White Horse Beach, Manomet, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA

White Horse Beach, Manomet, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA
White Horse Beach, Manomet, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA

Monday, October 21, 2013

How to Publish a Blog

People have asked me, "how do you make a blog post?" so I thought I'd write a short blog post about how I make a short blog post. 

First of all, get your pet off your keyboard. Second, and most importantly, remember that a blog is a creative act. You control every step - your blog is a reflection of what you want it to be. It is your creation. It is electronic art.

Step-by-step........... 

Concept
  1. you must either open a blog account (Blogger and Wordpress are two of the most popular and common platforms) or you can use your own website if you have one 
  2. decide the basic style - will it be words only, pictures only, a mix of both; what is the desired length, tone, theme; what audience do you want to reach
  3. think up places to go or things to do or ideas to express
  4. carry a pencil and pad or scraps of paper to write and retain ideas (retaining becomes an issue sometimes for "people of a certain age") 
  5. imagine a theme for the post and tease it out into coherence
  6. keep it short or lose the audience
  7. my goals are: each post should be beautiful, interesting, informative, witty, smart and it must not exceed about one minute in duration -  I often miss one, some, or all of these goals - it is always a challenge 
  8. people are busy - if you want them to come back, say little but say it well
  9. generally, people do not want to read long ramblings   
Images
  1. decide what pictures to take and where to take them
  2. go on location to take the pictures
  3. upload pictures to your computer for post-processing
  4. review the rough images for  broad thematic overview and whether you can tell the story you have in mind
  5. select the best images that tell the story (or change the story)
Post-processing
  1. edit the selected images in computer software
  2. that edit includes adjust light levels, tweak the shadows, midtones, highlights
  3. adjust the brightness and contrast, color temperature and saturation
  4. choose size/shape and crop accordingly
  5. save final image for export to blog platform
  6. proceed to your blog platform template 
Writing and Editing
  1. create a title for the post, mindful of easing the search possibilities for readers and Googlers 
  2. create labels and identify the location
  3. upload the final edited images from your computer to the blog platform
  4. place the images in proper order to tell the story
  5. write the text/caption under/over/beside some or all of the images
  6. review and edit completed draft for flow and readability
  7. proofread for spelling, layout, spacing, grammar, and syntax
  8. proofread again for spelling, layout, spacing, grammar, and syntax
  9. proofread once more for spelling, layout, spacing, grammar, and syntax
Publishing
  1. preview final version to be published
  2. hold your breath and press the "publish" button
  3. relax and be awed by the idea that you have just sent your creation out for anyone in the entire world with access to the internet to enjoy - what a world we live in!
  4. repeat all above for the next post
Other Stuff

I generally post five to seven times every week.  Time-wise I spend twenty to forty hours a week to accomplish that. Sometimes I have images but no words yet, or words but no images yet.  I often will have five to ten posts in various stages of completion.  I am not a news reporter - I don't feel compelled to publish immediately after an event or after I have the images.  I am the creator, writer, photographer, proofreader, editor, critic, and publisher - it's ready when it's ready. Sometimes, a nap takes precedence.

I didn't start out with high expectations.  As a retiree, blogging gave me something constructive and creative to do, allowed me to write a little, take pictures a little, have a place to keep photos that wouldn't get lost and moldy in a basement box, and might be informative or entertaining to others.

I do not choose to include advertising.  Maybe someday but not this day.

Little did I know that readers would find and read my blog in all 50 of the United States (and Washington DC), and more than 160 countries and/or territories around the world. To date, more than 150,000 page views. I am astounded at that.

Did I mention to proofread carefully before publishing?........

2 comments:

  1. I love 7, 8, and 9. proofread... it certain shows in your blog.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What a great example of irony - to use "certain" instead of "certainly" - you are too clever!

      Delete