Blogs v Books – what makes a good blog?

I don’t know what makes a good blog (it’s all very subjective in my opinion) but what I have learnt is that the writing I enjoy in a blog is very different to that in a book.

When I read blogs I look for a quick read, something to do during a coffee break or lunch hour, something that is informative, opinionated or tells a short story.  What I don’t want to read is a lengthy description about what something looks like or how someone feels.  I don’t want lots of dialogue either.  I don’t have the time.  Neither do I look for a big audience around a blog to pull me in.  It doesn’t bother me if a lot of people don’t comment on an article; to me this isn’t necessarily a bad reflection on the blogger or their writing.  It may simply be due to the author not promoting their blog enough.

The big turn off for me is long posts.  If I come across a blog that is too long (for me, usually over 1500 words) it doesn’t matter how well written it may be, I switch off because I simply don’t have the time to read it.  For me reading blogs is akin to reading newspapers and magazines when information and opinion is more important than description and dialogue.  That is best kept for a novel in which I can give time to sink into a storyline and live it for a while.  Books are my emotional escape, blogs are my source of information and a place to discuss things.  There’s a difference which doesn’t mean to say one is more superior than the other.  They’re just different.

What about you?  What you do look for in blogs?

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One Response to Blogs v Books – what makes a good blog?

  1. Hmm, that’s an interesting question – funnily enough I was just thinking about something similar the other day. I came to much the same conclusion: I enjoyed short blog posts that got over one short story or one message. It means the quality of the writing doesn’t matter – in fact it can almost be a bit of a turn-off because some writing styles can mean quite dense prose that needs a bit of chewing. That’s great in a book where it might pay off after you’ve really got into it, but you don’t want to read that in a blog. Conversely, a short conversational style – sometimes not very grammatical or perfectly spelled – can work really well in a blog, but be really irritating in a longer piece of writing! The other thing is, I tend to read lots of blog posts at once – like a newspaper, as you say – and a lot of the posts are a bit like catching up with friends. “Oh, what’s so-and-so saying over in New Zealand?” you think. The effect of a blog can be cumulative – each post isn’t world-shattering, but over time, each post builds up a voice, a portrait of the writer or a distinctive point of view.
    Ps. This is JuliesMum wearing my alternative hat!

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