You’ve taken the first step to writing a feature blog for the Canadian Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse (CNPEA). This is an opportunity to share your knowledge on a topic of interest to network members.

Our mission is to:

By contributing to this blog, you can raise the profile of your organization and share your own insights. You can also make useful connections and start important conversations with other network members.

These guidelines will help you write and submit your draft. The blog coordinator will let you know within two weeks if your draft needs tweaking and when it will be scheduled for posting.

We do not have a pre-set word limit. Instead, we encourage you to say what you need to say as concisely as possible. Remember that your blog post isn’t the final word on the topic. It’s an invitation to a bigger conversation. Here are our top five tips for getting published:

Know your Audience
The most important thing to remember is to write for the people you want to reach.
Who are they?  What interests them?  How does your story meet their needs?
The CNPEA membership is diverse. It includes lawyers, healthcare providers, social workers, community volunteers, and many others from across Canada. It’s important to tell your story in a way that people of different backgrounds can understand. Finding common ground is the starting point for building a lively network.

Use Natural Language
Write it the way you would say it in a conversation. Use language that your readers will understand, language that will help them share your ideas with their colleagues and allies.

Avoid jargon and technical terms, or explain the terms when they’re absolutely necessary. If you use an abbreviation, such as an acronym, spell it out in full the first time and put the abbreviation in brackets after the full spelling.

Be consistent with terms. For example, if you describe the same group of people as "specialists" and "practitioners" in the same article, readers might think you are talking about different people.

Keep it Short and Simple
Our members tell us they are busy and often overwhelmed by the amount of information they have to read in a day. And yet they are hungry for ideas they can use. Your message will stand out if it is clear and to the point.

Use Real Examples
Real examples or believable scenarios help to create pictures in the reader’s mind. Experienced writers often open with a real-life example that hooks the reader’s attention. The example might come from direct experience or from a story reported in the news.  Be mindful of privacy and confidentiality, and change personal identifying information, if appropriate.

Invite Connections 

And Finally…
Suggest a headline and subheadline. But don’t fret over it. It’s an art. A good headline should have at least two relevant cues to readers—for example: “New public education program in Saskatchewan.” Since our network is national, it’s helpful to name your region and the category of information. We’ll fine-tune your headline for maximum impact.

If possible, provide logos, illustrations and photographs that can be included with your blog post. These should be high-resolution JPEG images. Also provide information that can be used to create captions or explain the attachments.

Writer’s block? Here are some questions to help you get started
Sometimes getting started is the hardest part. Some bloggers use a Question & Answer format to help them organize their ideas. Use it if it works for you, but feel free to gather and present your information in other ways. If you are going to use the Q&A format, keep the questions as simple and short as possible. Think about the key points you want to share and then develop questions to provide structure for your blog post.

Here are some questions to inspire you. Choose just a few, or develop your own:

Happy blogging!

E-mail your submission to 
Put “blog post” in the subject line. 
Attach the text as a Word document and attach images (logos, illustrations, and photographs) in high-resolution JPEG format.