Are bloggers writers?
Are writers bloggers?
These questions have been raised for as long as I can remember, and it seems that the general consensus is that bloggers don’t have to be excellent writers, and writers aren’t necessarily good bloggers. However, their skills put together make the perfect combination.
That being said, it is our responsibility as bloggers to make an effort to improve writing skills. Not only does that make for more readable posts, but it also increases credibility. Even those who do not have perfect grammar can be rather critical of the work of others.
So how do you improve writing skills? Here are three easy ways to do that.
“The greatest part of a writer’s time is spent in reading, in order to write; a man will turn over half a library to make one book.” —Samuel Johnson
Whether you’re writing a book, or you’re writing a blog post, reading is an important element of creation. The more you read, the more you learn how to write. You get inspiration. You learn about different styles of writing.
So read everything you can, as much as you can.
Pro tip: Purposefully and carefully read the work of prominent bloggers in your niche.
Write without thinking of criticism, SEO, etc.
Some bloggers are self-conscious when they write. While they may accept the idea of a first draft, they write as if they want the first draft to be perfect, publish-ready. Then there’s the SEO part. They place such high value on SEO that it gets in the way of writing.
If there’s one thing you should do to improve your writing, it is this: Just write.
Write. Proofread. Revise.
Wash. Rinse. Repeat.
Perfection comes at the end. As for SEO, the best SEO is excellent content.
Get external feedback.
You can read, proofread, and revise your work as much as you want, but sometimes, it is essential to get an outsider’s point of view. You’re too close to your work that you may have biases – even if unconsciously.
Ask a fellow blogger to critique some of your work. You can ask for his general opinion, but it’s more beneficial to be as specific as possible. Some elements that you can highlight are:
- Title/headline. Is it catchy enough? Is it phrased properly?
- The body of the post. Is it connected to the title? Is it written in such a way that the flow of thought is smooth and the readability good?
- The closing paragraph. It is so easy to end a blog post without providing a conclusion. You know, just like a road that suddenly stops at a cliff. Ask your “reader” if your last paragraph leaves him with a sense of closure.
- Grammar. There’s no going around it. You don’t have to be a grammar expert, but you can always improve your knowledge if you want to.
- Typos. There’s a difference between grammar errors and typos, and I’ve seen how bloggers make the same typos regularly. It could be due to indifference. It could be due to habit. If someone else points this out, then you can exert more effort to keep an eye out for those regular typos. Before you know it, you’ll be rid of them.
Blogging and writing skills go hand in hand to a certain degree, and both can be honed. If you are willing to take the steps and make some effort, you can give your blog a boost just by writing better.