Technical decisions about blogging

Blogging is easy once you get started, but after you decide to start a blog and you have an idea about what you want it to do for you, you do need to make two decisions before you can start.  Don’t panic, though, or let the decisions intimidate you or scare you away!  Instead, let me, the-blog-editor, try to help you.  The two blogging decisions are

  1. What blogging “platform” will you use?
  2. How will you get your message out—via a free host or by arranging for a vendor to host your blog?

A blog platform: The first piece of the puzzle . . .

I’ve tried several blogging platforms, but I fully recommend using the open-source blogging platform that is discussed at  WordPress.org.  So, we’ll pretend that that decision has been made!

A blog host: The second piece of the puzzle . . .

The second decision is not as easy.  You can decide to host your new blog for free at WordPress.com  but the advantages of WordPress.com are limited, other than being free, that is.  Of course, it might very well suit your needs.  Really, the two biggest disadvantages of WordPress.com are

  1. that your website address URL will be, for example, www.anEditorsBlog.wordpress.com, and
  2. that you may have some advertising on your site and in your dashboard area.

Of course, you can always move your blog from the free hosting at WordPress.com to another host at any time; but the move means repeating much of the behind-the-scenes work that you would have already done with your free blog.

If you do opt to host your site away from  WordPress.com,  I can—from bad experiences in the past with other hosts—recommend  Hostgator  wholeheartedly.

Your “self-hosted” blog site

A domain name for your blog   Before you get that far, though, you have one more chore to tackle before you get started.  If you do choose to host your site away from the free WordPress site, you’ll need to purchase and register a domain name that you want to use.  (This will enable you to have a URL—the text that displays in the “address” line of your Internet browser—such as www.anEditorsBlog.com, for example, instead of www.anEditorsBlog.wordpress.com, if that’s important to you.) 

To purchase your own domain name, I recommend using GoDaddy.com—they may have lousy, shameful, sexist ads during the Super Bowl but they are the number one domain registrar for a reason: the website is user friendly, their support is very helpful, and the company is trustworthy.  You can follow this affiliate link, if you wish, to research and buy your domain name:

Go Daddy - The Worlds #1 Domain Registrar!

A host for your blog   Once you have your domain, you can get a hosting package at  Hostgator  and perform a relatively simple installation of WordPress on your new site.  This affiliate link will lead you to Hostgator:

WordPress Hosting by HostGator

Once you’ve done that, you are well over the technological hump!  You’ll soon be a fully functioning WordPress advocate!

A “theme” for your blog   One of the first acts you’ll then need to complete is choosing and installing a “theme” or “skin” for your blog—this theme (and you can experiment with more than one or change at any time) is the program that determines how information on your blog appears to visitors.  WordPress has a large variety of themes you can choose from (packaged inside the program); you can also find some fun themes (which they call “templates”) at  wordpresstemplates.com  as well as some great choices at Solostream, ElegantThemes, RocketThemes, or Simple Themes—my clients have used themes from all of these vendors over the years and have had good experiences.

For additional information, follow any of these affiliate links:

Premium WordPress Themes     WordPress Themes by ElegantThemes     WordPress Themes

Congratulations! You’ve mastered the technology of blogging. From here on, you are going to have fun!

 

Stephen, the-freelance-editor.com
e-mail: editorial –at– Im Your Editor –dot– com
text: 832-233-0041

the-blog-editor is a division of  the-freelance-editor.com, where we work with our clients—you or your team—to help them say what they want to say to the audience they want to reach.

If you still have questions or concerns after exploring our site
or  if you’re ready to see about getting your complimentary sample edit
and an estimated rate and schedule, contact me today.

One more chore off my lists!

So, I’ve finally finished updating my new website, and this is it!  After two life-changing decisions—moving to Raleigh in January to return to work at the state Museum of History and deciding to re-establish my editorial services business—several lists of chores followed.  Getting a website back online was near the top, of course, but it just kept sliding from the top.

Today, however, I am proud to announce that I’ve finished fine-tuning most of the pages and that I feel confident enough to announce they’re ready for review.  So, take a tour and let me know if you find any mistakes, major or minor.  I still have a couple of pages to post, including a payments page and the “‘instant’ help” page, so you can skip those—I’ll announce when they are ready—but, as they say, have at the rest!

One of the delays in getting a presence back online was the debate over continuing to use an HTML-based website or following the industry and moving to a content management system (CMS).  I finally opted to switch and to use WordPress (which I’ve used for years as my blogging platform) for this version of my website.  In addition, I decided to promote my blog address, “anEditor’s Blog”, to serve as my home on the web instead of reviving the old “the-freelance-editor” URL I’d been using since the late ’90s.  In line with those decisions, I will, however, be keeping my formal business name as the-freelance-editor.  Enough change is enough!

Key to the new site are my specialty pages  (you can access them with “Why use a freelance editor?” on the main menu bar, above, and then sliding down to “My specialties” and hovering for the page line-up  or  by using the more-standard menu list at the bottom of the page) (or you can be lazy and simply click the following links)  for the so-called divisions of the-freelance-editor:  the-blog-editorthe-history-editorthe-young-adult-editor,  and  the-freelance-ghostwriter.  I’ll be adding more detailed sub-pages under them eventually, but these get the point across for now.

I guess the race has begun!  Thank you, all, for your patience and continuing support.  And, let me hear about those errors—you know I’d let you know about yours!

Stephen, the-freelance-editor.com
e-mail: editorial –at– Im Your Editor –dot– com
text: 832-233-0041

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A new service for clients of the-freelance-editor

As of this morning, the-freelance-editor was approved for live consultations through the Live Person “world of experts.” As of this afternoon, links have been added from each of the contact pages on the network sites that have been updated:

A link from the contact page of our primary site, the-freelance-editor.com, is also available. And, one will be added to the sidebar of this blog eventually. Here are samples of the links:

A separate button is also used in some cases:

This new service will add another way for clients, old and new, to reach the-freelance-editor at almost any time. If I’m online at my desk, I’ll be on call—and, since I work an average of fourteen hours a day, you should be able to catch me! I’ll be available to answer questions and address concerns about

  • grammar and wording,
  • organization and structural issues,
  • writer’s block,
  • fact-checking and research,
  • blogging,
  • Web site arrangement and Web page development,
  • business and professional publications,
  • ghostwriting projects,
  • personal histories, family histories, and memoirs, and
  • museum-related issues.

I would invite you to try out the service, but a small charge is involved. Still, if you have the need, you now know where to find me.

See you there,

Stephen Evans,
the-freelance-editor.com