As part of our Collaborative Divorce Texas marketing campaign, we are asking members to submit a 500-700 words blog on any topic relevant to collaborative divorce. To help you develop topics and draft new blogs your newsletter editor will offer a few suggestions on how to create a blog that attracts potential clients’ attention.
- Current Topics: You can write about current topics in the news, such as the holidays, vacation time, or back to school.
- Issues clients face before, during and after the divorce.
- Prior to divorce, the person has to decide whether she really wants to file a divorce, whether to file the petition or try couples counseling and whether to stay in the house or move.
- During the divorce, there are numerous issues to write about, including how to find an attorney, whether to litigate or use the collaborative process, how to tell the kids, whether to date during the divorce, what to expect during the divorce, legal issues of child support, spousal maintenance, contractual alimony and asset division.
- After the divorce is final, there are budgeting, dating and parenting issues that need to be explained. As you can see, there are numerous potential topics available for you to write about.
Do Some Basic Research (research or Google the subject area)
- Once you decide on a topic, do some basic research so you know what you are writing about.
- Many topics can be researched online through a Google search.
- Legal topics are best researched through state bar publications or other authentic sources. Sometimes it helps to interview an expert in the field and write about what they said, including attributed quotes if they agree.
- No matter where you go to collect your background information, make certain it’s accurate and up to date.
- If there is any doubt, check multiple sources until you are certain you know what you are writing is accurate. The last thing you want is to publish incorrect factual information for your readers.
- When I begin to write, the first thing I do is list the topics I want to cover and think about an organizational plan.
- Sometimes I organize my blog chronologically. For example, if you are writing a blog about how to find an attorney, you could begin by suggesting who to interview, how to get a referral from an attorney, etc. Next, you could suggest the client do some background research on the attorneys, checking their education, experience, areas of practice and grievance history. Then you can suggest the client make appointments and interview two or three attorneys before choosing one to engage. Finally, the client needs to share their information with the attorney and find out how she intends to handle the case.
- At other times, I begin with simple ideas and move on to more complex ones
- If there is a central idea, I try to present it during the introduction and then develop the idea through examples within the blog.
- Given how easy it is to move paragraphs around in a word processing program, I sometimes just write down a series of ideas, look at them, and imagine what sort of organization makes sense. This is a risky strategy, because you often have ideas that don’t fit into a single organizational scheme. That means you either have to discard material, imagine another organization for the material you have or separate the material into two blogs.
- Drafting: Once you outline the material, draft the blog and write an introduction and conclusion.
- Revisions: Next comes the most difficult part. I revise my blogs at least five or six times before I submit them! And, I do the revisions on different days so I can approach the material with a fresh mind. You will be surprised how many changes you make in material you were certain was perfect the day before. I strive to make my writing simpler, easier to read, shorter and more clear. I find that I usually begin my revision with a blog word count of around 900 or 1,000 words and I end up with about 700 words.
- Review by Another Person: Only when you have done all these steps are you ready to submit your blog to a good friend for review and feedback. Ask them to give you an honest appraisal of the material—both the good and the bad. You want to produce a fine produce and the best way to do that is to listen to constructive criticism from a good writer and take their suggestions seriously.
If you can do all these things, you will become a good blog writer with time and practice. I have been writing for forty years and have produced around forty-five blogs this year. It helps if you allocate an afternoon or morning every week to blog writing so it becomes a habit. Good blogging.