Savvy Freelance Writer

The Craft of Narrative Nonfiction


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Must-Haves

If you’re going to go it alone – or at least try to – in establishing yourself with a blog and various other social media accoutrements, here are some things that can save you some sanity.

Podcasts: Yes. You create the audio recording. You can use GarageBand for that. It works great. You might want a different mic. All of that is discussed in this post. However, unless you bleed through your eyes, you may not discover that you need to burn a feed and submit the feed to Apple. How do you do that? My suggestion is to run to Feedburner. It works. Oh. And you’ll also need to upload your audio file somewhere. You can upload it to your WordPress site, but you have to upgrade it first. You’ll find that info when you click on Media and look closely at all the stuff you ignore when uploading images. Continue reading


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Tackling HTML and CSS

I’ve noticed I can add CSS to my blog to make it do what I want. That has not made sense to me until now!

Yes. Going with the theory that knowledge is power, I am tackling HTML and CSS – in the most basic sense. Continue reading


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The Value of Giving Up

There is value in giving up. I’m sure of it. I mean, how many hours is it worth to get the image for your blog to fit in the blasted little square? I’m not sure, but I know  it is not the number of hours I’ve spent futzing with it.

Help_mI’ve been a financial analyst, so I know the mesmerizing quality of figures run through various scenarios. I’ve already admitted to being blog-stat-enchanted. Neither of these practices come close to the effort I will put into something that “only needs a tweak.”

There in lies the fallacy.

There is no such thing as “only needs a tweak.”

In the spirit of the original cookie to a mouse, each tweak inevitably leads to another. and another. and another. Maybe this is because I have no real idea of what I’m doing. I’m ready to admit that freely. However, as a writer, I need an online presence. I also need a way to promote my book through the site I created for that purpose. In order to do that, I either need a lot of green – so not happening – OR I need the stubborn determination and dumb luck to do it myself. Continue reading


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Blog Stats

What can I say? I’ve been studying my blog stats like a miser counting his gold coins.

I’ve read everything I can find on click counts, views vs visitors, the use of ….more in posts, linking internally, linking externally, linking extra terrestrially. I’ve also read and practice the publicize tips through Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest… People who haven’t seen me in years are starting to hate me!

But those stats. Those stats are so alluring.  Continue reading


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Hmmm

Has anyone else noticed that writers don’t just write any more? Maybe they never did, but I distinctly remember not doing a lot of what I now do when I first started freelancing. What am I talking about? This whole social media – presence thing.

In the past two weeks I have created a podcast, burned a feed, submitted the podcast to iTunes, pleaded with them to help me switch to a different feed, tweaked the feed, and seen it all appear in iTunes – pretty much as I’d envisioned it. Continue reading


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Hits to Followers?

Sigh.

I have two blogs that contain science content. One is directly related to my book about scale model testing and fluid dynamics: Fluids in Motion. The other has general science information on a variety of topics: Synthesis.

Hits on Fluids in MotionSince my book, Modeling Ships and Space Craft: The Science and Art of Mastering the Oceans and Sky, was released by Springer in October, I have had hits on my blogs from all over the world! It’s very exciting. It’s also marvelous to know someone is actually reading my blog.

The thing is, while I’m getting a lot of hits, I’m not getting a lot of followers.

My question to you is twofold:

1. Does it matter that they are not following the blog?

2. How do I convert hits to follows?


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Redirecting Your WordPress Blog

I admit it. Sometimes, after I’ve started something, a better idea comes along. The choice is to wait until I’ve thought of the ideal name or thing – oh, wait. That’s what I thought I did – or get going with what I’ve got. The penalty of starting and changing your mind can be excessive…

The last time I needed to switch my blog to a new url it was a nightmare. I honestly don’t want to think about it, let alone describe it in detail. THIS time I decided I needed a different name for my fluid dynamics blog – I had Fluid Dynamics in Action as the name because it was about fluid dynamic principles in action. It seemed to anyone interested in fluid dynamics that I was simply not aware that fluid dynamics is the study of fluids in motion.

Anyway. I wanted to change the url for my blog from FluidDynamicsInAction to FluidsInMotion.

All I needed to do was redirect the traffic from the first url to the second. It costs $13 per year and took about three minutes to do. Imagine my delight to discover all my content and formatting is now at the new url!

Yes! So you can go to http://fluiddynamicsinaction.wordpress.com and you’ll wind up at http://fluidsinmotion.wordpress.com. If you go to http://fluidsinmotion.wordpress.com you’ll wind up there, too.

Oh. Happy, happy, happy day!

If you need to make a change between WordPress urls or even a complete change in domains, this will walk you through it.