Standring, a former president of the National Association of Newspaper Columnists (which recently opened its membership to bloggers), said bloggers need instruction on how to fact-check, maintain consistency, and earn a readership’s trust. “I think this is what makes a professional blogger stand out from the wannabes,” she says. Whether it’s online or in print, she stresses, powerful, original, and professional writing is key, and “it isn’t the art of the rant.”

“We’re in the middle of a revolution; there’s no doubt about it,” she says. But in the end, Standring is confident that only the best writers prevail.

So unless your career goal is to doodle obscenities on paparazzi shots, don’t lose sight of the basics as you tweet and tear up the blogosphere.

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