Posted by Mitch Mitchell on Jul 12, 2012
There’s always this interesting discussion about just how well a blog post needs to be edited before it goes out. I’ve read different theories on how it does or doesn’t matter, and how what’s most important is the message the writer is trying to get across.
Let me nip this one in the bud; editing is very important, but it doesn’t have to be perfect. I come across many blog posts that are written so horribly that I leave before I even get to the meat of what it’s all about. The human brain has been proven capable of muddling through badly written text to figure out what the writer is trying to say but who wants to work that hard all the time? Bad spelling, punctuation, and skipping words doesn’t make for an easy read, and if truth be told, missing words will drastically change the meaning of some posts.
American readers tend to make allowances for people who aren’t from this country when reading what they have to say, mainly because we’re impressed someone else knows our language, since we’re pretty bad at learning the languages of those in other countries. But we’ll only accept it to a point. If all you’re doing it telling your story, it’s acceptable. If you’re writing a tutorial or, even worse, trying to market something, we’re not sticking around.
Most blog software automatically highlights misspelled words, so there’s no excuse for that sort of thing. Also, you might try reading your post after it’s completed out loud, just to see how it sounds to you. It’s easier to pick out mistakes when you hear something rather than just reading it. Trust me, I’m not immune, but most of the time my problem is when I use voice recognition software like Dragon, which will skip words yet spell everything correctly. You have to be cognizant of that as well.
No one expects perfection, so if a word here and there is off, no biggie. But if your entire text is wonky, people are going to hate reading it and you’ll find it hard to keep a following.