Tips and Tricks Tuesday: Post-Haste

The internet is full of blogs that started off well, but for whatever reason the author lost steam and abandoned the project. I believe this happens most often when the novelty wears off, and writing the blog ceases to be a source of entertainment. Totally understandable.

When the initial energy and excitement is gone, hard work is mostly all that’s left. And while there are rewards, few people are thrilled about spending 6 or more hours at the computer on a 500 word post. So what’s the trick? How do we maximize our time at the keyboard and maintain positive blogging energy?

Here’s my “best of” list from some smart people who know how to write fast:

  • Set the stage. Michelle V. Rafter says, “Write when you’re on.” She claims 5am is her freshest time of day and reserves it for writing. She ‘un-plugs’ (internet, T.V., etc.) and removes all possible distractions.
  • Focus your topic. Jim Estill starts with a list of points to cover; marinades them for a few days, gathering ideas and honing the focus of his piece; and then tosses the items that don’t fit. (BTW Jim’s article was fantastic, definitely worth your time.)
  • Answer a question. Gill E. Wagner says turning your subject into a question to answer identifies what you need and don’t need to cover.
  • Pick your format ahead of time. Alisa Bowman recommends spending your time on writing rather than format. Her article identifies 5 common blog-post formats.
  • Write first; then edit. Get everything out of your head before you make changes. Breaking up the flow of your ideas requires you to spend time collecting them again.
  • The shorter the post, the better. Internet audiences are known for their limited attention span. The blogosphere has no use for fluff and filler. Write about what’s interesting and avoid everything else.

Can you do it now? Go pound away for a solid 30 minutes, and then move on with your day already!

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6 responses to this post.

  1. Thanks for including a link to my post, which has proven to be one of the most popular I’ve ever done. Appropriately enough, I’m reading this at 6:14 a.m., getting an early start to finish a story before the rest of the world wakes up.

    Michelle Rafter

    Reply

  2. Great ideas Lyn! You mean I’m not the only one who spends six hours on a 500 word post?

    You have inspired me. I’m going to go write for 30 minutes, edit, and call it good.

    Thanks!

    Reply

  3. Lyn:

    Hi! This is a wonderful post. It does take more time than I thought it would to get a post ready…but I always learn something new while doing research. I love to write at night, especially after midnight. That’s how long it takes for my house to quiet down.

    Take care,

    Nora

    Reply

    • Wow. I’m worthless at that hour, even if I am still awake!

      I’m glad you enjoy the research end; I do too. I’m learning so much about writing. That’s what keeps me going.

      Reply

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