TJ Kelly

Why I Still Blog

I like blogging. I like it better than social media sharing or updating. It’s long-term and therefore historical (as much as the web can be, anyway). It’s also long-form and therefore informative and meaningful.

On the other hand, I love the interaction (and, I’ll admit, the the feeling of popularity or influence) that comes from Facebook comments and likes. It provides feedback and a degree of validation. I’m careful not to place too much stock in that validation, since it doesn’t always come, but it’s nice when it does.

I also like the quick, as-it-happens nature of social updates. I find myself tweeting and cruising Facebook during commercial breaks if I’m watching TV. It’s hard to publish long-form posts that way (though I am writing the first draft of this post on my iPhone, while watching a documentary about Facebook). In general, I like publishing. I like putting my thoughts out there, even if no one is listening.

The P-form of Publishing

To date, I haven’t figured out the formula for big success in web publishing. In the music industry, Noah Stokes called it the pop-formula, or “p-form.” It’s more than “going viral.” It’s creating awesome stuff. But some people have figured out the formula so nearly everything they publish is gold. I’ve seen articles that say things like, “how to write the perfect blog post,” but those are about the organization of an easy-to-consume piece of content. They say nothing of what to write about and how to use the right voice.

I’m working on two publishing goals for the near future:

  1. Write more
  2. Write better

I’ve been reading up on content strategy, following the irrefutable wisdom of Kristina Halvorson and Karen McGrane and trying my best to follow their rules for awesome publishing. I have my excuses why I’m not batting 1000 in that game, but I’m getting there!

So, why do I still blog, exactly?

Because I like it. I like being heard. I like sharing my thoughts with the world, even if no one is listening. As noted above, I love the feedback and near-instant gratification of social sharing. But the truth is that I wish I could publish technical and web-related things and get the same level of positive feedback that I get with jokes and friendly comment-conversations on Facebook.

Let’s make it happen, people! I’ll comment on your blog if you comment on mine! (Please? I’m not above begging…)

2 thoughts on “Why I Still Blog

  1. Brian Christiansen

    1. Write more
    2. Write better

    Do number 1, number 2 will follow. Actually, it’s pretty much the only way to get to #2. The other advice I’d suggest is to a) not fall in love with anything you write, b) make many edit passes. Not typo passes, though those are important. I mean, look to re-write something a couple of times. Try to cut out as much as possible (“cut half” is a common writer’s refrain), to make your message concise. I almost always trash my first paragraph. Since I’ve become comfortable with that, writing is easier, I can just spew off, knowing I can clean it up later. This allows the ideas to flow.

    Now, taking my own advice, this comment is too long…


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