Writing on the web

While going through my Twitter archive, I realised several things which are going to greatly inform the way I write on the web in the future:

  1. While linklogging is fun, easy and in many ways the fabric that makes up the internet, it’s existence is fleeting. Maybe that link will remain valid for 10 years; or maybe it will last for 6 months. The value is the commentary, opinion or observation and what was important at the time rather than the thing itself. What caught your attention, why should you care, etc.
  2. The mundane rituals of your life now will seem facinating in 10 years time, because likely those same rituals will have changed, or you’re with someone else, or in a different country. Take a moment to capture your life as it’s playing out now to help trigger some nostalgia further down the road.
  3. Own your stuff. It’s important because you ultimately control the format that they’re in, now and in the future. I’m looking at you Twitter/Tumblr and your shortening links.
  4. Once you’re 80% happy with the way your site looks like, move back to writing, photographing, drawing, whatever. Leave the final 20% for slow, purposeful and incremental enhancement.
  5. If you’re wondering what type of style you should write, take some advice from one of the guys doing it the best (kottke), write as though you’re writing to a friend in an email.
  6. Who cares about categories and tags.