A ‘how to blog’ talk got me blogging again.

Long-term work and blogging compadre David Higgerson and I were asked to give a talk on blogging recently.

Obviously David has lots of thoughts on this subject because… pause… he still actually blogs (and there aren’t many journo bloggers from way back when resolutely still plugging away – Hello! Adam and Paul !) Every one seems to be giving up or shifting to Medium.

Anyway, a side effect of having to prepare for the talk, and then deliver it, was that I had to confront the elephant in the room; I have not blogged for So Long. I very much doubt there are legions of readers sobbing into their sleeves over this fact, but the thing with blogging is this: I get out of it much more than I put in; the drafts folder, for example, of this blog is full of completed or half-formed posts that never got published simply because I a) wrote my frustrations away or b) wrote my way into seeing a solution – one that didn’t require me to foist my deathless prose onto the world.

But I love blogging. I love the subtle behaviours that go with it – the etiquette, the styles, the tinkering with sentences to make your point and then the ‘will anyone read it/care’ moments that follow.

It’s taught me about the language, behavioural codes and niceties of Wheaton’s Law, and about how people are likely to interact from behind the safety of a keyboard and anonymity.

When I started putting the talk together I asked Twitter for insights, and so thank you to those who came back with views – some of you will see your tweets featuring in the slides below.

So I thought I’d share the slides on here, and get my blogging mojo going again. What have I got wrong? What have I missed? What do you agree with? All views welcome. David’s going to publish his slides too, and I’ll link to those once they are live.

Anyway, I’m going to talk my own (and contributors’) advice, and just crack on with blogging again. And this time I will be starting posts with the aim of finishing and actually publishing. Who knows, it might even happen,

On ‘posting a blog’

It’s a small point, in the grand scheme of things, but when people ‘post a blog’ my day loses a little of its savour.

Ancient (well, several years old, at least) blogger credo insists: You post a post to your [web]log; you do not post a blog. You don’t upload a blog either, and there are purists who would prefer it if you didn’t blog as a verb at all. You are allowed, however, to post an update to your blog.  It’s a pedantic minefield.

Having said all that, you can do all of the above so long as you don’t follow the lead of one long-ago sales colleague and tell me (repeatedly) that you’ve “sold a blog” because you think blog is the technical term for a one-off sponsored content slot.

(I’ve nothing against Cathy’s tweeted sentiment, incidentally; she just happened to be the 3rd person to ‘post a blog’ in my timeline today)