Blogging

Next Bloggab (5/6): The WORST Blogging Advice You Received

Bloggab is a weekly Twitter chat about personal blogging. Once per month, we hold Critique Night, where bloggers volunteer to have their blog receive constructive feedback from the group. Join us each Tuesday night at 9pmET. You can always find transcripts of past editions here.

What’s the worst blogging advice you’ve ever received?

That’s the topic of this week’s #Bloggab Twitter chat, Tuesday, May 6th, at 9:00pmET.

Like parenting, blogging is something that a lot of people are only to happy to offer advice about. Much of the advice is great. And most of it, I think, is offered with the best of intentions.

But once in a while, even the best advice can really burn the advice taker when they allow the advice to cripple their progress or lead them astray from a way of doing things that happens to work for them.

One of the worst pieces of advice I ever received is one I still hear often:

You must write every day no matter what.

Hogwash.

I know there are published, best-selling authors who insist upon this “golden rule” of writing. Good for them.

But not everyone works the way they do.

The notion is based on the idea that “Writers write.”

Well, I can’t argue with the concept that writers write. Or that eaters eat. Painters paint.

You can see where I’m going with that, right?

The problem here is that for some career paths, it’s about more than the primary function.

Writers write.

They also read. They also experience. They also research.

And once in a while, they rest, too.

If you need to spend a day not writing, it is not, contrary to what some blogging “experts” might tell you, either the end of the world or the death of your blog.

My advice, instead, is to fill as much of the non-writing time with activities that still make you a better writer and give you ideas for better content.

Your readers, after all, won’t notice whether you write every day. But they will notice if your efforts to be a better writer — whatever those efforts happen to be — actually begin to pay off.

They’ll not only notice, they’re more likely to come back to see what you have to say next.

That’s just one example of the worst blogging advice we’ll talk about. If you have been given advice you consider to be bad, bring it, and be sure to be ready to talk about why it turned out to be bad advice for you! And if you hear advice that you think is valid — even the one I mentioned — be ready to talk about how it did work for you!

If you’ve never been part of a Twitter chat, it’s simple: it requires a Twitter account, which should be obvious. You can then use sites like Nurph, Twubs, Tweetchat or Tweetdeck; they’ll ask you to log in to your Twitter account, then allow them to authorize their service to post for you. You’ll then enter the name of the chat, in this case, “Bloggab”, and the services will filter in all tweets that contain that hashtag. And you can type your message and the services will automatically add the hashtag for you, so there’s one less thing for you to worry about!

I hope you’ll join us Tuesday (5/6) at 9pmET!

Patrick is a Christian with more than 30 years experience in professional writing, producing and marketing. His professional background also includes social media, reporting for broadcast television and the web, directing, videography and photography. He enjoys getting to know people over coffee and spending time with his dog.