There’s a famous saying that every blog has its day! So without further ado . . . on with The Ten Tips — And you can just take what you want (in a little doggy err bloggy bag) and leave the rest for other readers to digest.
- Your Job Title – When you’re at a cocktail party and you’re asked about your profession, do NOT just give a simplistic, two syllable, seven letter career name like “Blogger” or “Writer” or “Author.” How is that going to command any kind of respect? We’re Wordsmiths but we can’t even generate an impressive description for what we do all day? Try these instead. a) A Controller in the Language Industry b) A Disseminator of Thought Processes c) An Ideation Ideologist. See if that doesn’t cause a few people to avert their eyes, murmur, “Wow” and bow in deference. The host might even raise his glass in a toasting gesture.
- Suggestions — Learn to cut people off who offer you “terrific ideas” for your blog. WTF? Why does everyone who finds out you’re a blogger think you’ve run dry and it’s their civic duty to tell you their life story so you’ll be chalk full of entertaining posts again? And they always end by saying, “You can use that story for free!” Gee, thanks. I don’t go up to my physician with a toy stethoscope from my son’s Doctor’s Kit and say, “Here! Take this! I won’t even charge you!”
- Conclusions — Always end your articles or blogs with some sort of “Call To Action” for the reader. Sometimes readers just need a nudge or a little direction. You can ask the reader to leave a comment, like it on Facebook, or request that he Tweet it on Twitter. I usually make my Calls To Action very personal. For example — “Please show up at the author’s home with dust rags and Windex this Saturday at 10 am.”
- Write-offs– For income tax purposes (you must do ample exploration of your location so it’s realistic, yes??) always set your blog post somewhere beautiful and exotic. Seriously, would you rather research events that take place in Costa Rica or Tahiti — or your bathtub?
- Lifelike — You want fictional people to be believable in your writing, so be sure and flesh out all your characters. You may even want to completely flush out a character, if one of them is due for a colonoscopy.
- There are NO NEW IDEAS. — Got that? If you have an idea that you think has never been done before, Google it and trust me, it’s already out there in some form. All plots loosely fall under these three categories — 1. Man Against Man. 2. Man Against Himself. 3. Man Against His Dishwasher.
- Plagiarism — Don’t do it. Take this vow: “I pledge-arize not to plagiarize.” However, there are a lot of poems, famous sayings, and quotes out there that list “Author Unknown” at the bottom of them. So even though “There Are No New Ideas” (see #6) that doesn’t mean you cannot take credit for some old, anonymous ones. Does it?
- Reviews — Most bloggers are shy about asking people to review them on Linkedin or Amazon (if they’ve written a book) but you can do this in an innocent, charming way that harkens back to grade school. Simply pass your reader a folded note with a bashful smile, and they can check off the appropriate box.
- Funny! — Become a Humor Blogger so that when people don’t like what you’ve put out there you can always say, “That was just a joke. Here’s the REAL blog.”
- To Be Continued — Always leave a cliffhanger (especially effective if your name is Clifford!) to ANYTHING you write. Notice that there were only 9 real tips in this post? But now you’ll keep checking back to see if I add a 10th item, won’t you?
Reader CALL TO ACTION! Please leave a comment or take out my kitchen trash. Your choice. But should you let sleeping dogs err blogs lie? Maybe!