I thought I would share with you all 3 cheap and cheerful items that I purchased this week that will help me with my blogging and help me become a better blogger.
Imak Ergo Beads Mouse Cushion
I sprained my wrist badly playing basketball when I was about 14 or 15. When I was 19 it flared up again and my wrist gave way lifting weights at the gym. Years later, I hurt it again trying to punch through 2 boards at TaeKwonDo.
I’ve got a good wrist support for my wrist which I use when the problem flares up but the best solution is prevention. Lately I’ve felt my wrist becoming sore after working at the computer for so long. I have a standard computer style desk with a pull out drawer for a keyboard and a good leather swivel chair. If I sit upright the keyboard is at a good level for my wrist. However, I have a very bad habit of leaning back when just browsing the web or reading an article and when I use the mouse in this way it puts strain on wrist.
Regular mouse pads with a cushion would obviously help this but I was looking for something a little better. And I found the perfect product from a company called IMAK. Their Wrist Cushion for Mouse was apparently designed by an Orthopedic Surgeon and contains ‘massaging ergoBeads’. If you have ever squeezed a beanie baby then you know what this cushion feels like.
It might seem like an irrelevant item with regards to blogging but it is allowed me to work longer without hurting my wrist. I got it for £13.99 through ebay though they seem to be selling for $14.99 in the USA. If you ever suffer from a sore wrist from typing too much (a common repetitive strain injury), I recommend checking it out.
The Little Red Writing Book
As I mentioned a few days ago in my reply to Patti Staffords post ‘Possessive or Just Possessed?‘, I am actively trying to improve my writing abilities, particularly grammar. Not that I think my grammar is not good enough for blogging per say however I have long forgot the rules and reasons why certain things are used.
The book which I bought to help my writing style is called ‘The Little Red Writing Book: 20 Powerful Principles of Structure, Style and Readability’. At 160 pages long, this book is hardly the complete reference on writing though it manages to pack a punch by listing 20 basis principles of great writing. Each chapter is quite short which allows you to absorb the information very easily over time.
I find that I tend to forget quite a lot of the major points of this kind of book when reading it all in the one go therefore I plan on reading a principle every day for the next 2-3 weeks.
It’s a cracking little book and only cost me around £6 from Amazon. You can preview ‘The Little Red Writing Book’ at Google Books. I recommend checking it out if you are looking for a concise easy to read book to help you become a better writer.
The Oxford A-Z of Grammar & Punctuation
My last item may prove to be the most useful book I have purchased in years. When looking at grammar and punctuation reference books I was swithering between the 168 page long ‘Oxford A-Z of Grammar and Punctuation’ and ‘The Oxford English Grammar’; which at 672 pages long, appears to be the definitive guide to grammar.
I dediced on the more portable ‘Oxford A-Z of Grammar & Punctuation’ for a number of reasons. Firstly because it cost £4.99 instead of £22.75. Secondly, the smaller book is more practical to take with me when travelling somewhere and finally, because I don’t think I need such a large reference to help me improve my grammar (I think the larger book is more for teachers etc to refer to).
I’m actually a little curious as to what the larger book has in it because the ‘Oxford A-Z of Grammar & Punctuation’ appears to be the most complete guide on grammar I have ever seen. It truly is a fantastic little book. Every punctuation and grammar rule you can think of is in here.
I strongly encourage all of you to look into buying this book. I would go as far as saying that bloggers should consider purchasing this before any other blogging specific book. Native English speakers will find this useful however I have no doubt that this will greatly improve the quality of posts from non-native English speakers.
This is not a book you are going to read every day but it is something you will reference time and time again. I’m going to keep it next to my laptop at all times for ease of use and will probably throw it in my bag when going on holiday so that I can reference it when on the move.
I hope you have enjoyed this little summary. Have you purchased a new book or item to help you with blogging? If so, please share it with everyone in the comments section 🙂
Thanks for reading,