I really love blogging but one of the biggest headaches is dealing with the online text editors. I’ve found that the editor built into WordPress is one of the best out there but even it is a bit quirky. Spell Check works in Firefox but not Internet Explorer. Keyboard shortcuts for formatting are hit and miss. Adding a picture is a major hassle…First you have to compress the image, and then you have to upload the picture and add it to the text of the blog. Resizing the image and laying it out in line with the text is next to impossible without switching to the raw code and editing the HTML by hand. I love coding web sites but when I want to blog I just want to blog. I want a true what you see is what you get (WYSIWYG) editor.
Enter Microsoft Word 2007. Imagine using all the document creation tools you’re familiar with in Word as the editor for your blog. Word 2007 can directly upload to most blog servers. I don’t mean typing in Word and then cutting and pasting into a new blog post on your server. I mean typing in Word, formatting in Word, adding pictures in Word and then clicking Publish in Word and having it show up on your server. Word 2007 can upload directly to the following blogs; Windows Live Spaces, Blogger (blogspot), SharePoint blog, Community Server, TypePad, WordPress, and most others if you have an API for your blog. You can even define an alternate location for images if you don’t want them hosted on the same server as your blog.
To begin, open Word 2007 and click on the new “Office Button” located in the top left corner of Word and choose publish>blog and bang out a post. Insert any images and format everything the way you want it (there are lots of online tutorials for using Word). You could type your post and then click publish>blog but switching to blog mode first will eliminate the page breaks and margins. It will also limit your image and page formatting to things that can be recreated in HTML.
The first time you enter blogging mode you will be prompted for your account information. If you have more than one blog don’t worry, Word can handle this.
Simply select your blog provider and click next
Enter the URL for your blog in the space provided (mine is eventhorizons.wordpress.com), enter your username and password, check “Remember Password” if you want to be able to publish without entering this information next time. Click “Picture Options” if you want to define another web server to host you images on.
As soon as you switch to blog mode you can access to the blog toolbar.
This has some great features.
Clicking this button will post your entry to your blog and upload all your images. You can choose to Publish or Publish as Draft. I always select draft so that I can check it one last time online before I make it public.
This simply opens your default browser to your blogs home page
Clicking this button adds a category dropdown to your post. You can select from any of the categories that you’ve previously defined on your server or enter a new one. Click it again to add a second or third category to the posting.
This is really cool. Clicking here will give you a list of all of your posts. Even post that you did not create with Word show up. Using this tool you can open previous post in Word and edit them.
This menu lets you edit your account settings or setup additional blogs to manage. If multiple blogs are configured you can select one to be the default.
When you create a post there is a dropdown to select your account (if it is different from the default).
You can also title your post
Double clicking a picture pulls up the picture toolbar which has a number of great features including cropping, borders, edge effects (soft edges, glow, drop shadows, bevels, reflections, and 3-D rotations), brightness, contrast and compression. Compression is one of the most useful…By default Word will upload compressed JPEGS of all your images…no more need to edit your pictures before blogging and no more 3MB pictures on your blog!
Picture with shadow and reflection
Picture with 3-D rotation, soft edges, and bevel.
There are about 40 presents as well as full control over all the options for an almost infinite amount of combinations.
Hope this saves you some time on future blog posts (course now you need to buy Office 2007!)