5 Helpful Links About Improving Your Blog

by Derek Halpern · 17 comments

5 links

Over the last few weeks, some people have alerted me to the fact that they did not receive the latest DIYthemes blog updates.

So, if you missed them, today I’ve got a quick summary for you.

Additionally, I’ve got some other links that I believe you’ll find helpful.

That said, here’s the links:

1. How to Paginate WordPress Posts (new Thesis tutorial)

Ever notice how long in-depth articles on top-tier magazines and newspaper sites are broken up into pages? Well, if you’d like to do the same thing to your articles, here’s a tutorial on how to do it.

2. How to Get More Twitter Followers—And Keep Them

There’s a lot of advice out there about how to get more Twitter followers. The truth is that much of it is bad. However, this post is different though because it has concrete actionable tips… and DATA to back it up.

3. How Often Should You Update Your Blog?

There are two camps when it comes to updating blogs. There are those who say you should do it daily, and then there are those who say you should do it a few times per month. Read this post to see where I stand on that issue.

4. Why is Responsive Design Such A Big Deal?

Responsive design is a hot topic on the web right now… but why? In this post, Alex “the Kid” Mangini, shares his thoughts about it. Additionally, if you scroll down in the comment section, you’ll notice that Chris Pearson shared his ideas too. (You may also know Alex because he releases a bunch of cool graphics for you through the DIYthemes blog).

5. How to Crop, Rotate, and Flip Images in the WordPress Image Editor

Here’s how you can use the built-in WordPress image editor to edit your images for your blog posts. It’s a simple tutorial, but it’s great when you don’t have your image-editing software handy.

About the Author: Derek Halpern ran marketing at DIYthemes, and is the founder of Social Triggers. To get more tips on how to be confident, sign up to his list here.

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Thanks for the info, I wasn’t getting the updates for some reason but they have been restored. Cool!


The Marketing Maverick

Hey Derek… you and your awesome Social Triggers podcast rock my friend!

I am definitely bookmarking this page because it has so much WISDOM per square pixel… I definitely need to master Twitter… I’m missing out big time.

Thanks again fellow Marketing Maverick,

Ken Hammond

Tommy Walker

Thanks for the round up Derek. I’ve been wondering about pagination for quite some time now, and the other articles were pretty useful as well.

Melanie Lundheim

I’d love to learn more about how to get spammers to quit leaving comments, in general, and to quit leaving comments on pages where I have no way to uncheck the comment box. Somehow they’ve found a way to leave comments a URL for one of my images. Thanks!

Harvey Stanbrough

I’m a toddler at this stuff, but I’d like to know how to change the color of my feature box. I’ll learn soon anyway, probably, because I’m beginning now to study and learn some CSS coding, but I don’t want to THINK I know enough, then apply it and get the Word Press White Screen of Death again. That’s scary. 🙂


Typically it’s pretty simple to change the background color of the feature box; you’d edit custom.css and add something like this:

.custom #feature_box { background:#ccc; }

It’s extremely unusual for custom.css edits to cause a whitescreen or parse error, so I’d encourage testing with some caution but little fear.

Neal Umphred


I have no website.

I have never blogged.

I have published a buncha books (price guides for record collectors) and a lotta articles (mostly rock music 1954-1974). I have a lot of content, old and new. My ideal site would have static pages containing older material previously published in books or magazines along with multiple blogs with different topics.

To avoid redundancy, I would want -or think I want- a four column blog page as the first page leading into two, three, and maybe four column blogs for the bulk of the content.

I am impressed with Thesis (which is why I am a subscriber to your DIY newsletter).

Will Thesis do all of these things? That is, can I make multiple Thesis blogs on my one website for the $87 fee?

Do I need to do all of these things?

Finally, I have spent my professional career on a Mac and am struggling with a PC — does it matter if I use a Mac with WordPress and Thesis?

Thanks in advance,


PS: Which host best serves the needs of Thesis?

PPS: The 23 minute tutorial about Thesis on your website was so easy to understand that my wife, more a Luddite than even I, said she thought she could set up a site with it!


So you asked what we would like you to write about. Well… how about the release of Thesis 2.0.


Hi Derek
can you explain the php code for pagination in a little more detail please, for example what does this do __(‘Sections —’) Do I need to indicate somewhere in the code how many words per post (or page)? Does it only work for posts or for “normal” wp pages as well? Can pagination be applied in an ad-hoc manner, or is it site-wide? I get awfully frustrated when so much information refers to “posts”, when it’s actually applicable to wp-pages as well – it’s so ambigous and I spend a lot of time working out whether it’s “posts” or “posts and/or pages” It must be a “hangover” from the days when wp/thesis was mainly seen as blogging platform.


Hi Derek
great article about Next pagination. But I have a question for you. I have a page about books on snow leopards and would like that page to have one paragraph on each book and then a link to new page where the rest of the info about the book is posted. As there would be about 20 book titles each with a small intro para and then More, how can I do that given that each page only allows one More…hope this makes sense?
thanks for all your great work on making Thesis understood by us non geeks 🙂


How can I get WP pagination on the bottom of the page do guide my readers to the next posts? It’s not a matter of post pagination, I need pages pagination. However my theme seems not to accept such pluggin.

Jacqueline Church

Love the Thesis theme and so far pretty happy with the DIY community. I’m always eager to learn something new and was intrigued by the “responsive design” blurb. Only, it turns out to be one of those posts that excludes rather than includes the audience. I get that the boy genius is only 18 but the web geeks I know and love most (whatever their age or path) are those who understand and treat the web as if it is more than their own private monster truck rally.

We all have things to bring to the table, you’ll miss a lot if you exclude those who are not already in your inner circle.

Call me a geek wanna be but don’t dismiss me so fast…

Alex Mangini

Nothing is private about it, I am writing an article and wanted to gather the opinions of my community to quote within it.

I’d say that’s being pretty open. 😀

Elizabeth Almann

Love reading your blog – has a lot of great ideas & keeps me inspired. I haven’t built anything in Thesis yet – initial learning curve is steep compared to themes with built-in style editors – but it’s where I’d like to go eventually so I can have more freedom to do what I want. Just haven’t found the key to understanding how to tackle it – what’s the missing link for my brain? Another major question I have that no one seems to want to discuss is best strategy for re-doing an established Frontpage site in WordPress – transition time, Google issues, whatever. Would love to hear your insight on that!

Neal Umphred

Since my post above has received no replies, anyone have any idea where I might send it for a reply?

Trung Nguyen

Thanks for the list of 5 awesome posts here, Derek. I really love the post on How to Get More Twitter Followers and Keep Them.


I have a ‘few’ twitter followers and I think they key is to simply talk to them more, A little bit every day. The others see that you engage and view you as ‘real’ and not a ‘spam bot’. There are far too many of the latter on twitter.