The Manhattan Project--2016 A to Z Theme

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Monday, July 12, 2010

Blog Boggled: The Long and the Short of It

        I've been talking about changes and today I want to talk about one that I'm considering--shorter blog posts. 

        During most of my blogging history I have typically been posting 1000 word blog posts  Recently, I have been cutting down to 600 to 800 word posts.  I am thinking that sometimes I may resort to 100 to 300 word posts (a collective sigh emanates). 

         I often put a lot of time and effort into my posts, including the actual writing and at times a fair amount of research.  But I wonder if it's worth it.   I realize that a long post also requires much effort on behalf of the reader, but sometimes I feel it is necessary to go long in order to get across a point I'm trying to make.  The question remains:  Is my point really that important in a blog post?

          How about you?  Do you do much research for your blog posts?  Is a blog post really worth much time investment?   Do you tend to jsut skip over a blog post that you feel is too long?

And now continued from my Saturday post:

Patricia Stoltey awarded me the Creative Writer/ Liar Blogger Award where I was supposed to make up  5 lies and 1 truth:  I did and there weren't many guesses so I thought I'd give it another chance since I spent at least five minutes of my time coming up with these stories.   On Wednesday I will reveal the truth and the lies.
Which do you think is the true story?

1. I was once a roadie for the Marshall Tucker Band (a popular country rock band in the 70s)

2. I was the salutatorian of my graduating class in high school.

3. I have hiked the entire Appalachian Trail.

4. I performed in a circus that featured Ted Cassidy and Jackie Coogan from the television show "The Addams Family".

5. While rafting down the Colorado river through the Grand Canyon, the raft I was in capsized and I broke my leg, necessitating a helicopter rescue out of the canyon.

6. In the late 70s I spent one season working as a featured magic act in a carnival sideshow.

There you go -- which one is true?

13 comments:

  1. First I think number 4 is true,
    Now for your shorter blog post, I always read what ever you write whether it be short or long, as for research as I write mainly on what has gone on in my life I wait for it tot happen .
    I have always enjoyed your post, the only research I have done is the music lists to find out various things about the artist.
    Whatever you decide to do I'm sure it will be the right decision.

    Yvonne.

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  2. You definitely were in a magic act!!

    I don't really like long blog posts unless they grab my attention from the get-go.

    I try to write short and sweet posts because no one cares as much as the blogger writing them.

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  3. I'm guessing #5 is the lie.

    I try not to go over 500 words or so because people don't have time to read long posts. Some take 20 minutes to compose, some an hour or more!

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  4. I had to look up salutatorian - I've never heard that word before. We have small schools up here I guess & this is not something we do. So after spending all that time on it (almost 20 seconds!) I'm going to guess that one is true. :)

    I don't count words for my posts, but most of them are pretty short. I do follow a lot of blogs, and shorter is easier for me :)

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  5. I've read blogs that were long and I didn't notice until I went to comment.
    On the other hand, some short ones seem to last forever.
    Not much help but I'll read what you write no matter.

    Giggles and Guns

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  6. well I can tell you that general rule is that readers tend not to read and follow blogs with long posts with long blocks of text and without illustrative pictures and images. That's a well known blogging fact. So making ones posts shorter but still effective is a good decision.

    Although it's superficial judging things from a visual point of view, I'm sure you will agree with me that most people still do it. So you can either fight against them or just try to find a good compromise :) But it is true that shorter (but effective and informative) posts with a visually appealing blog bring much more new readers.

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  7. Lee-

    I think shorter is usually better, and as you will see on my political rant blog would rather spread it over a few days than make the post too long.

    I do not think that should detract from research, though.

    I do not post anywhere near as often as you do, partially because I spend fifty to sixty hours a week on my day job (where I am now and probably should be focusing on rather than reading and typing here).

    That time spent at work also makes my blog reading time compete with other household tasks (trying reading a long blog when you haven't fed the cats) and makes sitting in front of another screen for leisure less appealing.

    Which brings me to where I started. I think shorter is better.

    And I'm going to guess #1. Someone had to be their roadie-why not you?

    LC

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  8. Here I go again, like a fish out of water. I'm flip flopping again; I'll say #4 is true!

    I think when we go long, we lose the reader,especially if they are trying to hit 30+ blogs.

    I think variety may work, short, medium and long on occasion! I can really get into long on Thursday's Debate post! I like seeing all the angles you throw at us. It feels like you are tossing the dice and giving us a lot of different views!

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  9. I run long-- I know I do. It seems like I just can't quite get to the point quickly. I confess to skimming SOME long posts, but it depends on the topic and how engaged I am--if they are IMPORTANT (like your social issues ones) I am happy to read every word thoughtfully... if they are FUNNY, likewise... it just sort of depends on how deeply it engages me.

    I think though, I would spend almost as much time writing short as long... maybe not... but it seems to be how I process...

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  10. I am going to guess number 6. I too am trying to cut down on the number of words. I like around 500 but lately with some of the topics I have been hitting 1200. I don't want people not to read because it is to long. Can't wait to see your changes.

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  11. Lee, I'm sorry - I missed your post this morning! Damn, I must've been asleep. Stupid Mondays.

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  12. Thanks for the comments -- I'm catching these a bit late today.

    Yvonne--Thanks for the vote of support. I can always count on you.

    PTM-- Sometimes I'm afraid you might be right about noone caring as much as the writer. If that's true I'd rather spend less time writing my blog posts.

    Diane -- If I'm just writing off the top of my head I can hack out posts in little time. Sometimes I start checking facts and it takes longer. I just wondering if it's worth the effort.

    Jemi -- Maybe they just have salutatorians at bigger schools. I always check the word counts of my post and find they usually average out at 1000 words. I guess that's my comfortable writing range. Probably comes from college essays I used to have to write.

    Mary -- Well, gosh, Mary, that makes me feel really nice. Thank you.

    Dezmond -- You're right and you're right. I'm going to try for shorter, but I might not always make it.

    Deborah -- I tell you on Wednesday if you're right.

    Larry -- Yeah right, you, me, and Stephen McCarthy all love those long posts. We could keep the Goodyear blimp flying for a long time.

    Ellie -- I'll probably do what you're saying --short, medium, and long. But the long habit is hard for me to break.

    Hart-- I agree with everything you've said. Keeping it short, but maintaining completeness of content would take longer for me too.

    Gregg-- Your posts are not only long but very deep. I could spend all day on some of your posts alone.

    Alex-- Your late comment is probably what caused me to be late in responding to comments--it's all your fault!

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Lee