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Blogging is not a digital humanities method, but it is a practice that can

The most important thing to realize is that Blogging is a habit! Setting up a blog is not blogging. Writing a few posts of the sort you want to write is not blogging - it is aspirational blogging. To blog you have to develop habits of posting regularly or no one will return to your blog.

Blogs can be used by projects in a number of ways:

  • Blogging systems like [| WordPress] are so powerful you can use it as your project web site. It is a great way to get a nice looking project site up that multiple people can edit. You can have announcements, you can have stable pages, and it has attractive themes to fit all sorts of needs. WordPress is, in effect, a Content Management System ready to go.
  • Blogging can be used in teaching. You can ask students to keep a blog with reactions to readings. You can have a shared blog. There are lots of uses of blogs in humanities teaching. See for some ideas.
  • A private blog can be used to keep a running log of what is being done or to keep team documentation in one searchable place.
  • You can also use them for certain projects. Suppose you want to translate a page of Italian a day - use a blog as project site.

Developing Blogging Habits

It is easy to start a blog, but hard to maintain one. Here are some tips for maintaining them:

  • Choose a topic or theme that you are motivated to write about regularly.
  • Write short blog entries - don't aspire to long essays that you will never get around to writing. For longer things that you want to write incrementally you should use a wiki.
  • Try to make your entries useful to someone starting with yourself. I use [|] as my little black research notebook. Even if no one ever looked at it, I make sure I blog certain things I will want to find again and, as a result, now search it regularly.
  • Feel guilty if you haven't blogged in more than a week. Let the guilt seep in and drive you to blog something, just to keep appearances going.
  • Don't write about yourself unless you want to make your life public. Blogging is great for expressing more personal opinions about things, but the bloggers that make themselves the primary subject of the blog are either tedious or really good. Chances are you aren't a really writer with ideas about narrative voice.
  • Read some of the advice out there for how to write for blogs.
  • Get others to join you in blogging.

Readings & Links

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