Jill at Unfinished Chapter 80 poses an interesting question: How do you blog? That is, the actual writing part of blogging?
When I am blogging about a book or movie or TV show, what I usually do first is the research. At the minimum, that includes a site about the item. For the book, it's usually Amazon just because that's where I usually shop. (And, I've stopped, temporarily, the Amazon Associates part of creating links for items because it was too time consuming.) But, depending on the site and the information provided, I may do Barnes & Nobles or the publisher. For visual medium, that means IMDB, TV.com, and the official movie/network site.
For books, I then look for information about the author/illustrator, preferable their own site. I also look related information, like author interviews.
At this point, if I have run out of blogging time, these are all saved in a favorites folder called "story ideas". (But I'm thinking of changing that to the more specific "current blog post.") If I do have time to blog, I start the blog post with the following structure: book jacket photo, title, author; and then what may well be the end of the post, such as "author interview here." So it starts with all the links already there. With that structure in place, I start writing.
The actual writing takes place in the blogger software; there is usually no need to link anywhere since it's been done. I usually refer to my reading journal, where I record my impressions of books. (A typical entry has no plot summary, but instead lists what I liked, didn't like, fave quotes.) I look at it in preview, revise, read it out loud, revise. Post. Find a typo, edit, post.
Seriously, it doesn't take as long as it sounds.
When I write in response to something -- a news article or another blogger's post -- if I don't have time I save it in my story ideas folder. If I do have time, I link as I write.
While I like my story ideas folder, I find that I need to go in every month or so and clean it up because there are story ideas that go stale. By the time I sit down, everyone has already posted about it and I feel I have nothing new to add. Or, I posted and didn't delete the site from the folder.
If I'm writing something not for blogger, whether fiction or non-fiction, my first draft is handwritten; the second draft takes place when I'm putting it into Word; then I print out, revise, print out, revise. I have tried writing first draft on the computer but I get antsy tied down to one place to write (hence my increasing desire to get a laptop.)
By the way, Unfinished Chapter 80 is Jill's new blog; go take a look! Short description: an academic examination of children's literature. Long description: here.
So, how do you blog?
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