Here are links to the earlier pieces:
Here's what I've learned from all this:
- Define your core themes. Find something that is broad enough to give you latitude in your topic choices so that you can:
- Understand and make an emotional appeal to your audience. What is it about your blog that will connect with your audience?
- Write with a broad view of your subject matter and do it intentionally (not out of sloppiness). This will help you appeal to your audience - they think about their own work the same way.
- Surprise is a useful tool - a number of his good posts rely on an interesting setup (fences, gravity) with a very engaging reveal in the last sentence.
- You can use multiple voices (first person, second person, third person). Probably best to use first person singular sparingly - good for when you have a strong point to make, but it will sound too familiar if you're always doing it.
- By contrast, starting with first person plural (we) is a good way to involve your audience in your post.
- Change voices with intent and good reason, or don't do it.
All of this is predicated on knowing your core theme(s), without that the rest of this stuff is probably mechanical.
If your core themes aren't clear to you yet, start writing anyway. But until you can write your core theme(s) down, you are working toward having one and you need to keep this in mind.
You aren't really writing this type of professional blog without a solid understanding of the core theme(s), knowing what you want to say, and figuring out who you want to say it to.