The featured image in this post is from one of my favorite weekly photo challenge themes, “Waiting,” from September 2017.
Preemptively missing The Daily Post? Seven-plus years of posts means there are tons of resources (including many you’ve probably never seen, so they’re new to you) to keep you inspired and busy. They’re not going anywhere, so you can come here and dig in at any time.
To get you started treasure-hunting in the archives, here are some of our favorite posts, handpicked by Daily Post contributors — and some of yours!
Picking a few favorites was hard! So I cheated, and picked one roundup post and one series: “The Principles of Design” posts, by our in-house designer Kjell, is an incredible collection of resources — from color to font to layout — with wealth of accessible tools for even the most design-challenged among us. And the handy “Everything Widgets” roundup helps you make the most of these super-flexible, super-powerful little geegaws.
If I had to pick one single post to recommend, though, it’s “About Page 101: Making Them Care,” by former editor and painfully funny person Michael Pick. Your About page will be one of the most-visited pages on your site, so it behooves you to spend a little time making it compelling. Most of them — and I include About pages I’ve written in that — are not, and Pick’s post contains my favorite nugget of About-page wisdom:
A shopping list and a delicious meal have a lot in common (okay, ingredients), but they’re not the same thing. Imagine a hungry friend comes over for dinner. But instead of serving them your signature dish, you read them a list of ingredients. “Pasta” you say. “Cheese” you say. “Tomatoes” you say. Half an hour in, they start to cry.
That’s exactly what most About pages feel like. “I come from blah blah” you say. “I like dogs” you say. “My best friend Winnie thinks it’s cute when I blow my nose trumpet” you say. But none of it holds together. It’s a shopping list. Your job is to put those parts together and make them into something greater than their sum.
Blogging is 50 percent about writing posts and 50 percent about learning how to engage thoughtfully with other members of the community via comments. So many of us struggle with commenting, and Michelle* offers some timeless advice for helping you make strong connections online in “Kick-Start Your Comments” and “Don’t Undermine Your Comment with a Plug.”
* I’m blushing.
I love rules (and breaking them, on occasion) and I love writing, so it’s not entirely shocking that some of my favorite posts revolve around writing and rules: “Declutter Your Prose: Three Phrases to Avoid” and “True Confessions: Bloggers’ Writing Quirks.” I also cheated (as I said: rules are fun to break sometimes!), because this etiquette roundup I’m choosing includes many links to some of my other favorite posts.
I tend to write run-on sentences because, first of all, I think they’re funnier and I typically write rants and a run-on sentence mimics the slow build-up and frenetic energy of ranting, and also I watched a lot of Gilmore Girls in my formative years and the long-winded patter of that show is ingrained in me, and also I write the way that I talk, and I tend to talk without breathing, but beyond all of those reasons, run-on sentences are simply more interesting to me, both visually and in a sort of “inner monologue cadence while reading” kind of way, and I like them and I use them and I am not ashamed.
Although short sentences are fine, too. It’s good to vary sentence structure.
– Elizabeth’s confession, from “Bloggers’ Writing Quirks”
We often looked to you, our readers, for your advice and expertise. A few of my favorite posts, then, are roundtables — conversations with groups of writers and photographers on various topics — because they allowed us to highlight the many voices and perspectives of our audience around the world. I recommend these roundtables on freelancing writing, the scariest posts you’ve ever published, using watermarks on photos, and street photography again and again.
A good photo adds so much value to a blogger’s arsenal, whether or not you’re a photoblogger. I really appreciate Jeff’s post on “Creating a Photograph vs. Taking a Photograph,” which is chock-full of tips on how to approach photography and improve your photographs — and it’s accessible for shutterbugs of all levels, so we can all learn to take photos that truly enhance our stories.
If we can use “most popular” as a stand-in for “favorite,” here are the three most popular posts in Daily Post history as chosen by you, the studio audience.
Unsurprisingly, they touch on evergreen issues that every blogger or website builder faces: choosing the perfect name for your blog, organizing and structuring your pages and posts, and good grammar.
To browse the rest of The Daily Post archives, use the Category widget down at the bottom of this page — it’ll help you sort through the wide range of inspiration, advice, and tutorials available here. And if you’ve got a favorite post, share in the comments!