Posted by: Donna Cunningham | November 3, 2010

Writing Tips–10 Dos and Don’ts for Astrology Blogs

(c)11-3-2010 by Donna Cunningham, MSW

DO WORK ON THE TITLE AND OPENING PARAGRAPH SO THEY ARE CLEAR AND APPEALING. 

DON’T WRITE LIKE A COLLEGE PROFESSOR.

 DON’T WRITE LIKE DANE RUDHYAR; WRITE LIKE MICHAEL LUTIN.

 DON’T WRITE LONG PASSAGES OF ASTROBABBLE. (Define terms simply for the general reader; have a newbie read it before you post it.)

 DON’T MAKE ABSOLUTE PRONOUNCEMENTS about signs, planets, or the future.

DON’T FOCUS ON WORST CASE SCENARIOS.

 DON’T BE TERMINALLY POSITIVE EITHER, or the reader won’t know what the challenges are and will be blindsided.  (A balanced look at worst case/best case scenarios gives the reader guidelines.)

 DON’T SLAM THE SIGNS YOU LOVE TO HATE. 

 BE AWARE OF TIME-SENSITIVE MATERIAL AND MAKE IT EASY TO TWEAK AFTER THE ASTROLOGICAL EVENT HAS PASSED.  

DO ADD TAGS (KEYWORDS) AND CATEGORIES TO EACH POST SO THE SEARCH ENGINES CAN FIND IT. 

 DO CLOSE WITH AN ACTION THE READER CAN TAKE OR AN INVITATION TO COMMENT ON THE IDEAS IN THE POST. 

More  Tips about Promoting Yourself:


Responses

  1. Gee, Donna, I’m not sure what Michael Lutin does (at least the stuff on his blog) can really be considered writing. He is the most incoherent astroblogger I know of. I think this is a strategy to write such vague statements that can be interpreted any way the reader wants. That way, you’re always right!
    Sure, I read Lutin, but only for entertainment value. If you want to be an entertainer, great, but I think most writers have higher aspirations. I think you have to decide what your audience is, and write for it. Realize that the average daily newspaper is written for a 6th grade audience, at that level of language complexity. This is great, if you want to express ideas that 6th graders can understand. I think there is also a place for people who want to write like Rudhyar, for more erudite audiences.

    • Good points, Charles, but there has to be a middle point where one writes quality material in an understandable fashion that is not elitist. It goes, really, to another of the points I’ll be covering in the lecture–that of knowing your target audience and writing for them. Donna

      • Right, and this is why writing is an art. You need to find a middle ground. But you also have to be yourself too. If you’re kind of nutsy like Lutin, you write crazy, entertaining stuff. But if you’re kind of intellectual, it is easy to sound condescending if you aren’t skillful at explaining things simply.
        I had a conversation with an astroblogger recently, she was dispirited and had deleted her blog because she was depressed at how her specialized niche was criticized by a few blog commenters. I told her that no matter how specialized she was, or how obscure her material was, even if she thought it was so personal that she thought nobody would ever understand it except her, there would always be an audience for it. There is always an audience out there, waiting for you. Ultimately, you first write to an audience of one, yourself. If you are happy with your own work, it will come through to your readers.
        Now actually, I ought to get back to work writing myself. I have an important audience of one, my editor, and oh is he hopping mad that I haven’t finished my feature article that was due last friday. Ha.

  2. Thank you for sharing. xxx

  3. Michael Lutin used to write monthly scopes for Vanity Fair; read them every month because he always made his point and was often funny while doing so. He made me think and laugh. I haven’t read his blog yet but will now:)

    Donna, good luck at the conference:) Your outline looks good. As far as knowing your audience goes, it’s hard with astrology. There are always novices, intermediates and advanced (although at the conference it’s probably most advanced). I agree with writing to the midpoint so to speak in a clear direct manner; that way the new people get it and the advanced can add their own spin if they so desire.

  4. Thanks,–I’ve been a reader of Dane Rudhyar for 40+ years but never before heard of Michael Lutin…always learning something NEW here…I’ll look for his name right now while hoping he’s not TOO “entertaining”.

  5. Remove the astrology terms and this seems like great advice for writing ANY blog!

  6. You may not like his site, but trust me.. get a hold of one of his books. If you have socks on, they will likely be knocked off.

    (Also, he was great on my show too.)🙂


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