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GKBC’s Library of Online Resources for Writers

Being the chroniclers and promoters of great quality, original, inventive and interesting content that we are here at GKBC, we felt it was probably up to us to create a comprehensive library of information, tips and guides for those who want to improve their online writing.

Whether you are looking to get expert advice on how to tweak and hone your writing skills, become a master of grammar (and therefore incredibly sexy), learn how to source images and embed videos or how to get published, the GKBC Library of Online Writing is a great place to start.

Contributions by Lene Adolfsen.

How to create eye-catching titles

Creating interesting and enticing headlines is one of the fundamental aspects of successful blogging. Your headline may be seen by many, but your post itself will only be read if your title manages to draw the reader in.

Medieval writing desk

Image from Wikipedia 

Your main title isn’t the only headline that needs to tug at the reader’s attention though, if you are including sub headers in your post (which is usually a great idea) then they will need to be interesting as well. When a reader finishes a paragraph the next sub header needs to be there to keep the reader going, if it’s no good the reader could easily move on, which is where the following links can help.

Why Gawker Writes the Best Headlines
Insight into how to write Gawker headlines, widely acknowledged as the best on the web.

How to Write the best Headlines You’ve Ever Written
The people at GoodContentCo share their expertise on how to get people clicking on your articles.

How to Write Magnetic Headlines
A link to some really useful Copyblogger articles on the fine art of headings and subheadings.

10 Sure-Fire Headline Formulas That Work
An easy-to-use resource, helping you find new angles for your headlines.

5 Magical Headlines To Make Your Blog Posts Go Viral.
Aim high. Five tips for getting your head round irresistible headlines

John Rentoul’s Headlines
A weird and wonderful roundup of headlines, that are bizarre yet enticing.

How to Write Exquisite Sub Headers
A captivating headline is only half the battle. Here Copyblogger provide some tips on how to maintain your readers interest with subheadings.

Crafting Headings and Subheadings
Another great set of tips on how to hook your readers in and keep them interested.

5 Simple Subheading Tips To Make Your Blog 10 Times Better
Great tips that tackle the problem from what not to do, which is where all of us start.

Keep your readers interested

Congratulations, you’ve piqued the reader’s interest with an amazing headline. Don’t get too excited though, your work doesn’t stop there. Throughout you have to keep their wavering attention fixed on your amazing content, by continually reminding the reader it is worth their time. From strap-lines and stand-firsts and to introductions and subheadings, these terms should be ringing in your ears as you start to write interesting readable content.

Fishing Frogs and Hooks

Image by: Dennis Mojado

Strap-lines and Stand-Firsts

A strap-line is a single line used to reinforce or elaborate on or explain a headline while a stand-first is essentially an elongated strap. Both help to guide the reader through the article and although rarely used online, as the link below says, web editors should make more use of them.

In Praise of Standfirsts
Thorough introduction to stand-firsts, including an example from a blog.

5 Reasons to Love Standfirsts
This article explains why getting your head around standfirsts is a necessary step in elevating your internet writing to the next step.

Tips for Writing Good Excerpts
3 simple and quick ways you can improve your excerpt writing.

Introductions

How To Write Intros
A handy collection of guidelines to consider when writing intros, though don’t worry in this situation it’s fine to colour outside the lines.

11 Ways To Write An Irresistible Intro To Your Blog Post
How-to guide for writing great introductions, using it’s very own enticing introduction and exquisite subheadings.

The Writing Center – Introductions
This document will explain why good introductions are important, show you how to write them and give you some examples.

Tips to Write Great Blog Post Introductions
Some great tips on how to make sure that your blog posts “start with a bang.”

Essentials for Writing Stronger Introductions
A check list of the elements that make up great, enticing introductions and the different ways they can be used.

How to Write Irresistible Blog Intros
Great tips and a sterling example of how to write a great introduction to a post.

Great Intros – Can Anyone ever do Better?
The esteemed Roy Greensdale of the Guardian lays out his thoughts on what makes a great intro.

The Introductory Paragragh
Another great guide on how to make sure your first paragraph is an entrancing bit of reader bait.

How to pick images

We live in a visual world, where a great image can draw those elusive readers in as much as a tantalizing headline. Pictures and videos need to be carefully selected, both for suitability and to avoid a nasty bout of plagiarism.

Creative Commons

Image by: imranabduljabar

The Importance of Images

10 Benefits of Using Images In Blogs
How images can be used to improve your blog post.

Why Images are Important for Blog Posts and Content
Different kinds of pictures will give off different signals to the reader about what kind of post yours is likely to be.

The Creative Commons

Creative Commons is an amazing source of images that you are free to use in your blog posts, as long as you do so correctly. In order to avoid any confusion or acts of plagiarism, here is a simple 4 step guide to using Creative Commons and below are relevant links that will help you use the site in the best and most appropriate way possible. 

How to Use Creative Commons to Add Images to Your Blog
A quick breakdown of the different kinds of Creative Commons licenses.

Creative Commons FAQ
A pretty damn comprehensive source of Creative Commons related information from the creators themselves.

How to Correctly Use Creative Commons Works
Learning how to source images correctly is important for those that want to avoid some potentially pretty serious legal issues.

Creative Commons Licenses Explained
An example licence for a usable image from Flickr and other picture sites.

How to use Videos Effectively

Why you Should Start Using Videos on your Blog 

A short video blog explaining the usefulness of video blogs.

The Pros and Cons of Using Videos

A balanced look at how video can be used to spice up your posts as well as hinder their effectiveness.

An SEO Guide to Hosting and Embedding Videos

The mighty SEO Moz cast their knowledgeable eyes over the processes of hosting or embedding video content.

Writing Tips

Whether you’re suffering from writer’s block, in need of a thorough thesaurus, or simply in need of some tips and encouragement then here are some great tools for you to take advantage of. From how-to’s to grammar and style guides, this collection of links offers a wealth of knowledge that is incredibly pertinent to any writer.

carpenters - Bad Grammar

Image by: Pargon

Online Tools

Five Free Online Tools for Writers
A great little list of ways in which the internet can lend a hand to aspiring writers.

Writer’s Toolbox
Mashable weighs in with its two cents.

Seven Best Online Tools for Content Writers
Yet more internet tools that can help you make creative leaps and bounds.

Improve your writing skills

An Amazing Thesaurus
A visually striking and inventive way of helping you expand your vocabulary.

Perfect Blog Articles – From the Idea to the Post
A great comprehensive guide through the entire writing process, from idea to the finished product.

The Ultimate Article Pitch
Some helpful tips on writing articles, pitches and proposals.

The Art of Writing
Writing tips from some of the undisputed masters of the art form.

How to Write for Your Audience
Knowing who your audience is and how to write to them is one of the most important skills that successful writers are able to utilise.

8 Steps to Writing Author Bios
Create an air of strident professionalism, all-conquering authority or a little mystique with a perfectly written authors bio.

Different Writing Styles
The world is full of different writers with different styles and voices. The key is finding your own.

Grammar Tips and Guides

One thing that sets great writers apart form the rest of the pack is their understanding and mastery of that most tricky, confusing and infuriating of beasts: Grammar. 

Grammar Girl
A great site dedicated to ‘quick and dirty’ grammar tips.

‘Who’ Versus ‘Whom’
This post explains the instances when you should use the word ‘whom’ instead of ‘who.’

The Active and Passive Voice
Passive sentences confuse the reader; here is a guide to writing clear sentences, in the active voice.

How to fix a Sentence Fragment
Consider revising those pesky sentence fragments, with this handy guide.

Colons and Semicolons
This post outlines the differences between colons and semi colons and how to use them correctly.

Using the ‘Historical Present Tense’
This infographic show you how to use the historical present tense in storytelling.

Comma splices and run-ons
Comma splices and run-ons are common punctuation errors; here is a guide to correcting them.

15 Common Grammar Goofs
This infographic lists 15 grammatical mistakes that reflect badly on your writing.

Dangling Participles and misplaced modifiers
Dangling Participles and misplaced modifiers are unsightly writing errors, here’s how you avoid them.

10 Words You Need to Stop Misspelling
This info graphic explains once and for all, the words you really need to learn how to spell.

How to use Commas Correctly
The 21 rules for using commas correctly

Rules for Apostrophes
This infographic shows you all the instances where you can use an apostrophe.

Pronoun Errors
Article explaining how unclear pronoun references make sentences vague and difficult to understand.

Basic Sentence Structure
Word order advice for basic sentences; subject, verb and object (SVO).

Commonly Corrected Grammatical Errors that Aren’t Really Mistakes
Article from Cracked.com outlining the common grammatical corrections editors make that aren’t strictly necessary.

Verbs with Unnecessary Prepositions
This post tells you how to write succinct sentences, by cutting out prepositions surrounding the verb.

A-Z of Common Grammar Errors
Links related to many common grammatical errors

Compound Adjectives
Article detailing how hyphens should be used correctly in order to turn words into compound adjectives.

Parentheses – Commas, Brackets and Dashes
Parentheses are parts of a sentence (written in brackets, commas or dashes) that can be removed, without causing ambiguity.

How To Use Quotation Marks and Punctuation
This infographic clears up any confusion regarding punctuation marks within speech.

Parallel Structures in Writing
This infographic explains how clauses should be parallel when linked with coordinating conjunctions.

Verb Tenses
This infographic explains how verbs should appear in the past, present and future tenses.

All About Adjectives
This infographic gives advice on how you should order adjective clauses.

Daily Writing Tips
Daily Writing Tips has this archive of grammar related articles and tips for improving your writing.

Get Published

After you’ve conquered online writing and the blogging process it’s time to get your post out there. Now the question is whether you want to create your own blog and simply self-publish, or if you want to get your post published on someone else’s (probably more visited) blog. Below are some helpful tips and guides for either option.

Jumping for JoyImage by: Only Sequel 

Getting your online Writing Out There

10 Best Blogging Platforms
A run through of the major blogging platforms and their relative strengths and weaknesses.

 

Promoting

With the power social media holds today it may seem like getting word out about your post would be easily, but if not done properly you could run the risk of coming across as spam. Here are some incredible guides for anyone looking to promote their blog, themselves, or their business using various platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr.

megaphone promotionImage by: mickyroo

The Art of Promotion

How to Promote your Blog with Social Media
A great introductory guide to all the major social media platforms.

Tips for Promoting Your Blog
Establishing your blog as a known source of quality content is no mean feat.

How to Do Keyword Research
A key part of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is being able to identify and use keywords.

30 Tips for Promoting Your Blog Content
A great set of tips and tricks to help you make your blog stand out from the crowd.

 Reasons Why Google Plus Can’t Be Ignored
An introductory guide to a social media platform that is likely to keep growing in importance.

Promoting Your Blog with Social Media
Some more useful tips for using social media to you and your blogs advantage.