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Friday, September 18, 2015

Hyperlink Know-how Part 2

In last month's FIRE STAR PRESS blog post I wrote about how to hyperlink words on Blogger. You can access this post by clicking HERE. This is part of my series which began with my post about putting together an online media kit which you can find by clicking HERE.

This month I'll demonstrate how to hyperlink words using a Microsoft Word document. If you use a Mac computer or a different word processing program, the process for will probably be similar.

I find that there are certain links, such as those for my author platform social media sites and my purchase links for my books, which I use over and over. It can be time-consuming and a hassle to type the descriptive words and hyperlink them from scratch every time I wish to use them. I have found that by formatting the information in a Word document, and then hyperlinking those words, I can copy and paste the information from the Word document to either an email or a blog post. What is more, the hyperlinked words stay hyperlinked.

Here is how I go about it:

1.  In my Word document, I format the information I want in the proper font (one that is compatible with the available fonts on my email program and Blogger), font size, and lay-out. 

I save this in My Documents as part of my online media kit. Links like the one below I save on my desktop where I can find and access it easily. To begin the hyperlinking process, I highlight the word I wish to hyperlink. In this case, it is my personal website.

Very important!
I cannot stress this enough.

A word of caution if you plan to put together a grouping of words like author platform links or book purchase links, whether you are doing it on a Word document or directly into a blog page:

Do not use the TAB button on your computer keyboard to separate the words you wish hyperlinked.
Use the SPACE BAR.

Here is the problem if you use the TAB key. The tab will connect word one with word two. Then what can happen when you hyperlink the first word and accidentally pick up the tab in your hyperlink, you are unable to hyperlink word two because it is already connected to word one by the tab.

I like to use two spaces, a character, and then two more spaces to separate my words I wish to hyperlink. In this example, I use vertical bars, but there are other options. 

Word  |  Word  ~  Word  *  Word  <>  Word  /  Word  #  Word

Choose a style that fits you, or just use spaces. Just be sure to separate your words to be hyperlinked using the space bar. And, when highlighting the word to be hyperlinked, do your best to not catch any of the spaces or the separators.

3. Go to Insert on the command tools ribbon and click on Hyperlink. You can also use the shortcut command <CTRL>+K.

4. This will bring up the Insert Hyperlink command box. Set the Link to: to Existing File or Web Page. Set the Look in: to Current Folder if you are copying the link from a Word document or to Browsed Pages  if you are copying the link from the web.

5. The next step is to copy the URL, or web address, of the site to which you wish to link the word(s) you have highlighted. You can go directly to the site on your web browser.:

Or, you can do it this way. What I have done is put the links at the bottom of the page below my formatted section I intend to copy and paste to emails and blog pages, etc. and save it as part of my permanent record. You can do it either way. 

Highlight the URL of the website to which you wish to connect your word(s), and use either the shortcut command <CTRL>+C or right-click your mouse or touch pad and click on Copy.

6. Down at the bottom under Address:, Paste your link by using the shortcut command <CTRL>+V or by Right-clicking on your mouse or touch pad and clicking on Paste. Now your link is in the command box. Click on the OK button.

7. Now your word is hyperlinked to the website to which you connected it. Continue to hyperlink all the words you need hyperlinked. Save your document with a descriptive name.

8. Once you get your Word document formatted, hyperlinked and saved. you can copy and paste the section you need to your email or blog post. Not only does the font style and size stay the same, but the hyperlinks transfer. You will see this very same grouping copy and pasted from my word document to the bottom of this blog post.

 Zina Abbott is the pen name used by Robyn Echols for her historical novels. Her novel, Family Secrets, was published by Fire Star Press in October 2014 and her novelette, AChristmas Promise, was published by Prairie Rose Publications in November 2014. The first two novellas in the Eastern Sierra Brides 1884 series, Big Meadows Valentine and A Resurrected Heart, are now available.
The author is a member of Women Writing the West, American Night Writers Association, and Modesto Writers Meet Up. She currently lives with her husband in California near the “Gateway to Yosemite.” She enjoys any kind of history including family history. When she is not piecing together novel plots, she pieces together quilt blocks.



Monday, September 14, 2015

Leading cause of insanity

My computer hates me. Okay, I doubt that my computer has such a complex thought but seriously, there are days when I'm convinced the gremlins buried deep inside have it in for me. Case in point—today the curser is acting as if it has a mind of its own when I'm on the Net. "Maybe I'll go where you direct me, maybe I won't."  And recently it's been doing such unnerving things as suddenly going black or freezing up. Then there's the incomprehensible message that reads ProgramFiles/Windows NT corrupt and unreadable. Run Chkdsk utility. Say what? Like I'm supposed to know what that means.
I have a pretty good idea what the core problem is. I'm just not sure how to do anything about it short of hiring someone to whip said computer into shape. A couple of months ago I updated my virus, etc protection program to the tune of about $80 a year. Of course the updating took longer than I thought it would but there's no way I'm going to not have some kind of protection so figured I'd covered my tail.
About an hour later, everything froze. My monitor went black. When I punched the power button on the tower, nothing happened so I unplugged the darn thing and plugged it back in. Nothing. Always before the unplug/plug has gotten my computer's attention but not this time. Hey, I'm a writer. There's no way I can exist without my computer aka my brain. In a bit of a panic, I took the tower to my trusty computer tech. (Of course this all happened on a Friday afternoon)
Long story short, my tech who I'd adopt if he wasn't a smoker, called the next day to let me know he'd isolated the problem. As I understand it, the virus protection update is set up to work with Windows 10 and I'm holding onto my Windows 7 for as long as I can. The protection program apparently went through my computer making random decisions about which utilities to keep and which to dump. My tech told me that 80-90% of his work comes from similar lack of communication.
So my tech got rid of what he thought were all signs of the program I paid $80 for and installed AGV which he trusts for a much-appeciated low price. He also encouraged me to contact my credit card company and ask for my money back from the original program which I did.
All well and good except I'm convinced that gremlins from the original program are still hanging around in my hard drive determined to mess with my mind. It's a conspiracy I say, a conspiracy designed to prove that computers are a leading cause of insanity.
At least I can still word process aka write without problems which is what I've been doing.   
And that's my excuse for why I'm behind.