A Short Checklist: Writing Tools for Bloggers

Writing tools for bloggersWriting good blog posts isn’t difficult when you’re passionate about your topic. But that same passion can cause you to not notice if a few (or maybe even more than a few) errors slip through. If you want to raise your writing to the next level, the following tools can help:

* Your spelling-check software

This is your first line of defense against typos. That’s pretty obvious. But what you might not realize is that because aspects of the English language actually change more often than you’d think (a good example is the recent influx of Web-related terms), spelling software sometimes isn’t up-to-date. So, here’s an important caveat: if your software doesn’t contain a word, or if you suspect it’s displaying the wrong hyphenation, capitalization, etc., you should refer to a dictionary or the next tool below.

Chicago Manual of Style* The Chicago Manual of Style (CMOS)

Available in print and versions, this resource is a practical guide to editorial style. Although the online version offers easy answers to most questions that can pop up while writing, it doesn’t address all of them. You need the print version for that.

Some examples of the questions TCMS answers:

  • Should president be capitalized when not used in front of someone’s name?
  • What is the proper format for citing an information source?
  • Which is correct: Web site, web site, website or Website?

The online version is based on an annual subscription, but there is a 30-day free trial. Also, they offer a free-for-everyone that answers common grammar questions.

Please also read our full review of this book.

Buy this book

Send: The Essential Guide to Email for Office and Home* Send: The Essential Guide to Email for Office and Home

Send, by David Shipley and Will Schwalbe, is the first comprehensive guide to e-mail etiquette and standards. Since e-mail and the immediacy of blogging are closely related, awareness of the newly emerging rules regarding electronic communication can only benefit bloggers. Written with wit and style, Send is both a great resource and a fun read.

Please also read our full review of this book.

Buy this book

There are obviously plenty of other good resources out there, but using even just these three will help you significantly improve the quality of your writing.

Sometimes communing with others can help too. If you like to read, why not try a social networking site for book lovers or a general social networking site? Seeing how others write can often either inspire you or show you what not to do. And if the objective of your blogging is to make money, you owe it to yourself to learn how to make money online with Google Adsense. Many bloggers will tell you it’s the gold standard for monetizing a blog.

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2 Responses to “A Short Checklist: Writing Tools for Bloggers”

  1. These are interesting articles. Thank you for taking the time to write them.

  2. Awesome thanks for the info and the place to buy these books I will look into them! LOL I like that is says spellchecking because I see so many blogs that things are spelled wrong.