How Not to Write a Blog Post in 14 Easy Steps

CC Image: Mike Licht,

Much of my job entails poring over vast numbers of blogs. There are many worthwhile bloggers you should be reading, but this post isn’t about them. Given a birds-eye view of the blogging landscape, you start to notice certain similarities. For instance:

  1. To cover up your lackadaisical grasp of the English language, randomly bold or italicize different words in order to make your point more pointed.
  2. Use . . . ellipses . . . in order to . . . create . . . tension . . . or to . . . cover up . . . your lackadaisical grasp of proper sentence structure.
  3. Use your and you’re interchangeably. No one’s really reading anything that closeely these days anyways. Your welcome.
  4. Write a post for the sole sake of having something new on your blog. Quantity over quality they always say. In this instance, “they” is your insecurity that you’ll be forgotten about if you don’t update every day.
  5. Flame out at the end of your post. Once you’ve reached 500 words or so, just call it good enough. It’s OK if you never actually get to your point. We all have things to do.
  6. Don’t re-read your post. God knows you’ve already given too much time to this frivolous pursuit. Why would you want to spend time proofreading your own work? Don’t your readers know that blogging isn’t like real writing?
  7. Incorporate some kind of number in your blog title and be sure to include a vague word like ways, things, ideas, or steps.
  8. Never spend more than two seconds on your title. It’s not like Google needs that to help people find what they’re looking for, or that real human beings want to know what they’re about to read.
  9. Don’t spend any time whatsoever on your blog design. It’s OK if I think your site’s been around since the 90s. It’s retro-chic, right?
  10. Apologize for not blogging regularly. Saying “I’m sorry” is one of the ways I know you care for me.
  11. Don’t provide an easy way for me to contact you. I may be interested in what you have to say, but only insofar as I don’t actually have to communicate with you.
  12. Don’t use images. We came to your site to read your words, not look at pretty pictures. If a picture is worth a thousand words, you don’t want to go over your self-imposed word limit before you even start writing.
  13. Use long paragraphs. Don’t break them up by using bullet points or subtitles. Your readers love your verbose prose. They have very little else to do.
  14. Take a quote, idea, or image, slightly tweak it, then fail to reference where or who you stole got it from.

Let’s recap (so I can get to my word quota). So long as you have:

  • bold words and italic words and italic bold words
  • at least four improper uses of ellipses and/or misplaced apostrophes
  • homophonic tendencies
  • an insatiable desire to update instead of elucidate
  • an inability to complete a post
  • a serious lack of respect for the editorial process
  • a vast knowledge of numbers and insubstantial words
  • the ability to write headlines that no one cares about
  • delusions of graphical artistry
  • an astounding array of alternative apologies
  • virtual agoraphobia
  • no time to find images, or just enough time to find horrible images
  • ignorance of the word “scannability.”
  • a propensity to break the eighth commandment

You too can become . . . a blogger.