This is a post in conjunction with Confident Writing’s Joanna Young and her focus on writing with responsbility.
Your Words Are Your Brand: Watch Your Words Or Live To Regret It
Now and then I like to blog about somewhat controversial topics, including politics…the hardest debated topic of all. It isn’t easy to try and be moderate while also sharing some personal thoughts on the topic. And it certainly is difficult trying not to offend anyone.
I think the same goes when writing about anything focused around Christianity and the church. Christians are passionate about their beliefs, so I’m sure I’ve offended plenty of people since I started blogging. I’ve been told by plenty of people that I should stay away from controversial topics because they are divisive. My answer to that is that I think people today want to be able to talk about controversial topics with civility and blogging is a great place for those conversations to happen or at least begin.
Unfortunately I think too many people are careless with their words in blogging. The result of this carelessness is usually people no longer reading your blog or people thinking negatively about you and not saying so.
I’m going to give you 5 ways I think will help you watch your words, so as not to regret them later.
- Always give yourself a break. Usually when I blog about anything that I think could cause people to get heated I write up my thoughts and wait a day or two. I then come back later and add/reduce/edit everything. Often I end up with something totally different. Too many bloggers write and post in the heat of the moment.
- Allow people to disagree with you and don’t ignore their comments. I read a lot of blogs and I think most bloggers are HORRIBLE about engaging with their readers. I think most bloggers want to engage some sort of conversation because they know they aren’t great writers. Yet most bloggers do nothing to engage conversation. They let comments sit without any sort of reply. That is an absolute no-no. Allowing for conversation, allows you to say things that you might regret and still get away with it.
- Have a little knowledge of what you are writing about. I am probably a bad example of this because I blog everyday about topics I don’t know a ton about. With that said, I make sure to read other blogs and books about the topics I write about. If you have no idea what you are writing about, it will show eventually. You don’t need a lot, just a little.
- Present both sides. Usually an argument has two sides to it. If you only present and agree with one side you have isolated a good number of your readers. You don’t even have to agree with the other side, but by welcoming the other side to the debate you have given credibility to it.
- Pray about it. The worst thing you can do is blog about something controversial without praying about it. Easily my most controversial posts were met with a decent amount of opposition, and if I hadn’t prayed about what I wrote before hand I might have questioned what I said.
There we have it. 5 ways to help you not regret what you blog about.