Tag Archives: Dashboard

Author Presence: Putting your Blog Theme in Place.

Author Presence: Putting your Theme in Place.

Last time we met it was choosing your Theme for your blog. Let’s say you looked at the links I gave you and you picked one out. I’m going with the Coraline Theme for my example Blog. One of the things we might do today is install the About.me Widget, so go ahead and log into your About.me account in another Tab or Window. This isn’t a must today but I am going to cover it.

You are going to actually pick your blog and activate it on your blog today and chose the layout. All very simple.

  • Log into your WordPress.com Blog.
  • Click My Sites
  • Click The Gear on the top right of the image of your blog
  • Click Go to Admin Dashboard

Now you will see a long list of words on the left side. If you take a moment you will be able to do some common sense figuring out of things. For now, since we are going to actually pick out your Theme and apply it to your blog, we are going to change the Appearance of your Blog.

So guess which of those words we are going to click on?

Yep-Appearance.

Technically you don’t have to click on it, but instead just place the cursor over it and it will show your options, but either way works.

Click Themes

Now you are going to want to Search for your Theme.

On the Right side click Free. Now there is normally a Search field here, if not, you can do the search function on your computer, or simply scroll down until you find your Theme. I am going to choose Coraline.

Once I find it, I will place my cursor over it and click Activate.

I click the x at this point because I don’t want to Customize, which means things like Add a Header Photo.

Right now I want to choose the layout. Each Theme has at least one layout. If it has more than one option, then you will see under Appearance something called Theme Options.

For Coraline click Theme Options.

I’m not worried about that Color Scheme yet that is at the top of the screen. What I want is to take a look at the Default Layout. I can’t tell you which one to go with for certain here as you will want to pick your own flavor.

  • But I am going to choose the one that says Sidebar-Content. That means my Sidebar will be on the left and my Content, that is my posts/articles will be on the right.
  • Then I click Save Options.

Now you want to see what it looks like, right?

Look at the top left of your screen and you will see the name of your Blog. Mine says Ronovan Author. Click it. Now if you are in Coraline you will see some things already in your Sidebar. Don’t worry, you will be putting your own things in there but what’s in there at the moment is just fine.

Now you have a choice to make. You can do one of about four things right now:

  • Put a Header Photo in
  • Put your About.me Widget in
  • Write a post
  • Or really if you have had enough for the day, just stop. This post will be here tomorrow as well as the next day.

I think most people go straight for that Header Photo. Yes, that image is important, but I say let’s go with the About.me Widget. After all that time we worked on them, and even put possibly two images in there already, let’s put them to use. You are your image. Period.

Again we are back at the Dashboard and under the Appearance toward the bottom, right where we just left from. In fact you could click the back arrow on your browser to get there.

Once there you want to click on Widget that appears after you click on Appearance or hover over it with your cursor.

The About.me Widget is the easiest to find. Why? Because they are alphabetical. Yes, it’s the first one you come to. In the Coraline Theme on the right side I have Seven Widget Areas. I am only concerned with the Primary Widget Area right now.

  • Click on the About.me Widget.
  • Primary Widget Area is already selected so all you have to do is click Add Widget.

Under your Primary Widget Area on the Right your About.me Widget has appeared with a lot of information in it.

  • The ‘Your about.me URL’ is what you are looking at right now. Notice most of it is already filled out.
  • I know mine is Ronovan. So I just need to type that in. So log in to your About.me account and see what name shows up. Really it might say Home, but click on your name in the top right and edit and the name should appear in the URL.
  • Put that name in and click Save. Now let’s go see what it looks like.

Now all of that stuff that was there before is gone. Your image is there along with your bio and your Social Media Apps Buttons. Think about all you’ve done with this one Widget.

Not all of that information has to be shown. Back in that Widget area you can always go in and uncheck the boxes you don’t want to appear. If you keep your Bio up on your About.me Widget then you might not need the About page at the top of your Header Photo. The About page is one of the most popular spots on my personal Blog. Why do I not show my Bio from my About.me account? Because it takes up a lot of Sidebar space I use for other things. But if you are a minimalist in that regards do what you like. I am just going to show you what is possible.

Well that’s all for today.

See y’all next time.

 

Much Respect

Ronovan

Ron_LWI

 

 

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Author Presence: Create a Blog and your Twitter Bio

Author Presence: Create a Blog and your Twitter Bio

During the previous article we talked about Your Brand Name. If you missed it, you really need to check it out as it will come in handy understanding the importance of what I mean by this and how important it is to you.

 

What are we talking about today?

We’ll discuss two things today.

  • Creating a blog with WordPress.com
  • Twitter Bio

So why are we doing two things today?

For one thing these will be relatively short and another thing, I want each day to be useful for everyone joining in. So for those with blogs, you might get something out of the Twitter Bio.

Blog Talk Time

Creating a Blog with WordPress.com

When you go to the site you will see where you type in a name and then click create blog. Once you have done this the fun begins. Don’t worry about today being intense, it won’t be. And you know what? If you change your mind about the blog name afterwards, you can create another blog with this same account. That’s right, you can create several blogs with different blog names/addresses within the same account. I have RonovanWrites.WordPress.com AND LitWorldInterviews.WordPress.com under the same account. Sure I might could have done it separately but I wanted to be able to keep up with the activity on both at the same time.

For this I am creating a new blog called Ronovan Author so as we walk through I will fill in things appropriately

There are four fields to fill out on the

Get started with WordPress.com screen

E-MAIL ADDRESS–ronovanwrties@gmail.com

USERNAME–ronovanauthor

PASSWORD

BLOG ADDRESS–ronovanauthor  ( the wordpress.com part is already there for you)

Once you have filled in these you scroll down and click Create Blog under the FREE column. I mean you can do the premium ones if you like as they do have things like more space, but often times you probably want to at least try out blogging first. You can always upgrade at any time.

  • You will get two emails; one to confirm your email address and the other one saying you have your blog.
  • After you clicked Create Blog under FREE you will be taken to another page.

Step 1

Set up your blog

Blog Title–Ronovan (I could keep it as RonovanAuthor but not right now, although it might work. I can always change it at any time.)

Tagline (Optional)–Author of Imaginations and Realities

Language–English (Yes you can set it to different languages)

Click Next Step

Step 2

Choose a theme

It looks like at the moment the default Theme is one called Reddle. It’s fine to go ahead and just click on Next Step here as you will be able to change your Theme later. Your main goal today is to get your blog name and get to the point where you can start customizing, not that we will be doing that today. So don’t worry.

Step 3

Customize your blog (Reddle)

It tells you about the Theme but don’t worry about it right now. And when you see words like ‘custom colors’ and things like that, often times you have to upgrade to premium to get those.

Click Next Step

Step 4

Share your blog posts with family, friends, or followers

Basically it is wanting you to connect your blog to facebook or Twitter. We will be doing this later, but if you want to you can now. I will still be going through connecting these two at a later date.

Click Next Step

Now it will want you to create your first blog post. You don’t have to.  At the top of the screen you will see; Reader, My Sites, and Stats. You can click on any of these if you like and just look around.

Today I want to show you the ‘Dashboard’. The Dashboard is where you will spend a lot of time. You will create your blog post/articles here. You will select your Themes, create pages on your blog, and pretty much everything.

Click on My Sites at the top.

Now you will see all of your blog sites. By the blog you just created you will see a gear in the top right corner of the picture. Click the gear and then click Go to admin dashboard.

One thing you will see is a Welcome to WordPress.com Video. I want to say I watched it and it is rather useful so go ahead and watch it.

And that ends your Blog Talk for the day. You have created a Blog, an Author Blog. Next time we speak about Blogs I will want to give you some Theme ideas to use. The reason I want to discuss Themes before we get into the details of the Dashboard is because not all Themes have the same Dashboard options. But they all work basically the same way with just a few  Appearance differences.

 

Twitter Talk Time

The Twitter Bio

You might be wondering “I’m an author of YA SciFi/Fantasy/Dystopia.”

Nice. Yawn. Sorry, did you say something?

Yeah, that was a bit mean of me but I’m here for Straight Talk. In fact at times I do articles with the titles in them called Straight Talk with Ronovan. So let’s get to it. Your Bio needs to say who and what you are.

Here is my Twitter Bio:

Author. Promoter of Authors. Interviewer. Lover of History. Tacos are a food group.

Yeah, it’s not the best in the world. But it tells you what I am and do. It gives you a couple of insights into me. I love history, I obviously am a huge fan of tacos (humor there) (not really) and I have Fibromyalgia. I also have both of my main blog sites included.

I have had people follow me because of the Fibromyalgia. I have people comment on their agreement about Tacos being a food group. And I have had people say they Love History too. I apparently have some sense of humor by including the taco comment.

Be as creative as you like. Remember, be professional.

Neil Gaiman is famous. Being famous makes it a bit easier with the Bio but he still has to be somewhat creative.

“will eventually grow up and get a real job. Until then, will keep making things up and writing them down.”

Perfectly done. His sense of humor is there and he actually tells what he does in a creative way. In fact I need to rethink mine. Look around at your favorite authors and DON’T copy them but see how creative they are.

Jim Butcher is another popular author these days. Yeah, I met him and talked with him for a while during the first round of Dresden Files books. Was a really nice guy and humble.

“–Storyteller. Let’s not complicate things.”

Honestly, I can hear his Harry Dresden character saying this. Well not the storyteller part, but it is definitely Butcher’s writing style coming through in so few words.

 

Until Next Time

Much Respect

Ronovan

Ron_LWI

 

 

 

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