By David Joel Miller, MS, Licensed Therapist & Licensed Counselor.
Creating your blog can be simple or complicated.
I’ll try to describe briefly the process of setting up a blog now that you have an idea of your topic, your intended audience, and the kind of content you’ll be creating. Some people get really into this you can have a lot of fun creating their blog. But it’s not necessary for you to be tech savvy. Remember if this 70-year-old man can create a blog almost anyone can.
Not being a tech type person, I’m going to use analogies here, so I don’t get the details wrong and mislead you.
So, what are some things you’ll need to do to get this blog moving?
Decide where your blog is going to live.
Your blog will reside somewhere. If you already have a website, you can put your blog there. But if you’re new to this, you will probably want to house your blog on a site that specializes in blogs. I have two websites/blogs. One lives in a small house I built. And the other is housed in a condominium development called WordPress. I believe WordPress is by far the largest housing developments for new blogs. I noticed some bloggers use a site called blogger.
Since I use WordPress, let me try to explain how I use this site. This will be an extremely simple description. I recommend you spend some time exploring the neighborhood before you decide where you want to move into. They have lots of information available and even some humans who can help you.
You create an account. You give your blog a name. They will check to make sure that that name is not already being used by someone. This name becomes your mailing address for information coming to your blog and going from your blog to readers. My blog’s name is counselorssoapbox. The free version of that site would use the web address counselorssoapbox.wordpress.com.
You can elect to buy a web address. I purchased the web address counselorssoapbox.com which is set up to send traffic to my location at counselorssoapbox.wordpress.com. I chose to buy the web address because I expected to use it over a long time and wanted to be sure it was mine. If you buy a blog name, you will pay a small annual fee kind of like homeowner’s association dues. Since I bought counselorssoapbox.com, I can move to a different web neighborhood, called a “host” If I ever wanted to.
My other site counselorfresno.com resides in a planned community developed by a web hosting company. If you plan on becoming a large enterprise, with multiple sites, and doing e-commerce you probably want your blog along with your other web pages on your own site.
Let me tell you a little secret. I discovered it was a whole lot easier using the site hosted on WordPress.com that it was managing the self-hosted one.
You need to pick a “theme” for your blog.
I think of theme as the floor plan for my house. Do I need a large brightly lit room to display my photographs or do I need a room with lots of bookshelves in file cabinets from my papers? If you go with WordPress.com, they have a number of free “themes.” The nice thing about having my blog live in the WordPress.com housing complex is that if I change my mind about the floor plan I need, they let me move to a different “theme.” Not only did they let me move, but they move all my stuff into the new theme for me, for free.
There are also a lot of premium floor plans (themes) that are available for a small one-time charge.
Themes can be customized.
Whether you decide on a free theme or buy a custom one, there are lots of options. You can change the colors, move the doors that lead from one part of your blog to another and so on. Themes also allow for you to create some storage sheds (called widgets) that you can line up along one side or at the bottom of your theme. I use some of these to store things like a list of the topics I write on and links to take readers to those topics.
If you like the idea of building your own house, you’ll love self-hosting.
Some people prefer self-hosting so that their blog is built on their own property. This allows you to do a lot of other things with your website and blog but adds to the labor. A little secret you might want to know. If you decide to self-host, you can still use all the WordPress blueprints. Which are available through WordPress.org. Keep in mind if you self-host there with be more maintenance. If your blog lives in the WordPress.com development, they do most of the maintenance for you for free.
So, at this point, you have the keys to your new blog. Next, you’ll need to make some decisions about the furnishings and where you’re going to put them. In the next post, I want to give you some do’s and don’ts for moving into your new blog. Don’t forget, if you have questions, please ask them. Otherwise, I’ll just keep rambling on with the story of my writing journey.
You’ll find more posts on this topic under – Writing.
Staying connected with David Joel Miller
Three David Joel Miller Books are available now!
Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.
Casino Robbery is a novel about a man with PTSD who must cope with his symptoms to solve a mystery and create a new life.
Sasquatch. Wandering through a hole in time they encounter Sasquatch. Can they survive? The guests had come to Meditation Mountain to find themselves. Trapped in the Menhirs during a sudden desert storm, two guests move through a porthole in time and encounter long extinct monsters. They want to get back to their own time but the Sasquatch wants to kill them.
For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Author Page – David Joel Miller
Books are now available on Amazon, Kobo, iBooks, and many other online stores.
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For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse and Co-occurring disorders see my Facebook author’s page, davidjoelmillerwriter. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.