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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I find blogs pretty tricky. It took me a few days before I posted my first one online. I seemed to re-write it over and over again. So, I was just wondering how you went about writing blog? Is there a certain structure or way you approach it. My first one was fairly personal and about my old dog, Katie. In the end I threw away my pre-written blogs and just wrote an honest blog called "Dogs, the forgotten heroes", but not sure how it comes across because in the end I just wrote from the heart. I think perhaps to make blogs successful you have to do a bit more than that. I was just wondering what that something was. Any thoughts would be much appreciated.

http://hermitmaster.blogspot.com/2011/07/dogs-forgotten-heroes.html - this is the link to the short blog. I think you will see its honest, but not sure if that is the best approach?
 
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I assume you mean blog post?  Because if you were to actually construct a separate blog every day, that would be more than a little exasperating :)

Honestly, I write my blog posts like I wrote all my college papers: in a burst of frenzied activity at midnight (well, not always at midnight, but you get the picture).  I spend maybe an hour absorbed in whatever it is I'm blogging about, then toss it up and don't think about it too much, except to respond to comments.  YMMV, of course, but it's what works for me--and I got mostly A's in college too.
 

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It really depends what you want to achieve.  People blog for some many different reasons.  Do you want to reach out and change somebody's life?  Is it just therapy, a place to get your thoughts in order, or to vent, no matter if somebody reads it or not? Do you want to build a fan base and reach as many people as possible?  Support a cause?  Sell something?  

Each of these will need a different approach to make it "good".

My own blog has evolved from the "tap....tap...is this thing on?" stage through to becoming a place where I post my latest creative project because hey - people do look at it, and it motivates me to do more.
 

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IMO a good blog is one that either:

a. Provides information people want
b. Provides entertainment

Accomplishing either (and doing it in an original way) is the tricky part.
 

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I'm not great with writing blog posts, so I took a different approach to my blog. My blog is a series of images/songs that I enjoy and I feel inspired by. I feel more inclined to keep up with my blog when I'm looking at beautiful pictures or posting awesome songs.

I recognize that it won't be for everyone, but I enjoy it, and it makes me stay active, I think.
I appreciate blogs that provide some source of entertainment, so I feel like good blogs (two of these are on Dara's list):

a) cover topics I find interesting
b) offer me entertainment
c) have something I can actively participate in (giveaways, etc)
 

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A good blog is a blog with great content. I don't normally blog these days, but I had a popular blog back in the day, well I like to think it was popular, that I updated daily. It got quite a few hits daily. But yeah, just make sure to update it regularly with interesting topics and you'll be fine. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank you very much for all the replies. Where to begin!

I assume you mean blog post? Because if you were to actually construct a separate blog every day, that would be more than a little exasperating
lol, you can see how little I know, lol. I do mean blog posts and I liked your approach too.

It really depends what you want to achieve. People blog for some many different reasons. Do you want to reach out and change somebody's life? Is it just therapy, a place to get your thoughts in order, or to vent, no matter if somebody reads it or not? Do you want to build a fan base and reach as many people as possible? Support a cause? Sell something?
At first I thought I want to do this to promote my book, but the book (and the series) is sort of a throw back to the old, Never Ending Story, Willow, Witches and these type of movies I grew up watching. They were exciting and uplifting with really good messages. The book is about growing up with disabilities, touches upon losing a loved one, friendship and working towards your dream. It is a young adult book. That was what I went with in the end. A blog about my old dog, Katie. She is the star of the book, but the story follows this puppy dealing with these issues, so I tried to show why I was inspired to write the book rather than marketing the book.

a. Provides information people want
b. Provides entertainment
Those are really good points. I think I have the entertainment aspect down for my next blog, lol. That has given me something to think about.

My blog is a series of images/songs that I enjoy and I feel inspired by. I feel more inclined to keep up with my blog when I'm looking at beautiful pictures or posting awesome songs.
I quite like that. I like music and photography & art.

offer me entertainment
I am lucky that I have some rather funny animals in my house. My book is about animals, so I want to post animal related things on my blog. Going to be putting up a video of my singing dog. I think it should go down well, as the people near me find it pretty funny.

I mainly use my blog to promote my books. But I put other interesting things on there too.
I want to promote my book and the ones that come, but my current approach is basically try to do something that I would like to read, something honest and hope people connect with it. I just need to make it more useful to people and more entertaining or one or the other, lol.

A good blog is a blog with great content.
I sort of have an end game in sight. I did sit down last night and think about what themes I want to touch upon my blogs. In total, I could only think about six, so I was starting to panic, lol, but the "Dogs, the forgotten heroes." seems to be really popular with dog lovers at the moment, which is really nice. Lots of hits and starting to have comments rolling in. Now, not sure if and when I should do the next one. It may not be as good as this one, lol.

Thank you so much for your replies!
 

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Another big key to a good blog is that you consistently add posts/content to it.  On the Internet websites and blogs do better when they have a steady stream of new content. 
 

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bluemoonaurora said:
Another big key to a good blog is that you consistently add posts/content to it. On the Internet websites and blogs do better when they have a steady stream of new content.
This is true - but good content will trump "a-post-a-day". Pushing too hard to post for the sake of posting can result in blog burnout. Find a pace that works for you - once a week, or whatever, and stick to that.

I've collected some articles on the how to write better blog content - you can find my collection of links here:

http://www.delicious.com/mashadutoit/blog_writing

Hope that's useful!
 

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for me a good blog post is me.

what i mean by that is :

yes, you should have something that people want to read
yes, you should have it grammatically correct
yes, you should include a picture in the post
yes, you should not it long enough to grasp something but not long enough to put ppl to sleep

But i learned that the blog should have me in there. People read my books because they like what I write, but they read my blog because they like me.

That may sound narcissistic and a little over confident, but I learned in order to get good blogging, add all the ingredients above, and a little bit of me. (Sometimes i put too much of me, but I know I get a lot of viewership to blogs when I'm not afraid to be me.)
 

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Read you blog. I think it is great that you wrote that post from the heart. I loved your reference to the "millions of four legged heroes".  :)

It's a good advertisement for your book too.
 

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I blog just to share. I blog about writers and authors. I blog about my kids ridiculous antics. I blog about my own books and share my blog with other writers to help them. I add photos. I try to mix up the content to reach a wide audience of potential readers (writers included since they are the base from which I started) and photography customers (since they are my bread and butter) and readers (since those are the ones I want to reach) and general funnies (to bring in people I might not normally reach). :)

I think it's a fun way to open yourself up to the public but you really gotta balance what you put in. All about you and people will stop dropping by. All about one topic exclusively (like just writing) and it gets boring.

Mix and match. :) And most of all, have FUN with it! :)
Aimee
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Another big key to a good blog is that you consistently add posts/content to it. On the Internet websites and blogs do better when they have a steady stream of new content
That makes sense, but my worry is posting content that doesn't relate to what i do. If that makes sense. I have a few blogs in mind I am going to write, but I can count them on one hand. I think they will be really good, but its like I want to do amazing blogs, every now and then, rather than okayish blogs every single day. I should try both methods and see what works for me.

This is true - but good content will trump "a-post-a-day". Pushing too hard to post for the sake of posting can result in blog burnout. Find a pace that works for you - once a week, or whatever, and stick to that.
Thank you for the link too. That is my issue. I have some good blog ideas, but I would have them done in a week if I did a blog a day, lol. I like the fact that I am having people reply to my blog, on the blog, on twitter and on facebook. I think I will wait until people stop talking about it and then put up another blog, see if they like that one too.

yes, you should have something that people want to read
yes, you should have it grammatically correct
yes, you should include a picture in the post
yes, you should not it long enough to grasp something but not long enough to put ppl to sleep
I tried to keep my one fairly short, a quick read. I plan to use a picture next time, as I feel that is missing on my blog. I think my blog has been pretty good really because it is about dogs, the books main character is a dog, and dog lover and animal lovers have really taken to the blog and seem to be passing it on to their friends, which is really nice.

Read you blog. I think it is great that you wrote that post from the heart. I loved your reference to the "millions of four legged heroes".
Thank you very much. I am glad you liked the blog. I tried not to be too soppy, lol. It is hard when talking about my old dog, Katie. And the four legged heroes thing I think is so true. I live in the new forest and it is a big dog walking community where I am, the dogs play, I tend to chat with people and everyone has a story about their dog, old dog, favourite pet and I think all animals lovers can connect and relate to that line, as they are little heroes.

Mix and match. And most of all, have FUN with it
That is good advice. I am thinking about trying to make my blogs unique, but fun and honest. Try to make each one a little different from the last

Thank you for the advice everyone. I do appreciate it.
 

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I think a good blog is one with a lot of often updated content and interaction between the blogger and the readers. Comments on my blog often spark additional posts and people really come back for the conversation. We work as a community, help each other out, and become more than just blogger and readers. We're a network and connect across multiple social networking platforms. Drop by if you want to join the party ;) http://belindaf.blogspot.com/
 

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Hi Simon :)

Came across a great blog post this morning on the subject :
How I got 6,000 RSS subscribers in 12 months

The blogger blows away many common 'what makes a good blog' guidelines like:

- follow established blog rules. Wrong, says the blogger. He says: make your own rules.
- posting frequency matters. The blogger posts less than once per week
- quantity over quality. Quality content creates more engaged, active subscribers and repeat visitors.
- link sharing traffic. Transient traffic that rarely subscribes or returns.
- keep posts under 700 words. The blogger contends that longer, more detailed posts will garner more traffic than several smaller posts with less substance.

One of my favorite quotes:

What happened around Jan 09, May 09, and especially Aug 09 that caused a sudden jump in readers and increase in slope?

Answer: Nothing. I did nothing.

...I didn't do anything. I didn't pay for traffic, I didn't submit an article to the right place, I didn't convince someone to post it on their blog, I didn't get credibility with a link-sharing site, … I didn't do anything. Other people did stuff (more below), and they did it on their own only because they loved the content.
Read the post. It's one of the best posts I've ever read on the subject. See, I'm sharing it with you. This blogger is smart.
 

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I also follow problogger.net and he's pretty awesome when it comes to serious content on a blog and I recommend just reading some of his posts to help you get inspired
 

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Probably the best take on blogging, how to do it, and WHY to do it, is from my social media guru Kristen Lamb. I now blog 4-5 times a week (haven't posted today yet), and it's to build my AMY SHOJAI brand, gain followers, provide info-tainment and . . . waaaaaay down the list....sell books. I include lots of pictures, lots of links to my own or other's pertinent content, and I rarely write about writing although I did include a series on DIY Kindle-ization.

I write a Monday Mentions (mash up of other blogs, articles I love, etc); Tues Tips (on writing, pets, nail polish, whatever); Woof Wednesday, Thought Thursday (on anything) and Feline Friday. www.AmyShojai.com

Nobody but writers care about writing blogs and there are so many out there you'll be lost in the storm. Your personality should shine through. People who LIKE you will be moretempted to at least try your book(s) especially to find out if the "blog voice" they love is the same in your books.

Check out Kristen's blog here, one example: http://warriorwriters.wordpress.com/2011/07/27/whats-the-magic-number-how-often-should-writers-blog/
 

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If you find the answer let me know because I only get 1000 hits per month :eek:
 
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