Why this blog, separate from the Suncoast Blog?
I came to the realization that people feel more comfortable posting blog-like thoughts to their own blog sites, rather than to a group blog. If you have information that you think would benefit the entire Suncoast chapter, such as news about a job, conference, new software, a review, or some other information that you might likewise post across the listserv, then by all means add it to the Suncoast blog.
But blogging is all about the personal voice, and this is where it gets problematic on the group blog. Personal voices include personal thoughts, ideas, narratives, etc. People feel uncomfortable posting these on other people's sites, even if they belong to the same overall group.
I realized this while reading the STC Atlanta president's blog, which is something I visit every once in a while. I enjoy the personal narrative quality to her blog. I thought, hey, I want to create a blog like that. Originally I intended the Suncoast blog to be that blog, but with a group dynamic. However, that never really took off. And I finally had to admit that it probably never would. People feel comfortable posting to their own sites, not to group sites.
In fact, I even feel more comfortable posting to my own site. Because with this post, many of my thoughts may not be appropriate to occupy space on the group blog. I think maybe it's too informal, or unrelated to other's interests. On the other hand, it is exactly this type of material that others find engaging. People crave the personal side of communication.
My compromise, then, is to create a list of technical writer blogs as a link off the main Suncoast Blog site.
About Tom Johnson
I'm a technical writer based in the California San Francisco Bay area. In this blog, I write about topics related to technical writing and communication — such as software documentation, API documentation, visual communication, information architecture, writing techniques, plain language, tech comm careers, and more. Check out simplifying complexity and API documentation for some deep dives into these topics. If you're a technical writer and want to keep on top of the latest trends in the field, be sure to subscribe to email updates. You can also learn more about me or contact me.