Monday, March 05, 2007

Anarchy Of The Pen - What Makes A Good Blog Post

I asked my aging cat Cicero (who speaks to me telepathically) "What Makes A Great Blog Post?" "You are not a poet" he says. "You are not even a good reporter of facts." I started to feel very insulted. "What am I, then, my feline friend?" Cicero suddenly jumped up closer to me, starring at the top of my head for what seemed like many seconds. "You are not always entertaining or informative" Cicero continued. I was nearly in tears! "What am I then?" I yelled vocally at that giant fuzzball filling my entire range of vision like some giant eclipse. Suddenly, Cicero jumped up on my computer desk, forbidden territory for him, and mentally projected: "You are one unique point of view in G-d's eye, you are a unique voice, don't ever be afraid to express it!"

More down to earth, rational thought began to fill my head:

Stick to the topic at hand ---
Content is king!---
Always have "meaningful, truthful substance!"---
The material must be seen to have some utility - otherwise it could be seen as badly researched, badly sourced, or trivial.

Still another may emphasize: Talk to your "intended" audience. Don't insult them. Speak at their level. Even empathise with them.

Some journalism majors (those who remained undecided on what to do with their lives all though their schooling) may authoritatively emphasize some or more of these rules, and others (sad to say) might insist on all of them.

I heard an academician - a professor from Columbia U. - say that writing must not be too overwrought, too hyperbolic, or too dependent on humor. It still must be captivating and entertaining and conveying useful, meaningful information. It must convey useful information- Why?

A Hollywood writer said writing must in the end have a clear moral, uplift the soul, and and lead to a denouemond that satisfies all, like some epoch story.

Allow me to bend, break and ignore some or all these traditions. I sometimes apply some of these rules. I write what comes into and out of my head and it can be dreadfully bad or contain a gem every once in a while. But looking closely, occasionally there might be a "plus factor" lurking, exactly because there were no manadatory rules.


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