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Wordpress I: Thinking About Blogging

A guide to help law students start a blog in Wordpress.com.

Why Should You Blog?

Law students may choose to blog to

  • explore a topic in the law
  • hone their writing skills
  • showcase their skills
  • highlight their resume
  • provide an online portfolio of writing samples
  • show they are ready and capable of blogging for a firm

See it in action: Law Student is the go-to guy on NFL injury litigation

Practicing Attorneys may blog to attract clients, to provide expertise on a topic, or to network.

Ponder these statistics:

“Of AmLaw 100 firms, 93.8% have or plan to have blogs. Of AmLaw 200 firms, 94.7%. Move on down the list and the percentage for every size firm is greater than 75%. Among 1-5 lawyer firms — which make up the majority of firms in the U.S., 87.8% have or plan to have blogs.”

h/t to Robert Ambrogi

More: Blogging for Attorneys: Law Blog Essentials

Five Tips for Starting Your Own Blog from ABA

Find a Good Blog to Follow

Writing a blog can be a solitary activity, but at its best, it is also a social activity. Students interested in blogging might want to start with reading and commenting on other blogs.  Below is a list of places to start to look for law blogs. 

It is also helpful to look at the blogroll or list of links that many bloggers offer. These will direct you to the blogs that they find worthwhile.

What Should You Blog About?

This is probably one of the hardest questions to answer. Consider the following:

  • Nothing says you have to have just one blog.
  • Nothing says you can't start a blog and change its direction entirely if you choose.
  • Nothing says that you can't stop blogging if you are not enjoying it.
  • Nothing says that your blog has to be about a lofty topic.

With that said, let's do the following exercise:

First up, grab a pen and paper and set a timer for sixty seconds. Draw a stick figure in the center. That’s you. Now prepare to start the countdown and scribble down anything (really, anything) that comes to mind when you think of reasons why you’d like to have a blog. Ready? Go!

Next up, on a fresh page, draw a new mini-me in the center. Reset the timer to 60 seconds, and prepare to jot down the things that you’re passionate about.

On a third page, draw another mini-me. This time you get 120 seconds. Treasure them, because this will be much harder. The aim of the game is to take the words from your first page or napkin (you can cross them off as you transfer them if you like), and move them over to the new page or napkin. Then you’ll take the words from your second napkin and place them strategically around the first set. So you might have “family news bulletin” as a reason to blog, and “photography,” “eating out” and “travel” surrounding that word. Ditto for all of the remaining words, until they’re all gone.

Questions to ask yourself:

a.       Of all of the blog ideas I came up with, which one am I most likely to be able to create content about for a week, a month, or a year?

b.      Which group of words feels closest to my original reason for checking out WordPress.com in the first place?

c.       Do I already have a reputation among friends, family or colleagues for expertise in one of these broad areas? Do people often praise my knowledge, passion, or skill in (insert topic)?

d.      What would my first three posts be about? Am I passionate enough about the topic to want to start writing right now?

Subject Guide

Cindy Bassett
Contact:
224C Hulston Hall
Columbia, MO 65211
573.884.9150
Website / Blog Page
Subjects:Law