I use WordPress.com but also Blogger.com for my blogging needs, and the Blogger, I find, very limiting in the formatting processes. You don’t find much in the way of bells and whistles unless you understand a bit of HTML (which I happen to know). So I discovered the fun-filled world of blog writers. I’ve used two so I’ll post a real quick review here;
Your first question is probably ‘Why use a blog writer in the first place?”. You can post through the text areas of the blog services, but I find a few drawbacks with these;
-Limited with insertion of graphics. It can be tricky how to upload, resize, and edit a picture. Blog writers provide lots of features, including formatting the picture to look like rounded corners, or even a photograph.
-Limited with certain code that limits monetization of blogs. Not that I want to ever get too obnoxious with ads, but I like the fact the Blog writers enable me to insert with a button a link to Amazon or a pertinent article.
Benefits of blog writers services or programs:
-If you have more than one blog, you have to copy/paste to another blog to share a post. With a Blog Writer you can cross post very easily, posting to multiple blogs at a single time..
-You can write incessantly and schedule publishing each post as you want. I have yet to use this feature, but I might explore this at a later date.
-Backups to the computer as well as a draft on most blog sites.
-Allows for more HTML and other features very easily, often with a click of a button.
Services and programs:
Scribefire– This is an extension to the Firefox or Chrome browser. Safari and Opera also can use this extension. Its pretty straight-forward with text field that are labeled clearly so you can post what you need to post. It includes formatting such as indent, bullets, and inserting of graphics and even video.
I found its layout a bit dull and colorless. Features are basic, but a step up from what most blogs offer. Its nice but I found Windows Live Writer so much better…
Windows Live Writer is my blog writer of preference. This is a free program you download and run on the computer. It has the same features as Scribefire, but the layout offers a better user friendly interface.
– I can add plugins such as Zemanta and Amazon quick Link.
– It offers lots of fun features to edit photos in the program such as rounded corners, or set to black and white.
– Includes a wordcount feature.
– I could add smileys if I want from MSN, Yahoo, or AOL.
– I can insert a video by either upload, or from a video site such as YouTube. That allows me to insert and resize directly in the window.
I’m finding the Zemanta plug in incredibly helpful because it provides me a way to add pictures, related articles, and in-text links for what I want. Its quite handy.
You may find using a third party service/program to post blogs a bit cumbersome, but I can’t live without the the flexibility and features Windows Live offers me.