How to Write a Blog Post

If you are reading this you probably either have a blog already or are thinking about starting one. I started this blog over  5 years ago, but it’s only been in the last few months that I finally started blogging consistently. I decided to compile a few tips for other bloggers based on what I have learned from my own blog.

  1. A good blog post is essentially an essay. Now I don’t mean that your blog post has to be boring. And it doesn’t have to have an introduction paragraph, 3 (or more) supporting paragraphs, and a conclusion paragraph like you were taught in school. Of course, if you want to use this format go for it! It’s a great method that is taught in schools for a reason. When I say that a blog post is an essay I mean that it is a collection of ideas about a specific subject. It may include research or links to other websites. It takes time to write well, so don’t expect to just slap a few sentences on a page and have a successful blog.
  2. Writing a blog post tends to be easier when your content is more or less unified around a single theme. That way your readers know what to expect, and your possible blog post ideas are limited (most people find it easier to brainstorm when they have limits to work within). My blog’s theme (at least recently) has been about knitting: What I’ve knit, the yarn I’ve bought, patterns I’ve used or want to use. Now that doesn’t mean that I never post about anything that isn’t related to knitting. A blog is also a story of things that happen in your life –  you might post about a vacation you went on, or the funny thing your friend did, or anything that strikes your fancy. But try to make sure that the majority of your posts are about the same kind of thing and that that thing interests you enough to keep writing about it.
  3. Consistency is key. If the number of views your blog gets matters to you at all, you will want to post regularly. This doesn’t mean you have to post every day. My goal for my blog is to post 3 times a week. Some bloggers post only once a week. Some bloggers post several times a week, but the number of posts is different each week. Once people find your blog and decide they want to keep reading they want to know how often they should visit so they don’t miss any content.
  4. Proofread everything. More than once. Every time you make a change. There is little that annoys me more than misspelled words and bad grammar. With word processing software as advanced and readily available as it is, no one should ever misspell a word ever again. Taking 2 minutes to reread what you’ve read gives you a chance to reflect on the quality of what you’ve written and to change any glaring mistakes.

If you follow these suggestions I’ve given the quality of your blog posts will improve (or start out great! Yay!). Of course there will always be exceptions to the rules. Some people never write about the same thing twice. Sometimes I “write” a blog post that only contains a picture (hey, a picture is worth a thousand words, right?). Some bloggers post only once in a blue moon. Some never proofread (and it is almost always evident). But my favourite bloggers to read tend to follow these steps I’ve outlined for you. Good luck, and happy blogging.

On Writing

“Write me,” my novel begged me.

“How?” I begged it back.

“How can I write what others think,

What others feel and do?

They are not me, though I created them.

I am not them, though their source is me.”

 

“Write me,” my novel begged me.

“Why?” I demanded back.

“These people have no claim on me.

They owe me their existence.

I alone created them.

Their source is in me.”

 

“Write me,” my novel begged me.

“I can’t,” I answered back.

“I haven’t the words my people deserve.

I cannot do them the justice they so greedily beg.

They are not me, and I cannot live their lives.

I am not them, and they cannot live mine.”

 

“Write me,” my novel begged me.

And this time I complied.

I chronicled times I’ve never lived and places I’ve never seen.

I met so many people I had never known.

They are not me, but for a time I knew them.

I am not them, but for a while they knew me.

Once Upon a Time…

As you may have already guessed, one of the things I enjoy doing is writing. Whether it’s a simple blog post or a short story or attempting a novel, I delight in the written word. So I had an epiphany the other day while reading another blog: why not share my short stories with you too?? So here is the first of several of my stories. I don’t know about you, but a little humor always seems to brighten up my day.

 

20 Minutes

 

20 minutes. I had 20 minutes to be at work! I had woken up just a few short moments ago.  I rolled over in bed. It was a lovely day outside – the sun was shining, the birds were singing, everything was perfect. Until I looked at my alarm clock.

7:40 blinked the red fluorescent numbers.

“7:40!” I cried. “No, it can’t be 7:40!” What had happened? I knew I had set my alarm the night before for 7:00 – time enough for a leisurely breakfast. What could’ve gone wrong? Why didn’t the alarm go off?

All of these thoughts and more raced through my head as I threw myself out of bed, showered, and dressed in 10 minutes flat. I flung myself down the stairs and into the small kitchen. I grabbed a granola bar in my haste (after all, breakfast is the most important meal of the day), slipped my shoes on, and got in my car. That’s when I realized that I hadn’t thought to grab my car keys.

Grumbling to myself about stupid alarm clock manufacturers I rushed back inside to get the keys. Of course, the car took forever to start, and traffic was bad.  “What else could go wrong?” I wondered aloud.

Finally I was in sight of my workplace. Just in time, too. It was 7:59. I parked my car in the only available parking spot – which was, of course, inconveniently located at the farthest end of the parking lot – and sprinted up to the door.

My boss was going to kill me for being late again! I straightened my clothes and opened the door.

“Sorry I’m late,” I started.

My boss gave me a strange look.

And that was when I realized that today was my day off.

Have I mentioned just how much I love tatting? It has become an obsession with me (as I mentioned a few posts ago). At the moment I am working on a snowflake that should come out to between 4 and 6 inches. It’s quite pretty and since it’s a new pattern that I’m trying, I’m thoroughly enjoying breaking up the monotony of the old patterns. The only sad thing is that I don’t think I’ll be able to bring my tatting shuttle with me on the plane when I fly back to school on Tuesday. This is tragically sad. But maybe I can prepare another project to work on during the flight. 🙂

In other news, my story is now up to 14,500 words!! I don’t have it all up at the moment, but you can read most of it by clicking on the tab above named “Remember Me – a novel.” I would love to have some feedback and opinions on the story. Since the story is so dark (it tells about the Holocaust), I’m working extra hard to keep some light in there. Because no matter how dark it gets, one can always find something to be glad about.

November

Yes, you did read the title correctly. And, yes, I do know that it is still October. But did you know that next month is National Novel Writing Month (affectionately referred to as NaNoWriMo by its participants)? NaNo is a challenge. The goal: to write a full-fledged novel (50,000 words) in a month. The numbers work out to almost 2,000 words a day! Incredible, I know. I’ve been aware of NaNo for a few years now, but I never joined in the fun because I thought it was just too insurmountable of an object. I mean, there’s no way I can write a novel in a month!! Is there? Which is why I find myself signed up for the project this year. I know I’m crazy. I’m way too busy for this! I’m a college student doing way too much already. But I just couldn’t keep myself from joining. Hopefully you, dear readers, can help me gear up for the end of life as I know it and keep going when I’m in the throes of busyness and want to give up. I’ll keep you updated.

And any story ideas would be such a blessing!! I’m drawing a complete blank at the moment ….