You have a new way to explain how something works? A clever idea to share? An interesting memory? An original view on a social or political issue? Do you have an alternative viewpoint to provide? Then, it is possible you have a great blog posting from inside of you. The key question is, can you unlock your potential as a writer?
Unlike writing a book, blogging, or on-line writing, provides you with the versatility to express facts or opinions about the variety of subjects you know about. Even though one writer has published a blog post of 38,000 words, it doesn’t mean you have to. Most great posts are between 1,000 and 2,000 words long.
Tap into Your Personality
Blog writing is akin to essay writing. You can tap into your sense of wit, your humour, share an individual viewpoint, persuade others of your perspective. Indeed personality is so important in this genre of writing, readers love to see the writer’s personality. Can you write between 1,000 and 2,500 words at one sitting? Then, you have the potential to become a blog writer.
Can you become great? Memorable? Everyone has that potential! Everything you think has the potential to show people something of you, but not everything you think is ever written about. You should be clear on that distinction. If you have been thinking about the matter for a while then it must be important, and this could be something you should tell others about. That is, one of the joys of blogging.
What is your purpose? Who are your audience? These are certainly two questions you should think about before you write. Blog posts can explore, but they can imagine, they can digress. Indeed, like essays they don’t really have fixed rules for writing. There is no “Dear Sir” nor “thank you” necessary. The only real rules are to make it interesting, have a good title, and use pictures or diagrams to emphasise your words. Largely, the goal of a blog post is to take a personal experience, or an idea, or a memory, and relay it to the outside world. Part of the joy of blogging is also connecting to people on social networks and publishing your work.
The ability to argue and persuade are questionably the most important weapons a writer can bring to bear. Aristotle talked about appealing to reason (logos) and emotion (pathos). These skills are as vital today as they were in ancient Greece.
What is your potential? You should take a couple of minutes to look at what has already been said in this article and question what you can do.
Are you able to contribute? Maybe you won’t be able to paint a picture in a book yet, but that develops. I am convinced you have potential otherwise you would not be reading this right now. Uncovering or discovering your potential may be another thing, perhaps you should take a course on essay writing or other related topics. Reality is that it is up to you to explore your potential as a writer. You may surprise yourself.
If you can convince somebody through the use of humour, then it is a good medium to use. Personally, I’ve never mastered the art of humour, only finding it by happenstance.
Emotive and persuasive writing are skills that can be learnt. In part knowing what pulls at your own emotions and what persuades yourself is a start developing these skills and may be the start of recognising in turn how to persuade others. How were you persuaded to vote (or not) at the last election? Was it an advertisement? Was it something somebody said? If you think about what influenced you, then you can perhaps use the same skills to influence others. You need to put it in writing for your blog for it to be effective in this medium.
One of the lessons I learned was not simply to react to things other people have said. Reaction tends to be driven purely on emotion. Your arguments may fail to logically come together. As a result, there is no thread binding the emotional aspects to the logical ones. Even the logical Mr. Spock new about the power of emotion combined with the power of logic.
Are there Right and Wrong ways to Write?
It has been said that an essay writes itself. The structure becomes clear to the writer as they proceed. Yet with a blog many writers suggest that a structure is necessary in advance of putting pen to paper. Is this true? There are times when bullet points help you structure your thought process. There are other times when free writing is perfectly acceptable. I have written posts with the central idea in mind, the need to discuss views arising from a single point. Here the writing radiates from the central point, which is not necessarily clear in the opening paragraph.
There are some rules. For example, you should never accuse people of wrongdoing. I know there are examples of famous historical essay writers making unfounded accusations, but a modern blog writer has to think about the future of their blog. Being sued for damages is not a good idea and most writers could not afford the cost of a law suit.
Is the Central Purpose of your Post Clear?
As you revise your writing, you must ensure at all parts linked to the central purpose. This is true for the opening sentence as it is for the closing one. Each sentence may hint towards, build ideas, or logically support the central purpose of your essay. Many opening paragraphs preview the concept under discussion, mention existing thoughts, perhaps suggest an alternative way of looking at things.
How you build your ideas, sentence after sentence, is a necessary part of building the essay. Will each address some of the obstacles? Tell people why existing knowledge is limited, suggest other things we should know or investigate. Perhaps show different perspectives. These are some of the ways to develop your potential as a writer.
You may find the following articles helpful:
- First Time Writer – “I want to know if I can write”
- A Career Path for the On-Line Writer?
- Intrigue: Thought: What will You be Writing Next?
- Shattered Glass and the Pain of Not Writing
Buy Peter B. Giblett a coffee to thank him for looking at what it takes to become a good blog writer. If you have questions then please ask them via a comment. The images included here are from royalty free public domain image collections, photographs from Pixabay, or from Peter Giblett’s personal collection.