Life through my myopic eyes.

Can Blogging Lead to a Writing Job?


Cover of "The Elements of Style, Fourth E...

I read a Tweet on Twitter just now where the Tweeter had written an article about hiring writers for your blog.

Interesting.

I guess that I am still very naive about this blogging business. I mean, I’ve only been blogging for just under two years. I’ve only been blogging daily for a lot less than that.

Like most people, I assume –and yes I know that is a bad idea– that most people are like me. Writing about things that they are interested in while either trying to get the motivation to write or finish a book.

I do know that there are quite a large amount of folks who view their blog as resume (Curriculum Vitae) filler. They can presumably point to their view counts and follow numbers as some sort of standard of excellence, that they believe will show that they possess the talent to write professionally.

I can put my hand over my damaged heart and say that I never looked at blogging like that.

It sounds like a great idea.

Of course it also sounds a bit like the old, “I was spotted in the Schwab’s drugstore having an ice cream float by an agent.” Or the more clichéd, “Why Miss Jones! When you take off your glasses and let down your hair, you could be a model!”

“Why Miss Jones! You look beautiful without taking off your glasses…”

I suppose the literary version would be, ” Why Mr Smith, I had no idea that you could write so well! How would you like to work for us doing something that you are not only good at but love to do as well?”

It all sounds rather fanciful, but, I am sure there is some merit to the idea that blog writing can lead to employment as a professional writer. If you think about it long enough it does make some sense.

As a blogger you not only have to put your thoughts and ideas in down in such a manner that everyone can read them and understand where you’re coming from, but, you also have to add pictures and captions to help develop your blog posts and you are your own editor.

Editing properly, despite the helpful addition of ‘spell check‘ and WordPress‘s own ‘Proofread Writing’, is difficult. You can still commit all sorts of sentence sins and miss the occasional –or not so occasional–faux pa.

It’s a lot harder for potential professional employers to recognise your capability if your blog is full of grammatical errors or poor punctuation. Your creativity and originality can get lost in the shuffle of coma splices, dangling participles and shotgunned adjectives.

If this all sounds too daunting, you probably don’t want to start blogging if you haven’t already. If you are already blogging, just keep a copy of Strunk and White’s Elements of Style handy.

If it doesn’t sound too daunting, then you are where you need to be. Practising a craft that many aspire to become perfect at but so few can actually do.

Because blogging is writing, it can also be photographic in nature, but it still boils down to the writing. A picture may be worth a thousand words, but I’ll bet the photographer still has a few things to say about the picture he’s taken.

I do know that there are “professional” blogs out there, I’ve read them. But whether you are a professional blogger or an amateur, the rules are still the same. The big difference is that as an amateur you do all the work for no pay. Your recompense is the blog itself and the views, likes and comments that it garners.

I also would argue that because you do all the work that when you look back at a blog post and find a mistake, you overreact just that little bit more.

I know I do. I cringe if I find I’ve missed something after I’ve proofread the damn thing over and over. And before you ask, yes I do re-edit old posts. I have to.

I don’t know if I would enjoy writing for another blog in a professional capacity or if it would be as much fun or even as personally fulfilling. It would be nice to suddenly become a “professional” writer at 54, other people have started at a much more advanced age and been quite successful.

So I’ll keep blogging and maybe one day…

Blogging Heroes

Blogging Heroes (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Categorised in: Blogging, Entertainment, Personal, Reflective, Writing

9 Responses »

  1. I worked as a professional writer for 35 years, maybe longer. It’s not quite the way you think it is. Better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick, but commercial writing isn’t generally writing anything you want to write. You don’t get paid to write what YOU want. That’s what blogging is. A few people have columns that let them do their own thing, but they are a tiny percentage of working writers, most of whom work in PR, advertising, technology, education, some kind of government stuff … reports, manuals, or lies, take your pick. The best work is if you get to write about things you like … books were great. My brief stint as a newspaper editor was wonderful. But most writing for money is work. There are worse jobs, but glamorous and fun? Not so much.

  2. I do not blog with the aspirations of being a paid professional writer. I blog because I love to write, I want to improve my writing for my own satisfaction and, finally, because it helps me cope with stress and keeps me calm. I have days where I am just fine and I have days where I am angry, yelling, cussing and snapping at everyone and everything before inevitably feeling depressed and guilty. Writing helps the good days far outweigh the bad.

    • Yes, we blog because we like to write and we are our own worst critics, yet, we still have to do it. I could not begin to imagine what it would be like to write someone else’s blog. I’ve written pieces for base newspapers and it was straight forward reporting. Fun, but not the same as blogging. Thanks for sharing mate! :-)

  3. I don’t get paid but I write entertainment stuff/reviews for some big companies/websites. It frustrates me as I feel my creativity is crushed, since Im told what to write and it has to be exclusive etc. With my own site I love the freedom of doing what I want. Plus if I cock it up I can go back and edit it like it never happened :)

  4. Well, since I review movies I wouldn’t mind doing that for a magazine or something, but I’m having fun with it now as a hobby.

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