How To Quickly Slash Your Writing-Time-Per-Article By 50%

17 replies
It's simple. If you write articles for a living -
whether for others or yourself - the faster you finish
one, the more money you can make. Or the more free time
you'll have. Your choice.

When you've done something a lot, you start to figure out
what works - and what doesn't.

I've been able to cut my time per article down to 15
minutes on a consistent basis. And I'd like to help you do
the same.

I can't give it a complete treatment due to the space
restriction of a forum post, but here's some big things to
get you started. Let's dive in.

Batch Outlines

If you are writing a large volume per day - this tip is
for you. The mind has a start-up time associated with
doing each task. You take a certain amount of time to get
"in the zone" for writing. So, avoid this mistake.

Don't research->write the article->research->write the
article. Setup an outline for every article in advance. By
doing so, once you go to write, you will knock them out
one after the other - never having to break yourself
from "writing mode." Here's how.

Here's a link to an OpenOffice document to use. ( no
opt-in ) This is a more basic version of the one I use.
And it'll get you started fast.

It gives you a framework that puts the pedal down on your
writing speed. Fill it out in the following manner for
each article you'll soon write.

Put the keyword at the top - Answer each of the
questions - then follow the instructions top-to-bottom
under "writing passes." But stop before actually beginning
the writing process.

Set it aside and begin the next outline. Don't write a
single one until your batch of outlines for the day is
done. But don't stop there.

Use A Formulaic Model

Write in passes. After your initial brain dump ( see the
worksheet to see what I mean by that ), Rewrite it
top-to-bottom focusing on just one thing.

Then start again at the beginning focusing again on just
one thing. ( theworksheet I linked to above lays this out
for you )

Each layer can be anything you want. I give a few in the
worksheet as an example. But here's another example.

When I write my newsletters for HiddenConstraints.com
there are three branding layers. These are 3 sentences
that I want "whispered" throughout every newsletter.
Because I need to deliver a consistent experience.

Doing a rewrite with each layer in mind assures that
happens. Once you grasp the power of this, you'll be very
pleased with the results. You can up quality and speed at
the same time. No need for sacrifices. But always.

Set A Short Deadline

Use E.gg Timer - simple online countdown timer. Set a very short deadline for
finishing the article. This pressure will keep you focused
on RESULTS instead of minor corrections that don't
matter.


Well, there you have it. Just get all of the research and
bleh done up front. Then follow the worksheet. The steps
in it automate much of the process. Ya know - one more
thing.

Sometimes writing stuff like this is like asking the
pianist how he plays. He could say "I hit the keys" but
would that help?

Similarly, I may not have described this clearly. It's hard
to decode what is second nature into step-by-step instructions
at times.

If any of this was not clear, please ask questions below
and I'll update the post or reply.

When I started writing it took me 1.5 hours an article.
Formulaic models and templates have that down to
15 minutes - or less. You can too.
#50% #quickly #slash #writingtimeperarticle
  • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
    Thanks Dante.

    I do something similar when writing several articles at a time. The key for me is to do 1 task on every article before moving on to the next task for the articles (if that makes sense).

    Anything that can shave even a few seconds off of each article can really add up over time. Thanks again for sharing your method.

    All the best,
    Michael
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  • Profile picture of the author Karlis
    Totally aggrees but I would like to add one more - training... You will eventually get better by doing! The more you do the better you get!
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  • Profile picture of the author DR's Fynest
    Excellent tips Dante!

    I work in the same way. Do the research for a batch of articles and then I can focus on just writing without breaking up the flow.

    I also recommend using a timer. I use the Pomodoro technique for getting stuff done. The PDF which explains the technique is free. Using this, I've become much more productive.

    A great timer for this time management technique is the Focus Booster. It can be downloaded to your computer (works on Macs too) or you could use the web-based version here.
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  • Profile picture of the author TravellingMissie
    Thanks for the brilliant post. I have just started writing articles again and the time it takes for some of them is ridiculous!! I will definitely give this method a go as it seems like a great way to work. Love the egg timer too and if I know I'm working against a timer hopefully it'll give me a kick to work faster and harder.

    Thumbs up!
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  • Profile picture of the author David Chung
    Great post, thanks for sharing!

    Made a little checklist version on printablechecklist.org, hope you don't mind DanteRomero. If anyone wants to make their own checklist just visit the site and save it as a PDF when you're satisfied with the results.

    Writing Formula Checklist
    DanteRomero - Writing Formula.pdf

    Should be handy to print out a sheet for each article you want to write and tick off the steps as you complete each one.
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  • Profile picture of the author imdomination
    This is a great post. Personally, I also have luck using Dragon Naturally Speaking. It's by far the best speech-to-text software I've used, and cuts down article times to around 2-3 minutes each. Plus there's no typing involved so no risk of carpal tunnel in the long run!
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  • Profile picture of the author tpw
    I don't like using egg timers for the writing process, because you cannot rush perfection.

    If your writing process needs more time, give it the extra time it needs to be right.

    Rushing through the process does not make the output better for your readers, but it could make you less attractive to those readers whom you are trying to attract to you and your business.

    If you are writing for your human audience rather than the search engines, then what your readers think about what you have written should be important to you.
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    • Profile picture of the author DanteRomero
      Indeed, tpw.

      To handle that issue I use the brain dump and then rewrite process taught by joe sugarman. By withdrawing the left brain and just emptying my emotions onto the page.

      I close my eyes and imagine I am talking to my best friend. And then just empty that conversation onto the page without stopping, fixing grammar, or for any reason.

      Then I use the timer to go back and do the analytical side of it. The editing process where that emotional outpouring is brought to make sense through rewriting. You can't rush the creativity, but pressuring the analytical side can be done.

      Maybe give it a try and see what you think. :-) I've found I can still hit the human touch as long I don't try to mix and match the two processes. The brain dump and the editing.


      Originally Posted by tpw View Post

      I don't like using egg timers for the writing process, because you cannot rush perfection.

      If your writing process needs more time, give it the extra time it needs to be right.

      Rushing through the process does not make the output better for your readers, but it could make you less attractive to those readers whom you are trying to attract to you and your business.

      If you are writing for your human audience rather than the search engines, then what your readers think about what you have written should be important to you.
      Signature

      "Perfection isn't important. Improvement is."

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  • Profile picture of the author dv8domainsDotCom
    I've discovered a much easier method to writing articles in half the time.
    ---
    Write articles that are half the length (ba-dump CHA!)
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    • Profile picture of the author mojojuju
      Originally Posted by dv8domainsDotCom View Post

      I've discovered a much easier method to writing articles in half the time.
      ---
      Write articles that are half the length (ba-dump CHA!)
      I can reduce that by half too...

      ... by using smaller words.
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      :)

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  • Profile picture of the author 3bagsfull
    thank you -- I am going to use this when I am writing plr
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    • Profile picture of the author DanteRomero
      Hey, here's a follow-up post I just put up. It covers an important way to fix what TPW talked about above. Here's the link:

      http://www.warriorforum.com/main-int...ml#post4422283
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      • Profile picture of the author francy231
        I can also say that your interest in the subject matter can be a great help. If you aren't interested in what you are writing, it can really take to long to write even a few paragraphs of it.
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        • Profile picture of the author DanteRomero
          That is an excellent point, francy! I spose in the end we've all gotta just sit back and admit.

          There is a lot that happens beneath the surface in writing. But hey, the more of it we realize and come to understand the more we can harness it to improve.


          Great reply, francy.

          Originally Posted by francy231 View Post

          I can also say that your interest in the subject matter can be a great help. If you aren't interested in what you are writing, it can really take to long to write even a few paragraphs of it.
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          "Perfection isn't important. Improvement is."

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  • Profile picture of the author rowanman28
    I've been writing e-books which I give away to my list. I also use excerpts from the e-books as extra content on my site.
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  • Profile picture of the author RAMarketing
    It depends on the price point (if you write for clients) and the intended use (if it's for your website). If the article is going on squidoo, I might want to do it in 15-30 minutes. Still a respectable article, but nothing to write home about. If I want it to be syndicated or it's a press release... time really isn't a factor. Good tips though, outlining helps me every time I get stuck :-)
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  • Profile picture of the author catcat
    I use the timer on the microwave. It beeps at a certain time and it's always a game.

    It is used as a guideline only. It makes me focus more and I find the articles are written better using this method. Works for me!
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