Personal and Professional Blogging

Session Title — Make your blog (and you) popular
Session Speaker — Andy Dehnart of Stetson-University and Reality Blurred

Overview — If you want to start a blog and stick with it, the subject has to be something you are passionate about. If it’s not, then you will get bored x number of days or weeks down the line.  And while you may have an interest in celebrities or politics or whatever, find a niche that can become your own.  Finding something no one else has sets you a part and makes your job easier.

Another route is to do something and blog about your quest to become an expert in that subject.  Also set up a schedule of when you are going to blog.  Don’t post 10 times a day for a week and then jump down to one every other day.  Your readers want some sort of consistency and you will lose their trust if you are an irregular blogger.

And don’t forget to use your voice.  While it is great to have our journalism ability to find sources, attribute properly and understand the proper storytelling mechanics, we sometimes lose our voice in an attempt to stay true to our journalism nature.  You can do both.

When distributing your blog go ahead and make a fan page for yourself and your blog, work with divr.it to spread the word and begin to use mechanisms to make some money.

My take — The Pendulum needs more blogs.  Our sports and football blog has done a great job of updating and posting through out the games. We need to keep the momentum going by including more news and arts and entertainment blogs. Our staff has worked to generate ideas for possible blogs but we’ve been slow about implementing them.  Hopefully this can be changed, and our online programs director position must be filled again.

As for my personal blogs, and trust me there are more than six for various classes and leisure, I need to dissolve some.  There are some blogs I will discontinue once class is over and there are some I would like to maintain.  But can you really manage several blogs?  I am guessing no.  I wonder is there some sort of curation and way of doing it.  I haven’t figured it out yet but I am looking to try.  One aspect of blogging I struggle with is finding my voice.  I use to write poems, short stories and even longer novellas.  But since beginning college and intently focusing on journalism I’ve stopped.  And any attempts I’ve made at picking it up again, has failed.  That’s disheartening.  One of the things I’ve failed out these past two and half years is working on personal growth.  Not as a journalist, which is growing by leaps and bounds, but holding on to the things I loved before I came to Elon and figuring out how to grow myself on a personal level.  So my goal from this is determining how to find my voice as a writer again.  I’ll start small.  Once a week I want to write a short story.  Two or three pages at the least, seven or eight at the most.  Something to get it started again.  Wish me luck.

 

–Anna Johnson

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