My Blogging Tricks to Keep Things Simple

There’s definitely a time to rest in life. If you play your cards right, you can rest a lot and still be efficient. A blogging friend of mine Vinnie wrote today that he was going to be taking things slower, I like that.

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I’ve been building a better mousetrap with blogging since I started doing it way back when. I started using WordPress software in 2005 but my blogging roots go way back to around 1995 when I used to make Geocities pages about my life and random topics. Those resembled blog posts. In fact I remember after I got married living in Apple Valley publishing photos I took walking around the trailer park. I called it a “treasure walk.”

I thought I’d share a little of what I do now since after all these years I may have something to add that will make things simpler.  Sometimes I have to take breaks from this schedule because of my real job’s demands as a teacher but mostly, my wife is kind enough to let me explore my “treasure walk” even now in 2016. Usually however through tricks of the blogging trade I have found, I make it happen. Maybe my routine will give you some ideas or inspiration even.

Blog Film Critic hat:
Watch and review movies and TV around 3-7 shows a week at my blog http://rileyfilm.reviews I use a template with a plugin to extract sundry meta info from IMDB. This makes the process easier, more fun, and it looks very beautiful in the final product I think. Plugin and template below:


Sample of how it looks:


I use Buffer to post to Twitter and IFTTT to auto post to my Facebook page. I am part of a large group of Blog Film Critics called The LAMB and that also helps me network. I have a dedicated Twitter account just for movie stuff @rileyonfilm

Blogger hat:
Everything I do online is set to cross-post as a “draft” to my blog http://rileycentral.blog I go through every day or so and reblog these. I find there are a lot of people who see them there who wouldn’t otherwise at the movie or teaching sites. This is also the place where I get to “stretch out” and write about any topic I choose in my column or just personal blogging. For years it was rileycentral.net and I recently added the url rileycentral.blog so either will get you there. So much fun!

Edublogger hat:
From 2008 to 2015 I wrote often at my teaching blog: http://www.dynamitelessonplan.com
I write there occasionally still when inspiration strikes. The blog is still very active with lots of visitors however because I recycle one of my old posts every 3 days. This is done through an automated plugin.

Photoblogger and Photo enthusiast hat:
I auto post all the photos I take to a private flickr folder, This is done through the iphone flickr APP. I also go through groups on Flickr and read my tumblr subscriptions to get cool new pictures to share. I have a system set up on IFTTT where if I favorite a photo on Flickr, it goes to Riley Central as a draft. If I reblog something in tumblr the same happens. When I go to make a post, I have these photos ready to go with the proper attribution already coded.

To close, these are just the coolest things I do currently. I have others. I am always looking to get the “blogging moment” out to the public with the least drag possible. I’m closer than ever. If you have a trick to share, please do in the comments! I love to read what people do to create and innovate the blogging experience.

Author: Damien Riley

I'm a blogger, film critic, & podcaster with an MA in English from California State University, Fullerton. I teach public school, 4th grade as my primary occupation. My views on films and life are usually headstrong and often 'left of center' on movies and life, but I have respect for the other side. I married my high-desert princess (now my queen). We have 3 children.

5 thoughts on “My Blogging Tricks to Keep Things Simple”

        1. I’ve done that before. Mine was more chopping, stopped altogether. Had to. But tha t was years ago. Glad you are so mellow and balanced! All the best with your irl pursuits!

          1. I try to be a mellow person. I do so enjoy blogging so much. Just times I need to go a bit slower. I can sometimes be my own worst enemy.

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