How to Write a Comment

7:30 AM

Strangely enough, the art of writing comments never pops up in general blog conversation. If it does, it never goes beyond, "PLEASE! Comment!"

I think the conversation is overdue.

The art of writing comments involves good reading and writing skills and pinch of astute human analysis. Let me explain.

Good reading: A notable commenter is able to take a post (even as long as mine), find the main point (unless, of course, there isn't one) and figure out his own opinion on the same.

Good writing: Condensing one's hatred, love and enthusiasm to a nice, packed comment (along with proper grammar and punctuation - very essential) is of the utmost importance.

Good social skills: Being able to detect - and convey - tone, personality and different opinions will cool fiery debates and spark mutual goodwill.

Allow me, a very comment hungry sort of blogger, to offer some surefire tips of impressing me.

The 7 B's of Commenting

1. Be professional. Please, I don't understand txt mssaging. I like good writing. Please use it.

2. Be relevant. Generally, comments like "Great post!" or "You're amazing!" or "I love your blog!" should be few and far between. They add nothing to the conversation. Though they smell of flattery, they are a writer's least favorite comments to go back and read. Comment on the topic, the idea - share your opinion, unedited but in a nice way, and you'll quickly become the blogger's favorite commenter. P.S. Comments on a picture or funny anecdote that do not pertain to the point of the whole post are equally disappointing. "Didn't you read the post?" is what comes to my mind.

3. Be sincere. Commenters, due to lack of voice and facial expressions, all sound the same when they are nervous and respectful. But bloggers like people. We love personalities. We want to make friends and laugh over your cleverness with you. So be respectful, certainly, but don't sacrifice yourself. Otherwise your comment is no good.

4. Be clear. Make sure your main point makes sense. Most importantly, make sure it's clear you're making a point at all. Err on the side of giving too much information rather than too little or else nobody will no what on earth you're talking about.

5. Be charitable. Emotional pyromaniacs should go elsewhere to set their fires. Everything can be discussed calmly and rationally: there's no need to shout. We hear you loud and clear. By the way, rants and rages make the ranter and rager look ridiculous. That's not the impression you want to give someone you disagree with. The person who laughs first wins the argument.

6. Be curious. The highest compliment to a writer is a thoughtful, one-of-a-kind question pertaining to his post. Why? With one question mark you have demonstrated you read and thought about the post; you considered the writer and the post worth your time to ask; and that your are interested in knowing more.

7. Be honest - especially if you disagree. That might come as a shock, but it's true. People with blogs have opinions and passions they want to share. Disagreement only increases their vision to change the minds of others. Disagreeing - nicely, thoughtfully - is also a sign of respect to the author and shows an understanding of having read the post and an interest in starting a dialogue. The best way to disagree? With a question, of course.

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10 impressions

  1. Miss Bailey,

    Is there such a thing as, too much, curiousity?

    Such as, what one hears about concerning cats.

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  2. (I nearly just wrote "great post" just to make you mad. ;)

    Perhaps you should give me the list of the B's for commenting and force me to write a completely wonderful comment. Although I'll admit I'll never be able to remember it. And although your points are sensible and every blog owners dream of comments. *cough* 'fraid my comments are one-of-a-kind weirdo type. ;D

    Afraid you'll never be able to get past the saracasm though... ;)

    Nice pic at the top by the way. Nice way the post was written. Except you'll scream when you find out this typo. Yup. Actually not a typo. You forgot something. Never, ever, write a comment like thiiiiiiisss. Neeeeeveeeeeer, beeeeeccaussseee I reeeeeeallly caaaaan't staaaaaand ittttttt. ;)

    LOL. One of your bests post yet. Someday I might spend five hours writing a comment with perfect qualities. Just for you. Althouh I'd have to write a sloppy copy first. :D My grammar is that bad and this comment testifies to that.

    ~Bethany

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  3. Tragedy 101 - speaking from my own experience, yes. Good thing cats have nine lives. But on this blog, with this blogger, curiosity rules the day.

    Everywhere else...well, I always wait for someone else to make the first move. Reputations are that short-lived in blogland.

    Nice question, by the way. :o)

    LOL! I'd like to see that five-hour comment, Flop. Ready, set, go. No, as long as you make me fall out of my chair laughing, you may write your comment however you like...and I'll even forgive your grammar.

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  4. I really needed this post. I struggle with coming up with anything but "great post" on most people's blogs, so I usually end up not commenting. On your blog, I usually have oodles to say, but half the time getting it out in a coherent comment. So please to forgive me Bailey darling if I don't always comment. Be sure I *always* read and love all yours posts.

    Anyway, thanks so much for the great outline on how to comment!

    ~Elissa

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  5. Ho, ho... let's hope you shall also forgive my ill punctuation. You know, all them thar' commas? ;D

    See, and you had to pick on my most obvious opening line: Good/Great post! You are too unkind.

    This post is just too good though, and I must blog it. ;)

    *HUGS*

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  6. Oh dear, I know of several B's that I have violated in the past and I think my ability at writing good comments is pretty low on the totem pole--er,comment scale--oh, whatever. ;)

    I am bookmarking this excellent post and will be using it as I try to reform. :)

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  7. Elissa -- I think I have violated every single one of these "B's" myself...specially the coherency part. :P I always love reading your comments - you do an excellent job and I so appreciate them!

    LOL! Ah, Lizzy, there's a method to the madness with you...so you're excused. I understand you perfectly...and don't change, 'cause I like it. (And I think one of the last comments I left you started out with "Good post" or something like that. Yes, I be a hypotwit.)

    Erin -- you don't give yourself enough credit. You're a lovely commenter! :o)

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  8. A *much* needed post!! It'll certainly help when I'm trying to write a comment on another blog :)
    I also don't really care for or understand text language...how did the texting world ever come about anyways?...

    Mind if I link to this on our next "Seven Sisters' Treasures" post?

    ~Susannah

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  9. I think texting came about because people got tired of others telling them they misspelled things...so they created a language in which absolutely nothing makes sense. :o)

    Feel free to link this to your blog! Thanks, Susannah!

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  10. Bailey,
    I was going to write a well- thought out comment which meets all of your requirements for us commenters, but I gave up. Where did my creative juices go?

    At least I'm going to get the honest part down- these requirements are very hard to meet. We have habbits, if you haven't noticed already, they are extremely hard to break. Despite this, these guidelines are exactly what we need for our benefit and for yours. I'll keep them in my cranium (the consious part of my mind) and try to pull them out the next time I am about to write "Gr8 job Bailey, u r so inspiring!

    Love ya!

    ReplyDelete

Hit me with your best thought! I'm very interested in your unique perspective. If you'd like to discuss things in private, feel free to email me! :)