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The Language and Style of Blogging

A week ago, one of my readers in CuteWriting commented on a post that she found the article very simple and easy to understand than the corresponding Wikipedia content. This made me ponder hard on this aspect of language and style to be used in writing blog content. Here are some of my opinions on this topic.

Bloggers, You are Voicing Your Opinions!

Through your blog, you are not trying to be an authentic resource, but quite the opposite. You are trying more to tell your opinions on a certain thing to the world. Your judgment may be erroneous, sometimes correct. However, it’s just your opinion, based on facts, and not an authentic ‘verifiable’ Wikipedia article.

When you blog, be natural and tell your readers what you think and not what’s going on as news sites would do. Nobody is going to sue you for voicing your opinion, and nobody is going to even scold you. Your readers will only tell you how they felt about the topic and if you are wrong about any point. This is why comments are there.

Blog Is a Sort of Social Network

Blog is as exactly as any other social network, and the only difference is that in normal social networks you can’t place advertisements and earn cash.

Blogging means you are building a niche in the WWW just for you or your team, telling the world what you believe.

When you use social network, you never use such advanced language as found in Wikipedia, do you? You are better off using the friendliest, most natural tone, with a lot of you’s and I’s. But in blogging, be a little more refined. Something in between Wikipedia and social network may be appropriate for style.

Content Sites Like Wikipedia vs. Blogs

Wikipedia is an ultimate resource, one of the top ten most visited websites of all time. It’s a place where anyone from anywhere in the world can create or edit articles, at the control of AI programs called bots. Though not entirely error-free, Wikipedia has something to say about everything, and is believed far and wide as the most authentic (?) resource today.

What Wikipedia lacks is opinions. It’s only based on facts and not opinions. People writing there have to substantiate their authenticity with verifiable resources. Also, since there are professors and highly educated scientists writing in Wikipedia articles, the standard of English may tend to be a little higher than the laymen’s.

This difference in standard makes other content sites tick!

Otherwise, encyclopedias including Britannica may lose customers readily, Google may not be visited at all for information search, and any other content sites may not be read at all.

Blogs, however, will sustain!

Because blogs rate opinions as importantly as facts. When a person finds it difficult to understand a Wikipedia article, he searches to find an appropriate alternative written in quite understandable language. This is how other content sites get some traffic. However, blogs are there for quite another reason, to be the next level of forums—information and opinions. Comment body is as important as blog itself.

Blogging Tone and Style

Your readers are looking for simple, engaging posts with a tinge of wit, and not bombardment of verbosity spiced with statistics, which they can find in news sites. You may have great proficiency in language and style, and you can show it off on your blog, but you may not get substantial amount of traffic. The readers don’t want to see how massive your a$ really is, and when you uncover it people normally get bored. So, cover up, cover up, and give them something simple.

When blogging, you can of course use the most colloquial tone, however it is best to blend well, the formal and the colloquial. Some people believe it depends on the niche of your blog. For instance, if you are writing breaking news, it is apt to be formal, with a tone of witticism to it if possible. When you are doing something like me, then the formal tone with a bit of colloquialism makes sense. If you are writing travel articles, formal tone giving authenticity is best and no colloquialism or unnecessary humor. It’s up to you to choose the best tone for your blog.

How Much of Editing

How much of editing does a blog post normally require? Do you really have to be grammatically perfect? When I write for some freelance companies like Constant Content, I take much time editing out simple mistakes to make the post completely error-free, since they don’t accept posts with misplaced commas. However, when it comes to blogging, you can be a bit laxer. Here, you are not required to be grammatically cent per cent perfect; just make sure you write normally and don’t make anything sound awkward. Some misplaced commas, colons, run-on sentences here and there can be all right in blogs.

However, make sure you edit your content as soon as you are done drafting it and weed out as many errors as possible. Here in blogging, the editing part will become easier with time. As you edit more, your editing faculty will mature.

Building a Blog Writing Style

Each professional blogger has his own style, which each amateur blogger may try to sip from. The point is to build a completely new writing style. There are articles I wrote about writing style you can refer. Here is an article on Power of short sentences.

Adding a little ‘pointless’ witticism to your language can really enhance your readership and keep them amused. If you get time, watch some funny Jack Nicholson movies.

Conclusion

Blog is a private opinion based on known facts. Sometimes a blogger cannot afford to be on time on many issues. However, everyone has something to say about anything. When you say what you have to in a simple entertaining tone, you will develop your blogging style naturally.

Copyright © Lenin Nair 2008

Comments

  1. Thanks Lenin! You are the best! I feel a lot more empowered(??)maybe more confident(??).

    As Always, a fantastic post!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Angie, those were quite inspiring. I am glad to know you like my posts

    Lenin

    ReplyDelete

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