Sunday, August 23, 2009

So much for my career as a technical writer.

There are things - I suspect, many things - that are much easier to do than to describe. I just took it on myself to help a poet of my acquaintance create a bloglist on her new blog at WordPress. Now, I don't have a blog over there, though my character Marie does. I hadn't seen any reason to create a bloglist for Marie, because her reading habits are virtually identical to my own (and a good thing, too. I would have to give up sleeping if I had to read for two.)


I find WordPress rather ungainly, so in order to explain how to create the bloglist, I had to do it myself, with an e-mail open in another Firefox tab, and type the steps into the e-mail as I went along. This was the resulting letter:


"I've managed to create a bloglist. I'll go through it again and type in the steps.

1. Go to your Dashboard.
2. Choose Links (over on the left)
3. A little menu will appear under Links. (Edit - Add New - Link Categories)
4. Choose Link Categories.
5. Click on Add Link Category.
6. Just below that choice, there is a window where you can give your new link category a name. I created one called Bloggy Links.
7. Click on Add Category.

There. Now you have a place to put your links. Next.....

8. Go back to Links. You should be on a screen that reads Edit Links.
9. Click on Add New. A new screen should appear, headed Add New Link.
10. Fill in the name of your link, e.g. Amazing Voyages of the Turtle.
11. Fill in the URL of your link, e.g.
12. Scroll down to the header Categories and click the box by the category you have just created.
13. Go way over to the right-hand side of the screen and click on Add Link.
14. Bob's your uncle.

So. Having gone through all that, I realize that (a) You could just put your blogroll in the category WordPress calls "blogroll" (go figure), where they have the links to and If you want to do that, you can just skip steps 1 to 7 and pick up at 8.

OR.....I see that you could actually start at #8 and just scroll down to the bottom of the Links screen, where there's a box labeled Add Category. - which, you will note, is #7 on my list. You could then - again - start at #8. Is this beginning to sound like The Ring of the Niebelungen?

All of this is to say that WordPress has a lot of redundancy built in, and you should play around with it to see which road to Rome you prefer taking.

If I have confused you beyond hope, do call me at xxxxxxx, and we can get together in person, if you like. Good luck. May the force be with you. (This is all much easier on Blogspot - or maybe I'm just used to it.)"


I have probably driven this poor lady around the bend. I could, of course, have simply deleted steps 1 to 7 and re-numbered the rest, but damn it, I had gone through that whole rigmarole, and if I had to do it, so did she!

I don't know what I'll do if she asks about posting photos. I did manage to put some family photos on Marie's blog, but I have not figured out how to arrange them on the page. They go where WordPress thinks they should go. Period. Live with it.

I am reminded how much I like Blogspot. I speak Blogspot.


willow said...

I'm often curious about the other blog formats out there. Think I'll stay with Blogspot.

John Hayes said...

As Willow said, it's interesting to hear about other formats. There have been a couple of Word Press blogs I've followed to some extent: Errant Aesthete & Deadlier than the Male. The latter really does hardly anything with graphics; the former is a very beautifully designed blog; all the blog formats, I think, could make picture/graphic handling easier--Blogger has its own issues when lining up pix with text.

Kathryn Magendie said...

I was once on MSN and it was so easy to post photos-you could have a big photo album - it was cool, but MSN kept fiddling and fiddling and making things a pain in the arse.....blogspot is pretty durned easy to fool with, except the photo thing - when I load photos in my post, they don't go where I want until I fiddle and fool...

as for J/J eating thing - EYEWW - yeah, it drove me MAD -- all that smacking and open mouth chewing and .....eyewww!

Sandra Leigh said...

The thing I discovered about photos and videos on Blogspot is that if you look in the html, you can see the size of your photo, and you can change it. You just have to be sure to change it at both ends, or it won't work. That helped a lot. I still can't get fancy, but at least I can keep some YouTube video from taking over the whole blog.

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