Okay, I waited for Bethany to put up a Tuesday post but it looks like she's still in new mommy-land. (Bethany, take all the time you need and enjoy every moment of it.) However, we lucked out because Barbara Ray is guest blogging today!
Feeds For Dummies...
Do you try to keep up with the web logs of members of MWVRWA, other genre writers, agents, editors, and publishers? Do you fall behind because it takes so much time to visit each site, some of which have nothing new posted anyway?
I’ve recently discovered a way to save time and still keep up with all the blogs I’m interested in reading. It’s called “Feeds.” For the barely computer literate like me, here’s a step-by-step way to set up your blogs on feeds so you can go to them when and only when a new posting has been made there.
The next time you visit your favorite web logs, check each one for a feed button on the right side of the tool bar just above the main screen. If that web log has a feed, the button will be orange-with-white curved stripes (if the blog doesn’t have a feed, the button will be gray with lighter stripes).
To add the blog to your list of Feeds, press the feed button and wait a moment while a white screen with that blog’s entries in a simplified format comes up. At the top of that screen there will be a banner message about feeds with a button at the bottom saying, “Subscribe to this feed.” Press the button. A decision box will appear again asking if you want to subscribe. Press the Subscribe button.
Now read the entries down to the last one you read, and go on to the next web log. If you want to save the entries to read later, look on the right side of the main screen near the bottom for a line that reads “Mark as read” with a check mark in front of it. Click that line and the current entries will show up again the next time you visit this feed. That’s all there is to subscribing to each web log (at least for PCs with Windows XP).
Once you have blogs on your feed, you can check them for new entries by pressing the single yellow star on the far left of the tool bar. Right next to the button for Favorites will be a button labeled Feeds. Press that button and a list of your feeds will appear.
The feeds that have new entries since your last visit will be in bold print. When you click on them, you will get the white simplified screen you got when you first subscribed to the feed. You can read the entries there if the whole entry is included or if you are just skimming through the entries to find the ones you are interested in reading. If only a few lines of the entry are listed and you want to read the whole entry, you can click on the little green arrow next to the author’s name at the top of the entry or on Continue or More at the end of the entry. From this screen you can read comments and add your own comments to the blog entry.
Not all web logs have feeds, so some you will still need to visit individually from your list of Favorites. I don’t know how a web log writer puts their blog on feeds; maybe someone who has their blog on a feed can enlighten us on that in their comments to this posting. Right now the MWVRWA blog is not on a feed. Would you like it to be? I know I would. Who could do that? Elisabeth?
I know quite a few of our members use Apple computers. Can someone tell us how to subscribe to feeds on a Macintosh?
Is your writing blog on a feed? Did the number of visits to your blog go up when you put it on a feed? How do you use blogs in your research, networking, and marketing?