In her Blogging Insights series this week, Dr. Tanya asks us about post length, which she explains is often characterized as either short form posts (typically 300 to 400 words) or long form posts (more than 1000 words). She asks us to share our perspectives by responding to these questions, some of which I answered in this response to a previous Blogging Insights post.
1. Do you prefer writing long form or short form content?
In my early days of blogging, it wasn’t that unusual for me to hit 1,000 words or more in a post. But since I started this blog in May 2017, I generally write shorter posts. My average words per post so far this year is just 250. And that’s up from 237 last year and 235 in 2018.
I think it takes more skill to write a compelling, entertaining, informative, and engaging post in a short form than it does in a long form. You need to write in a crisp, concise manner and you need to choose your words carefully in short form writing, whereas you can blather away when writing posts of 1,000 words or more. To that end, I’ve actually made a concerted effort to be more concise in my writing. I had always considered myself to be a writer who has a way with words, when what I should have been striving to be is a writer who knows how to do away with words.
2. How long, in your opinion, is the ideal blog post?
To me, it’s not how short or long a post is as much as how engaging it is.
3. What do you prefer reading, shorter or longer posts?
I hate to say it, but I have neither the time nor the patience for reading “long-form” posts. Unless it’s an extremely compelling post, I tend to prefer to read posts that are 500 or fewer words. But that’s just me.
4. What are the topics on which you would like to read longer posts (say, more than 1000 words)?
You know, this is an interesting question because I’m not sure that there are any specific topics that would prompt me to read blog posts of more than 1,000 words. Unless, as I’m reading a post where the writing grabs me. Then I’ll read it, regardless of its length.