Podcast Interview: Lorelle VanFossen – WordPress & Blogging Expert

Click Here to Listen to this Podcast:



I had the great pleasure of being able to interview Lorelle VanFossen yesterday afternoon.  For those of you that are not aware of her work, you can head on over to Lorelle on WordPress.  She is considered to be one of the top blogging and WordPress experts in the world and can be regularly seen keynoting at large blogger conferences such as WordCamp, and SOBcon.

The podcast is quite long for an interview, so I won’t be able to transcribe the entire thing, but I will hit a few of the key points here.

  • 0:58 – Lorelle launched one of the first websites in ’94 – Taking Your Camera On The Road
  • 2:10 – Lorelle as one of the early adopters of WordPress just after the 1.2 release.
  • 4:45 – Development of early coding, plugins, and early testing.
  • 5:10 – WordPress 1.5 and the launch of modular themes making design incredibly easy.
  • 5:50 – Alpha testing WordPress.com based on the WordPress MU.
  • 6:31 – Creating a blog network using the MU (New York Times, REI, and many other companies currently using WordPress MU)
  • 7:52 – “blogs are not to be replaced by Facebook or Myspace, they are your online business card and resume.  They speak very loudly for who you are, what  you do, and what you’re offering to the world whether it’s your opinion, your product, or your service.”
  • 8:40 – Discussing the number of websites that run WordPress, and the difficulty measuring downloads versus installations.
  • 12:50 – Plug for the WordPress Sandbox Theme as a structurally sound theme that acts as a blank canvas.
  • 13:35 – “micro-formats are very critical to the future of the semantic web”
  • 15:43 – Lorelle’s prediction for 2009: “Alot of development in comment WordPress plugins”
  • 16:25 – “The Captcha is dead – if you have a captcha comment system on your site, kill it.  People are seeing it, and not commenting”.
  • 17:25 – Video commenting, image uploads, more integration with microblogging; Twitter, etc.
  • 18:05 – Biggest prediction for 2009: consolidate online administration, monitoring, and management of online tools.  Better monitoring, and tracking.
  • 19:02 – New social networking platform theme: BuddyPress
  • 20:38 – Tips for new bloggers:

“You can’t get anywhere without a plan; my tip is multi-fold…”

  1. Write down all the words that describe what you want to write about (what you want to write about, what you want people to search for, etc.)  25-50 words
  2. Narrow the list down to 5-10 words.  These should ultimately describe what you are going to write about, and will become your categories
  3. Write a minimum of 5 blog post titles for each of the 5-10 categories (these are poswts that you could write immediately.  You have the concept, the material, the ideas, in your head already)
  4. “As you’re working through your list, you will naturally gravitate towards the things that are inherently important to you, and not just the things ‘I think I should be doing’.  If you find yourself struggling to find just 5 articles per category, then don’t blog about it.”

This is just a sample of some of the great tips Lorelle has to offer from her book: Blogging Tips – What bloggers won’t tel you about blogging.  Make sure to check it out!

Thank you again Lorelle for your time.  I am genuinely thankful for the time you gave for the interview.

Make sure to check out Lorelle on these sites as well:

** Lorelle On WordPress

** Camera On The Road




  1. says

    Lorelle has been a great inspiration to me (and my guess is to many other WordPress adopters). I thing anyone who is interested to start a blog need to head over and subscribe to her blog. It is really hard to miss her website. If my memory serves me well, I found her website the first time I had question about WordPress. Great interview!

  2. says

    thanks for these good tips and links, I am working on some wordpress sites at the moment and some of this is really helpful

  3. says

    microblogging is really useful when you want to broadcast short updates. i am still leaning towards traditional blogging.,’-