Sunday, November 16, 2008

Windows Live Writer - your offline blogging tool

windows live writer Recently I tested this software and have a trial post to one of my blogs and as of now, I am very pleased with what this blogging tool has to offer. If you are looking for a tool that you can use to write your blog post offline and have them posted instantly or later then this Windows Live Writer is a "must have" for you.

I would like to thank Ruchir Chawdhry for posting up the 16 Essential PC Applications for Bloggers through Darren's Problogger site and Windows Live Writer is one application that I should be using since I started to have multiple blogs. In my opinion, I think this tool is great to enhance productivity because I don't have to go online and log in to my blog account to write as I can do so using this cool software. In fact, I am writing this post within Windows Live Writer itself. Once again, thanks to you guys. I am relatively new to blogging so this is a good discovery that is worth sharing with new bloggers.

I think it is best if you try out the tool yourself then decide of whether to stick with it or otherwise. For now, this tool is great to use as I find really easy to get the whole blogging thing up and running. I have quickly learned the shortcuts F12 to preview what this post would look like in my blog and F11 to return to the post text editing window. I could easily put a picture or even copy and paste YouTube's code for embedding video on any post.

The alignment feature work very well too. It is as simple as selecting all texts with CTRL + A and right-clicking and selecting align - justify to get the entire document presented in a justified format. Other features include inserting hyperlinks, pictures, tables, maps, tags and videos.

The only thing that I noticed missing is the thesaurus feature although the spell checker would help as well. Thesaurus works better if you're tired of using the same word over and over. It should help you to learn new vocabularies too. I hope future releases of this free to use tool would have a built-in thesaurus feature. Or maybe I should get those writing enhancement software from White Smoke or others that can be used almost anywhere - within your favorite text editor or a chat window.

Try the Windows Live Writer yourself. Maybe you will like it too. Get it from http://get.live.com/writer/overview

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

What can you do in the event of writer’s block?

Like many of you, I too, had faced plenty occurrences of writer’s block. Writer’s block is the state of mind when you’re unable to think or develop meaningful sentences from a list of ideas or even from the very basic of writing – finding a topic or an idea of what to write.

Symptoms

The obvious symptom when you are having a writer’s block is when your mind is completely empty as you face the blank empty document on your word processor or blog text editor. Another one is when you’re half way of writing something and then your mind ceases to develop what you have written and you tend to construct utterly useless sentences that only you could understand but not your readers.

Cause

Writer’s block comes from various sources, possibly from everything around you and in your mind. Your physical state of body might be tired, your mind might be filled with too many thoughts and you just can’t focus. Even too much background noise would upset your writing mood.

Options

There are a few things that you can do to overcome writer’s block. But the easiest way out is to identify what causes the writer’s block. You need to know what stopped you from being creative. You must find the source of the problem and rectify from there.

If your mind is too tired to think, then take a break off from writing. Have a good rest and come back when you’re ready with a fresh mind. If there’s too much noise in the morning when you’re writing, then adjust for a different timing to write – write at night when the atmosphere is more peaceful.

You can also browse through other blogs on the Internet, read what others have written and develop some ideas from there. This doesn’t mean copying what others have written, but rather thinking of what are the points that others have discussed and have your own say by writing in your own words. This will keep it original in your view of the story.

Sometimes doing things other than writing might just be a good way to generate some ideas. Ideas might come out of nowhere while you are cycling at the park, reading newspapers, listening to music or even surfing the Internet. Thinking about writing itself can be stressful, so do things that can remove your stress.

If you have some ideas but not sure of how to develop them in your writing, jot them down in a notebook or scrap book and use them later. You never know how useful they can be once your mind is ready with words ready to flow.

Conclusion

In essence, it is basically finding what works for you and perhaps indulging yourself with activities that are not just focused on writing. Always take a break when your mind is not ready to write and don’t force yourself as it will likely not to work.

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