I’m about to give you a small collection of the most effective blog editing tips for beginner bloggers.
But before I do that let’s give a direct answer to the below question.
What, in your view, is a great online article anyway?
Is it the one with super-useful content or the one that speaks to the reader as if they were listening to the voice of the writer?
A great blog post could as well be judged in terms of …
- how SEO-friendly it is
- the right mix of media attachments
- interesting expressions that keep the reader fully engaged
- proper focus on the topic being discussed
- appropriate use of internal and external links
Apart from all the above, there are other key elements of a blog post which deserve equal attention. Especially if you want to make a positive, lasting impression on that first-time visitor to your site.
While you begin to prepare your draft before hitting the publish button, pay extra attention to these blog editing tips I’m about to show you.
1. Edit overused or repeated words.
It is easy to fall in love with certain words to such an extent that you keep using them in almost every sentence. I catch myself committing this mistake quite often.
What I do in such situations is to delete the word and replace it with a different one. I make sure that the new word can serve the same purpose. Sometimes, I let the sentence be without any such word.
Varying the vocabulary is one sure way of making your blog writing truly engaging.
2. Edit the spelling thoroughly.
Let me tell you something interesting.
The variety of English I grew up learning at school is British English. Obviously, you will expect me to have my spelling look like favour, colour, smelt, dreamt, defence, judgement, organise, catalogue, programme, centre and cancelled.
Funnily, this is when my American-born Windows programme and its word processor, along with that grammar app, begin to play tricks on me.
They would insist (forget about suggest) I should rather choose favor, smelled, defense, program and so on.
This can get really confusing especially if you begin to get Americanized by virtue of your continued exposure to American English which dominates the web.
What happens is, that you’re likely to start mixing your original British spelling with American spelling.
I do this in many instances; sometimes without knowing.
My worry is some online readers may not appreciate this dilemma we face. They could consider your spelling to be substandard depending on where they’re coming from. And this could put some of them off.
Don’t you think so?
So, what is the solution?
Well, until the day these two major varieties of English fuse into one, at least with regard to spelling, I strongly suggest that you always check your writing for any inconsistencies in spelling.
What I mean is, just try and stick to one variety as much as you can.
What about “your” vs “you’re”, “thus” vs “that’s”, “it’s” vs “its”, “belief” vs “believe” etc?
Let’s just have a few pairs of sentences to guide you get your spelling right.
- Akua is your friend.
- You’re my friend, Akua.
- Your readers will judge your work by the accuracy of your spelling. Thus, you need to take your spelling seriously.
- Kindly change the spelling of that word. That’s if you don’t mind.
- Don’t go out now. It’s still dark outside.
- Your cat looks very healthy. Its dark colour is so bright.
- Do you believe in the existence of ghosts?
- She continues to have this rather weird belief that ghosts exist.
3. Resolve any issues with punctuation and capitalization.
You need to know when to use the apostrophe sign for it’s, you’re and the like. Another side of this blog editing tip is this. You must edit your draft blog post to rid it of the following errors and many more.
- Names of people, places and major events which start with small letters instead of capital letters.
- Extremely long, difficult-to-understand sentences which should have been broken down into shorter ones with the use of a few full stops.
- Careless use of other punctuation marks like the comma, question mark and exclamation sign.
4. Pay attention to sentence structure
To make your blog post not only readable but also enjoyable, you need to edit those sentences which come out as dull, ambiguous and confusing.
One way to do this is to revise most of your passive sentences into active ones. You should also do something about varying the order of the elements forming your sentences.
Let me explain with an example.
Adverbs, adverbial phrases and adverbial clauses, for example, are easy to shift around in a sentence. Therefore, varying the position of such in your sentences will prevent your article from sounding monotonous.
Take a look at these two sentences:
- Remember to leave a comment in order that I may know how you feel about this post.
- In order that I may know how you feel about this post, remember to leave a comment.
This is just one of the numerous ways you can vary your sentence structure and make your article flow like a melody.
5. Establish coherence within and between paragraphs
Here comes one of those blog editing tips you cannot afford to take lightly.
It is possible that upon a closer look at your new draft, you will discover that certain elements are not following the desired order.
Worse still, you may find out that whatever ideas you’re trying to communicate to your audience could be disjointed or mixed up, making understanding become very difficult.
Here is one of those best blog editing tips to apply to fix this anomaly.
Seize this opportunity to introduce the necessary linkages.
You may have to introduce linking words or expressions like moreover, similarly, on the other hand, however, nonetheless, as a result, further, as you can see, in addition, to explain further, secondly, and so on.
Moreover, consider reordering paragraphs and points. This will make your writing flow logically. It will also make your reader find it easy to follow your line of thinking.
The focus of the above blog editing tips is all about those essential aspects of the blog post that need proper editing before you go ahead to publish your beloved post.
So, next time you finish drafting your online article, whatever the platform or purpose, just remember to do justice to these critical areas.
I will always wish you successful online publishing. You owe me one too, don’t you?
Image by Raphaël Jeanneret from Pixabay