Tag Archives: Blog

The Circle of Life

Kahin To Yeh Dil Kabhi Mil Nahin Paate
Kahin Pe Nikal Aaye Janmon Ke Naate
Ghani Thi Uljhan Bairi Apna Man
Apna Hi Hoke Sahe Dard Paraye

Kabhi Yun Hi Jab Hui Bojhal Saansen
Bhar Aai Baithe Baithe Jab Yoon Hi Aankhen
Kabhi Machal Ke Pyaar Se Chal Ke
Chhuye Koi Mujhe Par Nazar Na Aaye

Kahin Door Jab Din Dhal Jaye
Sanjh Ki Dulhan Badan Churaye, Chupke Se Aaye
Mere Khayalon Ke Aangan Mein
Koi Sapnon Ke Deep Jalaye

The bridge glows like a jewel in the dark in front of me. Many a time I had crossed it earlier without knowing what a spectacular view it provided to the casual onlooker from a distance against the dark sky and the wide expanse of the bay spread out like a black satin sheet at this time of the night.

When you’re on a bridge you rarely know what crossings overs look like.

Yet, jewel the bridge is not. The hard, glittering, diamond-like effect against the night sky is not static. The light is softened by a dynamism that makes it come alive. Continue reading The Circle of Life

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New Year’s Resolutions for the Blog

Develop focus

It’s been quite a while for the blog now. From day one, I thought it might be necessary to have a plan for the blog. A year-and-a-half into it, I’m still planning to have a plan. What themes do I focus on? What character do I develop for the blog?

If nothing else, this plan to have a plan has made me think a lot about myself and my writing. So it’s not been all strife and missed targets but perhaps a little trimming of subject matter and presentation might help. Continue reading New Year’s Resolutions for the Blog

Must you keep blogging Mr. Blogger?

How do you stand out in the blogosphere?

Do you want to?

It’s important to ask that second question first because it’s tough work. Blogging.

Because the work never gets done. And just when you think you’re done, say, when you realize you’ve reached a certain number of regular readers or a certain number of strays who click on your page for some mysterious reason, you realize how sensitive those readers are to quality.

Those with short attention spans want good introductory hooks or great visuals. The deep ones want, well, depth. The busy ones want good timing. The “fans” want something every few days and the strays will come only if there’s excellence every time. Some will even start at the bottom of the post and read upwards. So the ending has to have a kick to it.
Continue reading Must you keep blogging Mr. Blogger?

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?

How to write a successful blog post

Many of us write well. Many of us also engage with really important or popular issues in our blog posts. Yet, some bloggers turn out more successful than others. How does that happen? What’s the big secret?

The most fundamental answer to this question about the big secret of writing a successful blog post is that there isn’t one. Readers know good content when they see it. They will not read anything that does not add value in some way (unless it’s your mother reading, of course!). So writers need to focus on quality first before anything else.

Yet, I’ve seen many great blogs that fail to engage the reader even with good content. “How does that happen?” I’ve asked myself many a time and have come up with the following cautionary points meant for good writers. Continue reading How to write a successful blog post

Electronic writing and the numbers game

Sometimes, a thought comes in a moment and you just record it. You type it as fast as possible and there it is.

Just so close to perfect!

As it’s coming, if someone interrupts you, walks in the door or calls or sends an innocuous email, boom! The thought is gone.

Other times, you sit for hours, construct a piece with great labour, something complex, something you think is so nuanced and hardly anyone gets it. Nor do they like it much, other than a select few, who are concerned about the same stuff as you. Always.

You wonder what happened.

What you fail to do is that you can’t draw the reader in, can’t make them care unless they already do. Continue reading Electronic writing and the numbers game

Why blog?

Sketch of gallery
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Okay. So I decided to write something little, something small whenever I feel like it. Isn’t that really what writing is all about? I mean, writing doesn’t really move mountains, or solve the economic crisis. You may try to hit someone hard with words, but a baseball bat is better. A few years ago, I saw a big cow eat an entire book. Didn’t make the creature any wiser. She was still standing, tied to a pole, the last I remember. Continue reading Why blog?

On grouping blog posts innovatively

OR On blog content arrangement Part 4

Once readers have been drawn to your blog, they may want more. At this point, you would need some kind of underlying idea to classify your posts. The more critical thinking you put in the classification aspect, the better your blog will be. The underlying principle has to come before you make use of the great features that will enable you to group blogs such as categories or custom menus. Continue reading On grouping blog posts innovatively

On focusing the reader’s attention on your blog

OR On blog content arrangement Part 3 (after Part 1 and Part 2)

How would you guide the reader’s eye in terms of content on your blog? What would you want them to look at and for how long? Would you want to present a lot of content or only a small amount? Continue reading On focusing the reader’s attention on your blog

On a reader-friendly arrangement of blog posts

OR On blog content arrangement Part 2

We talked about difficulties of navigating blogs without proper cues yesterday in Part 1. Let’s think about a few principles of arrangement of posts on the page today.

On a reader-friendly arrangement of posts

So how can we arrange content on our blog so that it’s more accessible to the reader?

There is only one answer.

The easiest way to do this is to put ourselves in the reader’s shoes.

We won’t be able to know how it feels in the reader’s shoes unless we first know what kind of content we are generating which in turn is attracting what kind of readers. Continue reading On a reader-friendly arrangement of blog posts

On blog content arrangement

Part I

Have you ever seen a blog that you’ve wanted to see more of? You’ve tried to spend a minute or two trying to figure out how, been frustrated, and then moved on?

Haven’t you wondered sometimes how some bloggers put a lot of effort into writing a post, then select great pictures, put colourful badges, icons and a lot of other pretty things around the page and then put little thought into how the reader would navigate the blog? Continue reading On blog content arrangement

Of bloggers, Birbal and birds: How to make yourself heard

How many of us bloggers are out there?

A mind-boggling number very hard to grapple with for sure.

Our sheer numbers  reminded me of a well known tale of Akbar and Birbal I came across recently on my flight back to the US from India. It was a version of the story in animation adapted for kids which I watched on the screen trapped in my little space in the sky.

It goes something like this: Continue reading Of bloggers, Birbal and birds: How to make yourself heard

Short blog posts or long ones?

Is it possible to deal with a topic in depth in a single blog post and still be read by a substantial number of people on a blog platform? Or is a blog post meant to be short, striking, entertaining for a moment, even intriguing, merely pointing to something more extensive and detailed? Is it meant to just keep people updated, a “Hello! I’m here” as opposed to “Hey! I’m here to visit and here’s my luggage. I plan to settle in for a while.”
Continue reading Short blog posts or long ones?

The Neapolitan Blog for Different Audiences

One of the biggest challenges of writing a good blog is the challenge of catering to different kinds of readers.

I don’t know if everyone would agree, but the act of writing a blog itself implies that the blogger is someone who believes in democratization of knowledge, especially with regard to access to reading and writing and cultural practices that are understood as important.

In other words, this means the writer cares about reaching a wider audience through their blog than simply being restricted to a select few with a taste aligned to that of their own. The blogger has respect for and aspires towards appealing to a wide audience.
Continue reading The Neapolitan Blog for Different Audiences

What’s a good blog?

What’s a good blog?

For me personally, it’s very hard to tell. I know it when I see it.

Sudan(?) Monkey riding a rhino
A blogger is a friendly person who is telling me a few things in a way I can trust (Photo credit: George Eastman House)

But what am I looking for?

One thing I know for sure–when I’m browsing a blog, I’m also looking for a good experience. Continue reading What’s a good blog?

Five ways to hold your readers’ interest in your blog posts

Kitten

This post is as much for myself as for my readers.

I’m beginning to take notes as things work and as things don’t as I blog on the blog hoping to help myself and anyone who reads this compendium of evolving experience on writing as I grope my way through the blogosphere.

So here are my words of wisdom to myself.
Continue reading Five ways to hold your readers’ interest in your blog posts