Reblog Of The Month: How To Create An Outstanding ‘About Me’ Page For Your Blog

Do you have an ‘About Me‘ page on your blog?

No?

If I told you that the ‘About Me’ page on most blogs is one of the most-visited parts of a blog, would I convince you to have one?

Are you struggling with what to put on your blog’s ‘About Me’ page?

Then head over to Perfectmanifesto.Com, where James M. Lane gives lots of help and advice about creating an ‘About Me’ page and what to put on it.

Click the link below to be taken to James’ post.

How To Write The Perfect About Me Page For Your WordPress Blog.

Are you’re wondering why the title of this post is different to James’ post? SEOs such as Google dislike duplicate information and rank duplicate posts lower, hence a different title.

As with all reblogs, I’m closing off comments here so you can leave them on James’ post with all the other comments his post has received.

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Reblog of the month

Copyright © 2022 hughsviewsandnews.com – All rights reserved.

How To Get The Best Out Of The Block You’re Using The Most On The Gutenberg Editor

It may seem much longer, but at the end of 2018, WordPress introduced the Gutenberg Block Editor to users. 

And what a journey the Block editor has had since introduced. Some users moved to other blogging platforms to avoid using it, whereas others decided to continue using the Classic editor for free via the Classic Block. 

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Are You using The Paragraph Block To Its Best Advantage?

Last year, I witnessed more than ever fans of the Classic editor coming over to using the Block editor, some of whom wondered why they hadn’t done it sooner.

As more bloggers use the Block editor, I thought I’d write some posts on how some of the most popular blocks work.

I’m kicking off with the ‘Paragraph‘ block, which everyone who uses the block editor will use.

How Do I Find Or Add A ‘Paragraph’ Block?

  • After adding the title of your blog post, click on the ‘+‘ symbol in the draft section of the post.
  • In the search box that opens, type in ‘paragraph.’
  • Select the ‘paragraph‘ block.
Screenshot showing where and how to find the 'Paragraph' block on the Gutenberg Editor
Where to find the ‘paragraph’ block
  • Start typing in the paragraph block on the draft post.
Screenshot highlighting where to type in the Paragraph block
Start typing in the Paragraph block

How Do I Add A New Paragraph?

  • Tap the return button on your keyboard to add a new paragraph.

Does The ‘Paragraph’ Block Come With Any Options? 

Yes. The ‘Paragraph’ block comes with a toolbar full of options. Here’s a list of what you can do.

  • Align text
Screenshot highlighting the Align button on the Block editor
Where to find the ‘Align’ button
  • Make text bold
Screenshot highlighting where to find the 'Bold' text button on the Block editor
Where to find the ‘Bold’ text button
  • Make text italic
Screenshot highlighting where to find the 'Italic' text button
Where to find the ‘Italic’ text button
Screenshot highlighting where to find the pingback button on the Block editor
Where to find the ‘pingback’ button
  • Other available options
  • Highlight text 
  • Add inline code
  • Add an inline image
  • Justify paragraphs
  • Keyboard input
  • Strikethrough text
  • Subscript
  • Superscript
  • Underline uppercase text
  • Change text to uppercase
Screenshot showing where to find 'Other options' on the Paragraph block
Where to find other options

Are There Any Other Options?

  • Yes. Click the kebab menu in the toolbar to show even more options such as ‘Add to reusable block‘ and ‘remove paragraph.’ 
Screenshot highlighting options under the kebab menu on the Paragraph block
Click the kebab menu to see more options

More options are also available on the righthand side of the draft page. To see them, select any block that contains text and select the ‘Block‘ option.

Screenshot highlighting the Block icon on the drafts page of a blog post
Make sure ‘Block’ is selected.

Colour: Change the colour of text or the background colour of a block.

AMP Settings: AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) is an open-source framework that allows browsers and apps to quickly load your site’s content on mobile devices. AMP is enabled by default for all WordPress.com sites. Click here for more details. 

Typography: This allows users to set the size of the font in a block. Here’s an example. In the next block, I’ve selected font size 36.

Hugh’s Views And News

See how much bigger it is than the text in other blocks.

Users can also manually set the size of the text by clicking the icon that sits to the right, just above the Size Default box. The icon looks like two small slider buttons.

Advanced Options:

HTML Anchor: This option allows users to insert ‘page jumps’ into a post. For example, you could anchor the words ‘Skip to the bottom of this post‘ in a block. Clicking on the anchor text then takes readers to the bottom of the page. Click here for more details. 

Additional CSS class(es):  Add CSS code to a block. –

CSS is the acronym of “Cascading Style Sheets“. CSS is a computer language for laying out and structuring web pages (HTML or XML). This language contains coding elements and comprises these “cascading style sheets”, which are called CSS files. 

Note: Some of the above options I’ve mentioned may move or change over time.

Layout, content, settings and format might differ on self-hosted blogs.

Looking for more information about the Gutenberg Block Editor? Check out these posts.

If you have any questions about the ‘Paragraph’ block, leave them in the comments section. I’ll try my best to answer them.

Is there a particular ‘Block’ you’d like me to cover in an upcoming post?

Don’t forget that you can also follow me on social media. Click on the buttons below.

Copyright © 2022 hughsviewsandnews.com – All rights reserved.

How To Unlock Your Mac Using Auto-Unlock With Your Apple Watch

Are you fed up with having to enter a password or passcode to unlock your iMac or MacBook every time you come back to use it?

My iMac requests a password if the screensaver is active. For security reasons, I recommend any device you use that contains personal information has an active password or passcode to open the device.

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Apple Tips

However, I recently discovered a nifty little trick to unlock my iMac (without entering the password) using my Apple Watch. 

Auto Unlock works when you’re wearing your unlocked Apple Watch, and your Mac is close by. You may need to move your Apple Watch a little closer to your iMac or MacBook to get it to work.   

Ensure that your Mac and Apple Watch have the latest software updates; otherwise, the auto-unlock feature may not work.

Make sure that your devices are set up as follows –

  • Your Mac has Wi-Fi and Bluetooth turned on.
  • Your Mac and Apple Watch are signed in to iCloud with the same Apple ID, and your Apple ID is using two-factor authentication. Click here to find out about two-factor authentication.
  • Your Apple Watch has a passcode.
  • On your iMac or MacBook, choose the Apple menu (the Apple logo) – System Preferences, then click Security & Privacy
  • Make sure the ‘General‘ tab is open. 
  • Tick the ‘Use your Apple Watch to unlock apps and your Mac‘ or ‘Allow your Apple Watch to unlock your Mac, box’
Screenshot showing the location of the 'Use your Apple Watch to unlock apps and your Mac' box on the security & privacy tab on Apple
Tick the ‘Use your Apple Watch to unlock apps and your Mac.’
  • You’re done!

No more having to enter your password when approaching your Mac device. 

This feature does not work for unlocking iPads or iPhones.

Do you have any tips or tricks for using Apple devices? Leave the details in the comments section.

Follow Hugh on social media. Click the buttons below.

If you enjoyed this post, you may also like…

Copyright © 2022 hughsviewsandnews.com – All rights reserved.

New To Blogging? These Free Tips On Leaving Comments Will Help Bring New Visitors To Your Blog

Are you a new blogger? Have you recently started following my blog or thinking about following it?

I’m honoured that Hugh’s Views And News has gained a lot of new followers. What’s even better is that some of those new followers are already engaging with me.

But it seems there’s a big difference about what engagement is. 

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New To Blogging? Read This Post First

If you’re new to blogging, there’s a long learning curve ahead of you. So allow me to share some advice about engaging with other readers and bloggers in the comments sections of blog posts. 

Don’t leave uninvited links or demands in the comments section of any blog post.

I received that vital piece of advice from some professional bloggers at the beginning of my blogging journey.  

Examples Of Comments You Should Never Leave

I’ve recently had a rash of first-time comments from readers that had me shaking my head. They include comments likes these.  

Hi, check out my blog, follow me, leave me comments and tell all your followers to follow my blog.

Hi, subscribe to my YouTube channel.

Help me get to 50 followers. Follow my blog now! 

I’ve followed your blog, now follow mine.

Follow for a follow?

Then there are the demand comments that don’t include links.

Screenshot of a first-time comment considered demanding
Demanding comment?

Yes, I’m interested in novels (not so much poetry), but don’t demand that I follow your blog, read your books, press ‘like’ on your blog posts and leave comments when you can’t even be bothered to mention anything about the contents of the post you’ve left your demands on. Did you even read my post?

I never responded to the comment because I doubt very much the blogger who left it would have seen it.

Although the blogger didn’t include a link to their blog, in my opinion, it’s just as bad as the comments that include uninvited links.

What’s worse is that some bloggers tried leaving the same demanding comments on several of my posts. All of them were bloggers who had never left comments for me before and probably wondered why their comments weren’t showing up. 

How To Get People To Visit Your Blog

If you want your blog to get noticed in the blogging world, read some posts and leave comments that add value to what you’ve read. 

However, while people are far more likely to check out your blog if you leave good valuable comments, it doesn’t necessarily mean they will follow your blog. 

My advice has always been to only follow blogs that interest you. Otherwise, you’re just wasting time following them.   

Leaving demands in a first time comment without ever having engaged with a blogger before is like going on a first date and demanding that your date buys you a drink and dinner. 

As for leaving uninvited links, providing you’ve set up your Gravatar correctly, your blog details are left within the comment box when you leave a comment anyway, so you don’t need to leave any links to your blog. It’s already there.

 

Screenshot highlighting where to find a link to the blog of somebody who has left a comment.
Where to find a link to the blog of somebody who has left a comment for you

Be friendly: Be nice.

Addressing a blogger by their first name in a comment (especially a first comment) goes a long way to getting you noticed. If it’s obvious what the blogger’s first name is, use it in your comment. If their first name isn’t apparent, check out the ‘about me‘ page of their blog and find out what it is.

Or is all of that just too much like hard work? I’m shaking my head at you if you answered ‘yes’ to that question. 

Be friendly and courteous in your comments, even if you disagree with the post’s contents. Don’t come over like a troll or somebody who will always disagree with the contents of every post.  

I don’t expect those examples of poor comments I mentioned to stop coming in. Why? Because many of those who leave them probably never read the post they’ve left them on anyway. 

I’m expecting similar comments to get left on this post, but you’ll never see them here or on any of my posts. Why? Because I moderate all comments before they appear. Comments with uninvited links or demands get marked as spam. You’re wasting your time if you leave me demanding comments or comments that include uninvited links.

Am I being too harsh? 

There is a chance that some of those leaving demanding comments or uninvited links are at the beginning of their blogging journey. They may not know they shouldn’t be doing it. If you’re one of those people, then take some time to check out, read and ask questions on the thousands of free blogging tips posts found all over the internet. 

I’m one of those bloggers that don’t charge for the blogging advice I publish, so don’t be afraid to leave any questions you have about blogging in the comments section of this or any of my other posts. 

I’m always delighted to help. 

Other bloggers that give free blogging advice

Renard at Renard’s World.

Natalie at Natalie Ducey

Janice at Mostly Blogging

Take it from somebody who has learned a lot about how the blogging world works, that you’ll get yourself and your blog more noticed if you read posts and leave good, valuable, friendly comments on them. 

Happy Blogging!

Are You New To Blogging? Do You Have Any Questions About Blogging? Leave Them In The Comments Section.

Looking for more blogging tips from Hugh? Check out these posts.

Join Hugh on social media. Click on the buttons below.

Copyright © 2021 hughsviewsandnews.com – All rights reserved.

Don’t Have Enough Time To Draft Blog Posts? This WordPress Feature Helps

Would you like to save some time when drafting your blog posts?

Do you participate in a daily, weekly, monthly or annual blog challenge?

Do you get frustrated with or dislike having to copy and paste from one blog post to another?

Do you have reoccurring blog posts that only need minor changes?

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Blogging Tips

If you participate in weekly blog challenges or publish posts that have the same layout every month, the ‘copy post‘ feature on the Block Editor is an excellent tool. It relieves all the stress and frustration of copying and pasting and finding the time to draft blog posts.

How To Copy A Blog Post

Here’s an image that will outline some upcoming vital points.

Image showing 3 key-points on how to copy a blog post on WordPress
How To Copy A Blog Post On WordPress

1. Go to your blog’s ‘Posts’ page and find the post you want to copy. In my case, I’m copying a post I wrote for the weekly 99-word flash fiction challenge hosted by Charli Mills at the Carrot Ranch.

2. Click the kebab menu (three vertical dots) next to the post.

3. From the dropdown menu that opens select ‘Copy Post.’

  • Open your draft folder, find the newly created blog post and make changes to it.
  • Essential changes you’ll need to make to the new post you’ve copied.
  • Title of the post
  • Content
  • Excerpt for the post
  • Other changes you may need to change.
  • Images/photos
  • Pingbacks
  • Categories
  • Tags

In some cases, such as the copied post I’ve used as an example, I didn’t need to add or change the categories or tags, so I saved myself even more time. However, I did need to update the pingbacks and images on the post.

However, overall, I saved myself time by copying an existing post and making amendments to it.

Screenshot highlighting a copied post on WordPress
Copied Post
  • Schedule or publish your post.

That’s it! You’re done and will have saved yourself some precious time and got rid of the experience of frustrations that copying and pasting often bring when drafting blog posts.

Layout, content, settings and format might differ on self-hosted blogs.

Have you used the ‘Copy Post’ feature on WordPress? Do you have any more time-saving tips when drafting blog posts? Share them with me in the comments section.

Looking for more blogging tips from Hugh? Check out these posts.

Join Hugh on social media. Click on the buttons below.

Copyright © 2021 hughsviewsandnews.com – All rights reserved.

Pinned Tweets: Why Every Blogger Should Have One To Help Drive Traffic To Their Blog

I see a lot of Twitter users who don’t have a pinned tweet set up on their Twitter account.

The main reason may be that they don’t know what a pinned tweet is, how it works or how to set one up.

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Pinned Tweets: What Are They and How Do They Work?

Pinned tweets help drive traffic to your blog or website and are a brilliant way of getting you, your books, your blog and your writing some free promotion.

What is a pinned tweet?

A pinned tweet is a tweet that users attach to the top of their Twitter timeline. It’s the first tweet people see when they visit your Twitter profile and is often the tweet that gets the most attention.

You can pin any of your tweets for which you want to get more attention. For example, upon publishing a new blog post, you may want to pin the tweet for the post to your Twitter account.

How do I create a pinned tweet?

  • Click on the meatball menu (the three horizontal dots in the top right of the tweet).
Image highlighting the meatball menu on a Tweet.
Click on the meatball menu
  • A new window menu will open.
  • Select ‘Pin to your profile‘ from the dropdown menu that appears.
Image highlighting 'Pin To Your profile' on Twitter
Pin To Your Profile
  • Press ‘Pin‘ on the window that opens that asks ‘Pin Tweet To Profile?).
  • You’ve now created a pinned tweet that will stick to the top of your Twitter timeline until you either replace it or remove it.
Image highlighting a pinned tweet on Twitter
Pinned Tweet

How often should I change my pinned tweet?

At least once a month.

Pinned tweets over a month old can look out of date and may contain out of date information.

Old pinned tweets can also make the user look lazy because they are not changing or updating their pinned tweet. Visitors who have visited before will see the same pinned tweet and may not want to retweet it again.

I always share fresh pinned tweets, whereas I don’t retweet pinned tweets I know I have shared before.

I update my pinned tweet at least once every couple of weeks. Doing so encourages visitors to my Twitter account to share and retweet my new tweet. This results in lots of new referrals to my blog or blogs where I’m being featured.

It acts as free promotion for my blog, books and my writing.

As a way of saying ‘thank you’ to those that share my blog posts via Twitter, I retweet their pinned tweet. However, if I’ve retweeted it before, I won’t retweet it.

Ensure you change your pinned tweet at least once a month.

Can I pin the tweets of other users to my Twitter profile?

No. You can only pin your own tweets to your own profile.

Do you have a pinned tweet on your Twitter account? How often do you change it?

Looking for more blogging tips from Hugh? Check out these posts.

Join Hugh on social media. Click on the buttons below.

Copyright © 2021 hughsviewsandnews.com – All rights reserved.

Reblog: How To Upload a PDF File In WordPress For Viewing And Easy Download

Have you ever wondered if there is an easy way to add a PDF file to a blog post on WordPress?

With the Block editor, it’s as easy as ABC.

Blogging guru Natalie Ducey shows us how to upload a PDF File on WordPress using the Gutenberg Block Editor. Click the following link or image to read her tutorial.

How To Upload a PDF File In WordPress For Viewing And Easy Download.

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Reblog Alert

Comments are closed here. Please leave any comments for Natalie over on her post.

Copyright © 2021 hughsviewsandnews.com – All rights reserved.

How to Create And Use A Reusable Block For Your Book On WordPress

One of the best features of the Gutenberg Block Editor is the ability to create reusable blocks.

Once you’ve created a reusable block, any amendments you make to it get implemented wherever you’ve used it. If you’ve used the block on 50 of your blog posts, the changes take place on all of them regardless of when the posts (and pages) were published.

That means there is no need to visit each and every post to make the amendments. Just think how much time that will save you.

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Reusable Blocks & Books

For authors, reusable blocks save lots of time when doing book promotions, such as offering a book as a free download or when offering a limited-time price reduction. And once the promotion is over, simply updating the reusable block takes care of all the changes all over your blog.

How Do I Create a Reusable Block For My Book?

  • Open up a new draft post.
  • Open up the ‘Media & Text‘ block. You can do this by clicking the ‘+‘ symbol in the top corner of the drafts page and inserting ‘Media & Text’ in the search bar.
Screenshot highlighting where and how to find the Image & Text block on WordPress
Media & Text Block
  • Select the Media & Text block to insert it on your post, or select one of the options available for it (e.g. text on left/media on the right).
  • Next, click on ‘Media Area‘ and upload your book cover by clicking the ‘upload‘ button. If your book cover is already in your WordPress media library, click the ‘Select Media‘ button.
Screenshot highlighting the Upload and Select Media buttons on WordPress
  • Click on the ‘Content…‘ area, and add content about your book in the ‘Content’ box.
Screenshot highlighting where to add content in the Media & Text block on WordPress
  • While adding content, don’t forget to use the toolbar on the righthand side of the page to create headings, enlarge text, etc.

Top Tip: Create and include a link in the ‘Content’ area to where people can buy your book. In my example, I’ve created a link to Amazon by making ‘Available on Amazon‘ a pingback.

I recommend you also make the whole block a link to where people can buy your book. To do this, click on the block and create a pingback (see next image).

Screenshot highlighting and showing how to make a block into a pingback on WordPress

Tip: To stop people from losing your blog when clicking on pingbacks, always ensure you turn on the ‘Open in a new tab‘ button (#4 on the above image).

How Do I Turn The Block Into A Reusable Block?

  • Click on the block and click the kebab menu (three vertical buttons) in the toolbar that appears. From the menu, select ‘Add To Reusable Blocks‘.
Screenshot highlighting and showing how to turn a block into a reusable block on WordPress
  • Give the block a name and click the ‘Save‘ button.
Screenshot showing how to name a reusable block on WordPress
  • Your reusable block is created and is now ready to be used on all your blog posts and pages.

Top Tip: Add the reusable block you’ve created for your book to the top three most viewed posts and pages of your blog. That way, even more visitors to these posts and pages will see details of your book.

How do I make amendments to reusable blocks?

  • Click the ‘+‘ sign in the top left corner of a drafts page, and select the ‘Reusable‘ tab (see next image).
  • Click on the ‘Manage Reusable Blocks‘ link at the bottom of the page (see next image).
Screenshot highlighting how to edit a reusable block on WordPress
  • Select the reusable block you want to edit.
Screenshot highlighting how to select a reusable block for editing
  • Make the amendments and click the ‘Update‘ button.
Screenshot showing how to edit a Reusable block on WordPress
  • Any amendments you have made are saved, even on the posts and pages you previously inserted the block on.

And here is the reusable block I’ve created.

Glimpses

28 short stories and pieces of flash fiction that take the reader on a rollercoaster of twists and turns.

Available on Amazon

Paperback – £4.99

Kindle – £0.99

  • Finally, don’t forget to click on the pingbacks you’ve added to your reusable block to ensure they work and take visitors to the correct page/site.

Layout, content, settings and format might differ on self-hosted blogs.

Any questions? Leave them in the comments section and I’ll get back to you.

Follow Hugh on his other social media platforms. Click on the buttons below.

Copyright © 2021 hughsviewsandnews.com – All rights reserved.

Is This New WordPress Block The Best Way To Help Promote Your Blog For Free?

Every blogger should be active on at least one other social media platform besides blogging. Why? Because it’s a free way to get you, your blog and your books in front of new audiences.

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Looking to promote your blog for free?

Unless you tell your readers what social media platforms you’re on, then they’ll probably only find you by chance. That’s why you should do all you can to promote where your readers can also find you and your books.

WordPress has made the ‘Social Icons’ widget into a block that makes it easy to advertise your social media accounts on your blog posts and pages. And, best of all, once you’ve created it, with a single click, you can add it to every blog post and page. 

The ‘Social Icons‘ block takes away the ‘probably’ and does the job perfectly.

Let’s get started. Here’s how to create your ‘Social Icons’ block. 

  • The ‘Social Icons’ block can be added to a new blog post (or one you’ve already published).
  • Click the ‘add new block button’.
  • Search for the block by adding ‘social icons’ in the search-bar.
  • Click the ‘Social Icons’ block to add it to your post.
Screenshot highlighting the three steps to find and add the 'Social Icons
Where to find the ‘Social Icons’ block
  • Next, follow the instructions on the following image to start adding social media icons to the block. I’ve also listed the instructions under the image.
Screenshot highlighting how to add social media icons to the social icons block on WordPress
Adding your social media accounts to the block
  • Click the ‘plus’ sign just above the window that shows social icons images.
  • Use the search-bar to find social icons.
  • Click on the social icons you want to add to the block.
  • For a full list of available social icons, click on ‘Browse all.’

In my case, I’ve added social icons for Twitter, WordPress, Amazon, Goodreads and Flipboard. 

Screenshot showing the social icons added to the social icons block on WordPress
Social icons on the social icons block

Useful Tip: Use the ‘link‘ icon for any social icons WordPress does not have icons for. I’ve done this for my Flipboard account.

Screenshot highlighting the 'link' icon on WordPress
No social media icon? No problem!

Note: Until you’ve linked your social media accounts to the icons, they will be ‘ghosted’ out.

  • To link your social media accounts to each icon, click on each icon and copy and paste the URL address of the relevant social media account in the bar that appears. 
Screenshot showing how to add a social media account to a social icon on WordPress
Adding your social media accounts to the social icons
  • Remember to always click the ‘Apply’ button after adding each account. 

As you add each address, the icon will no longer be ‘ghosted’ out. 

Now you’ve added and linked your social media accounts to all icons, it’s time to choose a few more features. You’ll find these on the righthand side of the screen when clicking on the ‘Social Icons’ block you’ve created. Here’s a screenshot of what you’ll see and some features I’ve highlighted.

Screenshot showing the different options available on the Social Icons block on WordPress
Social icons features

The features include –

  • The style of each icon. In my case I chose the ‘Pill’ shape for the icons.
  • The option of wether a new window opens when somebody clicks on one of the icons.
  • Choice of colours for the icons

I highly recommend that you switch on the ‘Open links in new tab‘ feature so that the page your reader is on when clicking on the icons does not close down. After all, you don’t want anybody leaving your blog when clicking on one of the icons, do you?

Can the size of the social icons be changed?

Yes. Click the ‘Size’ button in the ‘social Icons’ block’s toolbar to change the size of the icons.

Screenshot highlighting where to change the size of the social icons on the social icons block on WordPress
Changing the size of your social media icons

You can also change the alignment and the items justification of the icons in the block’s toolbar. 

How to turn your ‘Social Icon’ block into a reusable block.

If you want to add your ‘Social Icons’ block with just one click onto all your blog posts (and I recommend you do), you’ll need to make the block reusable. My post How To Add A Reusable Block To A WordPress Blog Using The Gutenberg Editor gives full details on how to do this, but here’s an image that quickly outlines the details.

Screenshot that gives quick details on how create a reusable block on WordPress
Creating a reusable block

Any edits or updates you do to a reusable block are applied everywhere you’ve used the block. Therefore, if any of your social media accounts get a new URL address, all you need to do is edit the address in the reusable block. You don’t need to visit and make the changes on every blog post where the block appears. Reusable blocks are excellent for adding details of your books to blog posts especially when doing occasional special deals on them.

  • Finally, most importantly, make sure the icons in the block work and go to the correct social media accounts before using the block on your posts.

Let’s Wrap It Up

  • Social media is one of the best ways to promote your blog and books for free.
  • Use the ‘social icons’ block to promote your social media accounts and let readers know where to find you.
  • The ‘social icons’ block is easy to set up and use. Follow the guide in this post.
  • Use the ‘link’ icon to crate a button for social media platforms WordPress does not offer an icon for.
  • To stop readers leaving your blog when clicking on your ‘social Icons’ block, make sure the ‘open links in new tab’ button is switched on.
  • Turn your ‘social icons’ block into a reusable block that can be inserted on all posts and pages with just one click.
  • Any changes you make to your ‘social icons’ reusable block will be implemented wherever the block appears. No need to make the changes on every post!

And here is my ‘Social Icons’ block.

Go ahead and click on the buttons and follow me on my other social media platforms.

Are you using the ‘Social Icons’ block?

Any questions? Leave them in the comments section and I’ll get back to you.

Layout, content, settings and format might differ on self-hosted blogs.

Looking for more blogging tips? Check out these recent posts from Hugh.

Copyright © 2021 hughsviewsandnews.com – All rights reserved.

New: WordPress Screen Options Button – Where, Why And How To Use It

Have you noticed the new WordPress ‘Screen Options’ button on the dashboard of your blog?

At first, it wasn’t very noticeable to me, but I now find myself using it everyday because it has some great features.

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New: WordPress Screen Options Button

Where can I find the ‘Screen Options’ button?

You’ll find the ‘Screen Options‘ button in the top righthand corner of your screen when viewing ‘Posts,’ ‘Pages’, ‘Media’ or ‘Comments’ on the dashboard of your blog. Please note that It doesn’t yet seem to be available on the WordPress App.

Screenshot highlighting the Screen Options button on WordPress
Screen Options Button

I am able to see the button when using WordPress on my desktop computer, laptop, iPad and iPhone using Safari and Chrome.

What does the ‘Screen Options’ button do?

It’s a quick way to switch between the new WordPress ‘Default’ view and the old ‘Classic’ view of your blog’s dashboard.

Clicking on the button gives users two choices when viewing information on the ‘Posts’, ‘Pages’ and ‘Comments’ section on their blog’s dashboard.

Screenshot highlighting the menu under the Screen Options button on WordPress
Screen Options Menu

‘Default’ view is the one I’ve been using for the last couple of months. Here are two screenshots of what my blog’s ‘posts’ page looks like with the ‘Default’ view and the ‘Classic’ view.

Screenshot showing the Default view of blog posts on a WordPress blog
Default View
Screenshot showing the Classic view of blog posts on a WordPress blog
Classic view

Many users may recognise the old-style ‘Classic’ view. However, did you know that it now contains more options? Clicking on the ‘Screen Options’ button again will disclose the options. I’ve highlighted some of them on the following image.

Screenshot of the options for blog posts on the Classic view options
Classic option features

Not only can you choose which columns to display under ‘posts,’ but you can also choose how many of your posts you want to see on the dashboard.

If you make any chances, click the ‘Apply’ button to save them.

What does the ‘view mode’ option do?

Changing the ‘view mode’ option to ‘Extended view’ will show a little more information under your posts.

Screenshot highlighting the Extended view option on WordPress
Extended view

In my case, I was able to see the excerpt for each of my posts.

Reminder – click the ‘Apply’ button if you make any changes.

The ‘Classic’ view also has a gateway to the old Classic editor, where you can draft new blog posts. However, WordPress may remove this at any time.

Screenshot highlighting the gateway to the old Classic editor on WordPress
Gateway to the old Classic editor

Struggling with spam? Use the Classic option

As I use the Block editor, I use the ‘Default’ version. However, I use the ‘Classic’ option for specific functions that the ‘Default’ option doesn’t yet do. For example, I use the ‘Classic’ option for deleting all spam from my WordPress spam folder with just one click.

Screenshot highlighting the WordPress Empty Spam Button
Emptying Spam

Don’t allow spam to cause you any problems or to allow you to make any harsh decisions. It can easily be dealt with.

Although the ‘Default’ option offers an option to bulk delete spam, you can only delete 20 spam comments at any one time.

Screenshot highlighting the Bulk Edit button on WordPress
Bulk Edit

So using the ‘Classic’ option helps save me time when dealing with hundreds of spam comments daily.

I’ve not yet discovered a way of marking comments that end up in the spam folder by mistake as genuine (not spam) in the ‘Default’ version. So, again, I use the ‘Classic’ version for performing this task.

While using ‘Classic’ view, if at any time you want to go back to using the new ‘Default’ (WordPress.com view) option, click the button.

Screenshot highlighting the Default view (WordPress.com view) button
Default view button

The ‘Screen Options’ function may only be available with specific WordPress plans.

Let’s wrap it up

  • The new ‘Screen Options’ button can be found on the ‘Posts,’ ‘Pages’, ‘Media’ and ‘Comments’ pages of the dashboard of your WordPress blog.
  • ‘Classic’ view option has more options when viewing posts and comments.
  • Delete spam with one click when using ‘Classic’ view.
  • ‘Default’ view only allows bulk action (20 comments) when deleting spam.
  • Works on desktops, laptops, tablets, and phones.
  • Does not work via the WordPress app.

Have you been using the new ‘Screen Options’ button? Have I missed out anything you’ve discovered it does? If you have any questions about the ‘Screen Options’ button leave them in the comments section.

Layout, content, settings and format might differ on self-hosted blogs.

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Click the ‘Diversity with a Twist’ image to check out my latest post over on my column at the Carrot Ranch

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Looking To Save Time When Blogging? Here Are 5 Things That Worked For Me

In my recent post, ‘Why Are Some Bloggers Killing Off Comments Being left On Their Blogs?‘ the most popular reason was – ‘they didn’t have the time to respond to them.’

Do you ever find yourself running out of time when blogging?

Blog post banner for the blog post 'Looking To Save Time When Blogging? Here Are 5 Things That Worked For Me.'
Looking To Save Time When Blogging?

It’s something that used to happen to me. After getting out of bed, I’d sit down in front of the computer and, before I knew it, the time had flown past! I’d feel as if I hadn’t achieved anything.

Many bloggers say that blogging can be very time-consuming. Your work-in-progress will look as if it’s never going to get finished, your laundry basket is overflowing, the house is a mess, and family and friends will start wondering who you are because you seldom join in anymore.

Here are five tips that I implemented to save me time when blogging.

1. Save time by stopping feeling guilty or stressed out about blogging.

I wanted to be everywhere in both the worlds of blogging and social media.

Every time I followed a blog or got a new follower on Twitter, I felt it my duty to read, like and comment on every blog post and tweet of every blog I followed. I felt guilty if I didn’t leave a comment. Can you imagine how much time I was spending reading and leaving comments on those blogs?

At first, that wasn’t so much of a problem (when I only followed a handful of blogs), but I found myself often reading and commenting on posts just for the sake of it. Even if the content didn’t interest me, I still felt I had a duty to read and comment. 

I acted like one of those hamsters running around on its wheel as I tried to get to the top of my WordPress Reader list. I’d spent my days reading and commenting, leaving me little time to do anything else, such as writing!

While some of the bloggers I’d left comments for came back and commented on some of my blog posts, my posts were suffering because I’d rushed them, not put any serious thought into them and published them on the same day I’d written them. Big mistake! I was producing poor quality content.

Unless they’re only following a handful of blogs, nobody can read and comment on every blog post of all the blogs they follow. Don’t feel that you have to read and comment on every single newly published blog post. A loyal, friendly blogger won’t mind if you miss or don’t comment on some of their posts. If they do care, or take offence, maybe it’s time to think about unfollowing them?

Save yourself time by only reading and following blogs that interest you. 

2. Save time by finding out what your ‘high peak’ blogging times are.

What do I mean by ‘high peak’ blogging times? They are the times of the day and the days of the week when you feel that the blogging world is at its busiest for you.

As soon as you have been blogging for a few months, you should start to see when your ‘high peak’ blogging times are. 

If, like me, you start by publishing on different days and times, you’ll soon get a feel for when your ‘high peak’ blogging times are.   

My ‘high peak’ blogging times are –

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday 12:00 – 17:00 (GMT).

These are the days and times when I feel the blogging world is at its busiest. I have more interaction with other bloggers during these times. 

However, let’s say that you only publish blog posts on a Saturday at midday. As your audience grows, they’ll soon get used to when you publish posts, so they’ll expect to see new content from you on that day and time. That will be your ‘high peak’ blogging time. 

If you work during the week, you and others may only publish posts and read and comment on other posts during the weekends. Therefore, your ‘high peak’ blogging times will be Saturdays and Sundays.

It took me a while to find my ‘high peak’ blogging times, and they can change.

Now, during ‘low peak’ blogging times, I’m not likely to be blogging very much, although I will respond to any outstanding comments. I use most of the time to get on with other things.

I may also use the time to write blogging posts.

Finding out my ‘high peak’ blogging times helped me cut down my online presence and helped me save time.  

3. Get Yourself A Blogging Routine.

Once you know what your peak blogging times and days are, plan a blogging routine around them. For me, I always begin the mornings by responding to comments left on my posts and those posts where I’ve commented.

Depending on the number of comments your blog gets, this can take up a lot of time. As I’m in my most creative mood in the mornings, if there are too many comments to respond to, then I’ll write first and come back later and respond.

When responding to comments, I’ve implemented the following time-saving rules.

  • I take conversations offline if anyone leaves a comment that has nothing to do with the post’s subject. 
  • If a blog post attracts lots of comments, I delay the publication of my next post (as I did with this post) until comments are at a level at which I can respond to them comfortably without feeling overwhelmed. However, if you run a weekly or monthly challenge, this may not be possible to do. 

My previous blogging tips post, ‘Why Are Some Bloggers Killing Off Comments Being left On Their Blogs?‘ produced lots of comments, so delaying the publishing date of this post helped me save time by not getting overwhelmed with more comments.   

  • I stopped publishing new blog posts just before going offline for a few days (such as going away on holiday). I also stopped publishing blog posts while on holiday. It means I don’t come back to an overflowing comments box that needs my urgent attention.
  • I close off comments on any reblogs I do, requesting that readers leave new comments on the original post. 
  • I close comments off on my Throwback Thursday and Flashback Friday posts, requesting that readers leave any new comments on the original post. 
  • Rather than respond to ‘lazy’ comments, I acknowledge them with a ‘like,’     

All have helped me save time when responding to comments.  

I give myself blogging breaks during the day but always stop blogging after 17:00. Occasionally, I will respond to comments during the evenings, but this is very rare. 

I recently decided to stop blogging at weekends because that’s when the blogging world seems to be much quieter for me.

Set yourself a ‘switch-off blogging’ time, and stick to it. 

4. WordPress Reader or Email Notifications?

Because I compared myself earlier to a hamster running on a wheel, I seldom use the WordPress Reader anymore. Instead, I receive notifications of new blog posts by email.

I have created a folder in my email box and named it ‘Must Read.’ I move all the posts with eye-catching titles and which I want to read to that folder. The rest get deleted. It stops my email box from looking like it’s been on a bodybuilding course which, in turn, prevents me from stressing out about there being too many unopened emails in my inbox.

I no longer feel guilty about deleting emails of blog posts I’ve not read or those that have unappealing titles.  

I do like leaving comments, but I no longer allow myself to waste time thinking of something valuable to say. If I can’t think of something that adds value straight away, I may leave a ‘like’ before moving on to the next post. It helps take away the guilt and stress feelings that spoilt blogging for me. Plus, it ‘s saving me time. 

5. Follow For A Follow

Don’t fall into the trap of following every single blogger who follows you, especially those that follow you, without leaving a comment.

Unfortunately, not only will some of these bloggers unfollow you as soon you follow them, but there’s no simple way (as far as I’m aware) of finding out whether they have unfollowed you or not. 

All those bloggers want are as many followers as possible – often without visiting and interacting with any of the blogs they follow. Stats drive them more than content does.

By all means, do check out some of the blogs of the bloggers who have followed you but never feel obliged to follow them back. Only follow the blogs that publish content of interest to you, especially if they are likely to get you leaving helpful valuable comments.

Let’s wrap it up

  • Stressing out or feeling guilty about blogging won’t save you time. All it will do is make blogging less appealing.
  • Save time by not following and reading blogs that do not interest you.
  • Never think that you have to read and leave a comment on every newly published blog post.
  • Find out what your ‘high peak’ blogging times are.
  • ‘High Peak’ blogging times are the times you feel are the busiest for you and often when you interact the most with other bloggers and readers.
  • Use ‘low peak’ blogging times to write or do other stuff.
  • Get yourself a blogging routine and stick to it.
  • Think and implement ways of saving yourself time when answering comments.
  • Set yourself a ‘switch-off blogging’ time, and stick to it.
  • If you’re spending too much time trying to get to the top of your WordPress Reader, consider getting new blog post notifications via email.
  • Move the new post notifications that have appealing blog post titles to a ‘Must Read’ folder.
  • Delete the new post notifications that have unappealing blog posts titles. Never feel guilty about deleting them.
  • Don’t fall into the trap of following every single blogger who follows you.
  • Some bloggers will unfollow you as soon as you follow them back.
  • By all means, check out some of the blogs that follow you, but only follow those that publish interesting content you know will make you want to join in with the conversations by leaving comments.

What do you do to save time when blogging? Share your blogging time-saving tips in the comments section and help those bloggers who are always finding themselves running out of time when blogging.

Looking for more blogging tips? Check out these posts.

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Reblog: Blog Description Example: How To Make Easy Choices About Your Blog Posts, 6 Ways

Are you looking for more blogging advice and tips?

Check out the following post from blogging and social media expert Janice Wald, by clicking the following link.

Blog Description Example: How To Make East Choices About Your Blog Posts, 6 Ways

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Comments are closed here. Please leave any comments for Janice over on her blog.

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