Tools for Beginning, Intermediate or Advanced Bloggers.

In my first three posts, I covered the basics of setting up an account on WordPress and how easy it is to remember how to use WordPress even after a long time away. Today I am going to talk to you about some tools that I think are useful for any blogger, but especially those like myself who are just beginning their journey.  Over the next couple of weeks, I am going to do some more in-depth posts about the tools I am about to present.  So, without further ado…

The first that I would like to mention, is a blog post titled A Lesson in AP Style for Bloggers Content Marketers by CursiveContent.com. This post is a short introduction to incorporating some of the most common elements of the AP style guide into your writing. It is by no means a substitute for the full unabridged style guide which is updated yearly.

The second tool I would like to bring to your attention is an e-book that can be viewed entirely online without the need to download at Bartleby.com. The book is titled The Elements of Style and was written by Author/Professor William Strunk Jr. in 1918.    A quick review of the book and his rules of style that it contains reveals many rules I’m sure we are all familiar with, even if the familiarity was only subconsciously. It is hard to say that the book has not become the basis for modern English writing style.

The next two tools are both to designed to assist anyone with grammar.  The first is a website called Grammar-Monster which not only gives you the opportunity to take daily, fun, little, quizzes on points of grammar but also offers very clear and concise definitions and examples of the multitude of grammatical items. The second is a plug-in called Grammarly which will take the guess work out of your grammar for you by checking your writing and suggesting corrections.  The plug-in works with Google Chrome browser for sure.  (It may work with others but I haven’t checked and won’t until I do its in-depth review.) It also has plug-ins that are designed to specifically complement Windows and Microsoft Office; yes, they are two different plug-ins.  Both toolsets can help you build confidence in or blow the rust off your grammar skills.

This tool is a great resource for even the most experienced writer to use when posting an article online.  It is the Readability Test Tool by WebpageFX.com. According to their site, “the average American adult reads at a 7th to 8th-grade level.”  By using their Readability Test Tool you get a free analysis and breakdown of how easy, or difficult, your article is to read. Of course, the easier it is to understand the more people will read it.  Incidentally, this article had:

ReadabilityCapture

The above tools will leave you, my fellow practitioner, in good hands as far as helping to write concise and polished articles for your blog that will be easily understood by your audience. But, what do you do when you want to write your next fabulous article, and nothing is coming to mind? That’s where the Blog Idea Generator from MakeAWebSiteHub.com comes in.  Type in 3 words, they say they prefer nouns, but you really can use any 3 words that you like. Click the button and the generator will spit out at least 5 ideas for blog topics for you.

The last tool I want to give you is a motivational article titled Why Doubt Stops You from Creating Your Best Work and What You Can Do About It. Yes, I said motivational, but don’t worry it’s not the kind of zip and pizazz article you might imagine when you think about a motivational speaker. It’s an article written by a fellow writer at PositiveWriter.com, who has also struggled at times, with finding the will to write or the topic to write about.  I recommend it as an addition to any writer’s bookmark collection just so you can go have a peak to remind yourself that you are not the only writer who has ever struggled or suffered a crisis of confidence.

I hope that you will find these tools useful to you in your endeavors. Please feel free to look for my upcoming, in-depth review of these tools for you. With that said, in the words of Garrison Keillor “Be well, do good work, and keep in touch”.

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