Do you want to start writing faster?
The time you have each day is limited, but your daily to-do list is always increasing.
I’m guessing that writing a blog post is one of the last things on your list? Or am I wrong? Out of personal experience I can say with confidence that I am right.
Even professional bloggers tend to have better things to do with their time than sit in front of a computer and create content. The reason for this is because to create content is very time consuming. Creating quality content takes even longer.
I want to help you to writing faster. The only way you can do this is to make writing a priority in your daily routine. I know that this can be very difficult. For this specific reason I wrote this post to help you increase the rate at which you write, so that you can have more time to do the other things in your life that make you happy.
Here are a few steps you need to follow in order to write your blog posts faster and have more time to do the things you truly love.
Separate the task of researching and writing
Doing research can be a very difficult task. This is why a lot of bloggers skip the researching phase and head on straight to writing. They start writing down what they remember they had read about the topic a while back, but quickly realize that they don’t have sufficient information to complete the post.
For that reason, most bloggers tend to write about a certain subject while doing research at the same time.
When doing this writers tend to lose the flow of the topic they are writing about. They start jumping around between their blogging and researching personalities. This is a very easily recognizable occurrence.
Researching and writing are two totally different tasks and they need to be taken care of separately.
First research the topic you plan to write about. Only when you are completely done, should you start the writing phase. By doing this your mind will be in a researching mindset while researching and in a writing mindset when writing. Being in the right mindset is important because it has a huge impact on the end result of your writing project.
If you you’re stuck, write your conclusion earlier
This may seem like a strange tip, but believe me, it works. I’ve done it a couple of times and it really helps you to get out of the rut you’ve been in for the last couple of minutes. And back into a writing mindset.
The conclusion is the part at the end of your blog post where you summarize everything you have written in the post. This is also where your call to action needs to go.
Writing your conclusion earlier will help you focus on the narrative of the post. What is your reason for writing it and who are you writing it for.
Write down and expand on the main points that you set out through your post. Write down why you think you listed these points above and why you think they are true or not. It doesn’t matter if you are correct or not. It’s just to get you to start writing again. You will fix them eventually when you start editing after you are done.
No one is perfect
When you first start out as a blogger you have all the energy in the world to go in depth on a subject and write a 3,000 to 4,000 word blog post. As the time passes you start to lose that enthusiasm and writing those long posts start feeling like extra weight on your shoulders. Especially if you start saying to yourself, “I can instead write a post that is close to a thousand words. It will take a lot less time and effort, and no one will even notice the difference”.
The thing is that your readers will notice. You can’t go into as much depth into a topic with a thousand word post than with a two to three thousand word post. You need to remember that you still need to give the same amount of in depth information as you did when you started out. But you also need to remember that you are not a robot. You can’t possibly cover every single aspect of the topic you are discussing.
For this specific example, you are writing an article about how to start your own blog. While searching online you find thousands of articles relating to this topic and every single one of them has a different way of illustrating how to start your own blog.
This shows that you don’t need to cover every single aspect of a topic that you are discussing in your post. Choose a few major points to discuss and your readers will still know exactly what to do. There’s no need to start going into detail about the different types of WordPress themes and the pros and cons to using them. Don’t get me wrong, you can still do that, but I would suggest you make that a topic for another post.
Write with the end in mind
I know you don’t want to work on that post you have been procrastinating on for the last couple of days. But there has to be a reason for you sitting in front of your computer and reading this post at this very moment. Something inside you wants to start. When writing, remember to always keep the end in mind.
Whether it is sitting on the beach with a cocktail in your hand and enjoying the heat of the sun while someone is cooling you down with a palm branch (I’m just kidding, I know this is a bit to extreme) or just collecting that check after you finish writing that post for a client.
Having the end in mind will motivate you to sit down and start writing. What better feeling is there than getting a butt load of money. Now I’m not saying that you are, but most of the people reading this post is probably reading it because they want to start making money with their blog. The faster you start writing, the faster you finish. And the faster you finish, the faster you can start earning.
Set deadlines for yourself
Whether you are a stay at home mom, or a have a full-time job. Blogging is always the last priority task on everyone’s list. Even though you love writing, it remains the first thing you would put off till the following day.
The reason you need to set deadlines is because they help you to stop procrastinating. Now I know that setting personal deadlines and sticking to them can be very difficult and that there are ways you can justify to yourself that you don’t need to stick to them. Usually because you think that nothing will happen when you don’t.
That is why you need to use a reward system. Why do you think you give a dog a treat when he does the trick? It’s because giving him a treat tells him that you (the owner) are satisfied with what he had done. Now I’m not saying you need to be treated like a dog, but rewarding yourself after every accomplished deadline will help you to form a habit in your daily routine.
Treat yourself with an extra hour of TV if you accomplished your goal before the deadline. Now that we got the reward system out of the way we need to start focusing on what should happen when you don’t accomplish the task before the deadline.
Something I am trying at the moment is to pay a certain amount of money into a jar every time I don’t complete a task before its deadline. This might sound stupid to you, but the idea of having to put money away which you wanted to use for something else will act as a motivation to complete the goal.
Usually I would put this type of information at the start of a subheading but I thought I would mix things up a bit. Did you know that setting deadlines and trying to adhere to them has a psychological effect on the human brain? These effects are better explained by the Yerkes-Dodson Law. This law stipulates that having deadlines set of a chain of chemical reactions in the brain that increase your productivity. This is why you study way better the night before a final exam.
Write against time
How many times have you started writing a post and when you look at your watch three, even four hours have passed. Your output is quite a lot, but definitely not as much as it could have been when you took regular breaks between writing. That is why you shouldn’t lose track of time.
You know the saying “time flies when you’re having fun”? This is true, but when you want to write faster you need to make sure you know exactly how long you have been writing a certain post. Not only does this help you assess the speed at which you work at, but it can also help you improve your output and motivate you to work faster in the near future.
My personal favorite tool to use is the Pomodoro Technique. There are online versions you can use on your computer as well as Playstore apps which you can download to your phone. Try both desktop and mobile versions to find which method works best for you.
The technique is quite simple. Before starting you should set the timers to your desired times. The default times which made this method so famous are twenty-five minutes working time followed by a five-minute break. After four or five of these small sessions you get a longer break of fifteen to twenty minutes. When starting you should try out different timeframes in order to find the best method that works for you.
The reason this method works is because you write in short concentrated bursts with ample recovery time between sessions. The long rest period is there for you to take a walk or do something fun. Anything to get the blood flowing before you get back to work.
Write an outline
The next subheading in the list is “Planning is essential” and I struggled to decide if I should talk about this subheading or “Planning is essential” first.
I must admit that they are both practically the same, yet they have a few important differences that made me decide to list them both.
Like I said, writing an outline is very much the same as planning your blog post. The biggest difference is the amount of information that you write down.
When writing an outline, you are basically writing a rough draft of the things that you want to say in your post. In this section you should list all the subheadings that you want to discuss throughout your blog post. Write down under every subheading the first word that comes to mind when you think about that topic.
I know that this sounds like a step that can be skipped in totality but this is the step that sets the direction of the entire post.
Planning is essential
Researching a certain topic can be very tedious. I don’t think I have ever met someone who loves this part of the writing process. A reaction I have noticed in many writers is that they want to jump into content writing immediately after they had finished their research. I am afraid that is not the right thing to do. You are going to have to wait a little while longer.
Now I know some of you are probably upset because all of that hard work has to be rewarded doesn’t it. Don’t worry, it will, but not yet. First you need to start planning the layout of your blog post.
You will need to have a clear idea of what you are going to write about even before you start writing. This way when you start writing there is no stopping you and your creative juices from flowing.
Make a notes on the major subjects that you want to write about.
Writing a blog post directly after you have done your research still leaves you with a lot of unprocessed data that you need to process and find a creative way to portray to your readers. My advice to you is to leave the writing for last and first start planning your post.
Practice, practice, practice
Practice makes perfect, right? Right.
Why do you think there are people like Usain Bolt or Michael Phelps? People who has revolutionized the Olympic games as we know it. These people have a talent, of course, but they spend hours and hours perfecting their craft. This exactly what you should be doing too.
It’s as simple as that. You don’t need to utilize every spare minute you have and practice your writing skills in it. But you do need to sit down and write on a daily basis. You need to build momentum. You need to make daily writing a habit. This is where I advise you to use the fifteen-minute rule.
The fifteen-minute rule is there to help you on those days that you don’t want to write at all. Those days when sitting in front of the TV or playing a game on your phone sounds more intriguing than you having to sit in front of your computer and create content.
The principle is as follows. Every day you sit in front of your computer and start typing away. It doesn’t matter what you type at that moment, but you shouldn’t stop. Even if you don’t know what to say, you should type “I don’t know what to type anymore” until another idea pops into your head and you are back on track. The reason this works is because you are playing tricks on your mind. When you start you tell yourself that you are only going to write for fifteen minutes. When the timer goes off after your fifteen minutes are complete the chances that you will stop typing is very small. The reason you can’t stop is because you started getting momentum. The task you started has to be finished otherwise your mind will not be at rest.
Even though practicing your writing skills is going to be your number one priority, you need to be reading as well. Reading basically anything can help you with enlarging your vocabulary, which will help you make better word choices when writing Reading will also help you to develop your own writing style.
For developing your writing style, I would advise you rather read posts of the authority blogs in your niche. These blogs are authorities for a reason, why not learn from them. When reading these blogs you will start to get a feel for different writing styles. This exposure will help you to identify your personal style
Write your introduction last
The introduction is probably the most important factor that has an impact on the duration a reader spends on your page. Writing good and intriguing introductions catches onto a reader’s attention. Where writing a bad introduction will result in you reader skipping to the next post, or even worse, leaving your blog entirely.
A introduction has to be a rough overview of what the reader is about to read. The catch is that you need to make the rest of your post sound interesting and worth reading.
The reason you need to write the introduction at the end is because by then you know exactly what you have written in the post. Therefore, you have a better way of portraying the post truthfully in the introduction. You will also know where you can spend a little more time on to make sound interesting for your readers. The most important thing that you need to remember is that your introduction can’t be misleading. When you write a misleading introduction your readers tend to trust you a lot less.
Writing your introduction last is another method of saving time while writing. I can’t even count the number of hours I have spent sitting in front of my computer trying to write introductions. For hours I will be sitting. Not writing. Just sitting, trying to figure out what is the best way to introduce the post to my readers. By writing it last you will know exactly what you want to say. You are able to get straight to the point.
Write now, edit later
I haven’t tried this method before finding it while doing my research for this post. I decided to give it a go, and guess what? It really helps. A lot.
When writing your post all in one go you don’t lose track of the flow of the post. You know exactly what you want to say. When you want to say it. And a while later why you said it in the first place.
You can write for hours on end without any distractions.
The fun part starts when you have finished writing. You get to read through your entire post and see what you came up with. After I read this post for the first time I actually laughed a little. In fact, after I edited for the first time I still had a the giggles while reading it again. It is quite amazing how a person’s mind can jump between ideas when writing a post.
Your job is to read through your work after you have written it, then edit it and read through it another time, and edit it again. This process has to be repeated a couple of times until you feel that you are presenting the best possible work you can.
Writing isn’t a talent that everyone has. Writing great content with great quality fast even less. Luckily for you it is something that can be learned. If you follow these steps set out in my post I can almost guarantee you that you will see progress. A little progress is all you need. One little step at a time.
Please remember to like and follow me on social media if you liked this post. If there are any methods to writing blog posts faster that you use which weren’t included in the post, help out other bloggers and list them in the comments below.