A Duel of words on blogging

FredomGold

Readers add so much to blog posts. Often, readers’ comments turn out more interesting than a post itself. Occasionally, comments give rise to a dialogue between readers regarding a position that the original post touched upon which might have great potential for a discussion.

I had two such comments on my last post How to write a successful blog post where two readers took up two opposing positions regarding the relationship of blogging to writing. I thought their conversation has great possibilities for a discussion. What do you think?

Miss Molly:

Blogging is not writing. We use words to do it, but we use words to make a grocery list, too. Your list is fine for blogging. I just hope serious writers are not confusing a blog with writing.

Adina Solomon:

A blog is another form of writing. You have to think of an idea, present it in a appealing format, and engage with readers. Blogs are as much writing as a poem or a book; it’s just different.

You’ll have to read that original post to understand Miss Molly’s perspective and not take it out of context.

My own thoughts have gone in both directions in the past (in that I’ve considered blogging a great form of writing and I’ve considered it suspect) as you’ll observe in older posts such as On learning writing through blogging and Five drawbacks of blogging. Thank you Miss Molly and Adina Solomon.

So what are you thinking?

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37 thoughts on “A Duel of words on blogging”

  1. Hello! Just dropping in to have a look as I haven’t been to your blog for some time now!
    Interesting post and very interesting some of the comments which keeps reminding me of something : We as humans should really stop with labeling and categorizing and defining every thing into a hole! Writing is writing…be it writing with pen and paper or typing out words on a laptop or typewriter.
    As long as the person finds joy in what they are doing, it doesn’t really matter, does it?

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  2. Nice debate 🙂 I consider blogging a form of writing. For me, I write short stories, poetry, photo-inspired posts and personal posts; and I exercise styles ranging from humorous to dramatic. It’s not the same writing I would use to write a novel, but it still has value in practicing skills and finding my own voice.

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  3. I just find it interesting, the need to find a distinction. While I’m still suspect myself, I appreciate both for what they are. Not sure, myself, if they’re comparable – I too like the analogy of street-theater vs. cinema – but in the long run, if it reaches someone, creates a dialogue, it’s useful if not “classic literature,” or something like that.

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  4. I’ve read some wonderful writing on blogs and in others I tend to get a bit lost because the writing is all over the place. So in that sense, you can tell a good writer by their blog posts by how ‘engaged’ you become in their mini stories 😀

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  5. I like the way you referenced two of your previous blogs in this post. As a result and in one sitting, I read three of your postings instead of one. AND I was reading your writing and your ideas. Blogging is writing and presenting and sharing ideas. It can take many forms depending on the style and voice of the blogger. Maybe it’s a genre all of its own. “Writing to know what we think.”

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  6. Whenever we try to separate things into neat buckets, they run back together on the page. Good writing can even appear in business emails (an arguably lower form of media than blogging).
    I wrote recently on the difference between art and science: for me, it seems I try to separate things sometimes to have control over them. But I don’t, and there’s no need to. Thank you for presenting the topic! – Bill

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  7. Blogging is street theatre. Instant feedback, online engagement. Adlibbing is possible if you use the comments well.

    Writing a book is cinema. You write it, it goes through many production processes and the audience is engaged offline. The feedback loop is distorted; sales tell you whether people liked it or not, but you don’t know why.

    But both need actors just as blogs and books need writers.

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  8. I think different blogs have different types of writing as well as other types of content in general. Free form writing is sometimes the first draft of a good book and also an appealing blog post and articles are a form of writing and also a marketing tool, thus a range of blog styles based on different types of written material and with different skill/talent levels. Some blog posts are short stories, excerpts from books, book reviews, author interviews, the list goes on…it’s all one type of writing or another and requires some level of creativity, talent, skill or at least education. Keep in mind too, the definition of writing is: the act or process of one who writes and the definition of writer is: somebody who writes as a profession: somebody who writes books or articles professionally; person who wrote a specific text or document and somebody who can write: somebody who can write, who writes well, or who enjoys writing – ultimately used as a method of social media networking, the answer lies with the reader and how they perceive and respond to the material…

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  9. A good blog is a good story. And I know I don’t do it very well. Maybe I’m just new at it, but doesn’t feel like my cup of tea. I’m a fiction writer, and maybe I should just stick to that:)

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  10. I agree with Ms Solomon. Just because it’s new and different doesn’t make it unworthy. You’re connecting with readers on a very different level. Instant feedback has created a new way of writing. But it’s still writing.

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  11. I think blogging is writing exercise. If you do it well you get fitter as a writer, or it can become an end in itself, if that’s what you want. I only started in February, but I find I am learning a new discipline and it feeds my other writing (fiction and academic). It works like reading, even the bad stuff contributes to my understanding of what makes good writing. Though of course it does eat time…

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  12. I feel as if having a blog has improved my writing, as I have an audience, I get feedback, and it requires time, attention and some measure of determination.

    So yes, I think blogging IS writing.

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  13. I agree with Adina. Blogging is to writing as sugar, or cream is to coffee. I love coffee, but don’t always need the sugar or cream if it tastes good alone. I mean, there are lots of different ways and aspects of writing and blogging is just one of the many ways to add to the mix.

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  14. If poetry is writing, then blogging is writing. I’m kidding, completely trolling. Anyway, here’s my shopping list:

    Dog food
    Milk
    Eggs
    Duct Tape
    Garbage Bags
    Latex Gloves
    Long serrated knife
    Butcher’s smock
    Shovel
    Cement
    Bone Saw (med supply store)
    Hair coloring

    Your “non-serious” writer 🙂

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    1. What about blogberries? Blogging is an art-form & much like everything else having the knack for it does not mean that the talent is always there.
      I too, do love strawberries & have a knack for writing…

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  15. I’d say blogging is writing. It has to be carefully crafted, whether it’s a business blog or a personal blog.

    The difference is that you get immediate feedback and can engage your readers in discussions. I love it when this happens, when readers contribute their opinions to a question I’ve asked and everybody learns something as a result.

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  16. I tend to think writing is writing. Writing a blog is not writing a novel is not writing a letter is not writing a poem is not writing a journal…it’s writing a blogpost. But using language-y symbols to communicate, well, okay, maybe we should distinguish writing from typing or HANDwriting from other technologies like pen, pencil, keyboard, screen…(silly?). Blogging is blogging is blogging? I confuse myself – gonna go write it out.

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  17. Love your open invitations.

    A painter is still a painter if his/her medium changes from oils to digital. The technique may be very different but I think it is important to remember the goal of the post. This goal is up to the *writer*. I have seen a great deal of fantastic writing that may never get published in the traditional mediums but that does not make them any less valid. Experimental, raw or unfinished works can reveal so much about a person and journals of all types are personal works that need to be structured in order to be understood.

    The real interesting thing is that we are all taking part in this debate. Perhaps helping or inspiring each other in the process.

    Thanks bottlewonder.

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  18. For me, blogging is writing. I have always “wanted to” write, but lacked the discipline and opportunity. By ensuring I have at least two blog posts a week, it forces me to write. Not all the posts can really be called “writing”, but because of them a lot more writing goes on in my life in general. Writing is a verb for a reason.

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  19. Since you asked … 🙂 Blogging is certainly writing. Even something as mundane as creating a shopping list *is* writing. It may not be creative writing — it may not be poetry — but it certainly isn’t mathematics, either. Unlike a shopping list, blogging *is* at least creative writing. It isn’t novel writing; it isn’t poetry writing; it isn’t essay writing, but it *is* writing. Now, I’m making my point using the term “writing” as I understand it. So, let’s define our terms, shall we? What is “writing”? There is the act of holding a pen and drawing the letter “A,” as preschoolers are taught to do; and then there is Shakespeare, which, well, pretty much only Shakespeare is able to do. “Serious writers,” or at least, aspirant writers, ought not limit themselves to one genre or one writing-form. They may become excellent biographers, or excellent essayists, but all the best writers (think of your favorites) made a point to at least dabble in other sorts of writing, too. Blogging is not as high an art form as essay-writing or epic poetry, but neither is crime fiction, and yet, many wonderful writers have spent great amounts of energy and ink in that genre. That said … there is certainly a difference between good blogging and bad blogging, and a “serious writer” should work hard to show the difference. Content counts for much; too often self-expression trumps clarity and concision in such an informal setting as a blog (though not here at Bottledworder!), but, in my humblest of opinions, blogging is as useful and pertinent an outlet for an aspiring writer as the sonnet or satire. You may not win the Nobel Prize, but neither did Homer 🙂

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  20. For me writing is a means not a goal: creating a work using words.

    Blogging is also a means not a goal: creating an internet accessible work.

    So there is an overlap in both often using word arranged in sequential paragraphs. However, I could blog purely by posting photographs and quotes from other sites to make a new gestalt, so blogging is neither a parent or child of writing.

    I feel there are some lessons that can transfer from one to the other (audience psychology, self-discipline) and some that do not really transfer (narrative arcs in fiction, images/breakouts increase readthrough).

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