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Resources for the modern journalist. From Loose Wire

Live Writer: A Quick Tour

Windows Live Writer looks a lot like Microsoft Word or any other word processor.

At the top you’ll see menus:


You’ll also see a toolbar below it with some familiar formatting buttons:


And there’s the main text area, where you can write, just as in a normal word processor.

But there are important differences:

  • Live Writer isn’t designed for printing, it’s designed for publishing online;
  • Live Writer works in HTML, the formatting language that web-pages use;
  • Live Writer is the door to all the blogs and other online material you’ve published, or plan to publish.

Here are some of the main features that make Live Writer different:

The Publish toolbar:


Think of the Publish button as the print button for online. Click that and your piece will be sent to your blog (or whatever website you’ve set up.) The next button along, New, lets you select whether you’re preparing a blog post or a page. Open lets you edit a previous post, page, or draft. Save draft lets you save your work, either to your computer, or to the blog/website itself, but without publishing it (i.e. making it public.)

The blog list


To the right of the Publish toolbar you’ll see a drop down list of all the blogs and websites you’ve set up to handle via Live Writer. This is a great feature that lets you move easily between accounts, and to publish one piece in more than one place.

The Taskpane


The taskpane sits on the right hand side of the main window. (If you can’t see it, hit F9.)

This lets you handle a number of things, including your blog’s settings, drafts and recently posted items, as well as insert extra bits and pieces into your blog.

If you have an image in your blog post, the taskpane will switch to an image editor:


This allows you to alter the properties of an image.

Edit tabs

Below a post you’ll see three tabs:


This lets you switch between three different views of your blog post. First is the edit mode, which lets you edit or compose a post as you would in an ordinary editing program.

The second lets you see what it might look like once it’s published online.

The third shows you the source code, or HTML, that you’ve actually created. (You can edit in this view if you like.)


Finally, there’s the properties tab below it:

Properties tab

(If you can’t see it, hit F2.)

Here you can add some extra bits and pieces, such as categories and tags, to your post or page. The fields vary depending on which service you’re using, and whether you’re writing a page or a post.


One Response

  1. […] A voyage around Live Writer […]

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