While you may be adept at sending and receiving e-mail, there may be some e-mail secrets that can make your life a little bit easier.

Bold, Bigger and Colorful
You can add style to your e-mails by changing your text to bold, italics, or underlined. Try new combinations of colors, fonts, sizes and much more. To get started, simply experiment with the row of buttons just above the e-mail text field.

Mail Extras
Did you know that you can add artwork, smiley faces and sounds to your e-mail with just a click of your mouse? Keyword: Mail Extras has everything you need to get started.

Dictionary, Thesaurus and Spell Check
If you get stumped spelling a word or find yourself lacking the appropriate turn of phrase, try keywording to Dictionary and Thesaurus. These online guides are invaluable while writing e-mail. Once you are done drafting your e-mail, click on the ABC button just above and to the right of your e-mail text box. AOL will instantly perform a spell check on your e-mail!

Favorite Place Hearts
If you want to share a screen or a Web site with another AOL member, you can drag the favorite place heart of that screen into the text of your e-mail. Or you can click on the favorite place heart and view the options of adding the screen to your Favorites folder, an e-mail or an instant message.

Status Check
After you've sent e-mail to another AOL member, you can check to see if and when they've read your e-mail. Bring up your Mailbox, click on the Sent Mail tab, then click on the e-mail that you sent. Now click on the Status button on the bottom of your mailbox. Voila!

For more information on e-mail, visit:
-- AOL Mail Center

Once you have mastered the basics of e-mail secrets, you are ready to embark onto the more advanced e-mail features.

E-Mail Signatures
Signatures are a great shortcut to adding your personal touch to e-mails. If you want to end your e-mails with the same information each time, maybe adding a quote uniquely suited to your personality, click the pencil icon above and to the right of your e-mail text. Then click Set Up Signatures and Create on the ensuing screen. Now you can create as many e-mail signatures as you want. To add one to your e-mail, click on the pencil icon again and select whichever signature seems most appropriate for that e-mail.

Mail Controls
If you find that you are receiving an inordinate amount of spam or unwanted e-mail in your mailbox, you may want to consider Mail Controls. You can keyword to Mail Controls, select Customize Controls for this Screen Name and click the Next button. Closely review your options, as you can choose to block e-mail from specific e-mail addresses or even entire Internet domains.

Mail Preferences
By keywording to Preferences, you have an opportunity to customize your AOL experience even more. Click on the Mail link, and you can now determine how you want to send and receive e-mail, how your e-mail looks, how long your old e-mail lasts and much more.

Personal Filing Cabinet
Another option within your Mail Preferences is to set your Personal Filing Cabinet. If you decide to retain your sent and read e-mail to your Personal Filing Cabinet, you will keep a copy of every e-mail on your computer. While this may be convenient from a record keeping standpoint, you may end up using more hard drive space than you realize. After a few months, you may decide to prune some of these archived e-mails.

Deleting Lots of E-Mail
There are times when deleting e-mail one by one gets monotonous. There are two shortcuts that you can use to speed up the process. If you hold down the Ctrl button (or Apple button on the Mac) and click on multiple e-mails with your mouse, you can highlight as many e-mails as you want for deletion. Or you can hold down the Shift button and highlight all of the e-mails between two selections. Then click the Delete button.

Undeleting E-Mail
If you accidentally deleted e-mail that you wanted to keep, click on the Mail Center icon on your AOL Toolbar and select Recently Deleted Mail. From this list you can retrieve deleted e-mails from the last 24 hours only.

Blind Copy
There may be times when you want to send the same e-mail to a lot of different people, but you don't necessarily want everyone to know which e-mail addresses received the e-mail. By using parenthesis around an e-mail address inside of the Copy To: box, you can hide that address from everyone else. We do advise that you send test e-mail with this feature before using it as making a mistake could be potentially embarrassing.