In 1863 president Abraham Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address, one of the most prolific and respected speeches in United States history. The speech was delivered in front of 15,000 observers and although your blogging audience may be a fraction of that number, there’s a lot that can be learned from Lincoln’s writing.
Give it Time
A popular myth is that Lincoln wrote the Gettysburg Address on a train only mere hours before giving the speech. It has also been rumored that he quickly wrote it on the back of a napkin or an envelope, however the truth is far less extravagant. Lincoln actually took a lot of time preparing the speech and ended up writing five different drafts before deciding on the final version.
One way to improve your blogging is to give it more time. A blog post that is written in half an hour, edited in 10 minutes and then published immediately will probably fall short on its potential for quality. Some of the best bloggers spend over a week revising and thinking about a post before publishing. There’s a fine line between procrastination and submitting work before its ready. Don’t take more time then you need, but don’t do your readers a disservice and put something out that’s fast and sloppy.
Cut Out the Excess Material
The Gettysburg Address is very well written and carries a lot of meaning. The interesting thing is that it conveys so much while at the same time being very brief and to the point. The speech itself was about two minutes long and was written in only ten sentences.
Next time you sit down and write out an 800 word blog post consider how many of those words are actually needed. Being brief and to the point will often pack a much stronger punch than an overdrawn and lengthy piece will. Long pieces have their place, but as a rule thumb don’t make the post longer then it needs to be. If it takes a lot of words to get your idea out then considering refining it and making it simpler.
Lincoln’s speech has stood the test of time and will be remembered forever. Although Lincoln was one of the most popular presidents of all time and his speech came at a pivotal time in the countries history, your blogging efforts may have more impact then you think. A well written blog can bring increased attention to your business and the products or services that you offer. A well written blog can increase traffic to your website and lead to new connections and relationships amongst other like minded bloggers. A blog can open doors. Quality writing never goes out of style.