From Vaporstory

Thank you for the kind words, Jami, and thank you for liking us on Facebook much apeapcirted! I am a real beginner when it comes to working on a blog backstage, but I have learned quite a bit in the process we moved 2 blogs from wordpress.com to wordpress.org as self-hosted sites, and created another one from scratch. (In all honesty, my goal for Minerva's Garden was to get the move done before Tuesday Garden Party started, so that helped keep me moving and motivated!) One big tip is to back everything up at your old site before you try to make the move, because you have a ton of data from the old site that you'll probably want to move to the new one (I had not as much as you, but still a fair amount. I couldn't find any easy way to back up pages, and pretty much had to do them all by hand, which took quite a while.) If everything works correctly, you should be able to just export the old blog onto your computer as an xml file, (it's in the Tools section on the dashboard), and then import it to your new blog on the FTP server; for me, this was at the host site, which is Go Daddy, but there are several others. I had a great deal of trouble moving the old blog content to the new one for this particular blog (not a lick of trouble moving the other one go figure) finally someone at wp.com was kind enough to email the content to me in a xml file, because I never could download it myself. Another tip is to select a web host that offers good customer support, because I was on the phone to them a ton during this process. I've been pretty happy with Go Daddy in this regard; they have WP.org concierges whose sole job is to help you get things set up from behind the scenes, so that was very helpful. They helped me with forwarding/pointing the domain names in the right directions, which is kind of tricky to do if you've not done it before, as I had not. They won't help you with working out problems with WP.org itself, and the WP.org Codex leaves a lot to be desired, in my opinion. It's probably good for someone with more computer experience, and code experience, then myself. I found parts helpful and a lot of it over my head. I found a helpful website called Blogging With Amy that provided a lot of tips for beginners like me who want to start a blog. I'm not affiliated with her or paid by her in any way to promote her site; I just found some of her articles easy to understand and helpful. It was fun once I actually got going in wp.org a lot more options in terms of site layout and design elements, and adding code was pretty simple by using the html options in the theme I selected, or in widgets. I wish you well on this endeavor I found it challenging because I am new to it all, but it was really nice when it was done, and I could just go in and resume writing once again!

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