Writing Exercise: use Hovercards for passive #promo Writer Wednesday

I’m over at the amwriting blog today! Basically, it’s with this post but I thought I’d dup it for y’all and ask you to go on over to amwriting because it’s CHOCK full of advice and items to help you out with your writing. You can even create an account and offer to guest blog, which I did. Johanna Harness (twitter ID: @johannaharness  please follow her) is incredibly giving as a tweeter and with her advice on the blog. So without further ado: The post.

I watch a lot of Simpsons. I really shouldn’t admit that as I know some folks don’t appreciate the humour of the show, but I mention it for a reason: it was the sole thing that encouraged me to investigate the concept of Hovercards.

What do Hovercards have to do with the Simpsons? Not much, really, except that when I first saw the term, I immediately thought of the episode where the Simpsons kids are offered a hoverbike by Marge in return for leaving a Cult run by “The Leader”.

Hover. That’s it. Just that one word connection, but it made a big difference to my social presence.

I first noticed Hovercards over at Kristen Lamb’s blog. Yes. You know the blog: The MYWANA blog. I’d been noticing other bloggers Gravatars for some time, had even set mine up with the cute little cartoonie things offered by WordPress. I didn’t think much of them, as so many that I saw were the same. Until one fateful day I decided to mouse over Kristen Lamb’s picture.

Shock! The mouse made a small window fly out. In that window was a neat little promotional bundle with pics and links and info. I would have assumed it was some nifty bit of code that some awesome programmer had put in…except for the word: Hovercard. That made me take notice. I noticed in the lower right corner the words: “Turn off Hovercard.” Hmmm. What was this? I examined the flyout more closely. Aha. A Gravatar symbol in the upper left corner of the flyout. WordPress? I thought. Is this a WordPress widget?

Turns out, TADA! It is, or at least I can utilize it and set it up from WordPress. I can go straight into my own dashboard and program in my own Gravatar complete with Hovecard.

So, you’re thinking, big deal. So you get a little flyout. Um. Yeah. Big Deal.

I turned on Hovercards in my Dashboard and now with my little bit of customization, every time I comment on a blog with my WordPress account, it sticks in my picture…AND my marketing bit. When someone rests on my pic, up comes all my promotional links and pics to encourage folks to visit me, buy me, follow me.

Simple and free and one more tool in that promotions toolbox.

Let me see if I can help you set up:

  • Login to your WordPress account and Go to the dashboard
  • Click on Settings: Discussions and scroll waaaaay down to the Gravatar section. You will click a couple of things (Avatar display should be Show Avatars and Gravatar Hovercards should be set to view other people’s profiles with a mouseover) These, so you can see others as well as yourself.
  • Save Changes

Now: Set up your profile

  • Go to the Account menu: edit my Profile
  • Customize to your heart’s delight (don’t forget book cover pics and links to your profiles across social media)
  • Save those changes.

Now for the fun part. Go to someone’s WordPress blog and leave a comment. See your Gravatar? Mouse over it! Yay. Neat lil promo package all for free.

Now Hovercards can do all the hard work of promotion for you once you’ve left your comments behind. It’s a neat way to upkeep that brand of yours.

Good luck and happy blogging.


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Thea is the author of several novels that she considers left of mainstream. You can find her on BN, Kobo, Sony, Apple

Anomaly by Thea Atkinson



Thea Atkinson is a writer of character driven fiction.

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Posted in writerwednesday exercises
6 comments on “Writing Exercise: use Hovercards for passive #promo Writer Wednesday
  1. […] Writing Exercise: use Hovercards for passive #promo Writer Wednesday (theaatkinson.wordpress.com) […]

  2. Thea, you are a star!

    Haven’t tried it yet, but looks so easy even I might be able to make it work!

  3. Knew about them, but not that you can add photos. Covers HAVE been added and profile updated. Thanks!

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