by Emerald O'Brien
Are you in a journalism class that requires you to blog for a grade? Are you masochistic enough to be writing a blog just for fun? (Or are you really just blogging because its a class requirement?)
|A photo of the author after finishing this blog. |
Photo courtesy of Mike Licht/Flickr
Well, you are in luck because in my 7 years of forced blogging experiences, I have collected a pool of invaluable blogging tips, and I'm here to share them with you.
1. Pick a topic you are passionate about.
When it comes down to it, if you aren't blogging about something you love, you won't want to keep up with it. And if you are being forced to blog, you will eventually learn to hate the things you used to love, helping to achieve my personal goal of eradicating all happiness from the world.
2. Stick to a schedule.
Your readers will expect your blog to be updated regularly, and if they can expect posts at a certain frequency, you'll have more success in drawing an audience to force your content on. Trust me, they'll be way more receptive to your updates about how burning your paella is going if they know exactly how often to tune into your bad cooking blog.
3. Create a workflow
Know your writing style. Do you need a few hours to write? A week? So much time that it's not plausible for you to be maintaining a blog? Allot yourself an appropriate amount of time and give yourself breaks. For example, I have to give myself time to change my blog topic at least three times, rewrite my bad jokes over and over until they are even more obscure and mangled than at the beginning, and have at least one complete mental and emotional breakdown.
Take a look at this sample timeline to get an idea of how you could structure your writing time:
10 am: Sat down to write this blog. Buckle up, everyone.
10:15: Sent unrelated email
10:20: Google search: "journalism news"
10:24: Google search: "journalism blog topics"
10:27: Google search: "how to write a blog"
10:30: Moving to an area with more people to make them give me an idea for a blog
10:35: Discussing headline titles like "Why your last article sucked" and "This girl tried to write a blog about journalism. You won't believe what happens next!"
10:37: Have a title. Going to write a blog about how hard it is to write a blog
10:45: Got in an argument about I vs. me and the oxford comma
10:50: Ate 6 strawberries
10:56: Editor asks how the blog is coming. Response: "Bad."
10:58: What is this blog even about? Why am I writing this? Who cares?
11:00: General existential crisis mode
11:02: My hands smell like rubber. Why do my hands smell like rubber?
11:11: My wish is that this blog was over with.
11:17: This timeline doesn't progress unless I blog, but the blog is the timeline, so I must write the timeline to do the blog which progresses the timeline.
11:21: I am a pathetic excuse for a journalist. I can't even write a blog post. I am just a pile of filth shaped like a human. I have no talents or motivation. I will die alone shoveling Nutella straight out of the jar and into my mouth with my filth-person hands.
11:29: Do I smell? Or is it something else? Has my body begun to decay in the process of slamming my hands on this keyboard until something of substance comes out? God save us all. Tell my mother I love her.
11:30: Scrapping everything and writing a review of the new Apple Wristwatch Mind Control Devices. Screw it.
4. Edit your blog.
Do'nt let ur blog post see the lite of day with/out looking over it carefally. Maybe have an editor look at it, but probably just trust you'r instinks. You don't need no editor telling you what to do.
5. Don't forget to post your blog.
The key, in fact, to having a blog is that it actually goes online. Although if you don't post it, you could be sparing the world your mundane daily musings that physically pain people to read. Think about it.
Now go forth and do great blogging! I might have faith in you!