Sunday, October 07, 2007

Blog Tips for Everyone, not just ministers

I discovered the blog Miss Cellania through Joel the Neff over at On the Other Foot. Miss Cellania offers a daily barrage of jokes, YouTube delectations, cartoons, and sage observations. A recent post referred readers to Omega Mom's list of Blog Tips, which I am reproducing here, because I think they're useful. (And once again, I'm waiting till the appointed hour to go do a 1 p.m. wedding and then go on to preach at 4 p.m. Waiting is not one of my favorite things to do, but it does produce blog posts.)

I have little to add to these, but I will star the ones I think are most useful to me, for I blog in a very vanilla kind of way, without much in the way of widgets and other features.

1. Look, read, and learn.
*2. Be EXCELLENT to each other
3. Don’t let money change ya!
4. Always reply to your comments.
*5. Blog about what you know & love.
6. Don’t use filthy language-buy a dictionary.
*7. Blog about something educational.
*8. Be yourself; others will follow.
9. Don’t have too many blogs that will become a chore to maintain.
10. Keep it simple, user-friendly, interesting and organized!
11. Keep the blog simple and sweet!!!
*12. Share with others your thoughts and don’t be shy!
13. Never ask for link exchange. Blog hop to increase traffic.
14. Don’t clutter your blog with ads all over the place. IT’S IRRITATING.
15. Don’t comment for the sake of commenting. Some looked too fake and it’s a big turn off!
*16. Share something interesting and you will gain more readers.
*17. Show that we care to all bloggers, treat each other as friends.
18. Pictures say a million words. Keep them coming!
*19. Blogging should be fun or you’ll get tired of it pretty soon.
20. Don’t think people will come to your blog if you’re not willing to pay a visit to them.
21. Everyone loves to read short posting and, best, illustrated with a picture.
22. Try not to publish more than 5 posts in one blog a day. Even if it’s from feed reader, it’s quite hard to digest and catch up reading everything.
23. Blog: the other window to peek into people’s life, minus the trouble. Keep a certain level of privacy to yourself.
24. Never tell your readers that you are going on vacation. That’s basically telling them to not visit your blog for a week. Instead, write several posts, and take advantage of the timestamp feature.
*25. Try and write with people in mind that are somewhat similar to you. Allow your audience to identify with your blog and feel at home.
26. The key to a good article is a good introduction. A joke, a question or a picture does wonders.
27. If you are looking to earn an income blogging read and, you will be amazed at what you can learn.
*28. Write for yourself first. Remember that it takes time, effort, patience…and above all, daring.
29. Photos for your blog should always be shot in the RAW! No, not in the buff, but in RAW format. That leaves you a lot more room to play with your subject.
*30. Blog about what you’re interested in, and what you want to share. And it’s your blog, you make your rules.
31. Scared of the new digital camera? Go out, take lots of pictures, slowly learn the bells & whistles. Enjoy!
32. Until you’re ready for heavy-duty PhotoShopping on a pro basis, stick with .jpg’s. Easier to handle.
33. Resize your pix before downloading to the Internet; you won’t eat up your on-line storage space nearly as fast. Remember, too, that the resolution on most screens is 72 pixels/inch. I resize all my pictures to 6″ wide x 72 pixels/inch (and hype the contrast — the Internet flattens pix). If you have a picture good enough to steal, it won’t have definition good enough for a commercial use; let them get in touch with you for permission to use.
*34.  Build a community–either find other bloggers whose styles are similar to yours and comment on their blogs, or find other bloggers who are interesting to you (not necessarily the same thing).
35.  Submit posts to blog carnivals.  Or join a “blog theme of the day” group, such as Julie’s Hump Day Hmms.  Or tag another favorite blogger for a ROFL Award or Thinking Blogger Award or Perfect Post Award.
*36.  Post regularly.  You don’t have to post multiple times in a day, or even a week.  But be sure to post regularly or else your readers will go *poof*.
37.  If you do decide to go the Pay-Per-Post way, please, please, please (a) don’t let it take over your blog, (b) do write your own copy in your normal voice, and (c) don’t let it take over your blog.  Did I mention, “don’t let it take over your blog”?  I have dropped a couple of bloggers who went that path.
38.  If you add a group widget, or any kind of widget, first check to be sure it doesn’t break your blog theme.  Then check to be sure the damned thing loads nicely.  Clear your cache, delete all cookies, close your browser, then call up your blog.  If it takes more than a few seconds to load, and causes your computer to slow to a crawl while it’s loading, ditch the new widget.  Also check it in more than one browser; try IE, Firefox, Opera, Safari.
39. Don’t be afraid to change anything that’s not working for you, whether it’s your style, your layout, your widgets, or your content.
40. Avoid clutter. A fancy template with color is OK if you are doing text-only content, but don’t overdo it. If you have photos and videos, keep the template as clean as possible for readability.
*41. Make it easy for your audience. Fonts that are too big or too small, or funny colors, or a dark background make reading a chore. It’s the content that matters. (my note: the dark backgrounds are really hard to read and give me a headache!)
42. Don't use your blogging platform for a word proccessor. In that way lies madness. There's nothing like working hours on a masterpiece and then your browser locks up or your server goes down before you hit save. Write it offline first, then copy to your post editor.
43. Don’t talk down to your readers. Sure, some people are idiots, but idiots need love, too.
*44. Don't take snide comments personally. They reflect more on the commenter than on your writing. i.e., someone who says your writing makes their skin crawl is not a nice person and others doubtless see that too.


Shelby Meyerhoff said...

"22. Try not to publish more than 5 posts in one blog a day." Uh, not a problem!

Thanks for the tips :)

Jan said...

Thanks for all these tips--I'm glad to know I'm doing ok!

Miss Cellania said...

Thanks for the link! I don't know why someone else hasn't thought of #44 before; its essential. You've got a nice place here!

ms. kitty said...

Thanks, Miss C. I love your blog and read it daily. I'm grateful to my nephew Joel for referring to it so often.

ms. kitty said...

And, Shelby and Jan, you're welcome!

Miss Kitty said...

These are some very helpful tips. I will admit, though, that despite the fact I'm an English professor, using foul language now and then feels so good. :-P Used in moderation, of course.