C h a z z W r i t e s . c o m

The publishing revolution already happened.

Stuff not to say on your blog

I’m all for free speech. I want to start this post by being very clear about that. I’ve actually paid dearly for my belief in free speech (as in losing a job and a career.) What follows isn’t about censoring anyone. It’s about what’s best for a happier reader experience. In the spirit of honesty — without being brutal about it — here are things make me run from your blog:

1. Please don’t start a post by apologizing that you haven’t posted in a while. Everybody says sorry when there’s a lull, but few readers would notice if you don’t tell us. I see it with podcasts all the time, too. When I see that apology as the lead paragraph, I don’t expect awesomeness to follow and I move on quickly. Maybe you feel bad for letting us down, but it’s blogging, not a kidney donated too late. Ease up on the throat clearing and tell us the crux of your post up front. Have something to say.

2. Unless a hurricane has taken your house away or you’re facing extreme weather bravely (or even in a cowardly manner), your blog isn’t the place to talk about the weather. That’s what Twitter and Facebook are for. (Facebook is for people who at least sort of know you and it’s the place to be funny/political/share grumpy cat pics; Twitter is for strangers you hope to make into friends; blogs are the place for us to be honest/helpful/funny/entertaining/whatever you’re into.) 

3. Don’t make your blog post so short that it feels like a cheat post (i.e. you posted just to post and put no thought or effort into it.)

4. Don’t make it as long as I did yesterday. Confession: I should have broken that post up into three days of blog posts. I was just so excited about my little epiphany, I blurted it all out at once, unable to contain myself, eager to help and share. That was a mistake, but if you managed to get to the end of it, you’re probably pretty happy you snuggled into your blankie with provisions for the endurance read. Sorry about that. I messed up.

5. Snark can be funny, but a steady diet is wearing. Mean can be funny as long as it’s deserved and you’re punching up, not down. However, a blogger of my acquaintance recently went on at too much length about how she’d been wronged. She had a point, but by the time she finished dissecting the person who wronged her, I almost felt worse for the offender than the pedantic victim. Keep it on track and if you feel you have to slag someone in public, be concise. (Better, keep it between you two and try to find a way to work it out privately without embarrassing anyone.)

I’m not big on rules. Break these rules if you want. It’s doubtful, but maybe you can be the first to actually make the admission that you haven’t blogged in a while entertaining. Call these warnings or guidelines. There’s probably lots more neither of us should ever say, but it’s a free country and a free Internet. That’s the beauty of it. It’s the Old West and there ain’t no sheriff to poop on our free expression parade. Usually when things go awry it’s because we somehow managed to poop on ourselves.

Aspire to Inspire eBook JPG~ Robert Chazz Chute writes books. The first few minutes of each writing session are stressful. Then the wings spread.

Learn more about Chazz’s books and the All That Chazz podcast at AllThatChazz.com.

 

Filed under: blogs & blogging, Publicity & Promotion, publishing, , , , , , , , , , ,

10 Responses

  1. Natasha says:

    Really great post!!! Needed so I retweeted it on Twitter. Especially making note of NOT saying I’m sorry for not posting. I hate it. In my latest post I tried to circumvent it… don’t know if I did job.. I do know it didn’t start off by saying ‘I’m sorry’ LOL!

  2. Chazz says:

    Thanks for reading, retweeting and taking the time to comment, Natasha. I appreciate it. I think when we take a break from podcasting or blogging, it’s a “never complain, never explain” situation, unless the blog is super personal and conversational.

  3. […] ← Stuff not to say on your blog 01/23/2013 · 11:40 AM ↓ Jump to Comments […]

  4. […] Stuff not to say on your blog (chazzwrites.com) […]

  5. Angela says:

    You made a point. I never said in my blog, “I’m sorry I haven’t been blogging for awhile.” It’s like yeah…who cares!? Just write when you are able to write. That’s all the readers care about.

  6. Rules are meant to be broken, but these are very helpful ones! :) Thanks for the pingback!

  7. […] Stuff not to say on your blog (chazzwrites.com) […]

  8. […] Stuff not to say on your blog (chazzwrites.com) You’ll see I break all of their wisdom in my blog (or at least I try). […]

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