Now that I’ve sold you on the benefits of blogging, I’d like to share some tools that make the task easier. Here’s what’s making me smile when I blog these days (I write for 5+ different blogs, so I need all the help I can get!):
1. Windows Live Writer: If you have a computer with Windows 7, you’re in luck. If not, chunk the one you’re working on and go get one! The best feature on Windows 7 to me is Windows Live Writer. With it, you can manage multiple blogs, add posts and switch between accounts without logging in or going to different websites. Once you set up any and all blog accounts you manage, you can choose the blog and start writing. You can add photos or videos, maps…anything you can do with WordPress or other blogging software. It’s software, so you don’t need to open a website to use it.
2. Snipping Tool: Another Windows 7 genius moment is the Snipping Tool. Prior to this, I’d find an image I wanted on a website, do a screen shot. Open Paint and paste it there. Save it, then modify in another program. Sigh. That’s a lot of work (I now realize). I now just launch the Snipping Tool, select the area I want to cut, and save. I did it for this post.
Why I Love It: I love my time, so anything that saves it gets my thumbs up!
3. Amplify: This is a new tool I’m playing with that I found on Google Chrome Web Store. You install the app, and on any webpage you can snip part of it (similar to Snipping Tool) and share it on social media or blog about it. I like this because the only option before this for sharing a site was either to copy the link and then go to wherever you wanted to share it (multiple sites if necessary), or use a “share this” widget. Now I have the ability to share across many channels, or just save something for later.
Why I Love It: Sometimes I just care about part of a webpage, not the whole thing. With Amplify, I can cut the part I want and leave the rest, just like we used to do with newspapers!
Do you use these tools or others to blog? Please share with us!