Saturday, 30 August 2014

Guest Post - Nikolas Baron from Grammarly

Why Blogging is One of the Best Ways to Start a Writing Career
While I was in college, one of my favorite visiting writers once said, “You may not be the smartest writer. You may not be the best writer. But, if you write every day, as I did, you’re sure to make it eventually.” Practice makes perfect. When it comes to blogging, I think the main reason it helps to spark a writing career is the daily practice. You can write 200 or 2,000 words per day but you’re still writing and practicing your technique and style every day. One of the hardest aspects of writing, grammar, is thoroughly beaten into your mind by having to practice and think and understand the pieces of the grammar puzzle daily. The visiting writer I saw wrote books, short stories, and was a writer on various television shows. He didn’t go to college for writing yet he taught creative writing at the master’s program at the University of Iowa; one of the top MFA programs in the country. He spent years writing every single day until he got good enough to get published, noticed, and officially hired as a writer. If that’s not an inspirational story, I hardly know what is.
Blogging can be used as a dual threat way of handling what my visiting writer did. He wrote on plain paper with no viewers or critiques for a while. If you start a blog, you’ll have readers and comments and critiques aplenty. However, you will have to write for yourself for awhile until the blog has some readers, but this is in your benefit. When you first start any project, you’re shaky and have a hard time gathering up all the parts. After practicing, though, you’ll have a good formula down and your brain will have tons of ideas ready for you with which to get started. Like with any writing, you’ll look back through your blog entries from months ago and think, "Wow, I was really rough around the edges." You'll see the improvement you’ve made in just a short time. Blogging helps improve your writing with the mere push to write every day or regularly; therefore, improve your style and techniques by practicing and learning on-the-go. Writing consistently is key to starting a writing career; blogging begs you to write constantly and allows you to improve on a public platform.
Another awesome aspect of blogging is the chance to get noticed. After you’ve toiled for months, or maybe years, perfecting the content of your blog, marketing it to the world, and finding that niche of followers who love to read your new posts, there’s a chance someone looking for a writer could stumble upon your blog and contact you. Although this is rare, the chance is still there. Even if you don’t happen to be offered a huge contract to become a staff writer, the blog is a huge jumping off point for samples and content to get other writing jobs. Blog articles, especially good ones, can catch the eyes of editors you’re hoping to impress. They show your knowledge of a topic, your quality of writing, your use (or non-use) of SEO techniques, the quality of your photographs or videos, and your intense desire to write. Those are important bullets on the checklists of editors. Additionally, blogs can get your name out there as a real writer. Gaining readers, using the blog as a way to connect with other writers, and honing your writing skills are all items to be gained by blogging. One of the most important things a writer can do is practice his craft. Blogging gives writers the chance to create an online professional portfolio that can be used to strike at a writing opportunity or learn from their mistakes and improve their writing.
If you’re just starting out as a writer, blogging can be the best way for you to begin your career. You’re young enough to have a fresh voice, but also inexperienced to the point where the practice will help make your writing perfect. A great resource to use for learning more about grammar and as a grammar check is Grammarly. They not only have teaching tools but other tools to identify your most common problems through the grammar check. Remember, even though you’re posting on your own personal blog, always run your work through a grammar check before you publish. Editors want to see your best work that’s clean and error-free. Want to become a writer but just don’t know where to start? Begin a blog and pledge to write every day and see how much you can improve in just a short time.
Nikolas discovered his love for the written word in Elementary School, where he started spending his afternoons sprawled across the living room floor devouring one Marc Brown children’s novel after the other and writing short stories about daring pirate adventures. After acquiring some experience in various marketing, business development, and hiring roles at internet startups in a few different countries, he decided to re-unite his professional life with his childhood passions by joining Grammarly’s marketing team in San Francisco. He has the pleasure of being tasked with talking to writers, bloggers, teachers, and others about how they use Grammarly’s online proofreading application to improve their writing. His free time is spent biking, travelling, and reading.


  1. So, are you planning to take this guest poster's advice? :-) no offence, but with about eight blog posts this entire year, you're not going to attract a lot more followers. You really need to post a bit more often. I hope you do, because there are some really interesting posts here.

    1. Touche!
      And thank you, I'm glad you found them interesting.
      And yes, I'm intending to be at least a little more prolific in the future. :)