How to add a MailChimp email signup form to your blog

mailchimp-logoLet me say it right upfront: I hate emailed newsletters. Most businesses send them out far too frequently for my taste. I usually let them languish in my spam folder unless I’m in the market for something they’re selling. But with Facebook limiting the organic reach of posts (unless you pay them), a newsletter is one of the few free ways left for us to be certain that our fans get word of a new release.

So when David Gaughran recommended MailChimp, I gave a lusty sigh, bit the bullet, and signed up. MailChimp is free for mailing lists with fewer than 2,000 addresses. The free service also limits the number of newsletters you can send out per year, but the limit is something like 800. I’m only intending to annoy people when I have a new book out, so I’m pretty sure I’ll be okay. Continue reading “How to add a MailChimp email signup form to your blog”

Goodreads Widget for Your Website

I just got a new website. It’s pretty, but it’s kind of plain. So I’ve been looking for some things to add to it. A Goodreads widget seemed like just the thing – and it was so easy to do that I thought I’d show you how.

1. Go to Goodreads and click the Home tab. You should now see a box at the top of the right-hand column labeled Author Dashboard. If you don’t, then chances are that you’ve never claimed your Goodreads author profile. Go here to find out how do that.

All signed up for the author program and back at your home page? Excellent. Now click the words, “Visit your dashboard.” Continue reading “Goodreads Widget for Your Website”

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!”

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