Writing a blog 2013


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An introduction to writing a blog post - suitable for beginners

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Writing a blog 2013

  1. 1. The hard part • Find an idea or topic that you are interested in • Find a way of making that topic interesting to other people • Find a way to make your writing more interesting • Be entertaining The hard part about starting a blogpost is actually starting it. The first thing you need is an idea. Once you have an idea the next hardest thing is actually starting to write. After you start writing the next hardest thing is to write well.
  2. 2. Establish a routine • Think-write – Keep several browser tabs open so that you can search for link sites and inspiration • Get a draft down quickly – Open Word and type without thinking too hard The truth is, writing a good and interesting post is not all that difficult if you don't worry too much about it. Chances are you may be already doing most of the work as a matter of routine. Technorati.com
  3. 3. Curiosity is your friend • Your topic needs a headline – Write the headline first – What is your key point? – Make that the headline • Find a good quote or three – Don’t forget to link / attribution – Think ‘why that quote’ and write your answer down If you are really perturbed by the subject matter, you are likely to persist and read more either immediately or over a period of a few days to follow up on the event to satisfy your own information crunch and curiosity. Technorati.com
  4. 4. Reflection – thinking time The best thing to do now is put it away and forget it till you are ready to spend that one hour adding what you have to say, annotating and referencing with the links and embellishing with the quotes and tweets you have collected. Technorati.com • Before you hit ‘post’ on your post consider: – Have you done enough research? – Do you have the right angle? – Is your message clear? – What’s missing? – Is the writing clear and engaging?
  5. 5. Don’t try to do it on deadline • Find something to talk about: – Make notes every day – Keep an ideas diary – Make notes about what you are reading – Keep track of interesting news items – Read some blogs If you write a blog post in a hurry, without having a proper background or an idea, out of the blue, in order to keep up with the rat race and hence under pressure – your blog post is going to suck! Write a blog without getting burned out
  6. 6. Create, don’t punch • Most bloggers who provide advice would agree – Don’t rush it – Take your time – Think it through If there’s one lesson that I’ve learnt about writing for the web it’s that a key element to writing successful blog posts is that in most cases they take time to CREATE. I emphasize ‘create’ because I think too often as bloggers we ‘PUNCH’ out content as though we’re in a race or under some kind of deadline. It’s almost like we’re on a production line at times – unfortunately the posts we write often reflect this. ProBlogger
  7. 7. Draft, craft, edit, refine • Write your draft in a word document – Work with short paragraphs – Keep ideas – one to a paragraph • Don’t write it like an essay or report • Paste your links so you don’t forget them I always have half-cooked posts in my drafts folder – more than one of them. When I am in the mood to write or when my brain says “it’s time to write” I just pick up any post that strikes a chord with my mood then. Write a blog without getting burned out
  8. 8. Make a point • Get to the Point – Tell us straight away what the post is about • Don’t Bury your Points – Get your message across in the first few sentences if possible • Find creative ways to reinforce your main point throughout your post • Don’t Introduce too many New Ideas in one post – once again this helps to avoid overwhelming readers with information all at once
  9. 9. Make it visually interesting • Lists – use lists, but not just lists – A list – can be used to make a quick series of key points • Formatting – consider the use of formatting with fonts and colours to draw attention to your main points – Don’t over do it • Headings and Sub Headings – are effective ways to guide the reader through the topic – Write in blocks of 2-3 pars under each heading
  10. 10. Illustrate and space out • Pictures – the right image, carefully positioned will add to your post • Borders – using a border, or box can highlight your key message • Quotes – draw the reader to a good quote by giving it a visual touch – with colour or a change of font • Space – a bit of white space can give your content time to breathe and it helps the reader’s eye adjust
  11. 11. CloudDeakin Discussion Board ‘Topic’ Home Screen Use ‘Compose’ button to open your post for this topic We recommend that you first draft your post in a word document and paste any URLs you want to include as links into the document. You can format them as links once you upload (paste) from the Word doc to the open post screen [see next slide]
  12. 12. Your post is written directly in this New Message window, or pasted in from a Word doc This group of tools is Cut / Copy / Paste / Paste ‘text’ / Paste from a Word doc This group of tools is for formatting B I U T is for fonts (typeface) and the lines here are for paragraphs (left, right, centre, etc), including DOT POINT and NUMBERED LISTs When you are finished click Post to make your entry appear on the Discussion Board Your headline (title) goes in the Subject line Pictures, multimedia and links are inserted with these tools TIP: Hovering over each tool will indicate what it is for. Always use the Advanced tool bar so you can see all the functions
  13. 13. The drop down menus ‘Paragraph’ ‘Font family’ and ‘Font size’ allow you to quickly select formatting for highlighted text in your post. Using ‘Paragraph’ you can turn text into headlines and sub-heads Use T to change the colour of the highlighted text. TIP: Highlight the text first and then apply the paragraph or font style. In this close up you can clearly see many of the formatting tools from left to right on the top line: CUT, COPY, PASTE, PASTE TEXT, PAST WORD DOC BOLD ITALIC UNDERLINE AND FONT COLOUR (T) LEFT, CENTRE, RIGHT, JUSTIFIED ALIGNMENT DOT POIINT (BULLET LIST) NUMBERED LIST AND INDENT TEXT
  14. 14. It is possible to create very good graphic elements in your post. This tool allows you to insert a table with several columns and rows. This is useful for representing data
  15. 15. This section of the tool bar is where you can add pictures, multimedia, PDF files and links to other web resources Importantly, you can also check your spelling. SPELL CHECK INSERT LINKS TO WEB PAGES ADD MULTIMEDIA, EMBED VIDEO FROM YOUTUBE AND AUDIO FILES TO PLAY IN THE POST ADD PICTURES FROM YOUR BROWSER