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ScribeFire: Online and Offline Blogging

by | Oct 13, 2012 | How To, Mobile, Wordpress, Writing | 7 comments

Offline BloggingAs the Chief Kid Driving Officer mom to two busy almost-teens,  I do a lot driving, followed by a lot of hanging around football pitches, ballet studios and a host other after-school activities places.

I won’t get into the nightmare of logistics when Kid 1 needs to be somewhere at 4:00 and Kid 2 needs to be picked up clear across town at 4:30, and my Deputy Chief Kid Driving Officer (hunky hubby) is tied up at work.

What I do want to talk about is leveraging those hanging around hours, when there’s no internet connection, no coffee shop close by to indulge in an expensive, 1000-calorie coffee concoction with the excuse of needing to be connected ‘so I can I work on my blog’.

Enter ScribeFire, a tool that lets you write posts during those times that you are not able to connect to internet.  You can save them, and when you next connect, the tool syncs up with your blog.

This tool comes as an extension to your browser, and is available for Chrome, Firefox, Safari and Opera.

For Internet Explorer folks, it must mean you are a Windows user, and an option for you is Windows Live Writer.

Once you install ScribeFire as a browser add-on, you start it from a little icon on your toolbar, and it opens up as a new tab on your browser.  You will need to be connected to internet the first time you set it up so that you can tell it where your blog is at (URL), and enter your credentials so it can connect  to it.

If you run multiple blogs, it’s a fantastic tool as well, as you can add multiple blogs.  Each time you create a post, you can simply tell ScribeFire which blog to post to.

Just like the WordPress editor, it has a WYSIWYG editor (What You See Is What You Get), including buttons to insert an image, insert a YouTube video or a table.  It even has an option for going full screen so you have more space to write.

For those of you who like to mess with HTML, you can also switch to HTML mode, and tinker with the code.  If it’s just font size and regular formatting you want to play with, the full formatting bar is availlable right there.

Word and character counts are available right there at the bottom of the editing window, and your categories and tags are available for you to choose from, or you can add new ones.

Once you’re done crafting your post, you can save it, or publish it, including options to schedule it, just like you get from the WordPress interface.  If you are offline when you hit publish post, it will get published when you next connect to Internet.

ScribeFire also has built-in Zemanta integration, a tool that suggests related links, images, and articles as you write, should you choose to turn it on.

A relatively new, cool feature that ScribeFire has added, is the ability to create blog templates.  If you often write a list post, a review post, or any kind of post for which you tend to use the same template, ScribeFire lets you save a current post as a template.  Then next time you want to write a similar post, you just pull up the appropriate template, and ta-dah … you can just fill in your new content.

It’s just magical.

So if you, like me, have a lot of otherwise dead time in your day that you wish you could better leverage, if only you could spend it writing, and you can’t stand the idea of using TextEdit / Notepad or Microsoft Word for blogging, get ScribeFire.  It’s free.

Of course, this means you need to take your laptop with you everywhere you go.  Grab a set of headphones as well while you are at it, just in case you want to plugin into your music library while you compose your masterpieces.

If you prefer taking your Android tablet or iPad instead, download the free WordPress app, and you will also be able to compose your posts offline, and get them synced up when you next connect.  The WordPress app also supports multiple blogs, so you really have no excuse now to confine your writing to a specific place or time.

What’s your favourite non-Wordpress tool for blogging?