Sunday, May 29, 2011

Today's the day

I'm a little nervous, but I think it will be fun. This afternoon at the EAC conference, I'm giving a session on blogging as a writing and editing practice.

Though I've been doing it since 2009, I'm far from expert. But it's been a great journey and I've learned a lot. For one thing, a daily blog post is a fantastic source of discipline.

By becoming a blogger, I've put myself in a position that obliges me to write and edit every day. Well, OK, I confess. I don't actually have to write every day, because I've learned how to write a few posts and schedule them to come out on future days.

I do have to edit daily. It's only once a post is visible on screen that I can really get my editing teeth into it. Editing to create a circular structure in a short post is also fun and challenging.

Brevity is a hallmark of most blog posts. I'm amazed by how much I can cut. But then, I'm truly motivated to avoid expecting the reader to scroll down. The reason is simple. Most don't.

Another aspect is visual editing. Online paragraphs are definitely shorter than those on the page. Guidelines for online contributors to Suite 101 suggest a maximum of 75 words per paragraph. With all those academic paragraphs behind me, I've found that a challenge.

Then there are links. This year, the EAC conference is on Twitter, so I've linked up this post. Pictures can also be added -- if taken by others, the source must be acknowledged, and photos linked to their original websites too.

1 comment:

  1. I really enjoyed your session on blogging, Carol. I think you're right about it being good practice in self-editing. Even when I double- and triple-check my posts, I almost always find an error or two, or decide it could do with some shortening or tightening.

    Now the problem is disciplining myself to post on a regular basis...