Ask This Question Before You Write Anything

Play the part of your reader and be your own judge.

By SHARE

Darren Rowse is a full-time blogger, with the widely-read ProBlogger site to his credit. Rowse coaches his readers on promoting and developing their own blogs, but sometimes his advice reads a bit more universal. In a recent guest entry for the ScribeFire blog Rowse asks a question that he believes "has been responsible for me growing my blogs to have over 90,000 subscribers and 50,000 daily visitors."

The question he asks is one that all human beings should ask themselves every time they put fingertips to keyboard or pen to paper. It's crucial to great résumés, great letters, great essays or stories or memos or novels: Am I writing something that I would want to read?

On the subject of growing blog readership, Rowse asks: "Would You Read Your Blog?" He notes this piece of wisdom, which ought to be etched into the edge of our computer monitors: "If you wouldn't read your blogs - why would anyone else?"

Equally, if you wouldn't read the boring language in the bullet points of your résumé, why would anyone else? If you wouldn't read your grad school application essay, why would anyone else want to?

Remember, however, that just because you like reading Maxim or Deadspin doesn't mean those particular writing styles belong in your piece. As Rowse says of blogging:

Of course your reader needs to be in the front and centre of your focus if you want to build a popular blog. It's important to be in tune with them, be interacting with them and writing about things that apply to their lives - however unless you're also writing for you, you might just find that others are not drawn to your blog in the first place.

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