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Quick Tip: Make the Most of Lists

Learn how to organize your Reader stream and share your favorite sites.

True confession: I follow a lot of blogs — nearly 900 at last count. Do you, like me, sometimes have trouble keeping up with the river of amazing posts streaming through your WordPress.com Reader? Do you wish there was a way to view the blogs you follow by topic? Try creating Reader Lists — a simple, yet effective way to organize your feed and share your great finds with others.

Creating a list

I love to sketch in my spare time. I fill my inkwell of inspiration by checking out my favorite sketch bloggers in the Reader. Here’s how I created a list to get to their most recent posts with a single click.

  1. Go to your Reader.
  2. In the left-hand column, click on the down-arrow next to Lists and then click on Add:
  3. Addlists

  4. Add a title and optional description to your list. Remember, lists are public so a description helps others understand what they might find there.
  5.  

    Editnewlist

  6. I went through the list of blogs I follow and added the URLS for over 15 of my favorite sketch blogs.
  7.  

    editinglist

  8. Now, when I need an ink fix, all I need do is click on my Artists and Sketchers list to replenish my inspiration — all their most recent posts appear immediately. If you love art or sketching, feel free to follow the list!

To share a list, copy its URL from your browser’s address bar and paste it into your comment:

copytheurl

All Reader Lists are public — try creating a list of your own and share it with us in the comments.

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  1. Over 900!? *falls off chair* I can barely keep up with my 40ish! I use lists for my twitter. For all my years on WP, I didn’t know there was a list capability. This is going to come in so handy, thank you!!

    Liked by 10 people

  2. I have created lists based on tags to keep an eye on blogs that I don’t necessarily follow, but want to check in on for a particular challenge hosted by either myself or a fellow blogger. It is a very useful tool.

    At the moment I have a garden challenge running and my list is https://wordpress.com/read/list/izit/garden-challenge

    anyone who tags their post gardenchallenge will appear in my list, so hopefully I don’t miss their post.

    Liked by 5 people

      1. I thought that you could only create a list using tags (apart from the URL), but I have just done a test using a category and that also seems to work. I guess using either of these is random unless you set a specific name.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. I am absolutely amazed that you are following almost 900 blogs. It makes me wonder if I understand the concept of ‘following’. How can one read the posts of so many blogs? Do we follow to support bloggers (and therefore not necessarily read what they have to say), or do we follow in keeping with our interests and therefore are able to not only read but also comment/like? Would love to know what others do and why.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Well in answer to your question, I only follow around 40 blogs and for a long time kept it to 30. I like to communicate with the people I follow so always read their posts and often comment unless I haven’t got anything to say. I find the interaction is the best part of blogging and I couldn’t manage to do that with 900 blogs! An interesting point ladycee.

      Liked by 5 people

      1. Thank you so much @Heyjude for responding. I feel the same way as you. I also like to interact with other bloggers and even with those I visit from time to time through following the tags.

        Liked by 4 people

    2. I enjoy reading blogs, but like you said, it’s quite hard, nearly impossible, to keep up with the amount of posts that come into my email. Prior to learning about Reader’s list capability, I would quickly scan all the posts in my email, sorted by the blog’s title. It sounds selfish, but I only read or comment on posts that catch my interest. Or else I would be spending 2+ hours every night reading through my blog feed. And that I cannot do. I follow “less popular” blogs to support (and am more prone to comment on those), and those with large followings, I follow mainly because of my interest.

      Liked by 5 people

      1. Hello Jessica. Thank you for responding. I do not think that is selfish at all. Thanks for sharing your strategy. I always promise myself I’m just gonna spend a short time reading/commenting but end up spending time I should be using to write my posts.

        Liked by 5 people

    3. I also have 900+ blogs in my main Followed Sites stream. As an editor focused on finding content on WP.com blogs daily, it’s a good way to keep an eye on sites I’ve already “marked” or vetted in some way. It doesn’t mean, though, that I’m reading every single post on every blog. That’d be crazy. But breaking down this stream into lists makes it possible to filter it even more.

      I think we all read/consume in different ways — I actually have the complete opposite approach on Twitter, for example, where I follow less than 100 accounts and don’t use lists at all. Whatever works for you!

      Liked by 5 people

      1. Hello Cheri, thank you so much for responding and sharing how you use followed sites/the Reader. I appreciate these insights. I am quite new to social media and am not on twitter/facebook/pininterest blah blah. Perhaps that’s why I did not fully understand the concept of “following”. This conversation has been really enlightening to me. Thanks once again. 🙂

        Liked by 3 people

    4. I follow a lot of blogs — definitely, but it’s important to remember that not all the bloggers post every day. I try to keep up the the active stream. The one great thing about expanding the number of blogs I follow is that there is always something awesome waiting for me in my Reader.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Thank you Krista. I still think you and @Cheri Lucas Rowlands are amazing. My mind just boggles at the thought of following 100 blogs let alone 900+ but I am going to be bearing in mind the strategies used by everyone who responded and will probably as a result change my tune regarding my own follows and try to set up some lists. Thank you for this post. 🙂

        Liked by 3 people

      2. Oh dear, I meant to respond to Krista and think I may have responded to Cheri twice. @Krista please see my comment which may have been put under Cheri’s name. Cheri – I did respond to you as well. Guess my bed is calling me – good night all! 🙂

        Liked by 3 people

  4. Oh, my God! 900! And I follow not even twenty. On the other hand I have almost 1000 followers on WordPress alone after over a year of blogging. I don’t know what to do with so many blogs. I want to keep track of them and really read. Show genuine interest and interaction. I’ll think about this.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. Hello! check out my first ever blog. It’s about my best friend whom I have not seen for almost a decade, but were forced to see each other because of the death of his 8-year-old son, hope you will enjoy my story. Hope you follow me and I will follow you too. Thank you!

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Very useful tip, thanks for the advice. Lists will help me narrow my choices, specifically for certain topics that relate to my Fiction Writing class. I just started using wordpress a month ago so this idea was completely foreign to me until now.

    Liked by 1 person