Bloggers Write Too MuchWednesday, February 1, 2006
Many of you (including yours truly) write too much!
I want to point you to A List Apart which wrote on ‘How to Write a Better Blog‘ back in 2002. A number of bloggers write like ‘amateurs’. I don’t mean that literally, that’s just how the article labels these individuals.
I think we can all agree there is almost too much content to keep up with. I submit that we all do each other a favor and become more aware of our own writing styles.
Declarative sentences are good. Web readers demand pith.
Steve Rubel is very good at blogging. If everyone emulated his style I could get through my feeds a hundred times faster and absorb a thousand times more content. For example, see how long it takes to read the following:
By the end of that second sentence I know everything I need to know. If I really want to get more information I’d either read on, click the link, or do both. Steve is a very good writer (good thing, given his job) and is very good at getting to the point.
Short-and-sweet is easier to do when creating news-like entries, but what about in-depth original content? Well, Seth Godin is an amazingly concise, yet extrmely insightful writer:
Human beings respond to emergencies. It’s easy to get everyone to take action if we’re in the middle of some sort of security crisis… but fixing the educational system isn’t going to happen. (Seth’s Blog)
Again, these sentences are quick and to the point. There is no dancing around with extra descriptions and examples. This makes reading his blog extremely useful.
I hate to say this, but when a post from Business Logs shows up I often ignore it. Their entires are great, don’t get me wrong. A full page of words is hard to read though. For example, the following:
“I’m a little torn here, so I’m in need of some good comment-based advice ? it’s regarding my impending purchase of a laptop, or should I say, a palm-top.” (Business Logs)
…could quickly become:
“I need some advice regarding a laptop (or should I say palm-top) purchase.”
Mike, no offense, I too have found myself saying more than I need to.
I also found a post the other day that seemed to drag on. I wanted to find out about how to make my PC look like OSX. The following:
“To make a long story short, I love the fluidity of the Frutiger font family, so I tried (unsuccessfully) to snag the Frutiger Next type face. I did, however, manage to snag the original version of Frutiger, which I don’t think you’re supposed to be able to get without a license. Believe it or not, I got the font courtesy of Microsoft, simply because they bundle the font with Microsoft Reader.” (pearsonified)
…is really just saying:
“I looked for Frutiger Next because I love the fluidity of the Frutiger font family. I guess you don’t need a license for Frutiger becuase I snagged it via the Microsoft Reader.”
Like I said, I don’t mean to offend, Chris. My point is, I’m less likely to subscribe to (or read) paragraphs of ‘stream of consciousness’ (but I did try out FlyakiteOSX; thanks for the pointer!).
I could go on highlighting long-winded individuals but I think the point has been made. A little bit of editing could go a long way…
Keep in mind I’m not trying to be as constructive as it may seem. I’m selfishly asking people to get to the point so I have more time to read my long-winded accounting textbooks… ;-)