To start with, the idea of blogging is quite daunting.
Most blogs seems to be written in a similar fashion, and read effortlessly and informally. For a student who’s been trained to churn out academic essays for the past 5 years, it was quite difficult to emulate the ‘blogger’ style.
Over the years I’ve been aware of and skimmed a few blogs, but never took the plunge (probably laziness, but we’ll say I was busy). When my lecturer told us we would have to build individual blogs instead of the routine module essay, I was quite nervous. I’d only ever really been properly aware of one blog – AnotherAngryVoice – and that was more out of my annoyance at modern politics than a love for the blogging format. I didn’t want to blog about politics, it seems far too many people now-a-days think other people should value their unoriginal thoughts and I didn’t want to add to that. Instead, I took influence from AAV in studying how the blog was filled with passion. With content that meant something to the creator, and something the creator actually seemed to know about.
What did I know about? – Bleak old books that all seemed to centre around depression. Books that have inspired several rabbit holes within my mind, and that I think are wholly underrated by my generation. If this blog could introduce some of my generation to these books, then I would be happy.
I had my inspiration but no practical skills, and so I looked at another blog for influence. This time it was FromTheFringe , a popular lifestyle and opinion blog. The biggest thing I took from this blog was how well it was written. It was casual, friendly and succinct – several areas of writing I struggle with. I prefer the long-flow format where I can write every thought I have, in detail, on a given subject. But this doesn’t fit with the format of a small-time blog. When writing I often found that I was already over the word limit for the assignment, and would need to delete whole sections and rewrite them to be more in keeping with the blog theme.
As a relatively computer literate student, the rest was fairly simple. I knew that if I was to use images they would need to be ‘labelled for reuse’ (/royalty and copyright free), and that if I was discussing something that could be ‘linked’ to another page then it would. Mainly to help flush out the blog for those who wanted more context on what I was writing.
On the aesthetic style of the blog, I wanted it to be fairly simple and functional. Much like AAV, as it didn’t make sense for what I was writing about to be presented in a polished and overly professional way. Instead I preferred the simple internet style, and so used a fairly basic but functional theme. The cover image I made in Photoshop, with a starry night sky (‘labelled for reuse’) and a shaded in circle to show the moon. As well as some ‘zzz’ marks to underline the theme of the blog – thoughts from when I should be asleep, extrapolated on with literature.
Are there any tips and tricks from more experienced bloggers? Please let me know below