This week, I’m providing tips for end-of-year technology maintenance. Sure, you should do it once a month if you’re active on your computer, but AT LEAST do it yearly.
For most writers I know, life zooms by with few breaks to pause, glance around at the surroundings and clean up the clutter and confusion that grows like mold from our everyday authorial life. The end of the calendar year is a good time to do that, when many of us are blogging less, posting almost nothing, and have less commitments and obligations to fill our usual week.
Here’s my short list–one I hope is do-able during the Holidays:
- Update my profile. Have I changed my focus? Changed jobs? Adding new pieces readers would like to know about? This, btw, should be done regularly, but at the new year–it’s critical.
- Check old posts for grammar and spelling. I start with the most-visited articles (under Site Stats) and work my way down (in case I run out of time). I’m always surprised what I catch with a fresh eye.
- Check individual post tags and categories to see if I can whittle down the options while still clearly cataloging my writing. Sometimes, I haven’t even added a category–fix all those, too.
- Check sidebar for out-of-date and no-longer-relevant widgets and links. Add new pieces (like awards and links) that add to the blog’s utility. Move pieces around to give a fresh look.
- Check list of ‘pages’. Sure, I’m on top of the Home page, but are the others still relevant? Up to date? Like my WIP page? Hmm…
- Check appearance on a smart phone and iPad to see if they require adjustments to display better. I recently switched my blog theme (you probably noticed) to respond to the fact that so many people read blogs on iPads and smartphones now, rather than desktops and laptops.
- Check blog in different browsers to see if I should recommend one over the other for best-viewing.
That’s it from my end. Do you have any maintenance issues you suggest for the new year? I’d love to hear them.
Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy. She is webmaster for six blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, a columnist for Examiner.com and TeachHUB, Editorial Review Board member for Journal for Computing Teachers, a freelance journalist on tech ed topics, and a monthly contributor to Today’s Author. In her free time, she is editor of a K-8 technology curriculum and technology training books for how to integrate technology in education. Currently, she’s editing a thriller that should be out to publishers next summer. Contact Jacqui at her writing office or her tech lab, Ask a Tech Teacher.