Every Blogger’s Guide to Editing for Creating High Quality Blog Posts
If content is King, high quality content is what makes a king an emperor. The response so far, to my recent post on writing awesome blog posts and the next one on writing high quality blog posts using dissection technique has been quite overwhelming, to say the least.
Importance of High Quality Blog Content
In 2014, you cannot just type a few words, dish out a few paragraphs, hit publish and expect your blog to succeed. No, that’s not gonna take your blog anywhere except towards the darkest corners of the blogosphere, where no search engines / readers ever visit.
Content Creation is a process
We bloggers now know how important it is to create high quality content. But what we (or most of us) do not realize is that high quality content creation is a process. You cannot expect great blog content by simply writing the words down. It takes a lot more than that.
Writing great content is just one of the steps in the entire content creation process. Another one of the crucial steps in this process is editing.
Editing Is Not As Simple As You Think!
Most of our blog post editing is restricted to grammar editing or language editing, unless of course we have a professional degree in editing. Maybe that is why no one really cares to know more about editing.
To be honest, it was not until I sat down to create this detailed guide to editing blog posts that I realized how long the blog post editor’s checklist is (and should be). There are many things that I sometimes do automatically, and editing my writing before it gets published is one of those.
As you might know by now, I began my online career as a professional writer.
BTW, almost 6+ years of professional writing has by now added a lot many criteria to my editing checklist and that is why I thought sharing my checklist with you folks would be a great idea.
Editing Checklist For Blog Posts
There are overall 15 criteria in the editing checklist that I can presently think of and here they are listed and described below:
Obviously the first of the criteria pertains to the basic component of your blog posts and that is language. While editing for language errors, you need to ensure that your posts are free of grammar, punctuation and spelling mistakes.
An additional hint for you in language editing is to use simple and easily understood terms rather than using fancy or complex sounding words, especially when the intention is just t impress your readers with your vocabulary skills. I also keep my audience in mind while writing content for my online clients.
Though the language used is English, there are 4 major styles used while writing for online audiences, based on their geographical location. No wonder that my clients demand that I write in American English, UK English, Australian English and of course Indian English.
Your ideas must flow smoothly throughout your posts. Only then can you expect your audience to grasp what you have intended to share with them. To ensure smooth communication, you must focus on your sentence structure.
Avoid using very short sentences as they sound too abrupt or unnecessarily long ones too. What I do is to write as I want to and then adjust the length of my sentences while editing.
3) Style/ Voice
If you are speaking to someone face to face in real life, you use your personal style to do so. You have your own voice and manner of speaking. Writing blog posts should be considered similar to speaking face to face in real life.
If you use a certain style of writing just in order to impress your readers, it is surely going to fall through in no time. No matter how hard you try, they will sense the fake style very soon and once they do so, they will leave you to never return again.
Every blogger has a unique style; some are humorous, some are critical, some are brutally honest, some are very gregarious and so on.
The best way to ensure that you use your own style is to edit it wisely. Just write down the ideas as they come to you and finish the post. Then you can read them out loudly while editing and if the style does not seem like you in real life, edit it to resemble your face to face conversation.
4) Facts / Veracity
There are many bloggers who have made a killing by courting controversy. Now controversy does not always mean being brutally honest.
Many of the times, they just lie through their teeth, just in order to generate a stir in the online circles and to profit from the temporary surge of traffic. But I can never resort to such cheap gimmicks, even to save my life.
Make it a point to check and double check your facts and figures before you hit the ‘publish’ button. Once your words are made public, you become vulnerable to scrutiny.
There is nothing more humiliating than being called out by your readers about the veracity of your information. In case you are a health, food or fitness blogger, you really could be putting lives in danger by propagating false or incorrect ideas via your posts.