Blogging 101

Everyone wants to express himself, and we all have our own set of interests and hobbies. Luckily, in the internet age, we have this thing called blogging where we can share to the world how much we love one thing. For those who wanted to express themselves, but don’t know quite yet how to start their own blogs, here are some helpful tips.

  1. Pick your preferred blogging platform.

We have Tumblr, Blogspot, Blogger, and many other platforms we can use to utilize our desire to write. However, many believe that WordPress is the best among them simply because (1) it’s easy to set up your blog (2) many themes and designs available for your blog and (3) content can be shared on social networking sites.

The choice is yours, however. I have tried both Tumblr and WordPress, and I find WordPress easier to use.

2. What do you want to write about?

Before you kick start your blogging, make sure that you know all too well what you wanted to write about. Your blog can be a personal blog about your daily life in general. But it could also be about your interests such as gardening, anime, YA novels, political views, random facts, etc. In other words, you can literally write about ANYTHING YOU WANT! As for citizen journalists, they can use their own set-up blogs to post the stories they have covered.

Also, make sure that your blog has a specific goal. If it is a blog about anime reviews and the latest anime news, make sure to stick with it. It would be weird if we find a post about Vampire Diaries (unless it’s an anime adaptation) in a blog dedicated to anime and manga. Readers subscribe to a blog because they are expecting to read the thing  they wanted to read in it. So if you want to create a blog about American TV series, it’s advisable to make another blog site for that and make that blog a sister site of that anime blog. One example of this is the sister sites Listverse and Knowledge Nuts, both founded by Jaime Frater. Although they nearly have similar content (random facts about science and history), the key difference is that Listverse focuses on writing Listicles or articles based on a list (e.g. Top 10 Discoveries which Changed the World) while Knowledge Nuts is more focused on writing short articles about anything in general.

3. Research

You don’t want to merely invent facts, do you? (Unless you’re blogging about deceitful magic tricks.)

Read and read and read a lot! And make sure that your sources are reliable. It is the best if you read academic books and journals (such as from doaj.org and academia.edu) from trusted academicians if your blog is about things like that. You can also conduct your own research (e.g. make a survey, interview key people yourself, invent recipes, and the like).

Of all the basic steps in blogging, research is the hardest. This is where you will spend most of your time.

4. Writing Proper

This is going to be a piece of cake once you have your facts laid out in an organized manner.

Before writing, plan first. Make a rough outline about what will be the contents of your blog post. For example, the outlining I did in this blog post is something like this:

Intro
Platform
About
Research
Writing
Concluding Statements

Now that you’re done outlining, then start drafting. Write, write, write! It doesn’t have to be perfect because rough drafts are meant to be imperfect. Fill those outlines with the information you gathered using your own words (plagiarism is a crime).

Finally, edit. Fix the transitions, grammatical errors, misspelled words, etc. Once you’re done with your OC moment as your own editor, you’re finally done. Congratulations!

Blogging about worthwhile information is not easy. But your efforts are going to be rewarded when someone out there will commend you for your hard work. Make that your motivation!

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