Balancing Your Blog

Blogging is difficult. It is crafting an audience worthy read on a regular basis. It is storytelling and it is a business, which is why the line between personal and professional is a very thin one. Good blogs have a balance between establishing themselves as professional authorities and creating a sense of community with their audience. However, if you sway too far in one direction then you are limiting your viewing public. This article is a compilation of pros and cons of personalization versus professionalism in writing blogs as well as a few of the author’s own suggestions for starting and maintaining a healthy balance for your blog.

So, You Want to Start a Blog?

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In my day, I’ve started and unsuccessfully ran a number of blogs. My problem? I didn’t maintain it. I would be enamored by its initial novelty, but as most things do with me, I quickly lost interest and ran to pursue the next thing that caught my eye.

Maintaining a blog takes work. This post from Blogging Consultant provides us with seven tips to keep it going. Definitely check it out for some great insight and motivation to keep your blog up to date.

StoryWeb: Storytime for Grownups

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Do you love stories? Yeah? Of course you do! I’m not lying when I say that, besides recess and naptime, storytime is one activity that I wished was carried over into high school and collage. Now, my wish has been granted thanks to former English professor Dr. Linda Tate. Dr. Tate, a fellow lover of stories, has created a blog and podcast called StoryWeb: Storytime for Grownups that celebrates all kinds of stories. After twenty-six years of teaching literature and writing at universities around the country and being named West Virginia Professor of the Year, Dr. Tate decided it was time to focus on her own writing. StoryWeb offers a different story each week. According to Dr. Tate, “every Monday, you’ll find a short blog post about the featured story as well as a multimedia clip highlighting the featured story. Hear E. B. White read from Charlotte’s Web, tune in for Hazel Dickens singing “Mama’s Hand”, watch Joseph Campbell explain how Star Wars brings the hero’s journey to life, or listen as I read the Seneca tale, “The Origin of Stories”. Treat yourself to five or ten minutes of a great tale, hand-selected by Dr. Tate herself from genres including fiction, memoir, poetry, film, song, oral storytelling, and more. StoryWeb will also be available as a free podcast in iTunes. To subscribe to the StoryWeb email list go to www.thestoryweb.com/subscribe. If you are not interested in subscribing, no worries. You don’t have to subscribe to StoryWeb’s email list to visit and listen: so come check it out and get your storytime fix.

Social Media: A Journalistic Tool

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Do you use social media as a news outlet? Then you’re not alone, as a survey from the Pew Research Journalism Project gathered information that showed nearly half of American adults receive news from the Facebook feeds. Because of this, author Eric Newton encourages journalism educators to start implementing social media into their teaching.

In this article from PBS MediaShift, a closer look is taken at why social media should be implemented into introductory journalism courses. Each platform has idiosyncratic characteristics that affect how ideas and news are communicated. Understanding these characteristics is crucial for effective usage of these platforms. I definitely learned a thing or two from this article. Definitely check it out!