8 steps to write a blog for others

Do not be fooled! This is a tattoo.

Do not be fooled! This is a tattoo.

8. Don’t tell stories. That’s what parties are for. Stories require personal interaction; a screen between you and your reader is hardly sufficient to create a meaningful interpersonal connection.

No one wants to read about your life. You didn’t click on this link because you want to hear about my day or know about my life, do you? (In the rare instance that you do, thank you – I love you!)

But the majority want information for themselves; they read when there’s something in it for them, they click when my words offer them some incentive. It’s less of a selfish intention and more of a tendency of human nature.

It’s just something to keep in mind if you want your writing to connect with others. Stories are fine, as long as they are anecdotes, structured to demonstrate a broader point that people can relate to.

7. Have an intended audience. Your readership can be as broad as you’d like it to be. My targeted audience is probably young adults, but older and younger people often find my blog and enjoy it, and that’s awesome. But having an intended audience is worthwhile; people like focus.

A food-lover might love one post that you write about a new restaurant down the street, but won’t read, or might even react negatively to your next post full of babysitting advice.

Think I’m a hypocrite? Maybe. While I’ve not even decided a distinct focus yet, readers can anticipate writing about the complex and three-dimensional life of a high school senior.

6. Create an identity – hold yourself accountable. If I didn’t share this blog with people that I know, if I didn’t give some sort of persona to Never Stationary, I’d probably be cursing all over the place and publishing very irrational writing.

It’s important to not let others’ opinions guide what you think and write, but the alternative is anarchy! We ought to be held responsible for our words, and what better way to do that then have others involuntarily mediate them for us? An identity creates consistency. 

5. Write about controversial, personal issues. The sky is blue, music is good, and Jimmy Fallon is hilarious. What’s new? Why not take the opposite stance of convention once in a while? Why not put a unique spin on something mundane and bring your personality to the drawing board? 

Blogs that do well, that proliferate through the web have something new to offer, something unprecedented, something that will make people stop, and re-read the title in disbelief.

Go one step beyond what most people do (state the obvious and agree) and discuss a topic which few have covered, because that’s what makes me want to click around to see what other insights you have to offer.

4. Edit, edit, edit. I used to omit editing my posts, to not even read through them before I hit that blue ‘Publish’ button, and this is very obvious. Previous posts are disconnected between paragraphs, and incorrect spellings and missing words dot the post here and there.

These easily rectified mistakes detract from the quality and credibility of your writing. Why does the opinion of a sloppy, undedicated writer on topics such as writing matter? 

Experience teaches me what kind of wording resonates most strongly with readers, and typically I’ll write three such drafts of every post before I am satisfied with it. Blogging is great; you can tell precisely when I realized the above.

I’ll change up vocabulary, delete irrelevant or redundant portions, and alter wording to most accurately depict my thoughts.

I cannot tell you how many times my words have been twisted, misinterpreted; in the most drastic of situations, I have to go back and edit again.

3. Be consistent. Don’t start a blog, post every day for three weeks straight, and then abandon it for eight months until you’re inspired to start it up again. Post consistently, do not overload yourself, and do not hike up your own expectations until you can realistically meet them.

At the same time, however, do not feel compelled to follow an overly tight schedule. If you assure something every Wednesday, don’t worry if you have to miss one week, and especially do not post something sub par just for the sake of keeping a promise. Do not overload yourself, which leads me to my next point…

2. Write for yourself. Write for others, but remember to write for yourself. There’s a fine line between writing content suited for the public and selling out. You joined WordPress, you started a blog because you thought you had something important that other people might want to hear.

If at some point you find yourself bored with what you’re writing, it may be that you’ve lost yourself in the midst of all of this logistical crap.

Why do you write for others? Do you want popularity, attention, or some form of acceptance? This place is not right for you; this isn’t sustainable.

Never get caught up in the frenzy on the Stats page, how many views your writing gets, or how many people comment or like your posts.

If you write what you genuinely believe and have fun with it, then the consistent and genuine readership will follow.

A blog is not meant to be a one-time project. It becomes a hassle to maintain and something to abandon if you lose interest in what you’re writing. Don’t let it happen to you.

1. Just do it. If you want to start a blog, just do it. Don’t question yourself or your ability to generate quality pieces, whether it be opinion, poetry, or creative writing.

But no one’s gonna read it! Just do it. Every day you put it off is another day that someone won’t be able to read what you have to say. People will read, because their curiosity gets the best of them. I guarantee it.

No time! BS. We spend too much time watching TV shows and making internal realizations and too little time capitalizing on these insights and turning them into literary gold.

Once while I was in class, I saw a dude that I honestly never talked to before in my life reading my blog. RAD.

Stop dilly-dallying. I wavered for hours but finally shook off my nerves and boldly did it. Never Stationary had a timid birth, but soon I stopped being defensive and started offensively stating my opinion.

There are so many people that tell me that they want to write, but don’t. If you think your opinion has any inherent value and you think writing might be your outlet, please please take a chance.

13 comments

  1. Pingback: How to Transition Your Creative Writing Degree into a Content Marketing Job - The Whiteboard
  2. Pingback: Part 1: Which Type of Writing Speaks to You? – Freelance Writing for Newbies
  3. Pingback: Common questions about my blog, answered | Catherine Zhang
  4. Pingback: If You’ve Always Wanted To Start A Blog, Here’s Your Sign. | Catherine Zhang
  5. Pingback: 4 Fundamental Truths About Writing | Catherine Zhang
  6. Pingback: How to write for yourself: an 11-step guide | Never Stationary

Share your opinion!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s