A few weeks ago I started to experiment with a new kind of format that I categorized as Notes. It consisted on picking a piece of relevant content from the internet (article, video, news, quote...) and construct an opinion or make a point related to that content.
It's not a new formula. Some great bloggers already do that, but it has helped me engage again with the Blog. For months I had a list of thoughts that I wanted to write down, but never found the time to put 1.000 words together. This last month I've been extremely focused on iomando and barely had the time to work on anything else on the side. As much as I enjoy writing, I couldn't find the time.
But Notes have worked much better than I thought and helped me in ways I didn't expect. Writing a long form article is hard, and it becomes harder if that's not your full time job. But notes are a great kick starter to speak up your thoughts. That's because they already give you some context about a topic, so it's easy to construct from there instead of a blank canvas.
How they work?
After some iterations on the structure and the format I've come up with a pretty solid lay out for each note, so they are understandable and coherent across the page. Each note has three main components.
- Title: I will try to respect (as much as I can) the title from the original post. Some times, though, I might cut it down (if it is too long) or modify it to better fit the story I'm about to explain.
- Quote: excerpts from the original site are always formatted like this one, so you can differentiate what has to be credited to the author. I'll always try to quote small pieces an refer to them on the next block if necessary.
- Comments: that's my stuff! It will always relate, in some way, to the linked article and the quoted text. I might comment directly on the topic or I might use it as a crutch to make a point or just I'll wander around and also link to other stuff in the comments. This block will be a little more open. I'll always try to keep it short, though, 3 or 4 paragraphs tops.
Why should I care?
From the reader perspective it is important to note that I do this (mainly) for myself (yes, that's not the best way to market your product...). I want to write these small pieces to keep my thoughts together and write constantly about the things I care the most. I will intentionally link to stuff that I find interesting (and I hope you find interesting, too). So expect technology, design, product management, business strategy, science... Don't even wait for politics.
It's going to be some kind of journal that will log news, old pieces, cool videos... But the content will be already filtered and fine tuned by me. Therefore, whether you like the topics or not, expect only high quality content :) That said, I hope you enjoy the all new format.