Monday, February 15, 2010

Metablogging: Clever post titles

Blogging is the only kind of writing I've done in massive amounts with the intent that other people read it.  People I don't know, I mean; a few near and dear have read the occasional short story.  But some few blog posts have started off as nothing more than clever titles.  The one that remains my favorite is, "Curriculum?  I barely knew 'um!"  I've never been quite sure that the joke works outside my head, but I think it's funny.

And that's a funny thing about this medium.  Some of my favorite blogs are usually nothing more than snappy, witty, sarcastic, or funny headlines with links to other websites.  Sure, occasionally they offer commentary of some kind, but mostly it's the post title.  The whole endeavor seems like an exercise in giving titles.  The masters also use tag lines well, but you can tell you've made it when your title is snappy.

I wonder if journalism is like this, as well.  I'm laboring under the understanding that, once a journalist writes an article, somebody else writes the headline.  (At least in newspapers.)  I find myself wondering who writes the lead-ins to TV news segments--the producers, the anchors, or the journalists doing the segment?  Or is there a special guy just for writing those bombshells they give you just before going to commercial--"And when we come back, how many things in your home can kill your pets?  Stay with us and find out."

One thing I do know, and that's that almost no blogger I read knows how to end a post well.

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