Since Blogger has changed a bunch of things in the "back room" of everyone's blog, I've decided to do a post on "how to use Blogger's buttons and gadgets". It seems some of you DO need a little help, I'm not mentioning any names but I've noticed some alignment issues etc. on some blogs around town, lol. I decided that what I'd do is cover "Everything Blog" for this 101, including removing formatting mistakes in one swoop, using labels to their best advantage, getting pictures to left or right align with text beside it, making pictures the size you WANT them to be and how to correct some Blogger Bugs.
K - This is for paragraph formatting. I really don't use these but if you use paragraph titles and subtitles this is the way to do it. Depending on which you choose, it bolds the font and increases the font size. Play around and see what I mean, you can always use the "go back" button to undo what you did!
L - Use these three if you want to bold, italicize or underline your font.
M - This goes with the three above, it
N - This is your font color changer. If you don't like the color you chose I suggest using the "go back" button instead of just re-changing the color. Also remember, people have to be able to READ your font, including many who need glasses. Using difficult to read colors or smaller fonts isn't too smart. I suggest using the strange colors sparingly.
O - This highlights the text background with whatever color you pick. Once again, remember to not make it too difficult for people to read you! Check it with the Preview button.
P - Add a link. Highlight the text you want to make a link then click the LINK button. Add the URL in the window. (looks like this... http://justaddwatersilly.com/ NOT www.justaddwater.com) Check that you used the correct URL by clicking "test this link". If the blog or whatever you want to link to doesn't show up in a small window then you have screwed up the URL, try again, lol. If you want your link when clicked to open in a new window instead of going away from your site then check the "open in new window" box.
Q - Add a picture. Usually you'll use either "upload" from your computer or or "from URL". Here's a trick, if you want a picture beside your text, lets say the left side, you click on the left at the end of the first line of text that you want to be beside your pic. Leave your cursor there then click the add picture button and upload your picture however you want to. It will put itself directly above your text. Now, click the picture and it will highlight. Choose "left" and your picture will put itself on the left beside your text, cool huh?
R - Like add a picture but this adds a video from various places like your computer or YouTube.
S - This adds a jump break in your post. If you don't want your whole post to show on your "front" page but instead show your first few paragraphs then ask the reader to click to read more. Clicking brings them to the actual singular post page so they can read the entire post.
T - This is the alignment option. It allows you to align images and text to the left, right, centered or the fourth option squares off the text on both the left and the right sides by adding a few extra spaces between words, it makes text look very neat and clean. Remember, when you add a centered picture, you have to tell blogger you want to go back to left alignment or all your text will center under your pictures.
U - If this is clicked it starts a numbered list or a bulleted list which is really convenient because it automatically adds formatting to your list. It indents slightly and starts one line break after where you clicked the button. You therefore don't need an extra space between your previous paragraph and your numbered/bulleted list. If you add a line space it looks like there's too much space between the previous paragraph and your list.
V - This is the quote button. If you have a quote or some text that you'd like to "showcase", use this button. It indents whatever text is highlighted and slightly increases the font size. A really useful button.
W - This is a VERY useful button, it removes formatting. If you've copied and pasted something into your blog or you've made some colossal mistake and you just CANNOT get your formatting/line spacing etc. to work out, highlight all the offending text etc. and hit that button. It will take out ALL changes you made and gives you "clean" text. It also usually adds a bunch of space between paragraphs but that's easily eliminated with a few deletes. This is a bloggers best tool for when she makes some dumb mistakes and cannot figure out what happened.
X - When clicked, this button checks your spelling throughout your blog.
Let's move on to the right sidebar section... Once again, this is what it looks like.
One last thing I want to teach you, it's a REALLY cool thing you can do using the "Labels" section of your Post Settings. If you have a continuing series going on your blog or you have a theme of posts (like challenges once a week or somesuch) that you so wish you could "group" together virtually somehow, then do I have the solution for you!! What you do is create a button or blog badge to represent the posts you want to group together. For instance, as you know I have a Blogging 101 button in my sidebar. The cool thing is that if you go click it, it will bring up all the Blogging 101 series that have so far been published!! Cool, huh? It's easy to code and do, here's how. When you write a themed post that fits with that button, lets say this post, then what I want to do is in the labels section on the right side of the editing page, you want to add THE SAME word in EACH of your themed blog posts. So, for Blogging 101 I add B101 in the labels section of every Blogging 101 post. I do the same with my Artist's Play Room posts, I use APR in the labels section of EVERY Artist's Play Room post. Now, make SURE you pick a word that you WON'T be using in other posts without thinking, like I wouldn't use BLOGGING for my Blogging 101 series because I may use that label with other posts then inadvertently have them "grouped" with my Blogging 101 posts. Oops, lol.
Ok, with that done we have to tweak the button code just a tiny bit. If you don't know how to code your own button then click here and read all about it. What we do is slightly change where our button "points" to. Normally, a button would point to another blog or somewhere like that but we want these buttons to point internally, to specific themed posts within our own blog. So, instead of having the button go to your general blog, have it go to a search term and make that search term the word you use with that theme!! For instance, instead of having my Blogging 101 button just point to my blog (so readers would have to search for my blogging 101 posts manually) I have the button point to a B101 search. So, instead of using http://www.justaddwatersilly.com/ , instead the link looks like this...
And the above code produces this...
...and even cooler, when the button is clicked, or copy/pasted then the resultant button is clicked, it tells Blogger to find all the incidences of B101 and display them in order of newest to oldest! Brilliant! If you want to make your button do that then all you have to do is label all the posts you want to come up with the exact same label, then put that label at the end of the http:// like this...
I pick APR for my label so the search link I want to use is:
Just change that last bit to whatever label you choose!
Okie dokie, that's it for now,
Happy hazelnut coffee to you!