TL;DR | How To Focus Your Content + Win!


Those of you who have followed the Penslayer for AGES know that I CAN GET REALLY WORDY.  But on the internet, that is NOT a skill.  It's an almost sure-fire turn-off for readers.  So how do you cut to the chase and get readers to stick around?  Glad you asked!

"I KNOW MY NAME. GET ON WITH IT!"

If you have backstory, KEEP. IT. SHORT.  Do not repeat yourself unnecessarily, do not go into minute detail.  People WILL get to know you!  Especially if you keep things short + sweet and don't drive them away by a HUGE WALL OF TEXT OH MY LANDS RUN AWAY AIN'T NOBODY GOT TIME FO' DAT.  Your personality and history will evolve and grow on the readership as you blog.  Don't scare them off with text!

break it up + keep paragraphs short

Reading on the computer is GRUELING for the eyes.  Keep blocks of text to a minimum length without sacrificing content, so your readers will stick with you.  Break the post up into nice paragraphs - with headings!  We love headings.

do not. post. millions of pictures. of the same thing.

You've got a camera.  I get it.  It's cool.  But I do not want to scroll through over-large images of essentially the same damn image.  Not cool!  Show me one AWESOME picture that you took and I'm going to be coming back to your blog to see more awesome pictures (of different things).

don't hog the conversation

Chances are, if you (read: myself) do all the talking, no one is going to feel like that have room to chime in!  Uh, no thanks!  I know I want to hear what you have to say, so I'm gonna cut to the chase and have done and leave you time to chat!  That's what blogs are for!

are you guilty of this? yeah, I know I am. here's to better things! and shorter posts... 

image via pinterest. you saw that coming.

10 ripostes:

  1. I am pretty sure I am guilty of this on a number of counts. :P Thanks for the post though - I am definitely going to try to implement these tips in the future!

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    1. Awesome! And, as Janie pointed out below, don't let rendering the fat off the meat of your posts wind up compromising your content. Be YOU - but with less fluff. Always good advice. XD

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  2. These are really great points (especially the too many photos one. ugh). But I have to say that I've seen quite a few blogs that follow all the points you've mentioned here, but are completely yawn-worthy. I'll put up with quite a few formatting failures if you've got content that I'm actually interested in reading. Some of your really wordy posts, Jenny, have been my favorites. Your post, A Common Provenance in Pain, was the one that got me started reading your blog. Basically, if you consistently challenge me, spark my creativity, and make me think about things from a different angle, I WILL read your blog...unless you post too many photos. ;)

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    1. UNLESS YOU POST TOO MANY PHOTOS.

      You're absolutely right, longer posts that ARE engaging, are...engaging. XD Sometimes it does take more words to communicate a thought. But unnecessary verbage, of course, needs to be weeded out. That's a common malady.

      Rule #1: HAVE ENGAGING CONTENT.

      Rule #2: COMMUNICATE IT SUCCINCTLY.

      Rule #3: BE AWESOME.

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    2. Similarly to what Jamie said, I don't particularly mind longish posts,if my eyes get tired I may break but I /will/ come back if it interested me. Paragraph breaks are good though! I know sometimes when you posted snippets some of the longer once were delicious and I enjoyed them.

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  3. This makes sense. Blogs can be a great outlet for thoughts, but readers need to be taken into consideration. Can't just dump things into a messy post. You're very organised, though.

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    1. Oh, I didn't used to be. No sirree. It's something I've had to learn. I fought it, thinking that "readers just had to meet me where I was." But readers don't HAVE to come to The Penslayer. Maybe I have good content for them, but if I'm droning, they aren't going to find that attractive. I had to learn to communicate relevant content in a way that the lunch-break, fast-paced readership would be able to scan, digest, and respond to without feeling like I was choking them.

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  4. Awesome advice! It's kind of hard to keep things short sometimes. I think that's why I write a post and then edit it over a month of time. It usually downsizes by at least a half when I finally post it. XD

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    1. Girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do. XD

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