Whether you're a technical writer, marketing writer, article writer, or blog writer, there are three areas of your writing that you need to pay attention to. While in the past you may have had the luxury of having specialists work in each area, in today's world you often have to wear all three hats. In fact, with that in mind, technical writing certificate programs often organize the courses into three different categories, but all are required to earn the certificate. These categories are:
- Writing (Create)
- Editing (Rewrite)
- Production Editing (Design)
But the presentation is a very important piece of it all. It makes the difference between drawing your reader in and allowing them to receive the great information you have or turning the reader off in confusion as to what you were trying to say. Just as people make judgments based on first impressions when it comes to style and dress, so do they when it comes to your blog.
As an example, in my “Writing Reports" class, I received an “A" not just on the writing and editing, but also, I believe, on the presentation. When I presented my report to the class, everybody oohed and aahed when they saw it. Why? Because it had a pleasing design and I had used a color printer. Design is a crucial piece to conveying information to readers (search on “designing content for the web" for resource material).
"But it's just a blog, " you might say. “I don't have time to scrutinize my writing and edit it for hours. " True. How much time you spend on your blog may also depend on what your focus is and what kind of outcome you're trying to achieve. If it's a business blog, you'll want to pay attention to the details. A personal blog? Well, that's up to you.
But if you're short on time, the biggest impact you can have on making it reader-friendly is to run a spell check and to:
- Use short paragraphs (shorter for blogs than for other types of writing)
- Add white space between paragraphs
- Add subheads if you have a long post or are covering several topics
Kathy Holmes writes humorous women's fiction while raising an awareness for women over 40 and fatherless daughters. She has recently published a nonfiction book called “Myths of the Fatherless" about her own journey to find her father. She can be reached at http://www.kathyholmes.net