Hey friends, I’ve had this question come up several times in the recent weeks, so today I’m sharing my #1 tool for writing blog posts, it’s Windows Live Writer! I know for many of you this is not news, but for others still writing your posts in Blogger or WordPress or TypePad, if you’re a PC user, there is a free and user friendly alternative.
This is not a sponsored post, this is my personal opinion and what works for me. Every blogger needs to find his or her groove when it comes to posting, and WLW is my go to source for creating all of my articles – I’ve been using it for over two years and absolutely love it.
Since it’s a Windows based application, WLW is designed for PC users, but I did read this article which allows a Mac user access (Mac lovers, if you try it, let me know if it works). I won’t go through the basic step by step for installing WLW, but it’s really simple, just follow the prompts to have the application upload your blog theme to get started.
The first difference you’ll notice between writing in Blogger or WP and using WLW is that it imports your blog’s theme – mine is seen below.
My number one frustration with blogging in the WordPress platform is the time it takes to resize and upload images. I can’t stand it. I take all of my images in high resolution (2000+ px) but my blog column width is only 600 px wide. With WordPress (and I assume Blogger?) all images must be resized before importing them but there’s no need to go to the trouble if you use WLW – it does it for you, which is a huge time saver.
With WLW, picture uploading and resizing happens in a simple step. In addition, once you hit publish, all of your images (in WP) are instantly uploaded to your media library, thumbnails too.
Here’s how it works. You take your image (whatever size) and copy and paste it into your draft or you can use the “insert picture” and find your file image, then click on it. I often just copy it from my picture file and paste it in the post, easy peasy.
To resize your image, you can do it manually (seen above in the top left corner) or click and drag it to the size you want. No need to resize your image before you import it, WLW does it for you. It’s really brilliant.
You can also change the name of your image and quickly add hyperlinks attached to your image or highlighted text.
In this world of quickly circulating images without proper credit, you can watermark them in WLW before publishing to protect your work.
I also prefer WLW because it’s formatted much like Microsoft Word and allows you to change your fonts, their size, color, etc. I’ve never used anything other than my standard Lucida Sans Unicode font, but the option is there (be sure to research what fonts are universally read in all browsers first).
Another great tool is the “preview” tab which allows you to see your blog post as it will appear when posted, with your header, sidebar, etc. This is similar to a preview in your blog platform, but there is no need to open a new window, it happens by clicking a tab (seen in the bottom left corner). You can scroll up and down quickly to review your entire post.
There are a lot of other perks too like spellcheck, the ability to copy and paste HTML under the Source tab, or to manage multiple blogs in one editing program. If you have time for more than one blog, please send me a detailed email and include all of your secrets, thank you.
WLW makes video importing easy too.
The WLW posts are automatically saved to my desktop in a file (which I have set to back up daily with Carbonite in case of any problems like I recently experienced) providing an additional layer of security – they can always be republished again should anything happen to my server or blog.
Any of your blog’s widgets, pages, tables, plugins, etc. need to be managed inside of your blog’s platform, and you need not make any changes to your existing blog layout to use this program. It’s simple and easy to use this post editing application – it’s also free and user friendly. It may just help you blog easier, so give it a try if you haven’t already! Find the free download here.