New Grad Student Bloggers, Blog Will Feature Your Posts

New Grad Student Bloggers, Blog Will Feature Your Posts

Titus Brown posted more helpful comments in More advice to scientists on blogging.

The overarching question here is, how do I start blogging, and what about?

The short answer is, I don’t know the answers. But here are my opinions and advice :).

The most conservative way to start blogging is to pseudonymously write short reviews of papers relevant to your research – think an annotated bibliography, of sorts. Then post them to twitter, or find a friendly colleague in your research area to post them (I am happy to do this for bioinformatics and evo devo papers). This serves several useful purposes: it gets you used to writing blogs; it gives you feedback; it helps filter the literature a bit, by saying “I found this paper useful (or not) for the following specific reasons”; it may drag the authors of the paper online to rebut or refute or complement your comments; and you may even get useful tips about what papers to read next.

(I wish I did more of this. I hope to have some interesting news on an actual Selected Papers network soon, BTW.)

If you start pseudonymously, you can get a feel for whether or not you’re saying something useful, and you can start to generate Web traffic. You can even refer to your blog on your CV and in interviews without “outing” yourself, although at some point you may be exposed to the wider world. I would suggest planning to make a decision about if and when to go public after your first one or two dozen blog posts; by then you should know if it’s useful or not, and also whether or not it’s sustainable.

His commentary contains many more tips on dos and don’ts of blogging.

One problem many new bloggers face is to gain audience. Many people feel discouraged thinking that nobody read what you wrote. We posted a funny commentary in our social section, where a ‘comment spammer’ claimed that he was doing social work by uplifting the spirits of bloggers by posting positive spam comments.

“Sure for the 1% of super popular blogs out there this might be unnecessary, but in a world filled with bloggers blogging blogs most people never read, the fake recognition and pleasantry might be just what these writers need.”

If that is not an option, please feel free to send us the links to your blog posts and we will post them along with short summary in our daily digest section for our readers. The email address to send them is on the right sidebar.

Written by M. //