Category Archives: Web Writing

How To Embed Storify In WordPress

For those who know about or are familiar to Storify, the social media tool that allows users to create timelines using social sites from gathering and customizing information in a way they want it to look on social media. There are now options to get it for WordPress.

On a self-hosted blog (WordPress.org), there are a couple options to get Storify. Those options are:

  • Storify’s embed codes that are designed to work anywhere supporting HTML codes: copy and pasting the code of your
    published story onto your blog post.An example of a Storify embed code.
  • If that doesn’t work, install the Storify plugin . It would make posting Storify stories much easier. A WordPress plugin for Storify.
  • If a WordPress theme doesn’t allow some of the Storify embed codes, find a WordPress plugin like User Role Editor that allows “unfiltered” HTML code.
    A WordPress plugin for user role editor that allows "unfiltered" HTML code.

How to Embed Storify in WordPress.com or WordPress Sites Without a Plugin

On a hosted site like WordPress.com, Storify embed codes or HTML by default aren’t allowed, however, you can still link to Storify posts and content with Twitter embeds, blockquotes, and screen captures, such as this example from a Storify story on WordPress security news during a major security incident a few years ago.

The screenshot example would be shown below, with a custom link around the image or before or after it to the actual news story:

Screenshot example of a Storify Article image embedded in WordPress about a WordPress Security Issue.

Using Twitter embeds in WordPress.com, or linking manually from a self-hosted version or WordPress (or one using the Jetpack WordPress Plugin), you can simple paste in the links to the tweets, often the source of the material used on Storify such as these on the same news story.

The effect is very similar to Storify, as shown in this screenshot from the original Storify story, what an embed might look like:

Storify example of the WordPress Security News Story.

Be creative and you can emulate the Storify effect.

How to Embed Storify on a Self-hosted Version of WordPress

If using the self-hosted version of WordPress, you can seamlessly embed or create Storify stories into your post using Storify plugin for WordPress VIP for WordPress.com VIP members, Storify WordPress Plugins, or use some of the other Storify WordPress Plugins.

Storify is an easy way to find, collect, and share stories to friends and family and these were options in getting it for WordPress.

For More Information on Embedding Storify in WordPress

How to Write a Comment Policy

When creating a business or commercial site/blog, you’ll want to hash out your policies, especially your comment policy if you are going to allow comments anywhere on your site.

A Comments Policy is a statement defining your policy regarding comments on your blog. It is also a “responsibility statement”. It informs the reader of what you will allow on your blog, what you will not allow, and what they are allowed to do. It establishes publicly the responsibilities of each party involved.

Lorelle VanFossen

These days, a Comment Policy have become a web standard to help your readers better understand the rules when visiting.

As you decide how your comment policy is going to be laid out, consider the following: Continue reading How to Write a Comment Policy

Tutorial: How to Create a Link List

Links are a vital part of the World Wide Web. Anything can be made into a link, from words and phrases to images. A link list is, as the name implies, a list of links. In HTML, a list of links can be easily coded with <ul>, <ol>, <li>, and <a> tags. In WordPress, these are the same exact tags used to create a link list inside a post.

In this tutorial, I will walk you through the process on how to create a link list inside a post. Lorelle’s article, “The Art of List Making,” is a valuable resource on making link lists and it serves as very useful information for this tutorial.

In this tutorial, I will guide you through creating three different types of link lists in both the text and visual editors: the unordered list, the ordered list, and the nested list. Continue reading Tutorial: How to Create a Link List

WordPress on the Road: Be a Road Warrior

According to the Oxford Dictionary, a person who travels, often as part of their job and does work at the same time, is considered a road warrior.

roadwarriorWordPress users are able to successfully work and travel at the same time while experiencing cloud computing made easy.

This article will address the issues of taking WordPress on the road and covers: supported mobile devices, post by email, writing offline, and shortcodes.  Continue reading WordPress on the Road: Be a Road Warrior

Understanding Your Audience With Personas

When you first studied the fundamentals of effective writing, you probably learned what an audience is. For example, “My audience is people who like cats,” or “I am writing for people interested in learning about the Spanish Inquisition.” Knowing who your audience is helps you to tailor your style and the information you provide in a way that your specific audience will understand best.

However, it may not be that simple. You can sum up your audience in one lump statement, but doing so prevents you from understanding the diverse needs and qualities of those who visit your site. Fortunately, creating personas for your site is a great way to understand your audience and be a more effective writer.

What is a Persona?

In the context of web design and usability, a persona is a hypothetical user of your site based on real information you have gathered about your audience. Step Two Designs says personas “act as ‘stand-ins’ for real users and help guide decisions about functionality and design.”

Typically, you should have three to five personas that represent your site’s audience. According to Boxcar Marketing, ideally the personas you create should represent both your primary users and your secondary users. These personas should be similar in that they share a relationship with your site, but should be different enough to help you recognize variances between the groups actually viewing your site. Continue reading Understanding Your Audience With Personas

Why Not Center?

In order to write valid HTML, you need to avoid the elements that have been deprecated. Many HTML tags, including the <center> tag, are now obsolete. It turns out that HTML, like all technology, is constantly evolving, changing, and improving. While the HTML tag is still part of the HTML specification, it will not be included in the future. If it’s not included, browsers won’t support it. This will result in Web pages that may not work in future websites or applications.

Why is the <center> tag deprecated?

Many HTML elements are deprecated in favor of CSS style sheets, the design aspect of the HTML architecture. The <center> tag is one of those elements. While it once centered whatever it wrapped around, CSS styles now manage the centering process.

This article is about how the <center> tag came to be gone from HTML, no longer supported by the time HTML 4 (XHTML 1) was adopted, and why. Continue reading Why Not Center?

Disclosure: It’s Your Responsibility

A disclosure policy helps to inform visitors how the site content corresponds with and affects the user. The policy should be carefully endorsed in a clear and concise way that cannot be manipulated.

If your website is compensated for content by advertisers in the form of: endorsements, cash, or merchandise, or if you have hired staff to test and blog about a product, then your company should specifically disclose this information in the disclosure policy.

Continue reading Disclosure: It’s Your Responsibility

What is the Perfect Post Length

One of the most popular questions for a beginning blogger is, what is the minimum and maximum length that a blog post should be? When beginning to write or blog on the web, there are a lot of questions on what the do’s and don’ts are in blogging. Don’t allow the title of the article fool you, because there is no such thing as a perfect blog post length.

When you begin to blog, one thing to keep in the back of your mind is that most people who do read blogs typically do not have a lot of patience to read huge posts. A second tip to always remember when blogging is to always be passionate, be unique, and always make you content actionable. It will keep your reader entertain, no matter how many words you end up with in your blog post.

What Does Your Audience Have To Do With It?

Above all, it will totally depend on the type of audience. This is why blogging best practices for word count varies. It shouldn’t matter if it takes you 250 words to get your point across or 1400, as long as you keep your audience entertained and engaged. However, there are a few guidelines to consider when it comes to word count, and
finally publishing the blog to the desired audience.
Continue reading What is the Perfect Post Length

Write Your About Page in 5 Steps

Congratulations! You have written something that has inspired your reader to say, “Wow! Who is this author? I want to know more!” Now you just need a fantastic biography for your About page so your readers can get to know you.

5 Easy Steps to Biography Awesomeness

Your About page should be an introduction to you. It should tell your reader about who you are and why you are an authority on your specific topic.

Your About page should specify your background, training, and overall proficiency on your subject. It should spell out for the reader why it is that they should listen to you.

If your website is professional in nature, you might want to take some time to consider branding before you write your biography.

Continue reading Write Your About Page in 5 Steps

Tips For Writing Successful Policies

Policies on a site are used to protect you and your content, as well as protecting your readers. So how do you write a successful policy page? There are a lot of things to consider when writing rules and guidelines. Most of these policies will be designed specifically for you, so every policy page will, and should be, unique.
Here are a few things to consider when writing policies:

  • Legal requirements (varies by country)
  • Style, tone, and organization
  • Relevant policies
  • Short versus long
  • Understandable terms

Continue reading Tips For Writing Successful Policies

Become a Better Web Writer: Quick and Essential Tips

A few important guidelines are all you need to transition from writing for print to writing for the web. This collection of tips will enhance your web writing skills, attract a larger audience, and keep readers on your site longer.

Write Catchy Titles

A catchy title is a sure way to attract an audience. Without a good title, potential readers will never click on the link to your article in the first place.

Ensure that the title is:

  • Brief
  • Clearly states its purpose
  • Creates curiosity in the reader
  • Properly capitalized (this is partially a style choice)

Brainstorming titles until you find a title that sounds perfect is a great technique. Don’t overlook this step. Continue reading Become a Better Web Writer: Quick and Essential Tips

Rant like a Rock Star

Modern society downplays the importance and legitimacy of a good rant, and they forget that even Shakespeare was a fan of the rant. The first known use of the word rant was in 1601. Today rants are widely seen as annoying, self-indulgent complaining, and are not generally recognized as important or legitimate pieces of writing.

There are 3 types of rants found in web publishing.

Continue reading Rant like a Rock Star

Blogging With Evernote

A graphic for EvernoteEvernote is a powerful note-taking tool that enables users to write and cross-platform share between computers, phones, tablets and other mobile devices. Evernote has the capability to save notes in different forms, such as: web sites, photographs, voice memos, or hand written (ink notes) notes. This tool is especially handy for anyone writing for the web.

As a blogger, it is important to keep track of many notes for current and future blog posts. Because Evernote is web based, it partners quite nicely with most blogging platforms, and enables writers to work side-by-side with their posts and articles.

Evernote can be looked at as a blogging workbench. By utilizing the following tips, you will better understand the purpose of Evernote, and will be able to efficiently apply these tips to your writing/ blogging routine. Continue reading Blogging With Evernote

How to Write Post Titles in WordPress

Post titles can be a great way for people to find your post, it can attract people through search engines, that is if they are used properly.

Post Titles and Themes

Most Themes restrict post title length to two lines, however this might not be the case for all WordPress Themes. If you would like to write long post titles, test out multiple WordPress Themes an check the single post pageview as well as the front page as they may look different.

When looking for a Theme for your site it is advised to look at every aspect of the Theme, and not just the home page, there might not be support for some headings, or there may be issues with images. Continue reading How to Write Post Titles in WordPress

How to Blog: Best Practices for Creating Content

Even the best authors need a lesson in how to write for the web.  If you’ve reached the point in your web development process where you are ready to overflow your empty webpages with eye catching, mind engaging, titillating content, then you may want to read some of the pointers this article gives.

Together, you and I will look at some of the answers to questions ranging from “How long should a post be?” to the mind grappling “What should I write about?” To begin, lets break down our lesson:

  1. KISS Your Titles
  2. Break Up Your Content
  3. Emphasize don’t EMPHASIZE
  4. Writing “Good” Content
  5. Graphics
  6. Further Reading

Continue reading How to Blog: Best Practices for Creating Content