How To Write 555 Blog Posts

I recently published my 555th blog post on 35hunter.

As a pure number, this feels like quite an achievement, and assuming a post is on average around 700 words, it adds up to well over 380000 words. Perhaps enough for four or five novels.

This doesn’t include comments I’ve written, which perhaps add up to the same again!

But day to day and week to week, it doesn’t feel like I write a vast amount.

This is a great example of how regular habits – doing a little, often – can build up to surprising volumes over time.

As you may know, I’m quite a fan of habits, and have written about the power of habits and momentum before.

It’s these habits that have allowed me to write what I have on 35hunter so far.

Here are what I consider the five core elements –

1. Write regularly.

These days with family and work commitments I don’t write a new post for 35hunter every day. But I do write on a pretty regular basis – more days than not, and in fairly similar timeslots.

I find it far easier to know ahead of time the writing sessions I’ve committed to, than waiting for everything else in my life to be up to date and finished, then deciding what to do with that free time. Which never arrives.

2. Use scheduling. 

WordPress has a handy scheduling feature so you can set the time each post is published – rather than immediately when you’ve finished writing it. I use this extensively so I usually have three or four posts queued up and ready to publish at 48 hour intervals.

Using scheduling means even though I have fairly regular writing sessions each week, they aren’t as clockwork regular as every 48 hours, so it helps me even out these writing bursts to publish on a very steady basis.

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3. Capture ideas when they arrive.

My draft posts list is currently around 160. It’s rare that I think of an idea or title for a new post, then sit down immediately and write the remaining 690 words to finish it. As I have my phone on my virtually all the time, I can use it to jot down the idea as a new draft post.

Then when I have my writing sessions, I have plenty of ideas to continue to develop sitting there in my drafts, rather than having to come up with something from scratch.

You will also find that the more ideas you capture, the more ideas it generates. In nearly five years of this blog, I can’t recall being short of something to write about, because I’ve also saved ideas as draft posts.

Here are a few blog post ideas if you’re struggling yourself.

4. Encourage conversation.

Your blog might be purely a platform for your own thoughts and opinions. For me, it’s been fundamental from the start that I wanted 35hunter to be a place for conversation and discussion around the topics that interest me, which of course requires the input of others.

To stimulate these conversations I do two simple things.

First, I ask questions – related to each post I write, so people don’t just read, think “great post” (or “I completely disagree, what tosh!”) and their interaction stops cold there.

Second, I respond, as best I can, to every comment.

I don’t understand some blogs where the comments are enabled and many readers leave their thoughts and ideas, but the author doesn’t respond. I just think it’s arrogant and rude. Why bother having comments if you’re not going to reply?

These two actions keep the conversations flowing after the blog post has been published – and often the discussions in the comments section are more valuable to those reading (me included!) than the original post.

5. Give value.

I understand that the original function of a blog was purely as an online platform for one to share their thoughts, ideas, rants and so on, like a diary in a different format.

But if you have any intention of sharing it with others, and inviting conversation, you need to write in a way that encourages this engagement.

I feel a sound approach is writing about your own experiences, with the intention that others might take something useful or interesting from them.

If your blog is purely about ranting or complaining, and/or just isn’t very interesting, it’s unlikely people will hang around to read, let alone comment.

I hope you find these tips on blogging regularly helpful.

Whether you’ve been reading 35hunter for 5, 55 or 555 posts, thank you for the time you spend here – it matters!

How about you? What keeps you blogging regularly? What do you like best about the blogs you follow that post on a consistent basis?

Please let us know in the comments below (and don’t forget to tick the “Notify me of new comments via email” box to follow the conversation).

Thanks for looking.

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18 thoughts on “How To Write 555 Blog Posts”

  1. Great post Dan. There are a few reasons to keep following other bloggers for me. Probably the main one is curiosity. I think I’m a curious person by nature but I also need to keep it real as to choose who to keep following. THats where the value factor comes in. Be it a connection via personal views on the world or simply photography wise.
    If you find that you have established that connection and feel that whatever information you share is well received and you have some kind of response that makes you want to give the same to that follower/s. Ideally, this should be a never ending circle of giving and receiving if you wish.
    And I must say this platform allows us to do just that.
    Your posts are inspiring Dan and even though I can’t keep up with all different cameras that you use 😉 I do enjoy reading your blog. Cheers

    1. Yes you do feel more motivated to keep the conversations going (via new posts, and via comments on recent (or sometimes old) posts) with people you’ve made some connection with. It’s like checking in with friends, rather than going to a street corner and shouting at random strangers, which is what social media feels like – as reader and listener!

      I’ve done this with blogs in some form since I started around 2004 I think it was. I used to do it with Flickr too. Never really got any momentum with the social channels like Twitter and Instagram, and blogging just seems to offer a slower, deeper, more lasting experience.

  2. Solid advice. The last one is the one I work hardest to improve on. Sometimes I just want to write about meeeeeeeeee, and while I’m endlessly fascinating to myself I’m sure many others don’t agree. So I do try to either turn those subjects around to be about my readers somehow, or find the common human element in it that everybody can identify with.

    1. I think writing about personal experiences can resonate very strongly with others, but yes as you say you have to try to relay that shared human experience that connects more deeply with others. Even with something simple like camera reviews, there’s a wide range on blogs. Some are interesting because of the writer’s style, or stories, or their personal take on the camera. Others just spew out the camera’s stats (you might as well just read the manual) then offer a handful of half baked photos and expect readers to be engaged and return, just because it’s a review of an old film camera that might be quite popular.

  3. Congratulations Dan, that sounds like an auspicious number of posts. As you know, I myself have no interest in blogging, but I applaud those of you that do as it keeps me entertained during this quiet time. Cheers, Jon.

  4. I am currently missing blogging mojo and I am trying to find it inside and outside. I love reading blogs that have the writer’s unique personalities/voice infused on the writings. Maybe I should do the same??

    1. Yes, a personal voice or style can be very appealing and make your blog stand out, especially if you’re blogging about a topic that isn’t particularly specialised and there are many others blogs about the same kind of thing.

  5. Congratulations on reaching a new milestone on your blog. Not many make it this far. I discovered your blog today; a recommendation from WordPress Reader while commenting on another blog I read regularly. I have a colleague who has been blogging continuously since 2001. I have been blogging since 2003; 6351 published posts.

    1. Thanks Khürt, yes I’ve “met” you on a number of other photography blogs before. Wow, that’s an impressive total on your blog, I think this qualifies you as a blogging veteran and makes me look like I’m barely getting started!

      Have you had the same blog since 2003? I think I started in 2004 and have had perhaps four or five main blogs, with quite a few smaller blogs for poetry, short stories etc. This one, 35hunter, is the most I’ve had gathered together in one blog.

  6. I am not blogging these years, although I write reviews in Amazon of the books I read, different media but the same goals anyway, to show my point of view. I think I got to 600 posts, don’t recall well, but it was usually something unplanned, just a photo that would trigger a thought or memory which would write in the spot. I am glad you write about commenting, I have to confess I didn’t feel comfortable with persons commenting (and expecting and answer from me) but they would not reply in their blogs. I know it was not by bad intention, and their blogs have rather the goal of a portfolio and not a conversation, but nevertheless is a bit confusing. I think nevertheless we all have boundaries in reference to blogging, mine was about awards and challenges. I blogged not in a social way but rather as an open diary, not to build a network, so I actually got to think the confusion I felt for others would be felt by others toward me too xD
    Thank you for sharing with us in such a fantastic way your thoughts, Dan.

    1. Thanks Francis. I do think it helps to have some intention or aim when you start a blog, like with anything. So many social media formats have cropped up over the last 10-15 years and people have jumped on the bandwagon, posted half a dozen times, then wondered actually what the point of that particular new channel is, and abandoned it again. How many millions (billions?) of abandoned social media accounts must there be online!!

      I don’t really understand now why people have so many channels and broadcast a YouTube video say, then say “also follow me on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc etc” where they’re posting the same stuff. I just can’t be bothered to follow (or maintain for myself) so many different channels that have so much duplication. I’d rather opt out of all that, and just focus on my blog and keep plodding along!

      I think it’s also helpful with a blog to be clear about whether you want any kind of interaction from others, whether it’s purely a creative outlet for others to enjoy – but not interact with (ie comments are closed), or whether it’s purely a personal outlet for you, where viewers are irrelevant, and perhaps even unwanted. Once you’ve decided this, you can then optimise the way you host and run the blog to fit.

      My main bugbear, as I said above, is blogs where comments are open and encouraged, but the blogger never replies to any of them. Just comes across as a bit arrogant to me. If someone has taken the time to read your post and reply, do them the courtesy of responding.

  7. Congratulations, past half way to 1,000 😉
    I think you have a gift of creating and maintaining interesting conversation points.

    1. Thanks Chris, it’s made easy with people like you contributing to the conversations! At my current rate of one post every 48 hours I should 1000 in just under three years’ time!

  8. I’m a completely amateur blogger but with real determination to provide raw content that adds value to this very corrupt society I find myself in. Would anyone care to check out my recent posts & advise me on hwo to create a much more impressive, well designed and likable blog? Great blog by the way. Thanks.

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