How to write a blog

Are you a student or employee at the Faculty of Medicine, NTNU? Would you like to write a blog post on http://blog.medisin.ntnu.no/? Here are some hints and tips on how to write a good blog post. And remember: We have an editorial blog team that can assist you.

We also look after all the technicalities – and will upload the text and images for you.Geir Jacobsen underviser på tavla, foto: Geir Mogen/NTNU

Who are you writing for?

The target groups of this blog are:

  • Future medical students and their parents
  • Norwegian journalists interested in research and health-related topics
  • Norwegian politicians, especially within health and research
  • The man on the street who takes an interest in health and research topics, and who looks for a bit more depth than the tabloids can offer
  • International journalists writing about health and research
  • Potential employees – Norwegian and international

Decide on which of these you want to write for, and keep them in mind during the whole writing process.

You do not need to dumb things down. Blog readers often want more details than a newspaper article will offer. Nevertheless you should avoid difficult terminology, and if it cannot be avoided, provide a link to a good Wikipedia page explaining the concept.

Writer’s block?

You don’t know what to write about?Student med mikroskop, foto: Geir Mogen/NTNU

Are you a researcher? Here are some suggested topics:

  • Research results: Have you or your colleagues published an article recently? Say something about what you found and why it’s important.
  • Newspapers are often not interested in methods, but people reading this blog may find it interesting. But avoid jargon! What method has been used? How certain are you of the results?
  • Started/ongoing research projects: Write about what you’re researching and why.
  • ‘My life as a researcher’: Take some photos of the research (lab). Explain why you think it is nice to study/work here, etc.
  • Hot topics: Exercise, diets, diabetes, mental health, vaccinations, use of antibiotics, egg donation, Alzheimer’s, extended sick leave, sleep/insomnia, colds, swine flu etc. Do you, as a professional, have something interesting to say about these topics and others?
  • Pass comments on international research in your field: Why is this research exciting? Tie it in with your own work.
  • Do you need test/study participants? Blog about how it is to participate in a study, and ask people that may be interested to get in touch.
  • Do you have strong opinions within your field? Then you can blog about it under the ‘Meninger’ (Opinions) tab on the blog. (However, note that opinions not directly related to research may be better placed in for example the university’s newspaper).

Are you a student?

  • Blog about your existence as a student at Øya.
  • Blog about your extracurricular life and spare time in Trondheim.
  • Do you have any good strategies for exam time?
  • Are you spending a term abroad? Share the experience!

Content

  • Keep the title short and to the point. Tabloid headlines often start with: How… Why… What… etc.
  • Appeal to people’s curiosity in the first paragraph/introduction.
  • Get to the point! Put the conclusion first, not last.
  • Use an engaging tone and invite your readers to a dialogue towards the end of the text. Readers are often keen to comment.
  • Your blog post should not exceed 500-700 words.
  • A blog can also consist of only a few lines accompanied by good illustrations.
  • You can use references and link to other relevant blogs and websites.
  • The blog should use every-day language without too many specialist terms. Use short sentences.
  • Examples and personal experiences are always a winner.

You do not need to dumb things down. Blog readers often want more details than a newspaper article will offer. Nevertheless you should avoid difficult terminology, and if it cannot be avoided, provide a link to a good Wikipedia page explaining the concept.

This blog offers even more helpful hints on how to write a good research blog post.

Remember to always cite your sources in a blog.

Lots of photosEn PC og et stetoskop

We want a photo of you – preferably a neutral portrait.

We’d love good illustrations/images for your blog post. The more the better. If your blog post is about your research, then include photos from your work (from the lab, computer-generated-images etc). If the post is about a research trip, then we’d love photos from that too!

Spread the word!

We want as many readers as possible! Share your blog post through your social media accounts (such as Facebook and Twitter).

This post is also available in: Norwegian Bokmål

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