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Put Some Personality Into Your Blog

In Blue Sky Resumes Blog article, “Put Some Personality Into Your Resume – Please!”, I loved the following description:

Today I’m writing a resume for a young man who’s applying for a job within his existing company. I have his old resume in front of me and I’m reviewing the worksheets he completed. The difference between the two is unbelievable.

His existing resume is stiff, stilted and boring. He used one of Microsoft’s Word templates and he simply listed his positions and responsibilities, as most people do.

…My job is to instill that personality into his resume…Your job is to look at the resume you’re using, and ask yourself if it really communicates what makes you unique and valuable. If not, inject some personality!

Have you stumbled across a blog in the past few months that caught your attention and yanked you by your ears almost into your monitor, begging you to read it, bookmark it, and spend some time cruising its pages? The answer is probably yes. The more likely answer is “kinda sorta”.

I’m so tired of the same old same old bloggers blogging. I’m tired of the sensationalized ranting and pontificating, the few words meant to convey many which don’t say much anyway, the run off at the mouth blather of stream of consciousness writing…all of it. Been there, done that, threw up, used the t-shirt to clean it up.

Many blog just to blog. Their friends are doing it, so they have to do it. Others blog because they think it’s the way to business success, whether their business is blogging or blogging helps their business. Even many more lose enthusiasm for sharing their thoughts and opinions and start blockquoting content from the other bloggers, filling the blogosphere with redundant links and echoes.

What happened to the “creative” in creative writing? What happened to the magic of storytelling, where you hang on every word, eager for the next one? What happened to solid, entertaining writing? Writing that makes you think? That tugs at your brain hours after you’ve walked away from your computer?

Take a good look at your blog. Does it sound as stiff and boring as this guy’s resume? He’s led an amazing life and done incredibly powerful things, changing and improving his industry, but a template style resume says nothing but “this is a form letter resume.” Well, folks, many of you are turning your blogs into form letter template blog boilerplates.

Take a moment to seriously look at what you’ve blogged about over the past few months. Is your blog filled with your original writing or link lists and blockquote recommendations? Does it really show off your personality, intellect, and abilities? Or is it just something to do – you started it, now you just have to feed the monkey?

Come up with a plan to put some life back into your blogging. Maybe start a new series, once a day or once a week, on some topic you are well versed on. Or how about interviewing someone and writing it up on your blog, letting their words add some spice to your blog. There are tons of resources you can find for inspirational material to write about on your blog. You could also take one of my many blogging challenges to put some jazz back into your blog.

Make a plan today and start it tomorrow to put some personality back into your blog.

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Copyright Lorelle VanFossen, member of the 9Rules Network

Member of the 9Rules Blogging Network


  1. Posted October 14, 2006 at 6:48 am | Permalink

    Agreed that most blogs today do a lot of quoting from other sources and there is no real writing but I think you got to understand that everybody is not adept at writing and most of the bloggers do not have good stories to write everyday. Sometimes life does become boring and thats when it becomes difficult. You have given a link in this post that gives a list of many resources to find material. But I do not understand one thing, why do people need resources if they write original stuff. Sure, sometimes you can utilize other sites but then original writing is something thats not very easy to find in everybody.

  2. Posted October 14, 2006 at 7:31 am | Permalink

    This is a rather harsh blanket statement. Sure, there are a lot a mediocre blogs, so I (and I guess others) don’t read them. But there are also a lot of information blogs. Those might deserve a different name, but they provide a useful function.
    I write a boring blog. It’s for SMB’s. It’s not creative, and I try and to keep my insights and musing to myself, since this is not what I think my “public” wants or needs.
    I might write a brief post about SEO, but if they want the “real stuff”, I point them here :).

  3. Posted October 14, 2006 at 8:24 am | Permalink

    Putting personality into your blogs applies across the board. Creativity or personality has nothing to do with “personal” or “opinions”. “Personality” doesn’t equal “personal”. It means “character”, “passion”, and creating a “persona” when you write.

    “Real stuff” is exciting, if written with passion. It doesn’t even have to be well written, as long as there is some “personality” to the writing. Don’t sell yourself short. The majority of my writing for work and play is technical writing. When people hear that, they think “boring”, but read my stuff and boring won’t enter into the description.

    As for why people need resources if they write original stuff, if you don’t have the resources, how can you credit, cite, justify, and backup what you write? Where do you find inspiration? How do you find things to write about unless you find something to inspire you. Some take a walk out among the trees to find inspiration, others hunt on the web. It makes no difference. By evaluating what people want to know, how they want to know about it, who is writing about it, and how, I constantly find inspiration for writing material, helping people find the answers they want by knowing what they are looking for.

    My biggest underlying point here is that I hear a lot of people complaining about not getting enough web traffic, or wanting more readers. Unless you give them something to “read”, to think about, to inspire them to return, your blog may sound like this guy’s resume: BORING. And no connection with reality. The reality is that you have something to say and worth reading, it’s just boring to read. Trust me, boring attracts boring. And nothing changes. Put a little spice into your variety and give people a reason to return.

  4. Posted October 14, 2006 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    Well, you know as a personal blog, everything I put down on the page is a clear reflection of what happens in my life. Doesn’t have to be interesting all the time and it doesn’t have to be understood half the time, but as long as I get what I’m saying, as long as whatever moments I write for are frozen in those words I put down, then my blog served its first purpose.

    What I can’t stand and I don’t bother reading are the bulk of the “me too” blogs out there, the ones that like you said are either byproducts of peer pressure or for the purpose of the 15 minutes of internet fame. Blogger who pepper the blogosphere with “noodle posts” and photocopies of something that you can get from your major news site. Those are the ones I don’t bother reading.

    Though there have been a handful of blogs that catch my eye the first time I read it and those are the ones that I still read dispite my busy scheduel. Your blog happens to be one of those blogs though. Damn, if I can be half as eloquent and purposeful as the way you blog. But then, all I have is my life. 🙂 Not much informative wisdom there. 🙂

  5. Posted October 14, 2006 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    I just started three new blogs in the last three months (they’re all still active at the moment, I hope I can keep that up), so I don’t think I’m the target audience for this post. But I did notice that I have to write differently for each blog (one’s about fashion, one is video games, and one is about writing), and I find myself struggling for things to say. I will probably come back to this post when I’ve been blogging for a while longer — it will remind me to keep on track. Thanks, Lorelle!

  6. Posted October 14, 2006 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

    Another fabulous post. I am guilty of “Feeding the monkey” when it comes to blogging. Most of the time I do it because it’s there… not because I can’t help but write.

    I started a series on my blog called “Memories” and every post in that series starts with “I remember”. It’s been a popular topic as far as the comments are concerned and it gives me the time to really think about what I am writing instead of just posting a “Blogthings” quiz or something…

    I want to be a better blogger. Thanks for the inspiration!

  7. Posted October 15, 2006 at 2:20 am | Permalink

    Thanks for the reminder Lorelle. Your posts about writing really help me a lot.

  8. Posted October 16, 2006 at 4:40 am | Permalink

    Yep, that’s good idea, it will attract viewers and increase number of comments. IMO the personality should have relevant experience of particular blog subject.

  9. Posted October 16, 2006 at 7:00 am | Permalink

    Nice piece!
    I wrote stuff in my pre-blog days (10 yrs ago, wow.. I’m getting old..) as a personal thing – if others were interested or entertained: great. Same applies to the bloggy thingy. The ego would obviously like recognition (checking the stats pages like a junkie, heheh..) but that’s never the ultimate goal for me.
    I like writing about my stuff and I like finding ways to keep the subjects and the process interesting for myself. Anything else (like feedback from people you don’t know, wether good/bad useful/useless etc.) is a bonus.

  10. Posted October 17, 2006 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

    It is my experience as a freelance writer that EVERYONE thinks they can write. Until they sit down with pen and paper (or keyboard and screen).

  11. Posted November 8, 2006 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

    Lorelle – This is great. I don’t know how many blogs I have read that sounded like 15 others I read.

    Putting personality into a blog is a big challenge I think. Some who try to put in personality make it sound more like they’re just running their mouth. Trying to be ‘open’ and ‘opinionated’.

    A great way to add life to your blog is to talk to your readers instead of at them. Use language that makes them feel like they’re listening in on a conversation.

    I also like how you said “Personality” doesn’t equal “personal”. It means “character”, “passion”, and creating a “persona” when you write.

  12. bluewren
    Posted November 8, 2006 at 11:28 pm | Permalink

    This is very interesting … the way Lorelli still hav’nt found that
    haircut story
    now you know the one I mean where…. his scissors are flying around your head and
    he has been berating fast living females, and other low life then asks
    where you work….what was that about? ..I know it is not the be all and end all of everything ..but I am like a dog with a bone until I find out exactly how it went.:(.

  13. Posted November 9, 2006 at 12:03 am | Permalink

    Check out The Haircut Song by Ray Stevens. That’s the song. I use it in my lectures and storytelling about life on the road when talking about “Never get a haircut away from home”, and I must have written something somewhere about that on Taking Your Camera on the Road, but I can’t find it. Hope at least that much helps.

    Later…do you mean Nominated for 9Rules – Not Worthy? I quote from the Haircut Song in that. Whew! I knew I’d written out the lyrics for that recently.

  14. Posted November 28, 2006 at 4:16 pm | Permalink

    i am prety new to the idea of Blogging, I am not at all sure what it is I hope to achieve with it, but thanks for pointing out some pitfalls and I will be keeping an eye out for your challenges.

  15. Posted December 3, 2006 at 10:40 am | Permalink

    ‘That tugs at your brain hours after you’ve walked away from your computer?’

    I try to write about things that make people think. This was one of the things mentioned in this post. Hopefully I can entertain people enough to get my message across.

    It seems to be working – I’ve only just started Writing for Kicks (though I’ve got a lot of blogging experience) but it’s attracting some interest. A few hardened commenters hang around and others join in. A post is not a post without a discussion. The things I write about need a discussion.

    And I seem to get it.

5 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. […] Comment on Put Some Personality Into Your Blog by joyI just started three new blogs in the last three months (they re all still active at the moment, I hope I can keep that up), … But I did notice that I have to write differently for each blog (one s about fashion, one is video games, … […]

  2. […] Put some personality into your blog by Lorelle VanFossen – Always a good read over there. This caught my attention and made me think a bit about my blog. […]

  3. […] put-some-personality-into-your-blog […]

  4. […] Lorelle goes over some points that I have been meaning to capture lately. What happened to the “creative” in creative writing? What happened to the magic of storytelling, where you hang on every word, eager for the next one? What happened to solid, entertaining writing? Writing that makes you think? That tugs at your brain hours after you’ve walked away from your computer? […]

  5. […] However, no matter how tough the going gets, I refuse to blog “just to blog”. That would be a disservice to anyone happened to read my uninspired drivel. If I can’t create interesting and creative content, I won’t to write any at all. Because the blogosphere will always be full of writers or are more informed, more interesting, funnier, more creative, and all-around better than I am. I know this, and that makes me appreciate my reader(s) (do I have more than one?! hehe ) very much. You’ve chosen to take time out of your day to read my thoughts. […]

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