What is a "blog"?"Blog" is an abbreviated version of "weblog," which is a term used to describe web sites thatmaintain an ongoing chronicle of information. A blog features diary-type commentary and linksto articles on other Web sites, usually presented as a list of entries in reverse chronological or-der. Blogs range from the personal to the political, and can focus on one narrow subject or awhole range of subjects.Many blogs focus on a particular topic, such as web design, home staging, sports, or mobiletechnology. Some are more eclectic, presenting links to all types of other sites. And others aremore like personal journals, presenting the authors daily life and thoughts.Generally speaking (although there are exceptions), blogs tend to have a few things in common: ■A main content area with articles listed chronologically, newest on top. Often, the articles are organized into categories. ■An archive of older articles. ■A way for people to leave comments about the articles. ■A list of links to other related sites, sometimes called a "blogroll". ■One or more “feeds” like RSS, Atom or RDF files.
The Blog ContentContent is key for any web site. Retail sites feature a catalog of products. University sites con-tain information about their campuses, curriculum, and faculty. News sites show the latest newsstories. For a personal blog, you might have a bunch of observations, or reviews. Without somesort of updated content, there is little reason to visit a web site more than once.On a blog, the content consists of articles (also sometimes called”posts” or "entries") that theauthor(s) writes. Yes, blogs have multiple authors, each writing his/her own articles. Typically,blog authors compose their articles in a web-based interface, built into the blogging system it-self.11 Tips for Blog Writing1. Have something to sayThis makes writing easier and faster. When you have nothing to say, you are forced to writesentences that sound meaningful but deliver nothing.Read widely. Take notes. Choose your subjects wisely. Then share your information with read-ers.2. Be specificConsider two sentences: •I grow lots of flowers in my back yard. •I grow 34 varieties of flowers in my back yard, including pink coneflowers, purple asters, yel- low daylilies, Shasta daisies, and climbing clematis.Which is more interesting? Which helps you see my back yard?3. Choose simple wordsWrite use instead of utilize, near instead of close proximity, help instead of facilitate, for insteadof in the amount of, start instead of commence.Use longer words only if your meaning is so specific no other words will do.4. Write short sentences
You should keep sentences short for the same reason you keep paragraphs short: they’re easi-er to read and understand.Each sentence should have one simple thought. More than that creates complexity and invitesconfusion.5. Use the active voiceIn English, readers prefer the SVO sentence sequence: Subject, Verb, Object. This is the activevoice.For example:Passive sentences bore people.When you reverse the active sequence, you have the OVS or passive sequence: Object, Verb,Subject.For example:People are bored by passive sentences.You can’t always use the active voice, but most writers should use it more often.6. Keep paragraphs shortLook at any newspaper and notice the short paragraphs.That’s done to make reading easier, because our brains take in information better when it’s bro-ken into small chunks.In academic writing, each paragraph develops one idea and often includes many sentences. Butin casual, everyday writing, the style is less formal and paragraphs may be as short as a singlesentence or even a single word.See?7. Eliminate fluff wordsQualifying words, such as very, little, and rather, add nothing to your meaning and suck the lifeout of your sentences.For example:It is very important to basically avoid fluff words because they are rather empty and sometimesa little distracting.Mark Twain suggested that you should “Substitute damn every time you’re inclined to write very;your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.”8. Don’t ramble
Rambling is a big problem for many writers. Not as big as some other problems, such as afford- able health insurance or the Middle East, which has been a problem for many decades because of disputes over territory. Speaking of which, the word “territory” has an interesting word origin from terra, meaning earth. But the point is, don’t ramble. 9. Don’t be redundant or repeat yourself Also, don’t keep writing the same thing over and over and over. In other words, say something once rather than several times. Because when you repeat yourself or keep writing the same thing, your readers go to sleep. 10. Don’t over write This is a symptom of having too little to say or too much ego. Put your reader first. Put yourself in the background. Focus on the message. For example: You can instantly and dramatically improve your blog writing skills and immediately explode your profits and skyrocket your online success by following the spectacular, simple, and practical tips found in this groundbreaking new free blog post. 11. Edit ruthlessly Shorten, delete, and rewrite anything that does not add to the meaning. It’s okay to write in a ca- sual style, but don’t inject extra words without good reason. To make this easier, break your writing into three steps:1)Write the entire text. 2) Set your text aside for a few hours or days. 3) Return to your text fresh and edit. None of us can ever be perfect writers, and no one expects us to be. However, we can all im- prove our style and sound smarter by following these tips and writing naturally.
Things Bloggers Need to KnowIn addition to understanding how your specific blogging software works, such as Wordpress,there are some terms and concepts you need to know.ArchivesA blog is also a good way to keep track of articles on a site. A lot of blogs feature an archivebased on dates (like a monthly or yearly archive). The front page of a blog may feature a calen-dar of dates linked to daily archives. Archives can also be based on categories featuring all thearticles related to a specific category.It does not stop there; you can also archive your posts by author or alphabetically. The possibili-ties are endless. This ability to organize and present articles in a composed fashion is much ofwhat makes blogging a popular personal publishing tool.FeedsA Feed is a function of special software that allows "Feedreaders" to access a site automaticallylooking for new content and then post updates about that new content to another site. This pro-vides a way for users to keep up with the latest and hottest information posted on different blog-ging sites. Some Feeds include RSS (alternately defined as "Rich Site Summary" or "ReallySimple Syndication"), Atom or RDF filesBasics-A Few Blogging TipsStarting a new blog is difficult and this can put many people off. Some may get off to a goodstart only to become quickly discouraged because of the lack of comments or visits. You want tostand out from this crowd of millions of bloggers, you want to be one of the few hundred thou-sand blogs that are actually visited. Here are some simple tips to help you on your way to blog-ging mastery: 1.Post regularly, but dont post if you have nothing worth posting about. 2.Stick with only a few specific genres to talk about. 3.Dont put subscribe and vote me links all over the front page until you have people that like your blog enough to ignore them (theyre usually just in the way). 4.Use a clean and simple theme if at all possible. 5.Enjoy, blog for fun, comment on other peoples blogs (as they normally visit back).