MAKING CHANGES

Scott fav 2013 smMaking Changes

Changes can be painful experiences.  This is no surprise to you, but it seems to me that they get harder as I age, not easier.  If you have been following my blogs you may have noticed some changes in the website.  I recently took the “plunge” and switched from a WordPress hosted site to a self-hosted site using WordPress.org.  I’m sure there is an easier way to do it, but it was painful for me.

Laughing Squid has a good reputation.  This webhost is one of the three recommended by WordPress.  Instead of one big scary up-front payment you pay monthly.  It may actually cost a little more, but it is a month-to-month contract so I liked it.  However, one little detail should not escape notice.  There is no mention of 1-step installation for WordPress.  It started out well enough, then I hit a term called “SQL,” then “FTP,” and dozens of other terms of which I was unfamiliar.  I struggled through with the multiple usernames and passwords needed to perform various steps until I hit snags I couldn’t surmount.  Off would go a help ticket.  That would get me one step closer then I would hit another snag.  This went on all week last week until someone at Laughing Squid took pity on me and set up WordPress for me.  Now I know where the “Laughing” part came from.

This is not intended to be a criticism of the site.  I’m sure that people who know more about computer language have no trouble with this, but though I have used computers since 1982, I am a novice when it comes to much of the computer-speak.  I am up and running and loving the availability of “plugins” not just “widgets.”  Nevertheless, I understand that I could be in for more trouble with some plugins, because some are very basic and not too “user-friendly.”

So my website is working but I will be tinkering with it to make it better.

Tell me about your website woes.  Suggestions welcome.  Do you have a favorite plugin?  Let us know.

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About smcpherson58

Aside from loving chocolate and coffee (not necessarily in that order) Scott McPherson has learned that he loves to write. He writes fiction and, so far, has published two novels. Scott has many varied interests, though he tries to focus on one at a time. He has worked for nearly thirty-five years as a family physician, a pass-time that gives him great pleasure and pays the bills. He has five daughters and dotes upon three grandchildren. Recently married, he really loves life. Scott writes from his life experiences and from travel. His career in the active Air Force was brief, but he has been a member of the Nebraska Air National Guard since just before 9/11 in 2001. The aftermath of that great disaster changed the face of the Guard and led to missions in far-away lands. He has spent time in Turkey, Iraq, Spain, Crete and Guam in missions related to support for Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. He has been to Iceland and Antarctica as well. Scott has no personal experience with violent death or murder, but has gained knowledge from experts. In his first novel, “A Step Ahead of Death,” his character, Jack Sharp MD, becomes embroiled in a murder mystery. First as suspect, then as amateur sleuth, Jack tries to make a difference. He finds himself right in the middle of an investigation well beyond the scope of a local murder. A man of faith, Scott traveled to Africa with his small family in the 1980s and served as a medical missionary in Zaire (known as Congo today) with a church organization. The vast difference in what it takes to exist in such an environment served as a basis for much of his second novel, a thriller, “Congo Mission.” His character, Jack, is twenty years younger than in the first novel. In “Congo Mission” Jack serves as a physician in a missionary hospital in the jungles of northwestern Zaire. There he is not only captivated by a young woman visiting the region, but falls victim to his nemesis Jacques Levant. His motivations and faith are tested and his resolve to do God’s work gets pushed to the limit. When he is not writing Scott enjoys walking, a practice that actually led to his first attempt at writing a novel. He began making notes and writing prose about the mundane things around him. He tried to make the details sound interesting, even though it was just for his own pleasure. Eventually he found that he could expand his prose to “what if?” “What if I just kept walking?” “What if I, or my character, found a dead body in the ditch along the side of the path?” That was the premise for the first novel, “A Step Ahead of Death.” Scott McPherson is an avid trombone player and has played since he was nine years old. He marched in the Cornhusker Marching Band at the University of Nebraska and now takes advantage of one free football game a year by playing in the half-time show with the UNL Alumni Marching Band. He plays in the Lincoln Civic Orchestra and a community band from the nearby town of Waverly, Nebraska. Scott loves to sing as well, though his range seems to have diminished in recent years. He has sung in college and church choirs and remembers performing parts of Handel’s Messiah as a highlight of his singing experience. One little-known fact about Scott is that he once sang soprano in a boys choir. Scott plans to keep writing as long as the ideas flow and others show interest in his stories. He loves to interact with other writers or readers about what has become a passion in his life. Reviews are always welcome as are questions and comments.
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