For many years, I have given out basically the same advice to blogging newbies: read carefully everything I do, and then do the exact opposite.
I would, of course, be remiss if I didn’t mention some of the other advice out there, especially when Stacy McCain picks up on it and finds those passages most pertinent to his operation. And since McCain gets way more traffic than I do these days, I’m betting that (1) I can find something useful in that advice and (2) I don’t necessarily have to repeat what he says.
So, then, to Diana Adams’ “22 Traits of Successful and Happy Bloggers.” She’ll tell you up front that the list is not meant to be all-inclusive, which is a good thing from my point of view, since most of my traits are barely printable, let alone linkable.
This one I probably should keep around as a reminder:
I read my articles at least ten times before publishing them. It’s important to follow the accepted spelling and grammar rules. Successful bloggers are also meticulous editors.
From my point of view, one distinct advantage of rereading the piece before it goes live is that I never have to read it again. Regrettably, I don’t always catch every last error, though I’m generally quick to issue a fix.
There will be ups and downs in your blogging. You will have good days and bad days. You will have days when you just want to quit it all. Your commitment will carry you on those “off” days.
It also helps that I usually have a couple of pieces in the can, so if the words simply won’t flow, I’ll just change the date on one of those, and no one will be the wiser, except for that one time when I made reference to the trick-or-treaters last night in an item that was published in January.
It’s critical that your thoughts and what you are trying to communicate actually get to your reader in the way you intended. Communication can be tough because sometimes humor and little sayings that might make sense to you only confuse your reader. This is an important skill to develop.
Not to worry. I developed the skill to confuse the readers many years ago, and I get plenty of practice.