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Putting up a Blog? Post It Like Nobody Is Watching!

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Image source - Oatmeal

Image source - The Oatmeal

This isn't as bad if it reminds you of your own leaps in the dark of a blog business. Then, you reveal patchwork. Your own, at least. Because this is what blogging unfolds like. A series of patches, a game. The rules to which you create and re-create. Depending on the big picture you're aiming at.

Patch #1 - Research

Feed your mind. Daily. Set up a Feedly account (or an alternative to it). Cram it with any blogs, news sites that grabbed your attention lately. Look for more. Find those that cover the topic you mainly blog about. Add more. On various topics that you mainly don't blog about. Keeping up to date with exoplanets may come in handy, some day. Perhaps, for the lack of better ideas, you will explore how your crowd would land there. If it had to.

While feeding, don't forget social media, a constant inspiration to your diet. And possibly, a path to connect to authors you usually read in the dark. Alone.

Patch #2 - Grammar (rules)

Don't get trapped by grammar rules. If you have a proofreader, you're safe. Except, you will have to discuss your text with the proofreader, eventually. Which may be easier to do with an alien from a distant universe. Remember. He is there to read you the rules, but don't forget that you are there to give the rules a twist. If your voice requires a clean, staccato rhythm, he will tell you not to start sentences with "and", or "but". But you will. If you care to pour your sentences down to one nice endless string of words, he will tell you to add a punctuation mark now and then. And you won't. If you are a proofreader yourself, all the worse. Prepare for a harsh inner dialogue.

While not getting trapped by rules, don't forget that you should first know them. And an all bad grammar will give you an all bad voice.

Patch #3 - Attachments

Think about images you can add to your text. Think again. Not only should they appeal to the reader. But snap him out of the narration. This is how you lay them out carefully. Think of an image as a full stop that requires a short reflection on what has been said previously. Also, all the details and colors and symbols of the image will help you shape your voice. And sometimes even inspire writing. If they do, you'll make them stand in front. Like a trophy. If those are web comics, the bloggers' favorite would be xkcd, or Oatmeal. With comments on current topics.

The attachments to your text can also be videos or tunes. Those are good if you carefully balance the time it takes for your reader to actually read the text and the time it takes him to process the multimedia. And not abandon your page.

Patch #4 - Scrapbook

Own a scrapbook. With quotes, and words, and book titles. Add to it your personal observations. If you open your text with a quote, it will give you a nice line to follow while writing. If you memorize some, it will help you come up with playful titles to your post. If you are working from office, you'll want to learn from online scrapbooks. Such as Brainpickings, maintained by Maria Popova. It comes with writing tips from real writers. Plus, a literary jukebox.

Scrapbooks are real time savers on days when there's not enough coffee. Or exciting news. Or exoplanets.

Patch #5 - Inspiration

If blogging is what you do for living, you'll consider yourself lucky. But you will also get to know the faults, soon. To put it in words (and drawings) of The Oatmeal's Matt Inman, "being a content creator is a wonderful job… but inspiration isn't something you can schedule, harness, or control." And sometimes it will be easier to perform a dull writing chore for your boss, than to come up with - whatever you want to write about. To deal with that, Matthew advises to go hang gliding in your underpants. Or make a new friend. So far, the best writing tip.

Please take time to read the full scroll on being a content creator, by the Oatmeal.

Patch #6 - Marketing Tips

If you are doing corporate blogging, you will need to dig for some content marketing tips. The most fun and useful and to-the-point ones can be found on the Copyblogger site. Yes, they will wear out eventually. As you gain experience. But if you give out those first minutes of work to such literature. Light and harmless. And grow this into a habit. You will know, eventually, that it did help. You won't know why, but it did.

You can have fun times with tips serving literature. The texts will sometimes include your verbal superheroes from TV hit series. Such as Don Draper, from Mad Men. And what he knows about persuasion and success.

Patch #7 - The Big Picture

Unless you are doing a personal blog, try not to make it into a dear diary literature. The less the reader hears from that I, the better. Think book. The more it resembles a book, the more invited the reader feels to collect the scraps. Gets the urge to find out about the whole story. The whole patchwork. This is how you create audience. That applauds for you.

Also, think always of weaving in other people's words, credit them for it. This is how you make yourself into an audience. That is bowed at.

To wrap it up. By all means, use dictionaries.

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