The other day Jennifer asked if one needed a college degree to blog. I didn’t get a chance to respond, but I’ll admit here and now I never graduated college. I always loved to write, however, and as an editorial and administrative assistant in a busy publishing house, I was able to learn from some of the best in the business. I thank my lucky stars for that experience as it allowed me to be a successful freelance writer and blogger.
So do you need to be a good writer to be a good blogger?
Heck yeah. How many times have you come across a poorly written blog post and walked away either wondering what the blogger was going on about, or wanting to fix his misspellings or tighten up his sentence structure?
Now I’m not saying you need an advanced degree in communications, nor am I saying you have to follow a strict journalistic format. My point is that if you’re going to be writing for others you should have a good command of the language, a way with words, and the ability to get one’s point across without digressing too much.
What I love best about blogging is its informality. I can use my own voice and talk in the manner I feel most comfortable. The last thing i want is for someone to walk away from a read feeling as if I didn’t say anything or that I’m a really poor writer. Poor writing skills detract and distract.
Yes. You do need skills. Perhaps not in the formal sense, but if you want to blog, you should know how to write first.
Sharon Hurley Hall says
‘Heck, yeah’ – you couldn’t have said it better. Good writing skills will help any type of writing. Knowing how to draw your readers in and make them want to keep reading are just as useful in blogging as in other forms of writing.
Robert Kennedy says
Writing is a skill that can be learned, and blogging is a great way to hone writing skills. I think a love for writing is far more important that being a good writer. I know good writers who never get anywhere because their heart is not it. I say the heck with sentence structure, grammar, and even spelling; Write like nobody is ever going to read it. Use poor writers don’t want to put all the editors and proof readers out of business now do we?
Mister Thorne says
Actually, folks who can’t write well can make it seem as if they certainly can.
Consider the many luminaries who can’t write their way out of missing an exam — they hire ghost writers to do their writing for them.
And consider the few who need to write, but realize it’s not their strong suit. What do they do? They do what the very best writers do — they have an editor review their work BEFORE it’s published.
With suitable financial resources (and some smarts), even extremely mediocre writers can seem as skilled as the best.