Whose Blog Is It? – or – Why I’m Not on WordPress

a free blog is good enoughI’m half Czech. And Czechs are notoriously frugal (okay, fine – we’re cheap!) as well as practical. So if there’s an easy and inexpensive way to do something, I’m there.

That goes a long way toward explaining why I began my blogging career on Blogger. That is, this go-round of my blogging career began on Blogger. Many years ago, I started a blog on Earthlink’s free platform. I think I made four posts over the course of several months before giving up. Continue reading “Whose Blog Is It? – or – Why I’m Not on WordPress”

Adding Google+ Comments to your Blogger Blog

Google plus commentsThe idea of having a blog is not just to sell books – although, hey, if someone’s moved to buy mine after reading one of my posts, I’m not going to stop them. But ideally, you’re blogging to offer your thoughts and ideas to the Universe, and maybe even get a dialogue going.

“Having a dialogue” implies that your readers are responding to your posts. And yet, one of the biggest problems I had when I began blogging on Blogger (also known as Blogspot) was that people had trouble leaving comments. Blogger’s native comments system had multiple quirks – the sign-in process was kind of crazy, and oftentimes it wouldn’t let people post replies at all. I ended up with comments about my posts on my Facebook page, on my Facebook timeline, on Google+ – everywhere but on the actual post. Makes it hard to get a dialogue going.

Blogger users, as well as Blogger itself, had come up with several workarounds. I tried a few, and they worked, more or less. But really, you shouldn’t need a workaround for something as basic as allowing a reader to comment on your blog. Continue reading “Adding Google+ Comments to your Blogger Blog”

Follow You, Follow Me

July 2010 I had the idea for a book. A frustrated housewife, facing 50, would write a humorous diary about her life. However, after researching it I realised the diary format was “old hat”, so, after several more glasses of Chardonnay, I had a eureka moment. The woman would write a blog and end up making hundreds of friends online. How difficult could that be? Of course, I had to set up a blog, and then I had to find friends or as I now know them, followers.

Setting up the blog was simple enough, even for an internet dunce like me, but followers?

If I tell you that after one year of blogging I had over a thousand people following the blog, then you’ll realise it is easier than you think.

First off though, you need some way of letting people follow your blog so they know when you have posted.

I originally started blogging using Blogger as my platform. It has got even easier to use over the last two years. First, make sure you are signed into your blog. Top right of your blog will show three options: NEW POST, DESIGN, LOGOUT. Click on DESIGN then on “Layout” to be found on the left hand side. When clicked, it turns orange. That should open a page similar to this: Continue reading “Follow You, Follow Me”

Let’s Play (Blog) Dress-up!

Remember when you were a kid, parading around in Mom’s high heels and boa? Remember how much fun it was? Well, you can recapture that magic by dressing up your blog.

(And if you had so much fun dressing up in Mom’s heels and boa that you’re still doing it? Way too much information, dude.)

Nearly every writing-related website and blog hop has its own widget these days. Usually it’s a button – a picture with a link embedded, so that when you click on the pic, you go to the website. On Blogger, you can add widgets (Blogger calls them gadgets) on your layout page. For a pre-made button, copy the code from the site you want to link to. Then go to your layout page on your blog. Click “Add a gadget” and scroll down the list to “HTML/Javascript.” In the pop-up window, give your widget a title if you want (you don’t have to), paste in the code, and click Save. Then preview your blog. If you don’t like the position of your new button on your blog page, you can go back to layout and click-and-drag it somewhere else until you’re happy. Click “Save arrangement” on the layout page. You’re all set. Continue reading “Let’s Play (Blog) Dress-up!”