Staying active in the literary world is one of the most important things an emerging writer can do. One of the ways to do this is by writing blog posts. I personally find blogging very difficult to do; so if you’re anything like me, here are some tips that will hopefully help.
Find a piece of advice that’s been really helpful to you
Have you gotten any good advice lately? Or a gem that you always stick to? Has your favorite writer said anything inspiring lately? These are all some things you could write a blog post about. Joni Tevis recently shared some advice she had gotten with the editors at Runestone, and that was to get up and do stretches whenever you have writer’s block. You can also blog about how this particular piece of advice has been helpful in your life; for example: “After reading Effie’s advice on blog posts I was able to write a really great one!” Or something like that.
Write about your quirky habits
People are always curious to see how other writers’ thought processes work. For me, writing about myself can sometimes be easier than writing about something I don’t know a lot about. When I sit down to write I like to put on my movie soundtrack playlist. Sometimes I feel like I’ve conditioned myself so I can’t write without it. You can write about any of your own weird or interesting writing quirks.
Write every day, even if it’s not the best
Writing blog posts is difficult, but the most important thing is to keep at it even when you’re not sure what to write. If you push yourself to post consistently, eventually posting will start to become easier and easier.
Write a reader response to something
Sometimes formal book reviews can be a little too daunting, but you could always write a reader response. Have you read a new short story, essay, or poem that really spoke to you? Write about how you felt as a reader, not as a writer. If there was a particular line or image that stuck with you that’s a good way to focus. Don’t forget to say why you like it; your response doesn’t have to be super analytical but it should be thoughtful.
Write something you’ve learned from a class
This one doesn’t only have to work if you’re still in school, but will probably be easier if you are. Professors often say a lot of really cool things that they don’t remember later; take note of anything that really speaks to you and make a note of it to write about later. Like when my professor Mary Rockcastle said we (as writers) should steal everything.
The other thing you can do is to write about an interesting elective or class you’re taking. Chances are that class isn’t offered at every university and someone might enjoy reading about it. For example, I took a class this year called “Writers Go to the Movies” taught by Richard Pelster-Weibe. It was a really interesting class about how writers can be inspired by movies, and not just how movies are inspired from books.
Hopefully these five suggestions can get you started when you’re feeling stuck writing a blog post. I return to these ideas whenever I’m feeling stuck, and they usually lead me to something new and exciting.
[Image credit: Jonny Goldstein]
Meet the blogger:
EFFIE BARNES graduated this year with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing. Primarily a fiction writer, Effie has recently discovered the joys of writing poetry. She also enjoys watching nature documentaries and re-organizing her Harry Potter book collection.