So you’ve answered the “5 Questions to Ask Before You Blog” that I posed to you in the last post, and your blog is underway. Congratulations! Remember that your blog is a project of creative writing as much as your novel-in-progress or budding memoir. But there are important differences, and they are worth keeping in mind if you’d like the quality of your posts to grow, and readers to grow as a result of that quality.
(A reminder that this is the second of a two-part series in which I’m sharing a bit of the curriculum from my six-week Writer’s Center course, “Writing Compelling Blog Posts,” which begins the night of Tuesday, April 17th.)
Remember these five things while you blog:
- Your readers face temptation. At any moment they can hop to another blog, check their Twitter feed, or pull up a video of a cat yawning to a dance beat. Open strong. Write short.
- Allow your blog to evolve. Which posts are read the most? Keep drawing readers back months later? What are commenters saying? Listen and react. The Artist’s Road has evolved over the past 18 months in ways I wouldn’t have expected as I’ve responded to reader feedback.
Break the rules occasionally. When you absolutely have to, write long. Or go off subject. Unpredictability is great in moderation. Or, as your left brain might say, “Spontaneity has its time and place.”
- Post original material. A blog is not the place to publish your work-in-progress. You’re embarking on a conversation, not a literary reading. Engage with us directly, and we’ll engage back.
- Have fun! You get to write. You get to see your name in “print.” You get to read people saying they liked what you wrote. What’s so bad about that?
If you’re here, you’re a reader of blogs. You may have one yourself. What have I left out?