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Tips for Academics: How to Write a Science Blog Post

What event will you write about?

Fundamentally, your blog post is a story about a particular event. First identify what event you want to write about and why it is of value to your readers. After understanding the purpose of the writing the story, jot down a list of every topic that must be covered. This step is the most important. If done well everything else will naturally flow from it.

How will the article be structured?

Once you have a good understanding of the plot, start working on the structure of your story. Write a detailed bullet point outline of how the article will look:

  • Make readers stop in their tracks: First grab readers’ attention by telling them why they should care about the story. This includes how the issue covered can affect their lives (i.e. the decrease in the bee population will jeopardize food security) or how mind boggling amazing is the topic (i.e. millions of light years away the collision of two black holes has created ripples in space time that can be felt on earth).
  • Paint a vivid image: After grabbing the readers’ attention, describe the event that you will talk about. Include all important information such as its origin, its scale or its frequency. Your objective is to build a vivid mental image for your readers: they should be able to close their eyes and picture the main characters in the article, whether they are bees or black holes.

  • Start the motion picture: When the readers can visualize the story, start expanding on the plot. Explain how and why the event is taking place. For instance, after painting a picture of bee colonies collapsing all over the world, you will explain the possible causes and ramifications of this phenomenon. In this section, also explain how the event is evolving: how is it getting better or worse, or talk about physical changes to black holes after the collision.
  • Burn the event in their mind: To make sure that they remember the story and want to share it with friends a family by finishing with re-emphasizing why it is significant, and if they exist, concrete steps that can solve the problem.

How to put it in paragraph form?

This is actually the easiest task. Make sure that your paragraphs remain brief (4 sentences maximum) and that each paragraph only contains one theme: start with the most important sentence then explain or elaborate on that sentence. Also, remember that you are writing a story. As such, make sure that each paragraph references to the previous one by putting transition words.

To make the article more readable, use headings to group similar paragraphs into distinct sections. They should also be attention grabbing because readers quickly scan them to decide whether the article is worth reading. Headings are particularly important online because Google uses them to determine the content and value of your blog.

Other tips

  • Craft a great headline to compel your visitors to read the article.
  • Find a great stock photo to make the post look more professional. Make sure that it is royalty-free and that you have permission to use it. There are a lot of sites that offer that service, such as Stock SnapBurstPixabay or IM Free.
  • Understand your audience and make sure that they are able to understand all the ideas and terminology in your article. If you are unsure, the default is to simplify.
  • Use an active voice (insecticides kill bees) to make the story easier to follow instead of the clunkier passive voice (bees are killed by insecticides)
  • Remove, remove, remove. Make your blog post as lean as possible. Remove repetition and rephrase ideas to use the least words possible. Remove paragraphs that are not absolutely necessary and merge those that explain the same things. Remove ideas that add no value to the post. Basically, if in doubt, delete.
  • Proofread the article multiple times, making sure to remove superfluous things during each read. However, since it is impossible for one man to catch everything, give it to a trusted colleague: even the best authors have editors.