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National Postdoc Conference 2023 – Blogging guidelines

Illustration of person talking

A blog is an opinion piece, around 400-500 words and written in a conversational style. It doesn’t have to be a finished argument; it can pose a question or be a commentary – you want to engage the reader and get them thinking. 

Know your audience 

Who are you writing for? What are they interested in? 

Decide on a subject 

It should keep to a single subject or point and have a clear purpose – base it on your experience & expertise. 

Write an introduction 

Grab the reader’s attention. If you lose the reader at this point, they will navigate away from the page. 

Outline the content 

Create a list of everything you want to include. You could talk to a friend or into a voice recorder and outline your main points verbally, if that’s easier. 

Organise your content 

Organise the outline into a logical order. 

Fill in the blanks 

Using your outline, start filling in the blanks. Focus on the ideas you want to convey, not the quality of writing at this point. 

Keep the style conversational 

Break up the information so it isn’t a solid block – use subheads or lists, whatever’s most appropriate. 


Re-read and edit your post – reading out loud can be a good way of spotting when a paragraph doesn’t flow. Check for typos, grammar, repetition of a particular word or phrase, and don’t use jargon without an explanation. 

Give your article a title 

This is your first chance to engage the reader – your title needs to describe what the post is about, but also be interesting and as short as possible. 

Headlines are important if people are to find your work through search engines. 

Humour and controversy grab people’s attention, but must be handled sensitively – once published, web content has a life of its own and cannot be stopped! 


The Conversation: Bid to explain climate change risks losing the argument 

The Guardian: 8 pronunciation errors that made the English language what it is today 

CREDS: How fair is flexibility?  

These guidelines are adapted from those produced by Centre for Research into Energy Demand Solutions (CREDS)

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