{5} good things I found online in 2014

We are about three weeks into a new year, a new revolution around the sun.  I wanted to tell everyone about 5 good things I’ve found on the internet in 2014, but the time slipped away, with work commitments taking precedence. But in my line of business, I’m still wrapping up activities from last year and people still have to file taxes from last year, don’t they? So I’m really not too, too late to comment on the best things I’ve found from 2014.

1At some point last year, I became rather obsessed with graphic design. I wanted to add good quality low-priced or free graphics to my blog or any invitations or posters I made. Months of searching finally led me to Canva.com. I may have told everyone I know about this website. If not, I’m telling you now. Texts are free. You can upload your own photos to use with your design, too. There are loads of high quality graphics for only $1 each, but many of them are also free. You can design anything: blog post, Twitter header or post, Facebook header, full length poster, as long as you follow their terms of use. And what else is great about it? If you subscribe (free) you get regular emails showing you how to create wonderful and unique designs.


2So, there I was minding my own business one day, when I saw an interesting post from another party on another blogger’s site. I clicked on that blogger’s website and found the most intriguing blog called Behind the White Coat. It’s written by a family practice physician looking for an outlet to express herself. Most of her stories are anonymous encounters on the job, and they keep me glued and binge-reading. I have to tear myself away to get my own postings done. Check it out — it’s quite an eye-opening read.


4Have you ever wanted to add HTML special characters to a blog post, especially your post titles? CopyPasteCharacter.com lets you do just that. There are hundreds of symbols, shapes, mathematical characters at your disposal. There is no shortage of stars, flowers, arrows, weather symbols — the list goes on. I like to use them to jazz up a sentence ❈ or emphasize a point ☎.

 


5Many bloggers like to know that there’s a place to go to get free images to use without fear of being sued for copyright infringement. Let’s face it: 90% of us are not being paid to post here; we’re doing it for the fulfillment it brings to our lives. We certainly can’t afford a lawsuit. Over time, I’ve gathered a list of websites that offer FREE stock photos. Some don’t even require attribution and you can use them in any way you wish.

My favorite is IMCreator, but the photos here require attribution to the creator. It’s the least we can do, seeing that these are very high-quality photos. I also use Unsplash and Picography many times for photographic inspiration when I can’t think of what kind of story to write.


3I found this new alternative to blogging website last year called “Medium“.  I suppose it’s best described as a “blog-publishing platform”, well that’s what Wikipedia says. It’s a blog for people who may not blog too frequently. If you want to go on a rant, this is a good place to go, though. There are plenty of thought-provoking articles written by authors who may or may not get paid. You can also tailor your news feed so you only receive certain posts. It’s definitely not as colorful or robust as WordPress, but it’s another outlet to consider.


Best of 2014

 

And there you have it: My list of good things. Check them out when you have a chance and tell me what you think.

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