Tag Archives: blogging

Why I use WordPress.com and why you should too!

Before I became an author of books, I was a writer of poems and a musician but most importantly, I was a community manager on MSN communities and I was a graphic designer.

During that time as a community manager, I learned that creating your own graphics is absolutely essential. If you used the same stock graphics as everyone else, you might as well shut down the community. Nobody was going to join. It did not matter how great your content is. What mattered and always will, when it comes to any website, is the appearance. If it does not make a great first impression, it will be the last impression.

This is true of every website on the Internet. The reason is quite simple. If you cannot make an original site, then people have no confidence in your professionalism. If they have no confidence, they won’t buy, read, listen, or even bother to glance around.

That does not mean that the persons behind the site are necessarily unprofessional. It just means they were too lazy to make themselves look professional. On this one, I will have to side with the masses. If I go a website that is poorly designed, I will leave. Who has time for extra headaches, right?

The point I am trying to set in here is, it is more important to learn how to create your own graphics, than it is to spend money on buying someone else’s stuff, which they have sold a billion times. No where on my blogs will you find stock photos(other than company logos for recognition purposes). I create all the graphics myself.  This guarantees that nobody will have graphics like mine and it WILL be a new experience for them.

Someone suggested on Twitter to today, that you use premium themes. But let’s analyze this for a moment. If you buy a premium theme and use stock photos(graphics), then that is a the equivalent of serving shit on a golden platter. You completely wasted your good money, UNLESS you are going to go all in and pay for custom graphics. Then you are basically looking at someone building a website for you.  That is going to cost you at least $500.00!

My suggestion would be the inverse. LEARN TO CREATE YOUR OWN GRAPHICS! Then no matter what kind of theme you choose, you can create a custom site for your visitors.

Sure it will take some time, but the money you save can be used on advertising!

Invest $100.00 in photo editing software such as Photoshop Elements. It has enough customization options for most people. Learn a little html. Do these in your spare time, when you are not creating. A website, you should not expect to be an overnight success. It takes time and that is the time you can use to learn.

You can start that journey toward a successful website right here at WordPress.com. There are so many great themes with various options, including customization options, that it is the perfect place to start and even keep your blog permanently, as long as you do not plan on making money from the blog itself(placing ads). Note: They may have changed this policy and allow you to do that now.

This website offers plenty of free space( I have over 1000 pics on this blog and still have lots of space), they have a great spam blocker that actually works. They have plenty of widgets(plug-ins), layout choices, etc. all with no coding knowledge required. You can upgrade your account at any time to remove ads, add more space, or even install a custom or premium theme, should you desire.

Now, I do not use a custom landing page. I never will. It has been my experience that you cannot force people to do anything they don’t want to do. Trying to do so will only cause them to leave or to give you false information. If you want people to visit and return, just make their visit enjoyable.

Feel free to look at my stats on the front page and you will see I am not talking out of my ass. I have nearly 700k visits in eight years time. That is nearly 100k visitors a year and with less than 12 posts a year. Obviously, I am doing something right.

If you follow the path I suggest, not only will you save money, you will have fun learning something new, and you will have more money to put into things that matter…like advertising! There is a reason big companies spend lots of money on it every year. It actually works if the advertising is targeted.

Of course, the obvious question might be why don’t I advertise? The answer is simple…I have no money. I spend it all on medicine thanks to Obamacare. But that is a different story, for another day.

I hope this article you found useful. If so, please like, link, share, or comment. Your support is always welcome and appreciated!

Take care!

Axe

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Just so you know…

image

I have posts on Twitter that state there is a lot here and that this blog is old. Just so nobody thinks I am a liar. Here is the proof.

Nine years worth of jokes, funny pics, reviews and rants. Try to enjoy yourself a little and see what you have been missing right under your eyes.

Axe

 

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Filed under General Stuff, Pictures, Thoughts

Welcome!

With nearly 20k followers on Twitter, and over 3000 subs on various blogs and music sites, it is impossible for me to welcome each person individually. Of course, I wish I could. I love meeting new people and hearing their stories! Until I find a way of cloning myself a few hundred times, this will have to do. 🙂

A brief summary about myself. I have been writing since I was 12. I love the horror genre and that is what I read and write mostly.I also write fantasy and mystery.You can learn more about my writing just by surfing this site, if you so desire. I have been singing and playing guitar since I was 15. All of my music is FREE. (who actually sells music these days?) The music I create embodies Rock, Blues, Chill, EDM, and Downtempo. Give it a listen if you like.

I have only recently started doing photography, but I studied the craft very carefully before beginning, and spent the money required, to do it justice. I am unhealthy and trying to build a legacy, before I die from all of the health problems I have. Everything I create is with that in mind.

I currently live in a new RV in Texas, with my wife and a majikal cat named appropriately, Jinxy. If you want to learn more about me, or just seek something to discover, here is a complete list of all my website-

http://jb-thomas.pixels.com-My main photos site. You can buy prints, cards, iPhone cases, tote bags, towels, shower curtains, and much more with my best photos on them.

http://licensing.pixels.com/profiles/jb-thomas.html– If you would like to license my photos for books, online ads, TV, or many other things, go here.

https://www.facebook.com/jbthomasphotography– I will be making all future photo related posts here. Come join us!

axewielderx.wordpress.com -Main blog with jokes, funny pics and music.

authorjbthomas.wordpress.com– This is where ALL of my writings are. Poetry, prose, short stories, Novel chapters, and more.

amazon.com/author/jbthomas– My amazon author page where you can buy both e-book and paperback versions of my books. There are more book links, in the My Books” section of this site.

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5251326.J_B_Thomas-My Goodreads profile.

http://www.reverbnation.com/lucidchaos– My reverbnation website. All music here is in mp3 format only.

http://lucidchaos.bandcamp.com– Any format, lossless or mp3, is here. For those who like the best sound!:)

http://soundcloud.com/lucid-chaos– I only put sneak peeks of music WIPs here. I don’t care for soundcloud’s limitations.

http://www.youtube.com/user/Axewielderx– Various videos ranging from music videos to gaming casts.

http://www.facebook.com/authorjbthomas– My FB author page. This is strickly for the fans. I hate FB and self iced my personal account there.

http://axewielderx.tumblr.com/-Tumblr– It catches most of my posts from nearly every blog.

https://twitter.com/JB_Thomas– My twitter account where I do most of my daily posting.

I want to thank each and every person who has followed, subbed, or become a fan. I hope you enjoy the ride you just climbed aboard, and tell your friends, before the train has left the station for good. Take care and feel free to contact me anytime. I will answer as time allows. 😎  If you would like to connect on any of these sites, just send me your info via the contact page.

Axe

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Filed under Animation, Apps, Comedy, funny, games, General Stuff, Guitar, Humor, Jokes, Little Moments Of Truth, Music, Other Places, Pictures, Plasma TV, Podcast, Poetry, Polls, Reviews, Shadow Shifters, Thoughts, video games, Videos, Where the Water Leads, Writings, Xbox 360

Taking a break has benefits…

While I have touched briefly on this subject in a few posts here and there, I have never really went into detail on what taking a break means, for the creative driven individual. The thing that drives creativity is ideas. Ideas don’t just drop out of the sky. Ideas come with life experience, through the process of living life. That is why a lot of authors don’t create that break out book until after 40. They simply have not lived enough, to really fill out those great ideas, with actual life experiences that relate to the book. It seems like such a simple idea and one probably everyone should know. Complex, deep, and meaningful writing comes from living life. Write that down and don’t forget it. It is important.

The reason I say this…my reason for telling you this hard truth, this cold reality, this small bit of wisdom, is because knowing it will benefit you. No, I was not just trying to be some arrogant asshat in saying it. I was trying to give you something.

At any rate, the only way you are going to live that life you need and require, to write the most amazing things people have ever read in their lives, is to take breaks from creating, and then doing something different. What that something is, can be anything you want. The point is to step away, step back, and recharge the creative batteries. Then when you come back to creating, you will find new ideas, and plenty of drive to follow through on them.

Obviously, there are certain times, when taking a break from creating, should be done. I don’t recommend doing it while in the middle of writing a novel, however, if that is part of your writing style, then by all means go for it. However for most, the optimum time to take a break, is the when you do not have any big projects your deeply involved in and you are feeling a bit worn down.

I must confess I had a 2nd reason for making this post. That was to announce that I will be taking a break from creating myself. This year I have already completed 9 songs, finished a novel, and made over 20 writing related posts this year. My creative batteries are in definite need of recharging.

So what does JB do to “take a break” ? JB escapes reality by playing video games. Yep! I know not extremely exciting but video games have a couple of unique advantages for me. They don’t require me to be highly mobile, which I am not, at my young age of 49, and with my health issues, climbing Mount Everest just does not seem like a good idea. Video games are also great generators of ideas. Whether it be a simple game that requires little more than good controller control or it be games that require you to think and solve puzzles. Each has its merits in the creative thinking department. Yes, I could further explain how each has its merits, but I have enough faith in my reader’s intelligence level to just move on.:)

This time around I will be playing with a New Xbox One. I picked one up on sale yesterday that included Titanfall. I was also able to download for free Project Spark and Killer Instinct. And of course, I purchased the latest in the Assassin’s Creed franchise, Assassin’s Creed 5: Black Flag. Also this time around I may broadcast my horrible gameplay at Twitch. While thinking games I do fairly well at, the games that require fast fingers I have to die like half a billion times to get it right.,lol! My gamertag for xbox live is oOLucidchaosOo, for those who want to join me or just hang, w/e.

While I am on break I won’t be creating anything new. That does not mean I won’t be getting online in the mornings, and doing some tweeting, because I will be doing that. It only means I won’t be starting any new projects until my newest book, Shadow Shifters has been released. It is still in phase one of editing but I am told they are 3/4 of the way through the book, so probably in a couple of weeks it will come back to me for my first edits on it, and then it will go back to editing, rinse and repeat until everyone is happy, then to the beta readers for their input on it, then final adjustments and formatting are done. Then the book is published. So as you can see, I may be on break for a little while. 🙂

The only posts I am likely to put here will be reviews on the games/system I am playing with, and announcements on the Shadow Shifters progress on my author blog.

Until I type again…

Axe(aka JB)

 

 

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Filed under games, General Stuff, Thoughts, video games, Writings

My lists on Twitter…

The purpose of them is not what most people probably think. I have seen tweets about how they can be used to build blogs and such. Considering I have 658,899 hits(as of this moment) to my blog, that obviously would not be of use to me. Furthermore, 7 yrs. worth of content brings a steady stream of visitors everyday. So what is the purpose of my lists on Twitter?

The answer is a lot more simple than you would think. The purpose is to help out my followers. By sorting my followers into various lists, my followers can then easily find others with similar interests. While they are still a work in progress, my goal is to have it up to date weekly, with every follower being on at least one list.

Lastly, I should mention the list category of “Awesome Followers”. These are the followers who seem to grasp the basic concept that a favor should be returned. If I re-tweet or favorite a post of yours, you should do the same for me. Those followers who get this idea will make it to this list, those who do not, won’t. Furthermore, those who forget this simple concept, will be removed from the list. I believe good followers should be rewarded and that is what this list is for. 🙂

I hope this brief explanation was helpful to those who took the time to read it. TC and have a good one!

Axe

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