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I'm working on a guide for developers who want to blog, but don't know where to start. What questions should I answer?

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The title says it all. I'm working on a brief guide tentatively titled "Start a technical blog today." I want it to be as useful as possible. If you've ever started blogging, or wanted to start but couldn't, what got in your way?

UPDATE

This course is now live!

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Hello Glenn! Thanks for coming out on this. I'll really love to see this article come to light.

A couple of questions you could answer include

  • How can I to explain/communicate programming concepts effectively?
  • Where can I find/What are the best grammar-checkers?
  • How do I write so that readers would instinctively share the content to others who need it? Not by asking them to, but sharing it because they know that someone in their space will definitely benefit from it

I'll add more as they come to mind.

Thanks

Your article on Choose Your Next Article Topic With This Exercise is awesome btw tbh

 

Hey Orim, thank you for the kind words.

How can I explain/communicate programming concepts effectively?

Great question. I try to break down concepts and keep articles as clear and concise as possible. Don't try to teach people everything, just teach them what they need to know. I also try to consider what possible roadblocks the reader could run into, and move those out of their way. Another tactic I've found useful is to use examples based on real data. No foos and bars and to-do lists here.

Where can I find/What are the best grammar-checkers?

I use Grammarly and Hemingway. Neither will make you a great writer, but they'll catch common mistakes and help keep your writing at a certain minimum standard.

How do I write so that readers would instinctively share the content with others who need it?

I wish there was a magic formula here, but there isn't. The best tactics I have is to keep the reader in mind, be as useful as possible. If you create something that can help one person, it can help others. Think back to the last article you shared, what made you share that with someone? Look for inspiration from others you admire.

 

Oh! Thanks! I'm keeping these in mind! I really appreciate! πŸ’™

 

Wanted to let you know that I answered the grammar checker question a bit more in-depth here: 12 Tools I use to Publish Content

 

Your guide is for "developers who want to blog, but don't know where to start" and you also don't know where to start? That's quite a pickle.

If you don't know where to start how are you going to guide others on how to start?

 

Haha, I'm well beyond started on the guide at this point. I figured it would be useful to get feedback while working on it to ensure the end result is as useful as it can be.

 
 

Agree! Publishing right on the edge of what you know helps you get feedback on your ideas faster, which helps accelerate the learning process.

 
 

If you mean covering deciding what to write about, it is. :)

Not to get meta but of the tactics I recommend is having conversations. I could sit and come up with an outline from my own imagination, but there is a higher likelihood that the end result will be useful if I get input from others along the way.

 

Of i have a big topic to blog. Should I make it into a series of blogposts under same title or different title.

Also how important is it add code examples?

 

Great question! Either way works, but there are a few reasons I'd lean towards writing many smaller articles instead of one large one.

  • The most important is that it's easier to ship. Large articles can become daunting and end up sitting in your drafts folder forever.
  • When you write a series, you can get feedback and make adjustments along the way.
  • If you write a series, you can always bundle it up into a larger guide later. It's much harder to go the other way.
Classic DEV Post from Apr 4 '19

Learning to love software development books πŸ’™

Glenn Stovall profile image
Full-stack engineer. Currently exploring machine learning. I also write on my blog here: https://glennstovall.com/articles-archive/

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