Lilac and Lime

Contrasts in colour, contrasts in life – Mary Bruce

#ThatAwkwardMoment : Blogging 101

Hmmm. I think I’m about to be bitten on the less-contemplated side.

Having been happily blogging for quite a few years, more than six in WordPress following my Blogspot introductory blog, KnowGoZone, from May 2004 to May 2010, this evening will see me explaining the ins and outs of blogging using WordPress to the Pietermaritzburg Computer Club. The problem lies in concisely verbalising something that has now become second nature.

Social media is a place I feel really comfortable and am fascinated by the easy access to like minds, likeable minds, and others.

The whole Internet forum relies on basic common sense : a healthy dose would reduce the ill effects of cyberbullying, trolling, Twars (Twitter wars) and the less savoury side of online interactions in general. When speaking to various audiences about how much or little personal information to make available on the Internet, I’ve frequently used the example of what details one would feel comfortable handing out to strangers at a public place like a shopping mall. With the development of Web 2.0 a decade ago we all acquired potential access to a universal audience. Smartphones have brought our publishing potential within laughable proximity. It is a matter of what we do with it. Being responsible.

On Why to blog
So many reasons . . . Blogging has given exposure to individual pockets of expertise and status to home industries, a foghorn to the whisper, a way to sneak what doesn’t fit into 140 characters into a hyperlink that can be Tweeted.
Personally I’ve always loved writing, inflicting myself on numerous penfriends throughout my teen years, wracking the psyches of my English teachers who were required to demand creative input and then cope with the results. Or, as one of my Twitter correspondents put it earlier this year, “you are a true writer; writing because words inside demand to be written”.
One of the driving motivations behind the development of Lilac and Lime was to leave a record for my (potential) grandchildren to read one day and discover who I am/was ; the name was chosen as an indication of the quirks in life that give me a surge of happiness and reboot the batteries when they need it.

On How to blog
The do’s and don’ts of blogging, written last month, encourages bloggers to be true to themselves. That is the bottom line. My first drafts are always written as the thoughts come to mind, as if I was speaking rather than writing. Saved drafts can be edited and polished before being published.

And, How to blog, really
How to start a blog on WordPress.com seems a sensible starting point for a new audience, leading to the nitty gritty at https://signup.wordpress.com/signup/.
Choosing a theme is always fun but can be distracting at a time when one’s mind is likely to be full of so many other plans and thoughts. The theme I chose for this blog remains one of my favourites, although I’m not sure if it is still available.
WordPress has tons of features but I don’t know how many of them we’ll have time to go through tonight.
And one can use WordPress to create a website rather than a blog.

I love blogging, do not devote enough time to it, and hope to find a way to share my enthusiasm for the sport with my audience tonight.
– – – – – –
And now, the article I had been looking for all week : How To Start a Blog on WordPress.com. It’s extremely comprehensive and gives one access to any aspect of creating a blog via a nifty navigation bar on the left.

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