Is Your Blog As Friendly As You Think It Is?

A great reminder from Hugh, to check out how friendly your blog is… besides these are just good habits to have in our community. ❤

Hugh's Views & News

Just imagine it’s your first day here on Planet Blog and you and everyone else with you hears the words “Hands up all those that want 1,000 followers.” What percentage of people in your group do you think would put up their hand?

When we start our journey in the world of blogging, getting as many followers as possible is very important to all of us.  Why write and blog if nobody is going to read what we have to say?

So we’ve managed to gain lots of followers and we want more, yet we seem to also be losing followers.  I wonder why?

I learned very quickly that building and maintaining your very own blogging community is an important aspect of blogging and one of the easiest ways to start losing followers is by not acknowledging those followers that leave comments.  In my time as a blogger I’ve seen this…

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100 Best Writing Websites: 2017 Edition

Make 2017 your best writing year yet with our list of the best writing websites. Enjoy! ❤

Source: 100 Best Writing Websites: 2017 Edition

#Loveuary❤ – Rules And A Prompt List Of Sorts!

Ritu is sponsoring a “Loveuary” for February! She says: “As you know, I am embarking on a month of love related posts, be it creative or thoughts from the heart. I don’t know if anyone is interested in accompanying me on my journey of ‘love’ but if you are crazy enough to join me, here are the rules.” You will want to check out this post to see what you can come up with! ❤ Sounds fun!

But I Smile Anyway...

loveuaryAs you know, I am embarking on a month of love related posts, be it creative or thoughts from the heart. I don’t know if anyone is interested in accompanying me on my journey of ‘love’ but if you are crazy enough to join me, here are the rules.

  1. Below are a set of possible prompts, if you need them. They are a mixture covering many aspects of ‘love’.
  2. Please don’t feel tied to this list, you can post whatever you want, as long as it’s love related, be it poetry, prose, opinion, photos, or even songs!
  3. If it makes life easier, tie it in with other prompts or challenges you may already take part in. Just remember the #Loveuary tag and ping back to my daily post!
  4. I will aim to post daily at around 5am GMT, so if you are taking part, try and link back to my #Loveuary…

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Author Interview: Hugh W. Roberts

A great interview with Hugh Roberts about his new book. Check it out! ❤

Write Through the Night

Hugh W. Roberts is a new author, and has just recently published his first book, Glimpses, a collection of short stories.  Besides this, he is a blogger, and has a really inspirational story.  It was my pleasure to have the opportunity to ask Hugh a few questions and learn more about both his book and his life!

You have dyslexia, and make no secret of it. What was it like growing up with this, and do you think it caused people to see you differently?

While growing up, dyslexia was not an acknowledged condition. Teachers told my parents I was either slow and/or not very intelligent for my age. You can imagine how that made me feel, while sat alongside my parents, knowing that sometimes the words I wrote or read just seemed to get jumbled up. I was often taunted by other children about all the mistakes I’d make…

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Spotlight on #Blog Visions for 2017 ~ New Year’s Delight

Here is a great gathering of authors you’re going to love! Happy New Year! 🎉🥂

TINA FRISCO

Flower Garden by Lucie Stastkova Image courtesy of Lucie Stastkova

I’ve thought for some time now that I’d like to have a theme for my blog. Many of the blogs I follow have themes I find most enjoyable. I’ve asked several of these folks to be my guest, tell us what they envision for their blog in 2017, and include their images and links.

I want to thank all of those who responded and wish them great success in the New Year. They are listed below in alphabetical order by first name. Please visit their sites, like and follow, and perhaps download a book or two. Enjoy! 

*************

Allan HudsonAllan Hudson ~South Branch Scribbler

2017 will see the South Branch Scribbler hosting a variety of authors with some artists, photographers, and musicians. I have a lineup of terrific folks for the first three months of the New Year and am adding more weekly. I will be trying…

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» Writing Is My Job.

I like to think that I am a work in progress when it comes to my writing. I haven’t gotten paid for anything I’ve written (yet) but I am going to keep working on perfecting my craft. Don’t get downhearted… read this and keep writing and learning. ❤ Click the highlighted link at the bottom of the post to read more.

Every writer, at some point in their career, has heard the words, “Writing isn’t a real job.”  Only another writer can truly understand the frustration of hearing those words and being made to feel as if your dream is only a waste of time.  It can be even worse if someone suggests that it is time to stop playing around on the computer and find something meaningful to do.

Source: » Writing Is My Job.

#BOOK REVIEW BY @COLLEENCHESEBRO OF “Better Blogging with Photography: How to Maximize Your Blog Using Your Own Images,” BY AUTHOR @windigenredhead

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  • Title:  Better Blogging With Photography
  • Author: Terri Webster Schrandt
  • File Size: 551 KB
  • Print Length: 50 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN:
  • Publisher: Second Wind Leisure Publishing
  • Publication Date: July 6, 2016
  • Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B01I2NNLRU
  • Formats:  Kindle
  • Goodreads
  • Genres: Blogging & Blogs, Computer & Technology, Digital Photography

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**The author provided me with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review which follows**

“There is truth to the old adage that a picture is worth a thousand words. As a blogger, are you weary of constantly hunting for images to illustrate the subject of your blog posts?

Perhaps you are a new blogger struggling to get more readers. Or a seasoned blogger continually seeking inspiration for quality blog posts.
This guidebook is designed to help you utilize your own images on your blog or website.

While free image sites abound, there are limitations to using so-called “free” images. Gone are the days when bloggers can innocently copy and paste an image from the web and paste it into their blog post.

What will you get out of this guide?
In each chapter, I give easy but important tips for maximizing the use of images on your blog’s website and within each blog post.
Seven informative chapters walk you through–
-the importance of using images;
-the real dangers of using others’ copyrighted images;
-easy ways to edit your images using free programs and apps;
-building unending inspiration and content around your own images;
-attracting readers with images used in quotations, blog link-ups, and other tools;
-how social media sites link your images, and why you need them;
-a list of image resources available.

After reading this short guidebook, you will want to grab your smart phone or inexpensive digital camera and start taking photos!”

My Recommendation:

*The author provided me with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review which follows*

It was with great joy that I was introduced to Terri Webster Schrandt’s book, “Better Blogging with Photography.” The best part was that someone finally wrote a book which spelled out in detail how and where to find photos bloggers could use on their blogs without violating copyright laws. Not only does the author give you credible links, she also teaches you how to edit your own images. She concentrates on the WordPress blogging platform, however, all of the information can be applied to any site a blogger chooses.

If you are a beginning blogger or even a well-seasoned blogger, you will find each page jam-packed with information you will be able to immediately put to use on your own blog. Do you struggle with blog and header design? Guess what? That’s covered too!

In Chapter Four, the author discusses how your photos tell your stories. The emphasis here is how to gain inspiration from your own images by highlighting your written content with attention grabbing photos that draw readers to your posts. Everyone loves a great photo, so why not use your own to create interesting content on your blog?

This book would also be a handy reference guide for setting up your own blog. What are you waiting for? Grab your copy today! Terri has a free offer running from 9/29/16 – 10/3/16!


GRAB YOUR COPY TODAY!

My Rating:

Character Believability: N/A
Flow and Pace: 4.5
Reader Engagement: 5
Reader Enrichment: 4.5
Reader Enjoyment: 4.5
Overall Rate: 4.5 out of 4 stars

Author, Terri Webster Schrandt

About Terri Webster Schrandt:

Terri is a non-fiction writer and retired recreation and parks practitioner living in Northern California. As a university lecturer teaching leisure education in the recreation and parks major, Terri takes leisure very seriously because it involves one-third of our lives…really!

Obtaining a Master’s Degree at age 50, Terri wrote her thesis on the Four Generations in the Workplace, sparking her love of writing at midlife. In addition to writing and blogging, she offers consultation services and conducts and presents workshops for a variety of organizations.

Second Wind Leisure Perspectives is her blog about living a leisure lifestyle.

Her active lifestyle involves windsurfing, stand-up paddling, camping, reading, writing, walking the dogs, traveling, and…

You can find Terri on Twitter @windigenredhead, on Facebook at Terri Webster Schrandt. And, if she’s not out taking photographs and having fun you can find her on her blog, Second Wind Leisure.com.

see-you-soon

#WQWWC – Writers Quote Wednesday Writing Challenge – “Unity”

It’s Ronovan again. Yep, my week to host the challenge. First of all make sure to visit last weeks comments for all those who participated in the Autumn theme.
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This week I chose ‘UNITY’ as the theme.

Make sure to put a link to your entry this week in the comments section. You can also do a ping back in your post so people that read your blog can find us and join in the fun. Remember you can do Flash Fiction, Poetry, or pretty much anything as long as you include a relevant quote.

There’s a lot going on in ‘Merica that seems to be pulling us apart. Underneath it we know we’re together, we’re a nation. But we need it to be more than an underneath thing. It seems like big things to overcome: politics, race, gender, and so much more. But it all starts with each person. We each have to overcome how we were brought up and what we were taught to be norms of society. I grew up in a rural Mississippi area, but somehow I ended up one of the least racist people you’ll meet. We had a few African Americans in our school and I got along fine with them, just like I did with the ones I ended up in school with in a city school in Georgia for a while. Maybe I was intentionally going against some of what my family was saying, or maybe there was some underlying truth they were teaching that I picked up on in spite of there occasional verbalizations.
I’ve chosen a few quotes I thought appropriate for the theme. I hope you enjoy.
“Unity is strength… when there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved.” Mattie Stepanek
“Where there is unity there is always victory.” Publilius Syrus
“Even if a unity of faith is not possible, a unity of love is.” Hans Urs von Balthasar
“No doubt, unity is something to be desired, to be striven for, but it cannot be willed by mere declarations.” Theodore Bikel
“You don’t get unity by ignoring the questions that have to be faced.” Joe Weatherill
I think that last one is a huge one. So many of us through the years have ducked and covered in hopes the troubles will pass over. And yes, they do pass over, but they come back around and end up scarier the next time.
Much Respect and Love
Ronovan of RonovanWrites

Mention in Dispatches – Posts from the bloggers I follow – Aliens, Police Thrillers, Tips for organising your holidays.

Meet some great friends and bloggers! 💖💖💖

Smorgasbord - Variety is the spice of life

mention in dispatches

The first of two round-ups today.. this one is a small selection of the posts that I have read this week from the talented bloggers that I follow. There does not seem to be enough time at the moment but I am looking forward to a few months ahead when we are moved into our new home, the work is completed and we can settle back into our own routine.  One thing I now realise is that we have become creatures of habit.. so a little shake-up was in order.

Anyway on with today’s pick of the posts you might like to visit.

Colleen 1122016

Colleen Chesebro with a round up of celebrations, book releases and excellent posts from around the global village of the writing community – head over and you will find some great new blogs to follow.  https://silverthreading.com/2016/05/29/silvers-tea-party-a-monthly-tea-sharing-event/

Hugh Roberts

Hugh Roberts reviews Children’s author Janice Spina’s thriller Davey & Derek…

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How to Get People to Read Your Blog: 5 Savvy Strategies You Can Apply Today

Here is some great advice on how to build a blog audience. ❤

If you build a blog, readers won’t automatically materialize. Follow these steps to grow a healthy blog audience.

Source: How to Get People to Read Your Blog: 5 Savvy Strategies You Can Apply Today

WordPress Gremlins?

 

Is it just me, or has anyone else had problems with WordPress this week? My biggest issue is that I cannot get the little comment box to work on the black border menu of my blog. I cannot retrieve messages there at all since I changed to the Libretto theme.

Interestingly, I can go to the comments, or someone else’s blog and retrieve my messages… just not on my own blog.

Has anyone else had these problems? Could it be something wrong with my computer?

I can retrieve the messages on my blog on my laptop but not my HP desktop computer?

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. I have cleared my cache, updated Google Chrome…

Thanks in advance!

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Sharpen Your Writing Skills: 6 Free Tools to Help You Write Better Blog Posts

 

More great tools to help you blog! ❤

Want to write more in less time? You need these tools on your side.

Source: Sharpen Your Writing Skills: 6 Free Tools to Help You Write Better Blog Posts

Silver Threading is Going DARK!

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As hard as Silver tried, she could not convince Comcast to install her WiFi any sooner than next week! So, Silver Threading is going off the grid as of tonight. She will not be able to comment or post until her WiFi is restored.

Colorado Glory

In the meantime, please enjoy this breathtaking view by Patrick Chin. His photography is spectacular!

Thinking of you

See you soon!

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Silver Imposes Order on Chaos

Hi, everybody! We made it safely back to Florida and let me tell you… we are worn out! 2,600 miles in 8 days and we even bought a house. This was an amazing trip and we could not be happier.

I have 13 days to pack up the rest of our belongings for the arrival of the moving truck on October 28th. Of course, after the 28th I will be out of contact through much of this time with no WiFi except at the motels we will stay in along the way. Once I get my utilities up and running in Colorado I will slowly make my way back into the blogging world.

Please be patient with me during this transition. If I do not comment on your blog, just know that I will try to catch up as much as I can and that you all are with me no matter where I am.

Silver’s book reviews are operating at a standstill right now. I will resume reading and reviews once I get back to Colorado. There is just no way I can work all of this in my schedule. Thanks for being patient. ❤

Silver is worn out!

Inside Silver’s Brain – The Great MOVE

I have a million and one things going in on my head right now with this impending move looming on the horizon I don’t see it getting any better for a while.

I hope you all won’t mind if I am scarce on the blog for a bit. What with packing for our house hunting trip and packing household goods I find I just cannot concentrate on anything else at the moment.

Ronovan, from his blog Ronovan Writes, and Mel, from her blog, Melissa Barker-Simpson are going to post occasionally from Silver Threading while I am away house hunting in Colorado for the next ten to twelve days (10/4-10/15). I will share pictures along the way from our trip.

I have scheduled two Writer’s Quote Wednesday posts and Ronovan is going to do the wrap-up for them. Mindful Monday will just have to be mindful without me for a few weeks as I concentrate on this move. I know I will be behind on my book reviews so please be patient. I will get them done.

Please forgive my lack of interaction during this time. I always tell everyone that life comes before blogging… I need to take my own advice to heart. Thanks for understanding. I have the best blogging friends in the blogosphere!

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WHO Wants to Help Us MOVE? #BeWoW

We had an exciting day on Monday. First I had to go to one of my favorite places… the dentist! NOT! I survived my teeth cleaning and came home to find a message on our phone.

A couple was coming by at 4:30 P.M. to view our house – on a Monday afternoon! I kicked in the afterburners and ran around in a frenzy cleaning floors, dusting, and making everything spic and span. Ron manned the vacuum and took care of that issue for me. Meanwhile, Sugar and Spice slept on the couch!

Our real estate agent thought he would be there for the appointment to see if he could get a read on their intentions. At the exact time, we had agreed to let them view the house, Ron and I, including Sugar and Spice, jumped in the car and drove around for about a half hour.

After the couple left, we returned home and talked with our agent. He said this couple sure asked more questions than the other folks did that viewed the house recently! He said you just never know in these instances. The couple had not made a bid. L We were sad to say the least.

At 6:30 P.M. Monday evening, our agent called and said the couple’s real estate agent had texted him saying they were writing up a contract!! By 8:30 P.M. they had made a verbal offer and we accepted it. We now have a written contract to sell our house! WOO HOO!!

Image credit: Pixabay Free Images

I kept telling Ron that we had to make it through both of those September eclipses before our luck would change! It was interesting because last week we ran around getting all the things done that we needed to do before we moved, even though we had no idea when it would happen. Doctor appointments, vet appointments (for Sugar & Spice) and the dreaded dentist appointments were all completed and out-of-the-way for our cosmic energy to flow.

Many, many thanks to all of you who supported me through this crazy time. You guys kept me going when I felt the stress build up. I cannot thank you all enough. You know who all of you are, too! ❤

By next Tuesday, October 6th, we will be on the road Colorado-bound to do some house hunting. I am not sure just what the date will be for the house closing, but it tentatively  is set for October 29th!

This will impact my blog and some of my regular posts (Writer’s Quote Wednesday, Mindful Monday, etc.) so please bear with me. Book reviews will also slip in the schedule. Rest assured, I will review your book in due time.

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Just think of all the pictures of our trip I will be able to share!

Thanks again for letting me share my exciting news! Many thanks to Cherokee Billie for her accurate prediction of exciting changes that would happen after the Mega Moon Eclipse.

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Image credit: Eating 4 Balance

Stay tuned for more exciting developments!

Hurry Up and WAIT… and Other Miscellaneous Bits

Come on in and have a seat. That’s right. There you go. I have bottled water, coffee, tea… your choice.

I thought it would be fun to just chat for a change. I figured it was time to explain all the crazy blog themes I have been experimenting with and to bring you up to date on my life.

First, the themes. My friend, Ron from Ronovan Writes wrote a great post about our blogs and widgets and all the things we think makes life easier for our readers on our blogs. Make sure to check out this post because it has some valid points worth considering when you are setting up your blog.

Silver is a little crazy!

I know many of you thought I was mad as a hatter for all the theme changes the last few weeks. Well, I am and that has not changed! Actually, I was playing with images and load times for the images. Many of my blog posts are heavy with images so this was something I had to deal with. I had a couple of people say it took a long time for my post to load so they could read it. I did not want to eliminate all the photos for my Writer’s Quote Wednesdays!

I finally settled on the Penscratch theme. I like the way this one loads my header. When I reduced some of the widgets I had, it started to load faster too. In addition, I like the “featured images” part of this theme. It allows you to feature a photo to attract the attention of your readers which is a nice feature.

I also took Ronovan’s advice and reduced the number of blog posts that load on my blog to only five at a time. I think that has made a difference in the quickness of the theme to load. If any of you see differently, please let me know.

Do not be afraid to experiment.

The other thing I did was to eliminate receiving emails for all of your blog posts. Some days I was dealing with 300 emails a day and that is just too much. My phone receives all my email and it was ready to explode! I do not feel so stressed with all the mail since I decided to make another important change.

I have started using the WordPress reader exclusively. That is not exactly true, I do Google your blogs and find your posts that way if you don’t show up in the reader. This whole blogging adventure is meant to be fun but if all I do is go through emails I do not have time for writing and leaving comments. That was a huge concern for me.

Some of my other blogging friends, Hugh, from Hugh’s Views and News, and Judith, from Barrow Blogs have written some excellent posts about finding a happy medium with your blogging and the number of followers and who you follow back. Please read these posts and see if there is a way that you can reduce your blogging stress. (Just click on the bolded names of their blogs to read the articles).

Blogging is fun. Quit making it so much work!

On another note, we had an open house yesterday for our house sale. Only one couple showed up, although all the comments we received were favorable. Patience is something that I am dealing with along with the realization that this is an excellent house and someone will buy it. So, it is “hurry up and wait time.” I do feel a bit more peaceful about the waiting part. After all, everything in the South is slower and there is nothing you can do about it. Good things come to those who wait! J

Thanks for visiting with me and I hope your week is stupendous! If I have not visited you in a while, stop by and let me know. I want to make the people who visit and comment on my posts a priority. You are all important to me. Thanks for taking this great journey with me.

More Information on Amazon’s New Payment Rules

Are you still confused about Amazon’s new payment rules for KDP Select?

If you are, here are some great resources for Indy authors to read to find clarification. This fabulous break down of all the new information about the new Amazon rules features our own Chris McMullen in this article from The Write Life.com.

Read the article here: The Write Life.com

Thanks for stopping by. I will see you all again,

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The First Post Challenge

My dear friend Erika, from her blog, Author Erika Kind, has asked me to take part in this challenge by sharing my first blog post.

This actually is a great idea because it shows how we have evolved with our blogs over time. I had no idea where I was headed with my blog when I started writing last year. All I knew was that it was called Silver Threading and would deal with my journey into retirement.

I actually thought I would talk about gardening in the beginning. Look how far I have evolved since then. Now, I am writing my first novel! I belong to a fabulous community of writers that I enjoy each day. Life is good!

Here are the rules:

  • Copy-paste, link, pingback or whatever way you want to, your first post.
  • State what type of post that was. E.G. Introduction, Story, Poem
  • Explain why that was your first post.
  • Nominate 5 other bloggers. Five because I know the pain of opening a lot of tabs at once.

Here are my 5 nominees:

Melissa Barker Simpson

Randoms by a Random

Daily Echo

Book Chat

Legends of Windemere

I titled my first post, “Welcome,” and it was published on March 26, 2014.

Happy Spring to everyone, even though it does not seem to be spring yet in many parts of the United States. Here in Pensacola, Florida it has been a cold, rough winter. We had many cloudy, damp, cold days with winds coming out of the north, instead of the warm tropical winds from the south. I was able to grow a winter garden though and that was a fun attempt. My cabbages, broccoli, and kale grew quite well in the protection of my shed and neighbor’s fence.

Here is a picture of my grandchildren with the last of the cabbages. Gardening in this part of the Gulf Coast is a challenge in the summer. I hope to share some of my tricks and mistakes along the way so others and can enjoy the peace of gardening in Northwest Florida. Please follow my gardening saga and share your tips and tricks that you may find helpful to the rest of us struggling gardeners out there. Along the way, I want to share my other interests such as crocheting, jewelry making, and reading, crafting, baking, and weight loss and exercise tips. Join me in my journey into retirement as I silver thread my way to a more fulfilling lifestyle.

 

It is only proper for me to say thanks for joining me on my fabulous journey. I couldn’t have done it without all of you!

And, if you don’t want to take part in the challenge that works for me too! Let’s have a glass of wine instead!

Cheers!

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While I am on Vacation…

From May 8th through May 12th, I will be spending time with my family. Our oldest daughter Ronda, is coming for a quick visit, this time with the new man in her life. Ron and I expect to barbecue, go to the beach, drink cocktails, and repeat those events numerous times while we get to spoil our daughter for just a little bit. The grandbabies are staying home this time, so I hope to do something special on Mother’s Day for Ronda.

I have some special blog posts lined up for your reading enjoyment while I am off living the high life. I got a wonderful response to my invitation for guest bloggers and have met some wonderful new folks. Their posts will start appearing tomorrow, May 8 – 12. I hope that you will take the time to visit their blogs and get to know them, or even follow them.


I will see you all when I get back,

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