Somewhere last year Deva posted about her writing a blog post and whether or not to share it. I commented by telling her I usually prepare my blog post before publishing it. Then I promised Deva to share how I do it.
Here are 10 blog writing tips à la Chez Lorraine. These are steps I usually take for writing a blog post. They have worked for me so far. They are not tips about how to blog though. I will share these in another post.
1.What to write?
We, bloggers, begin a blog because we want to share our stories, right? Food bloggers, travel bloggers, political bloggers write posts with subject related to their niche. For personal blog there are many to write about; hobbies, music, movies, news, thoughts and other subjects. Just pick one you like.
2. Choose one subject
Stick to this subject the whole post. Adding sub subjects is ok as long as they relate to the main one. Various subjects in one post will confuse your readers. Think whether this subject is ok to share with public. If not, you still can write it in a locked post.
After that you arrive in the go and no go area for publishing. Ask yourself these questions before you start writing: Would the post start a dialog? Which reactions would come up from your readers? The positive ones would not be a problem. If you expect negative reactions which you don’t want to deal with, do not write it. However when you feel the urge to write about it, just do it and park it as a draft on the dashboard. Writing works therapeutic for some people.
Note: Some bloggers seek deliberately for an online dialogue, negative or positive. At this point they will carry on no matter what.
3. Do some research
Once the subject is chosen ask yourself the purpose of your writing. Is it convincing, influencing or just sharing? Convincing and influencing needs valid data to support it. Take a plunge on the web and search relevant information about the subject. It could be articles, polls, films, music, a quote or a YouTube video. Don’t be shy and use them.
One main rule about this: mention the source or simply link it back.
A basic lesson in writing: define the intro, body and closing of your post before you write. I for one, define this by writing the subtitles first, then I phrase the main sentence, from there I expand the paragraph.
Do insert an enter cutting a paragraph in two or three parts. This is ok and allows your readers’ eyes to rest in between the chain of words.
5. Language usage
Another basic lesson in writing: Stick to the narrative form. Do not mix I and We in one post. This will confuse the readers. Vary the vocabulary and avoid repetition. Pay good attention to punctuation. Message in written text can be easily wrong interpreted when there is lack or an excessive use of punctuation.
6. Your thoughts are important
What makes blogging really cool is bloggers can speak out for themselves no matter which subject they write. So, insert your own thoughts and opinions. It is interesting for the readers to get to know you through your posts.
7. Don’t make it too long
I prefer not to write too long posts. As I think of my reader’s browsing comfort. Reading long post makes them scroll endlessly with their device which could be unhandy. Remember, most of us are online not only on PC or laptop but also on tablet and smartphones. By keeping the post in moderate length, it attracts readers to come back or even follow your blog. If your story is indeed too long, cut in in various parts and make a chain post of it.
Did you know our brain receive images faster than text? It is also proven that people remembers 80% of what they see and do, 20 % of what they read and 10% what they hear. Look at this infographic for more info. However, add only images (pictures, photographs, infographics, video) which support your story.
Once again: mention the source if images and photographs you use are not yours.
9. Well arranged
The new post is written. Next important step is to categorize and tag it properly. Categorizing helps you and your readers to track it easily. Tagging allows random people browsing on the net, to find it. The latter is essential if you write useful information about one subject. When I browse on the net and stumble upon an interesting blog, I usually scan the categories to read another posts on it.
10. Re read
Beside the compulsory proofread (spelling and grammar checker), it is advisable to re read your post. I do this all the time. Sometimes I put a post in a draft in this step. I even re read a post 2 days after it was published. From time to time when I find a strange structure in my post, I revise it immediately.
Publish & share
An extra tip which has nothing to do with writing but important for bloggers: Publish your post at time when most of your readers are online (daytime untill 9 pm). You can easily schedule this. Share this also on social networks so other (potential) readers can find it.
Voilà! My 10 blog writing tips based on my experience as a mediocre blogger combined with theories I read and have tried at work.
They have worked for me, perhaps they would for you or not at all. Anyhow, happy blogging and keep on writing!
Image is taken from Ims writing.