See 2017 Out in Style

Updates, wrap-ups, top ten lists — the end of the year is the perfect time to highlight posts that still deserve attention.

Photo by Scott Beale / Laughing Squid

2017 is in its final weeks! Before we grab 2018 by the horns, it’s time for the wrap-ups and top ten lists that help us reflect on the year that was (and that make great blog posts when you’re crunched at holiday time).

As you plan your 2017 year-end blogging, here are our favorite bits of advice:

The Art of the Roundup

Is a roundup post “cheating”? Hardly! Year-end roundups shine a spotlight on pieces you read and loved — or wrote and are proud of — and how you curate them tells readers a lot about you.

Most of us blog because we enjoy creating and sharing original posts. Roundup posts don’t undermine that, they complement it. When you choose links to share with your readers, you’re not just sharing links. You’re introducing other perspectives, highlighting topics you think are important, providing context for all the original content you do create, and telling your readers more about you. The things you choose to share give us insight into what makes you tick.

You also turn yourself into a trustworthy source of good stuff, and that has long-term benefits. The internet is a vast trove of wonders (or a black hole or horrors, depending on your mood), and it grows ever-vaster each moment. When you help readers find the nuggets of brilliance floating among the detritus, you add value to their lives. Sure, they might leave your blog to visit a site you recommend — but they’ll remember that you’re the one who told them about it, and they’ll come back to you for more.

Read the full post.

Your Blog’s Year in Review

Doing a year-end roundup of your own work? You get to choose what’s important enough to be included. It doesn’t just have to be your popular posts — there are lots of ways to shape a roundup:

Which posts have earned their spot in your end-of-year review? Obviously you’ll want to include your most popular posts. If a post got a lot of comments and tweets when you first posted it, now’s an excellent time to shamelessly wring even more traffic out of it.

This is also a good chance to call attention to any posts that you think were unfairly overlooked the first time around. We all have those posts that we’re positive will go viral, that will get us a book deal or our own HBO special…and yet they garner barely a like. Who can say why? Maybe the internet was just on vacation that week.

Use this opportunity to give that criminally unappreciated post one more shot! If it still falls flat, well, all geniuses are misunderstood in their own time.

Read the full post.

Three Reasons to Love Lists

You don’t have to focus on your own blog posts (especially if you haven’t been the most prolific blogger in 2017, not that I’m admitting to anything). Think back — what did you read that made an impact on you this year? End-of-year lists are fun, popular, and shareable, and learning to do them well will enhance all your non-list posts, too:

Go to Facebook. Or Twitter. Or Google+. Scroll for a minute. Count the number of list posts you see. We’ll wait here.

Why? Posts that can be consumed quickly, are easily skimmed, and have clear highlights make the rounds — they’re useful, either as education or entertainment, and it’s simple to pull out the important bits.

Should you publish all your posts in list format to increase your odds of viral superstardom? Please don’t. But do be aware of what makes list posts such regulars on the social sharing scene, and think about how you can inject those elements into your own.

Read the full post.

Repurposing Evergreen Content

For better or worse, most blog posts are published, shine brightly and briefly, and then slowly sink down the page into the depths of our archives. But that doesn’t mean they’re no longer relevant! The end of the year is a great time to dig through your year’s oeuvre and pull out the evergreen gems:

Create an annual habit: In a comment on another post here, Andrea Badgley mentioned referencing older content on Facebook with the status: “A Year Ago Today.” This is a nice way to call attention to older posts, but you can also reshape this idea to revisit something — a moment, an event, an emotion — and commenting on what has changed. After all, memoir and personal musings are richer with perspective, so go ahead: reveal your new self. Infuse an older piece with a fresher voice. This approach works for other genres of writing, too.

Read the full post.

Are you planning any year-end posts, or have you already published one? Please share, that we all may be inspired!

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  1. Great post! 2017 goodbye posts are definitely the hardest posts of mine to right, just because it forces me to look back at the year and that’s always something that’s definitely hard to go through!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. This was great!! Im sorry I didn’t find your blog sooner!!
    I would love to hear your feedback on our blog.. we just started & could use ALL of the feedback I could get!!
    Cant wait to see the hello 2017 post!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I feel like I can’t do a roundup just yet because I have only been blogging for just over a month! But hopefully, by this time next year, I will have lots of stuff to choose from.

    Liked by 4 people

  4. Reblogged this on wheremabelgo and commented:
    Fresh perspective on one’s own blog content. Often times we bloggers get into a creative/ blogging rut or an acute case of writer’s block which seems to take up permanent residence.

    This post has inspired me to do a 2017 Roundup of my own site. Fellow bloggers, these tips will be beneficial in breathing new life into our own work, whether we are monetised or not.


  5. Quality ideas here — thanks! I’m just finishing up my first, quite sparse year of blogging, so I’m trying to think how to adapt your ideas for other newcomers like myself. Maybe I should write a end-of-the-year post about that very thing. 🙂 Thanks again! -LD


  6. I’ve done them in the past, one year I did a Garden round-up, last year I posted the best and the most popular posts since I began blogging.

    This year I’m trying something different, I’m going through my drafts from this year, and posting them instead; with a link to what I ended up publishing. As I’m doing it I’m kind of cringing, but it’s illuminating as well.