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Blogger Verses Wordpress: The Best Blogging Platform

Choosing a Blogging Platform: Pros & Cons of Wordpress and Blogger

I use Blogger or Blogspot as my blogging platform. Let me tell you why.

First of all, I'm far from an expert when it comes to blogging. I'm probably the most technologically challenged blogger bud you have. I have no idea how to write code and if not for the help of the experts over at TCBOTB, my blog wouldn't have any upgrades or cute little fonts or labels. I don't know jack about code, html, site hosting, shared server hosting, Virtual Private Servers (VPS), Cloud hosting ... yada yada. Hell, I still haven't figured out where this damn cloud is that is holding all my photos and documents hostage. It's out there ... so my kids tell me. 

I started blogging for fun and I wanted to connect with other writers/authors/bloggers with shared interest and Blogger seemed like the easiest choice. In defense of Blogger, they've made many style updates and bloggers have many more options when it comes to design and style. It's taken me years, but I've finally taught myself how to add widgets, photos, links and a few other accessories. I'm still a cut rate beginner and that's where I'll probably remain. I don't plan on taking any computer or code courses.

Many of you have probably heard me tossing around the idea of switching from Blogger to Wordpress. If I do, I will switch to Wordpress Dot Org, not Wordpress Dot Com. There are far more advantages and swag to owning your own site on WordPress Dot Org. I wouldn't even consider moving my blog to another platform unless I owned and controlled my website/blog.

I haven't made up my mind.

In fact I'm scared shitless about making such a bold move. Just look at me.

The move seems like quite an ordeal and one that I'm not technically up for. Although, WP users swear by their platform and the web is flushed with easy to follow tutorials. But, can a computer simpleton like myself follow those so called easy to follow instructions?

Here's how I see it: The advantages of moving from Blogger to Wordpress:

I currently reside on Blogger and while I've purchased my own domain name, I'm still only renting space. I am a tenant, renter, lessee.

Bottom line: I do not own my home on Blogger. 

If I move to WP, I will purchase my new home on the blogosphere. 

In the real world, I recognize the benefits of owning my own home, but if I am new to an area, I might be better off renting until I get a feel for the location. The question is: how long should I rent, before ponying up and become a home/land owner and enjoying all of the rights and benefits afforded an owner?

What I like Most about Blogger:

I am familiar with the platform and have pretty much learned how to use it.

I've made some amazing friends on blogger via Google Friend Connect (GFC), and I am worried about losing them if I move.

But, I also recognize that Google can take GFC away from me any day. I believe they've already stopped new blogs from even installing it. I know that Google no longer allows WP bloggers to use the widget.

We all know how easy it it for Google to yank the rug out from under you. They took away Google Reader and many speculate that GFC is next. Hell, half the people I know have hinted that it's only a mater of time before Google pulls the plug on Blogger/Blogspot all together. Then what? I guess all of us using the Blogger platform are up shit creek, not only without a paddle, but without a life preserver and facing riptides and a strong current.

I'm not a complete idiot. Yes, it has to be better in the long run to own your own blog; have control over your content, ads, and widgets/plugins. I understand we can hire a hosting service. So, what is holding me back?

One of the biggest drawback and I don't know how many of you have come across this, but there seems to be a big divide between the WP bloggers and Blogspot bloggers. During the A to Z challenge, I read many WP blogs and the authors came right out and admitted that they seldom if ever even read Blogger blogs because they claim it is far too difficult to leave a comment.

It's hard for me to leave a comment on WP blogs, as well, but if I like the blog, the author or the content, I make the effort and I find a way to leave a comment.

I'm certain that all of you know the wondrous, ingenious Arlee Bird, the mastermind and creator of the acclaimed A to Z Blogging Challenge. If not, you must be living in a hole or in solitary confinement at a super max prison. Arlee is one of the nicest, most helpful bloggers you'll ever have the honor of knowing. I read his blog post last week over at Tossing it Out and he made some good points about cross over commenting that really stuck with me.

Arlee wrote about all of the WP blogs that he follows. He regularly leaves comments, but he's noticed that quite a few of the WP bloggers that he visits: here let me give it to you straight from the gurus mouth:

"One of the first things I'm going to be tackling is my subscriptions to a number of Wordpress blogs that I've followed over the years.  There are many that I regularly read and comment on and they never seem to acknowledge the existence of my blogs.  I've already begun unsubscribing to many of those."

Arlee went on to say that he fully intends to maintain the wonderful friendships with the WP bloggers he interacts with. After reading his post, I felt like he'd ripped the thoughts straight out of my brain. Mind reader? Nope. Just another blogger who is feeling the neglect of some WP bloggers who make zero effort to reciprocate. It stings! It hurts. And he's right. we have too little time to continue following and commenting on blogs who fail to acknowledge we exist.

How do you feel about Wordpress bloggers who refuse to or can't comment on Blogger blogs? For all of you WP bloggers ... is it really that time consuming or too difficult to leave a comment on a Blogger blog? I have WP friends who manage to leave comments and I have (hands down) the worst commenting system out there ... Disqus. I know it sucks. Don't throw rotten bananas at me.

Any ideas how we can remedy the cross platform commenting issue? 

How many of you Blogger/Blogspot bloggers are content with your platform and intend to remain indefinitely? Do you see any drawbacks to your preferred platform?

Those of you who have made the switch from Blogger to WordPress ... any ideas or suggestions for someone on the verge of making the move? Can you recommend a specific theme? Hosting service? Other necessary services?

Those of you who are still using the Blogger Platform ... are you contemplating a move to Wordpress? What factors are you considering? What, if anything is making you reluctant to switch from Blogger to WordPress?

Those of you who will remain loyal Blogspot bloggers: Will you share the reasons behind your decision?

And finally ... Blogger/Blogspot bloggers ... how afraid are you that Google will yank the rug out from us and leave us high and dry without a blog to call our own? Have you taken any counter measures to ensure this doesn't happen?

If Google gives us the big Fuck Off ... then what?

I realize I'm bombarding you with questions, but I am confused and on the fence. A decision of this magnitude requires much thought.  I don't want to make a rash decision. 

And, if I make the move to WP, can anyone recommend a custom website/blog designer who specializes in creating WP blogs and transferring blogger blogs to Wordpress?

The suggestion box is open! Please speak up & voice your thoughts & opinions.

Tweet: Weigh in on the WP vs Blogger debate #blogging
Tweet: Weigh in on the WP vs Blogger debate #blogging
I appreciate any input and suggestions you can offer.

Do You Mary Sue?

It's Up to You ... Do You Still Like Mary Sue?

It's Been a While Since I've Screened My Characters Through the Mary Sue Test:

Is your character all knowing, powerful, flawless, pretty & perfect?

I'm sure my characters have enough flaws, maybe too many. But whenever I see this test, I can't help but give it a spin. If nothing else, it's quite fun.

It just might be time for another Mary Sue test for the protagonist of my current novel.

I'm a little worried that I may have taken her from Mary Sue to Bitchy Brenda Lou.

Here's another test, I came across. It's an interactive Mary Sue Test. But, this test is definitely geared more for fantasy novels. The first one works for all genres. 

This Mary Sue -test is a lot more comprehensive and asks the questions I remember from years ago, like if your character is named after you, resembles you or works in your same industry or profession.

And here ya go, for all the male protagonists ... is your character a Marty Stu? Damn! Poor dude. He has to lose the name or his looks might not be enough.
Because a Marty Stu + a Mary Sue = one
 dimensional, unbelievable characters who are too perfect and laughable. 
Don't get me wrong. I'm not implying that your characters have to be ugly, stupid, and so flawed that they are beyond redemption, but you get what I'm saying.

Most of us know if our characters are a little too good to be true. Hey, we don't like making a mess of someone we created, especially if their image and features and personality are already second nature to us. That's why it can't hurt to take an objective step backward and participate in a few fun quizzes, just to make sure, we've given our beloved characters enough flaws and imperfections to make them real on the page.

Or try this one on for size. Are you a Mary Sue & Marty Stu Critic? This quiz will (supposedly) alert you if you've gone overboard in the opposite direction. Are the characters you taged as Mary Sue or Marty Stu, really that bad, as in too good?

Or are you someone who harshly judges other writers' creativity? Whoa! A site making fun of those who judge Mary Sue characters. This should be fun. Or not.

And finally ... the official Mary Sue litmus test

Then just for the hell of it, hop over to Fuck Yea Character Development

This last site is not for taking the Mary Sue test, bur for questioning the absurdity of such test. Check out the Original Anti Universal Mary sue Litmus Test

Wow. Who knew? So much conflict for poor Mary Sue and Wimpy, but hot & sexy Marty Stu. Marty Stu needs a better name or he's gonna continue getting his ass kicked, wherever he goes.

Need some more ideas?

Want to morph your pantywaist, paladin, demigod, diva into a sneaky, badass Mary sue? Try this site for ideas on transforming your loyal, perfect character into a badass.

Have you taken these test? For fun? Or do you place any stock in the answers and outcome?

Egg Donation: Big Bucks for Elite Eggs

Egg Donors: An Altruistic Gift for Infertile Couples or a Baby Factory?

Seeking: Single white female, Ivy League college degree, blond, blue or green eyes, tall 5'9 minimum, slender, athletic, IQ 130 or above, musically inclined,  Jewish heritage, SAT score 140 minimum, excellent bone structure, gifted, excellent health, non smoker, no alcohol or drug problems in extended family, no mental health issues, coordinated, perfect vision and hearing, excellent breeding. 

Nope. This is not Harry the hunk's online dating service profile.

Nope! Not a job listing in the classified section.

It's a human catalogue. Egg donors fill out questionnaires and fertility clinics catalog the available egg donors with pages of beautiful, young, educated, talented, women. Prospective egg buyers peruse the catalog scrutinizing the girls and their pedigrees. Females offering their eggs are required to list their names (some companies use code numbers), height, weight, hobbies, IQ and asking price. Yup, you heard me. A price tag accompanies the offering. This is after all a business transaction.

And many couples are searching for the Golden Egg

 And they are willing to pay top dollar for A Perfect Match. Click on the link to the left and take a gander at some of the perfect match ads.

Bright Creative Egg Donor

Wanted by playful Boston couple. We recycle, floss & respect our elders. 

Generous Compensation Provided

Men have been donating sperm to sperm banks for decades and with the advancements in assisted reproductive technology more and more infertile couples are becoming parents. Reproductive technology will always be a controversial subject and many have strong opinions on the topic. I'm all for it. If not for a variety of assisted reproductive options, I wouldn't have any of my loving, bright, beautiful children.

But not eggs are created equal. Fertility and egg donor organizations have what they refer to as their "A" list; exceptional donors and the price tag on Grade A eggs reflect what people consider the quality of the eggs.

A Perfect Match advertised a $500,000 reward in an Ivy League Newspaper for egg donors meeting their criteria.

I'm all for assisted reproductive technology and I am in favor of sperm donors, egg donors, embryo donors, surrogate mothers, gestational hosts, IVF, adoption and other means that allow loving couples to fulfill their life long dream of becoming parents. Becoming a family. I advocate the rights of women to choose this option and the rights of women to donate eggs. I firmly believe the donor should be adequately compensated for her time and any pain and suffering involved in the process.

I don't know exactly where I draw the line. I think most of us who may have traveled this area, and given the option to choose your egg donor, would attempt to match with a donor who shares some of your physical attributes. There's nothing wrong with wanting a child of your same race and even who shares your basic physical components. If I were using an egg donor I would be interested in her mental and physical health history and that of her family. It's the same with adoption.

But ... when does one cross the blurred ethical line.

My search on the Internet showed me that Jewish and Asian donors with exceptional educational backgrounds and pedigrees are currently in high demand.

What's you take on this subject?
Should we be able to choose purchase the best that money can buy. Does the government need to step in and offer some real guidelines in this industry

Please watch this short trailer shown on We are Egg Donors. Sonja O'Hara, a New York writer and actress, starred in the narrative film based on her experience as an egg donor. Ovum is meant to spur conversation about eugenics and the unseen side of the market for elite and top shelf eggs, according to We are Egg Donors.

This teaser trailer is very short, but a must see.

Please share your thoughts on egg donation. For it? Against it? Should we be permitted to get into bidding wars for elite eggs. What about siblings who grow up not even knowing they are related? What problems can we foresee in the future?

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