  the URL’s run off the side of the page to the right out of the visual range.  I even have gotten a few comments from my site visitors saying that I ought to try to fix the Long URLs leaving the page.   Well, after some investigation and some trial and error, I have managed to fix the problem. So, I thought I would share the solution in case anybody else would like to save themselves a little time correcting the long URL problem in the future.

The fix requires a change to the CSS code of your site.  To make the change :

  • Navigate to Appearance > Customize > CSS and add input code
  • Add the CSS URL Wrap Code
  • Publish CSS Change

Appearance Navigation To Customize Menu

Appearance Navigation To Customize Menu

Appearance Navigation To Customize Menu

CSS Navigation Menu

CSS Navigation Menu

CSS Navigation Menu

 

Empty CSS Code Screenshot before Changes

Customizing CSS Before Changes

Customizing CSS Before Changes

 

CSS change code wrap a long URL on the table

table a {

overflow-wrap: break-word;

word-wrap: break-word;

-ms-word-break: break-all;

word-break: break-all;

word-break: break-word;

-ms-hyphens: auto;

-moz-hyphens: auto;

-webkit-hyphens: auto;

hyphens: auto;

}

Customized CSS With URL Wrap Table Code Added

Customized CSS With URL Wrap Table Code

Customized CSS With URL Wrap Table Code

Publish CSS Changes

Publish CSS Changes

Publish CSS Changes

Related References

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The Benefits of Having a Project Cart

Office Project Cart

Office Project Cart

I never really thought about how to make my home office more convenient even though I have worked from home for several years. However, I recently purchased a nice three-level cart and have found it extraordinarily useful. Especially, for writing projects, as I have my books and other reference materials scattered throughout my house in multiple bookcases and even in the garage on shelves.

Advantages of a project cart

Among the advantages of a project cart that I have found are:

  • ability to declutter my office
  • put my research materials and notes into organized buckets
  • ability to swap out my reference materials according to my work priorities for the day
  • the ability to hide the cart and what the contents of it are

Qualities of a good home office cart

here are some things I would recommend you consider before buying your office cart, which may make the cart more valuable to you:

  • first, the cart should be sturdy, you really don’t want a rickety cart, if you’re going to be rolling around your house and loading it up with heavy books or other project materials according to your interests.
  • the cart should be small enough to tuck away someplace when you wanted out of sight in case you have visitors or company or something. For example, when my cart is not in use, I roll the cart into a nice little closet in the hall out of the way.
  • Consider carefully the wheels; my house has tile throughout, so, small wheels are fine. However, if you have carpeting or uneven edges that you must cross with the cart you may want to consider larger and wider wheels.
  • Of course, there are the aesthetics, do you care if the cart has a rustic look, or a modern office look, or even what color it is.
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The First Rule of Photograph

Photographer In Action

Photographer In Action

The First Rule of Photograph

The first rule of photography is that “Any picture Worth taking, is work taking more than one picture of.”

Why should you take more than one picture?

There are many very good reasons, but here are a few which come to mind immediately:

  • The first picture may be the quality you expected—blurry or darker than wanted, etc.,
  • The picture you thought you wanted, may not be the one you end up using,
  • By varying your position on the target of your photography, may provide you with pictures, which may be useful for other reasons,
  • If like me you are not the best photographer on earth, carefully and thoughtfully taking more pictures, can be more forgiving than risking everything one photograph,
  • And in an age of digital photography why not? Once you get back to the office or home, you can put them up on the computer and then decide, which to keep for future use.

Related References

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The line of a people

Line of People Moving Forward

Line of People Moving Forward

It is in the fullness of the journey of our life that we begin to understand the true meaning of the smallness of our place in the lineage of life.   As we look forward and back, it becomes apparent that our actual contribution is not the material things we gather.  But instead, our the accumulation of contribution to the building of the future through those we help, teach, and our progeny which constitute the path into the future.

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Blogging – What is a Pinnable Blog Picture?

Pin It

Pin It

Whether you are just starting with blogging or have been doing it for years, you must know by know that images are critical elements of your posts. Online we are focused on visuals. The text comes second. How can this simple insight help you to drive more traffic to your blog? Just by filling it up with loads of cat pictures?

Well, not quite. The magic word is Pinterest.

But how can a scrapbook page for girls planning their perfect wedding and grandmas who love flower arrangements help you to increase your monthly amount of visitors?

We will show you!

How pinnable images can help you to drive traffic to your blog

First of all, you need to have excellent content that gives value to your reader. Without that, nobody will stick around. Even the best Pinterest viral campaign won’t bring you anything more than a one time visitors.

Having said that, once your content is fantastic and you have a pinned image going viral, then prepare yourself for some interesting times ahead!

Because of the nature of the platform, images on Pinterest are really ‘spreadable’; when people like an image on Pinterest, they are eager to share it. In fact, a pin is 100 times more spreadable than an average tweet! Also, the lifespan of a pin is quite long: Around one week. Compare that with content on Twitter (24 minutes) or Facebook (90 minutes).

The trick is to have a really good image on your blog and make this pinnable, which means that it can be found and shared on Pinterest.

We will give some good tips on what kind of creative content works well on Pinterest.

What is a good image for Pinterest?

And image which works well on Pinterest should be of the right size, because 80% of pinners view feeds on a mobile device, tall images work well. Try to go for an aspect ratio of 2:3 of 4:5.

Pro tip: A very long image takes more space on Pinterest, and is, therefore, harder to ignore.

Other than the right size, try also to incorporate the following aspects in your picture:

  • Avoid faces. Focus on things.
  • Use fresh and vibrant colors.
  • Give your images a colorful background with context related to the subject.
  • Try to put some red in your pictures. Red appears to increase the change on repins!

Depending on your graphic design skills, you can make all your Pinterest content yourself. You can use photography and photo editing software to develop the content.

If you are not so tech savvy, then there are loads of easy to use apps which can help you in creating amazing Pinterest pictures. You can also ask you creative cousin or a graphic design hero to help you out.

It is good to realize that you need to have a potential market on Pinterest for this method to succeed. If none of your target audience uses the platform, then it will be hard to gain traction. However, if you see that your subject is already represented there, then you have enormous opportunities for growing your traffic!

So go ahead: create killer content on your blog, add a beautiful image and make it Pinnable. With enough dedication and hard work, you will see your traffic increasing.

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Poetry – The Guardian

Guardian

Guardian 

 

A storm forced sea batters

Kelp obscured cliffs.

The frosty mist,

Deluge the whistling rock

And mortar cone walls.

 

In the distance,

A single powerful light is seen,

Flooding the sapphire blues of the water.

Like a mother’s soothing hand

On the back of the belligerent child

that is the sea.

 

A single structure

Standing in the middle of a raging sea.

Stone walls and bright light.

It leaves you wondering…

It leaves you wanting…

What mysteries do you house?

What wonders fill you?

 

A solitary door looms,

Like a single guard daring you to enter.

“Enter at your own peril!”

It seems to scream.

Inside, spiral stairs,

Twisting and turning like a sea-monster

Lead to rooms of glass walls.

 

With rotating lighting unit,

In its center,

And a walkway made of stone as old as time,

Your hands, laid on intricate artwork made of metal…

The handrail.

You stare out.

From the solace of the lighthouse.

 

The sailor’s guiding light pierces,

Through fog saturated night air,

Showing a Squall’s violently,

Crested waters.

 

To one side, a cove,

Whose beaches go undisturbed.

Behind the cliff gates,

Atop which stands a silent guardian.

 

Protector, savior.

Staring out,

These waters are as treacherous as they are beautiful.

Swallowing sailors, old and green alike.

The guardian does not rest.

He takes no day off.

For fates rest in his hands.

The guardian makes the difference between life and death

 

 

 

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