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Society for the History of Natural History


A blog about blogging. Would you like to blog for SHNH – Society for the History of Natural History?

A blog about blogging. Would you like to blog for SHNH – Society for the History of Natural History?

These are some tips and guidelines to help.

There are two outlets for our blogs:

Our Webmaster will advise on which is more appropriate for your blog but do say if you have a preference. Do contact our Webmaster to see if your proposed blog is suitable for SHNH and for advice about which site is appropriate.


  • Allow our Members and Archives authors to write about something relevant and of interest to our Members in an informal and friendly manner. Examples could be by an author giving some background to their recent paper in Archives of Natural History; introducing a virtual issue of Archives; reporting on one our meetings or events; review of an exhibition.
  • Are a more personal method of communication compared to our other outlets.
  • Are usually quite short only 300-600 words. These tips will help when blogging. Remember to enjoy blogging, this helps to convey your enthusiasm and enthuse others.


Make it Personal  – Your Voice

You are representing SHNH in the blog but it should be representing you as well, in this case write in the first person and try to convey your personality and passion for your subject.

  • Title – make it short and snappy, approximately 5 words or less if possible
  • Keep it short – 300–600 words. Especially as many people access blogs from their mobiles.
  • Keep it simple.
  • Bite-size chunks – break it down. Short paragraphs, bullet-points, lists, headings – all help.
  • Key points – know what these are a make them prominent.
  • Add links – readers can then delve deeper if they wish to know more. [The Webmaster will ensure these should open in a new window rather than take readers away from the blog]
  • Add images – enhancing the information in the blog and so it looks attractive and inviting to read. Caption the images and give appropriate copyright details/credits if needed. Ensure you have the rights to allow use by SHNH or Edinburgh University Press.
  • Sign-off – your name, who you are. If there is a date limitation, note it e.g. an exhibition’s start and end date.
  • You – provide some information about yourself and an image.


When you are happy with your blog please send to  who will moderate your blog, ensure links work and may carry out ‘light’ editing.

Please also send images (preferably as jpg files) to the Webmaster via WeTransfer

Happy blogging!


Ann Sylph, Secretary SHNH – Society for the History of Natural History, Librarian at ZSL.

Along with colleagues, I regularly blog at about ZSL’s Library and Archives at and recently contributed a guest post to Art Her Story about ‘Women in zoological art and illustration’:

I am particularly interested in the contribution of women to the development of zoology, history of marine zoology, historical scientific illustration. I also tweet: @ZSLLibrary and @ZooLibrariANN.


As I am currently furloughed I am using my garden as my workspace.


August 2020