Tuesday Tip: Dust Off Your Blog!

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If Gladys can do it, so can you.

You heard me: dust off your blog! Or your website, if that’s where your writing stuff is laying about. 

Here’s the thing. The beginning of a new year is the perfect time to do a little house-cleaning. And by house-cleaning, I mean getting your web presence in order. (I suppose you could actually get your home in order, too, but I’d probably be the last person to give tips on housework.)

The best part is that it doesn’t take a ton of your time. Just check all the links you have listed. Do they take readers to where they’re supposed to go? You’d be surprised at how often website domains change names (or maybe not, if you’ve noticed that I changed my domain name here at the blog). And if you come across an inactive site or blog or link you’ve listed, get rid of it. There’s no point in keeping clutter around.

And then, spruce up things a bit! Have you kept the same old, same old links to your work?   A visitor might think you haven’t produced anything since 2007! So add your new stuff, a touch of color here and there, maybe rearrange your favorites, freshen things up.

In a half hour or so, you’ll look around and think, “Wow. It looks completely different up in here.” And besides, you know how much everyone loves a sweet-smelling blog.

What Not To Do Wednesday on Business Cards

Every time I think I’m doing something swell (writerly speaking), I forget about the ripples. You know what I mean about the ripples? Like when you drop a pebble in the water and the ripples expand outward, affecting the waters further and further away?

So I’ve been researching agents and editors for the Rutgers conference (and I have found SO many wonderful sites/blogs packed with great info! I’ll share those soon!) and I came across a blog post from a writer who’d attended in the past and she mentioned business cards. And I thought,  thank goodness, I have plenty of business cards. Because I have THREE different–no, FOUR different business cards.

And then one of those ripples banged into me. Self, I said, you better check your business cards since you’ve made some changes lately. And uh-oh. Most of the cards had the Hall of Fame blog on it.  A few had my old website. Which means I’ve been blithely handing out business cards for the past…let’s see, 9 months, with outdated information.

Oy. I suppose I don’t need to tell you that I was pretty annoyed with myself, grasshopper. I should make a checklist of “What To Do When Changing Your Web Presence” rather than what I do do, which is changing one thing, then catching up with the ripples as they inevitably bang into me. Don’t do that, grasshopper. Make your checklist, and put “Check/change business cards” on the top of the list. Then you can do a happy dance (like me!) when the NEW BUSINESS CARDS arrive from Vistaprint! And P.S. I also ordered a sheet of sticky business card labels that I could slap on a manuscript, which I thought was scathingly brilliant, not to mention ripple-evading.

(If I’m being perfectly honest, I love designing business cards. But you probably had an inkling of that when you read about the four business cards, piled in my desk drawer.)