Friday, November 20, 2015

26 Reasons a Writer Should Blog - Part 7 Final



So we've done it! We're at the end of the alphabet. Typically, the last three points are the most difficult to come up with.

Since April, we've worked through the letters of the alphabet, each month choosing one significant word from the next two or three letters in the alphabet that clarify reasons why a writer should blog.
Now to come up with reasons beginning with X, Y and Z


24. X is for the X-Factor of Writing

During my first lesson in Algebra at school, I learned a crucial fact, that "X" is an unknown quantity. People often talk about the X-factor of various topics, in other words an unknown factor that influences the outcome. A dictionary definition of the term describes the X-Factor as “a variable in a given situation that could have the most significant impact on the outcome”. 

The variable is therefore something which can influence the situation. What does this have to do with writing, or blogging in particular? 

I have been writing for publication for about fifteen years. That is my situation. During that time I have learned there are things I do well, and there are areas where I suck. Blogging has the potential to act as my variable. It has brought about some key changes in my writing.


I have seen a significant impact on my writing output. I have two websites, each of which has its own blog. In Write to Inspire, my posts are geared to inspire and encourage writers and readers, and in Rise and Soar, my goal is to inspire and encourage those doing battle with cancer. I aim at producing at least one post a week on each of these.

I also contribute monthly to this blog, Writers on the Move, and once or twice a month to International Christian Fellowship of Writers. That's not counting my many writing commitments. So I have to keep writing. As a result, I'm also writing faster. My ability to do research has grown wings, and my creativity is expanding. 

So for me, it's not a question of finding the X-factor in blogging. Blogging is the X-factor in my writing life. How about you?


25. Y is for YouTube. I had only used a YouTube video clip once on my blog before I tackled the A to Z Blogging Challenge in April. However, when I wrote on N is for N’kosi Sekelel e’Africa, a post about the magnificent South African national anthem, it wasn’t enough to tell my readers the history. Nor was it enough to copy out the words for them. They needed to hear it for themselves!

I searched YouTube and found a stirring rendering of the anthem, complete with the words superimposed on a background of our flag. It was so easy to post this into my blog. 

Don’t know how? 

On YouTube, find the clip you want to use, then click on share. Choose the option, Embed. This will give you a line of code. Copy that to your clipboard. 

Now open your blog. Go to ‘source’ or ‘html’ to find the code for your post. Paste the video clip’s code into the correct spot. It’s as easy as that.

(If you’re new to html code, try pasting it right at the end of the post. Then come out of the code and drag the video image to where you want it.


26.  Z is for Zest. The dictionary describes zest as “Vigorous and enthusiastic enjoyment”. If you are a writer, you cannot only write when you’re in the mood. 

No business man would only go to the office when he felt like it. No nurse can only care for the sick when she feels dedicated. If you’re serious about writing, you need to write when it’s time to write. Not just when you’re gripped by the Scribe Bug.

However with blogging it is good to strike while the iron is hot, to use a cliché. When you’re in the mood, or in the zone as the youngsters would say, sit down and blog. For example, I outlined the majority of the 26 posts for this series with great zest in a few hours one morning. I skipped over any letters that didn’t immediately grab me and came back to them some days later. 

As long as you have something scheduled to go live on your blog on the day you plan, you don’t have to write them literally on the day. (See S is for Scheduling.)

 I hope you have found this series of 26 Reasons Why a Writer Should Blog helpful and informative. It has also included many tips on how to make blogging easier and more effective for you. Please leave a note to indicate what you have found helpful, and don't forget to leave a link to your own blog so we can pay you a visit!

Until next month . . . 

THE FULL SERIES: 

26 Reasons for a Writer to Blog - Part I: A - C
26 Reasons for a Writer to Blog - Part II: D-G
26 Reasons for a Writer to Blog - Part III: H-K
26 Reasons for a Writer to Blog - Part IV: L-O
26 Reasons for a Writer to Blog - Part V: P-S
26 Reasons for a Writer to Blog - Part VI:T-W
26 Reasons for a Writer to Blog - Part VII: X-Z

SHIRLEY CORDER lives on the coast in South Africa with her husband, Rob. Her book, Strength Renewed: Meditations for your Journey through Breast Cancer, has brought encouragement and inspiration to a multitude of friends and contacts across the world.

Visit Shirley through ShirleyCorder.com where she encourages writers, or at RiseAndSoar.com where she encourages those in the cancer valley. You can also meet with her on Twitter or Facebook.


Sign up to receive a short devotional message from Shirley in your inbox once a week. 

13 comments:

  1. I love the fact that you have written this series of posts even though I haven't been able to read them all in timely manner. However B is for bookmark, and I've book marked this page to go back to when I have some additional time. Thank you for your dedication to your readers.

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  2. Thank you Judith. I wonder why you can't read these in order?

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    1. The fault is entirely mine. My schedule is the only hindrance - that and the eternal interruptions in my reading time. :-)

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    1. Thanks so much Lucy! These three letters were a challenge. :-)

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  4. Great series of posts that we can come back to again and again. Thanks, Shirley!

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    1. Thank you Suzanne. It's been fun, and I've learned a lot myself along the way.

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  5. Intrigued. New to writing and blogging, and so still thinking about what I think. Thanks for food for thought.

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    1. That's a pleasure, Gavin. Enjoy your thinking about what you think. The posts will be here when you've thought whether you want to think about them. Thanks for the visit. :-)

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  6. Shirl, what a great series! All seven posts on why writers should blog has lots of usable tips. The Y for YouTube is a great one. Thanks for taking the time and effort to go through the entire alphabet!

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    1. Thank you Karen. It has been a worthwhile exercise for me too. I hope others have found it to be beneficial.

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  7. I may have forgotten that you mentioned it, Shirl, but one of the things I like my blog for is the chance it gives me to start up a new connection by asking for people to guest blog. You are invited to the party! (-:
    Carolyn
    Blogging at http;//SharingwithWriters.blogspot.com.

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    1. Ooh thank you Carolyn. I'll take a look at your link and get back to you!

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