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Backstage at the Blog: R is for Reader

April 21, 2014

R © A Scenic RouteWhat’s the first screen that comes up when I type the WordPress address into my browser? Not my blog. Not Freshly Pressed. Certainly not the Stats page.

It’s the Reader.

This is a great place to check out the latest doings of my WordPress buddies, especially because the featured images and short introductory paragraphs provide an easy way to see what the WordPress world is up to. From there the rest of the post is just a click away, and it’s a piece of cake to leave a like or even a comment.

It’s also easy to find the comments I’ve left and scan any responses by clicking on this menu, conveniently located on the right hand side of the margin:Screen shot 2014-03-29 at 3.20.50 PM

The only drawback of the Reader (besides it being a great way to lose a half an hour!) is that my Blogger friends are not represented, and so to be thorough in my blog perusal, I need to check my email as well.

I’m curious though: what is your preferred way to catch up on your favorite blogs? Is there an equivalent for the Reader on Blogger? And how do you escape the vortex of distraction commonly referred to as the blogosphere?

(Here’s your link back to the A to Z Challenge Sign Up list.)

  1. April 21, 2014 7:58 am

    “…to lose a half hour?” It’s more like 3 hours for me !! But it’s worth it for so many excellent writings and art and photos every day. I feel like I’m dwelling in a living museum!

    When you are on the reader page, to the right are some selections including “Blogs I Follow” with an edit button. If you click the “edit” button, there is a place to type in a blogger address and then select “follow”. Theoretically those will then show up in your reader scroll just like the WP blogs you follow. Unfortunately it isn’t consistent about showing blogspotter posts – more like hit and miss, I’ve found.

    I don’t like following on email because I mostly use my I-Pad and it works well for WP blog reading and commenting but doesn’t seem to have capacity to let me comment on blogspotters – usually freezes or comment disappears. Each if the blogging platforms seems to have a few glitches!

    • April 21, 2014 7:58 pm

      Omigosh, three hours would take up whole evening! I agree though, the wealth of great information out there is tempting, and it’s always a joy to spend time reading what everyone has to say.
      Thank you so much for the tip! One of the reasons I prefer email is because that way I can check all the blogs in one place. If I could get everyone into the reader, I would do that.

      • April 21, 2014 10:07 pm

        I wouldn’t say WP Reader is 100% reliable on scrolling non-WP hyperlinks that you type in via that edit button, but try a few and see if they show up consistently in your reader. If they work, you can type in the rest.

        • April 22, 2014 6:21 am

          I’m definitely going to give it a shot, along with all the other tips I’ve gotten from the comments here. 🙂
          I’m learning so much during this challenge!

  2. April 21, 2014 8:24 am

    When Google Reader died, I switched to Feedly. It was set up in a similar fashion, so it’s been easy to use.
    I still have almost a hundred blogs in my blogger buddies folder alone right now. It will take a couple hours…

    • April 21, 2014 7:59 pm

      I haven’t tried Feedly yet, but if the Reader let’s me down, it’s nice to have options.
      A hundred blogs? Yikes! You are amazing. 🙂

  3. susan permalink
    April 21, 2014 12:31 pm

    To be honest I don’t use the Reader. I rely on notifications on my email. I subscribe to blogger posts through email though there is a lag time between posting and showing up in my email. Bloggers subscribe to me via email also

    • April 21, 2014 8:02 pm

      I’m always disappointed when a blog doesn’t offer the follow by email option–although I can see some benefits to the blogger for this. (What if the post goes out with typos? Oh no!)
      I notice a lag between the Blogger posts and my email as well.

  4. April 21, 2014 12:37 pm

    You must have great self control to lose only a half hour. 🙂

    On Blogger, there is an orange square with a letter B inside, in the upper left of the page. (Blogger logo.) If you click on that, lower left on the new page there is a reading list. 🙂

    Email is much more convenient, though. 🙂

    • April 21, 2014 8:04 pm

      Not so much self control, but I love writing my own words more than anything else. 🙂
      I’ll try your blogger trick, but I do like having the leisure of sorting through my email!

  5. Loni Townsend permalink
    April 21, 2014 1:41 pm

    I use Bloglovin’, but it gets overwhelming at times. I keep thinking about all the blogs I have to visit and how short my lunch hour seems.

    • April 21, 2014 8:05 pm

      I know what you mean! I’ve fallen way behind on the non-A to Z bloggers, and fully intend to catch up …

  6. April 21, 2014 3:26 pm

    Great post. I don’t use the Reader either–I just rely on email, and this month, also on the A-Z sign-up list. As much as I love reading all my favorite blogs and discovering new ones, I find that between those activities and writing my own posts, blogging has become an almost full-time activity. Half an hour? How do you do it? I need to find some balance!

    • April 21, 2014 8:08 pm

      Half an hour is just the reading part …
      But I do set a timer for my blogging time, callous as it seems. I have to defend my novel writing time above all else. Although, I admit, thanks to the A to Z Challenge, April has been renamed The Month That (My Blog) Ate My Novel . 😦

  7. storyteller5 permalink
    April 21, 2014 10:17 pm

    I use Feedly, but I actually preferred it when I had my favourite blogs listed in the sidebar of my own blog. I could tell at a glance who had updated their site everyday, and they would see that someone from my blog was visiting. But a branding expert told me that was a huge no-no, so now it’s Feedly.

    • April 22, 2014 6:20 am

      It’s always a bit of a compromise between what is best for our image (branding) and what’s most convenient for us. Sounds like you found some good middle ground. 🙂

  8. April 22, 2014 8:34 am

    I usually look at Reader once a day, especially during A to Z. It takes willpower not to linger, however. The only complaint I have is not all the blogs have that handy X in the top left hand corner that takes you back to where you left off in Reader. Do you have to use a specific theme on WP to get this X feature?

    • April 22, 2014 7:16 pm

      Hi Nancy,
      Probably, but I’m not totally sure. Luckily I haven’t found many blogs that don’t have the X up there though. It would be frustrating to lose my place!

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