Write a blog post

Our blogs aim to give a first-person view of a subject that matters and what the author has done about it. They are read by a wide range of readers, many of whom won’t have thought about this topic before and won’t be familiar with the context of any findings. This gives us a particular style and structure which works best for us.

Style

  • Keep each paragraph to 100 words, with each sentence around 20 words.
  • Write in simple plain English for uninformed laypeople, without acronyms, technical phrases or subheads. Try to keep the tone conversational but professional.
  • Use examples and statistics wherever possible, rather than abstract ideas. This will ground the article in reality.
  • Write in the first person and include any personal responses or reflections you think fit.

Structure

Our blogs tend to be 600-900 words long, which in practice is about 6 paragraphs. Here is a simple and effective structure:

  • Paragraph 1: What is the problem (children’s mental health is getting worse, demand rising, services under pressure).
  • Paragraph 2: What did you do about it on your Fellowship (went to Finland and USA to find out about x and y).
  • Paragraph 3: What should the UK do about it (ie your recommendations)
  • Paragraph 4: What difference could this make?
  • Paragraph 5: What you have done since or recently
  • Paragraph 6: Your hopes for the future or what you’ll do next. This might include a call to action (eg mentioning an event or publication and its website).

In other words, state the problem and then your solution.

Headline

We are happy to write the headline, but if you would like to have a go, please bear in mind that the purpose of a headline is to attract readers, who may not be aware of or interested in this topic. So the headline needs to give them a reason to read on – typically by suggesting why the topic matters or is topical or interesting. Headlines that use jargon, or appeal only to insiders’ interests, tend not to be effective.

Photos

We always need to publish at least one photo in the blog. If you can send us a choice of several, that tends to get the best results. Try to choose photos that show your subject happening: perhaps you in action, or the beneficiaries receiving help.

The least effective photos are those that show people staring at the camera while not doing anything (such as mugshots or ‘team photos’). Pictures of office meetings are also quite dull. Close-ups don’t work well when shown large on a screen. We are likely not to use any of these.

Get in touch

If you have an idea for a blog post, please contact [email protected] and put ‘blog post’ in the subject line, before writing your post.

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