Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Useful Tips for Contrarian Bloggers

A couple of months ago, Mike at 10000 Birds and John at A DC Birding Blog offered some useful tips for becoming better bloggers.

But the contrarians among you might want to take a gander (no pun intended) at "The Contrarian Blogger Rules" posted by Donutbuzz on April 17, 2007. Since Donutbuzz doesn’t offer direct links to individual posts. I hope he doesn’t mind if I post his tongue-in-cheek rules in their entirety:
1. Write about your lunch. I disagree that nobody cares what you had for lunch. Hamlet said that “there’s nothing good or bad but thinking makes it so.” I believe that no topic is too common, too sublime or too ridiculous that you can’t write something interesting about it.

2. Don’t focus on anything. This is also known as my “write what I feel like” rule, and it’s really a corollary of the first rule. Sometimes I want to post about something in particular, but I simply can’t find the words. Today, for example, I wanted to write about the tragedy at Virginia Tech. I don’t have the words now. This is why I’m posting this list now because I need to write something.

3. No ads. You’re not writing for a newspaper, are you? (I didn’t think so.)

4. Avoid foul language. Foul language is like hot sauce. The hot sauce should flavor your posts, but should not overpower the substance. Use the “f” word a few times because you can. After that save the salty language for those rare moments when you want to deliver an extra “kick” to your post’s flavor.

5. Never provide more than three links per post. Unless you’re using these links as your own bookmarks for later, chances are that most folks aren’t going to take the effort or time to follow them.

6. Don’t link to a page within your own site. I’ve violated this rule many times, and so do most bloggers. This hobby is narcissistic enough as it is.

7. Don’t dwell on your traffic. Sitemeter’s fun, but don’t let it ruin your day. Have fun with writing.

8. I forget what eight was for. The non-sequitur rocks.

9. Post images sparingly. It’s my favorite contrarian blogging rule. Feel free to ignore it.

10. Remember: There are no rules. Except, of course, for my one post per day rule, which I actually violated yesterday.
I violate rules 2, 5, 6, 7, 9, and 10 regularly. What I haven’t quite figures out is, does that make me a contrarian blogger or a conformist to the more middle-of-the-road blogger rules?

My thanks to jedi jawa at This is not my blog for making me aware of Dunutbuzz’s contrariness.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

You forgot,

11. Don't take anonymous comments

May 10, 2007 2:49 PM  
Blogger John B. said...

Regarding #1, I am sure there some things I really would prefer not to know about my favorite bloggers.

May 10, 2007 3:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, thanks for the mention--and I enjoy your site! I think you and Jedi have convinced me to go back to using permalinks...I did use them before, and there's a long story on why I stopped. Suffice it to say that blogger and wordpress have their advantages!

May 13, 2007 10:33 PM  
Blogger John L. Trapp said...

Thanks, Hoyt. I'm glad you didn't mind me quoting your post at length. To my mind, permalinks are the only way to go!

May 14, 2007 7:48 PM  

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