How many times have you started writing a blog post, and halfway through you realized you’ve written yourself into a wall or lost your train of thought, or worse, realized you organized it all wrong and have to restructure and start over? GAHHH!
If you blog, you know it takes more work than it seems to write posts that aren’t crap. I enjoy writing, but I’ve got other things to do too (like ride my new bike home from Target after realizing it won’t fit in the car), so cutting down on time while maintaining quality sounds awesome.
Writing better-than-decent blog posts takes time. No getting around that. But if there’s one thing I’ve learned from repeatedly doing any task is that there’s always a way to speed up the process.
The way to speed up any process is by dissecting it and tweaking the individual parts for greater efficiency.
1. Have a list of potential topics to pull from
Keep a spreadsheet or document with potential blog topics. Every time you think of one or however you get them, add them to the list so you have a never-ending pile of topics.
2. Start with a brain dump
I get my best ideas when I’m blabbering. Why not put it to good use? Once you have your topic, just start writing until you have nothing else to say about the matter. Don’t worry about proper grammar or good writing—just write until you’re out of thoughts. This is a good way to not get stuck staring at a blank screen. You can pull different nuggets from your brain dump and organize the post quicker.
3. Write an outline
Remember in school how the first assignment of every paper was to write an outline? Turns out that was better advice than I realized at the time. Intro, Body, Conclusion. Organization is half the battle with writing quickly, and outlines give you a top-level view of the post before you get into the actual writing.
4. Start with the bread, then add the meat
When you make a sandwich, you start with two pieces of bread on each side, then add the meat in the middle (in case you were curious). Faster blogging requires the same. Start by writing the intro and conclusion first to give you a clear expectation for what the body should include. It helps sort out the main points of what readers will get out of the post, so the writing becomes more direct. Plus, typically the intro and conclusions are more difficult to write, so you get the hard stuff out of the way first when you have more brain energy. More brainergy.
5. Proofread after the post is done
Do you have editor’s syndrome? Are you obsessed with your pronoun-antecedent agreements?
Proofreading after you write each sentence or paragraph will dramatically slow down your writing, so just wait. Finish writing the entire post before you go back and check for grammar errors. That way you do it once instead of 5+ times.
Practice putting these tips into play, and I guarantee you’ll save time by blogging faster. The main thing is to find methods that work best for you. Optimize the things you do on a regular basis to improve efficiency.