15 replies
Hi Y'all,

I've been providing written content on the Warrior Forum full-time for over a year now and thought that I'd share some tips that I use in my business.

These suggestions assume that you have already researched your topic and are ready to write your article.

1. Focus on Completing the First Draft.

I have found that my efficiency is higher when I try and complete the first draft of the article quickly. I try not to recheck what I have written or even correct spelling errors until the 1st draft is complete. This allows me to get all of my ideas down quickly and helps reduce procrastination. After I have the draft ready I can then go back and edit it to make sure that the key points have been presented optimally.


2. Eliminate Distractions

Eliminating distractions complements the first suggestion. I use systems to ensure that I am focussed on the task of writing. I use the free app OmmWriter and have fallen in love with it. It's a text editor that goes full screen blocking out all distractions. Additionally it plays calming music and has a serene backdrop. Very Zen, and highly recomended: Welcome - Ommwriter

SelfControl (An app for Mac users) has rocked my world. It blocks internet access to specific sites (or only allows you access to your 'whitelist') for a chosen period of time. The best part is that once you start the app it can't be stopped until the timer expires (even if you uninstall the software or restart your computer). Pretty full on, but amazing for productivity. Download SelfControl for Mac - Block distracting websites for predetermined periods of time. MacUpdate.com

Other than listening to the music of OmmWriter I sometimes listen to whitenoise or nature sounds (there's a great free iPhone app called White Noise or you can check out RainyMood.com: Rain makes everything better.). I often listen to Hindi music too which I find less distracting than songs that feature English lyrics.


3. Write Early in the Morning

This tip will not apply to everyone equally...some people work more effectively in the morning while others have better results at night.

I choose to write in the morning (often it's the first thing I do after making a cup of tea) because I find it easier to complete the writing process from start to finish than I do later in the day.

Additionally, if I leave articles to complete until later in the day they can seem more and more overwhelming, which leads to procrastination.


4. Adjust as Your Energy Drops/Increases

Writing articles can be draining, I think Jason Fladlien once equated it to slave labor.

In the mornings I typically can write full articles without needing breaks, but come afternoon this idea becomes overwhelming and it can be hard to focus on an article from start to finish without taking a break.

So when my energy drops I typically work in 5 minute bursts with a 1 minute break in between. Here's an interval timer I use: Interval Timer - Online Stopwatch

I also break up the articles into sections and use a countdown timer on my iPhone to time each one. When I complete a section I rest until the time runs out and then I start the next part.


5. Consider Using Speech-to-Text Software

I go through phases...sometimes I am more efficient using such software and sometimes I get more written by typing.

The important thing to realize is that you probably dictate differently to how you type. For example, my language sounds more formal when I type than when I dictate (depending on your audience, writing in a formal style is not necessarily a good thing).

Keep in mind that using software usually requires extra editing time to correct mistakes. If you need a free alternative there is a Dragon Dictation iPhone app. It's not completely accurate and can only record in 1 minute bursts. When I have used it I dictated the article into my phone and then emailed it to myself so that I could edit it on my computer.

Joe
#article #tips #writing
  • Profile picture of the author Cee
    I don't think I could use Speech-to-Text Software. I had a digital recorder to keep notes and things, and every time I tried to record anything I would completely lose my train of thought and freeze up. It just did not flow. If I type the words come out fast and furious and it's generally a lot quicker. I think it would make things easier if I could give my fingers a break and just voice dictate sometimes.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7033795].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Joe R Piercey
      Originally Posted by Cee View Post

      I don't think I could use Speech-to-Text Software. I had a digital recorder to keep notes and things, and every time I tried to record anything I would completely lose my train of thought and freeze up. It just did not flow. If I type the words come out fast and furious and it's generally a lot quicker. I think it would make things easier if I could give my fingers a break and just voice dictate sometimes.
      I know what you mean.

      I used to dictate a lot and found it to be quite efficient. But then I stopped because I was working a lot in my college library (so I couldn't speak out loud).

      Since that time I have generally stuck with typing because I have found it harder to dictate in a way that flows. I think it might just be a matter of practice...
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7033814].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author jaiganeshv
    Useful tips and powerful free tools @Joe, thanks for the share
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7034007].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author tonyrior
    guess eventually everyone will develop his/her own writing habits. but useful model to follow for sure
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7034046].message }}
  • thanks for the input, although i am not that comfortable with a dictation software. well, that's just me i guess...
    Signature
    Want to know what the pros use to skyrocket their search engine rankings?

    Panda/Penguin approved and safe -
    www.backlinksrockstar.com
    - Google Domination http://www.backlinksrockstar.com/packages/
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7034444].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author wordwizard
      Interesting points about article writing, Joe.

      I remember Jason Fladlien talking about article writing, how after he did it for a few weeks, he didn't want to get out of bed in the morning anymore to face yet another day of writing...

      It's hard work, and it bugs me when clients I do write articles for tell me to just "whip out an article" as if I could just kind of burp them out.

      It's also an activity that takes a lot of my energy, and if I do it, I mostly want to use that energy for myself. That's why I very rarely write articles for clients anymore.

      As far as speech to text software goes, I agree with Cee. I tried speaking in to a tape recorder, and it never resulted in anything useful. I need to see what I'm writing and then work with that. My processing needs visual input I guess.

      I think it's important to know what works for you and then just go with that, from when to write, for how long to write, how many steps the writing process takes, and so on.

      It's worth it, of course, because you get the results you want.
      Signature

      FREE Report: 5 Ways To Grow Your Affiliate Income

      Let Me Help You Sell: Sales Letters, Email Series, Pre-Sell Reports... PM me & we'll talk!
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7034466].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author infocraze
    These are great tips, thanks. I also tend to write better early in the morning after waking up fresh.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7034505].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Joe R Piercey
    I think it's important to know what works for you and then just go with that, from when to write, for how long to write, how many steps the writing process takes, and so on.
    Absolutely. This thread is based upon my own situation. I'm sure everyone is different and I think efficiency is quite dependent on the circumstances of each individual.

    Thanks for taking the time to respond

    Joe
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7034577].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
    Banned
    6. A thesis statement. You must always work off of a thesis statement. You know what separates crap freelance writers from the top dogs? Crap freelance writers are told to write 500 words on the iPhone 5, will not have a plan of attack for the article, and will end up regurgitating whatever is on the first page of Google.

    The good writers (the kind you should strive to become guys)? Their first step is to choose a theme, an argument that the piece is going to make. The point is always strong (no grey areas here), and often polarizing. Supporting their thesis will require deeper research, leading to a better (and less generic) piece. The article will naturally solicit a strong response from readers, always a good thing for your clients. They get more buzz (and more money if they actually know how to market) and you get more business. Win-Win.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7034884].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Joe R Piercey
    Thanks Joseph, great advice
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7038005].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author jaiganeshv
    Thanks Joseph, nice one
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7038089].message }}
  • {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7038370].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author leclaims
      Totally agree with the Write Early in the Morning bit. I often would try to write late at night only to have to put it off until the next morning because I was too friggin' tired. I understand that there are those who do better at night, I was definitely not one of them... this smiley represents what I felt like when I tried to write late at night (minus the blue skin)
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7038660].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Joe R Piercey
        Originally Posted by leclaims View Post

        Totally agree with the Write Early in the Morning bit. I often would try to write late at night only to have to put it off until the next morning because I was too friggin' tired. I understand that there are those who do better at night, I was definitely not one of them... this smiley represents what I felt like when I tried to write late at night (minus the blue skin)
        It's weird, I'm usually really groggy in the morning but my productivity is so much higher than at any other time of the day.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7044830].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author RPaige
          Originally Posted by Joe R Piercey View Post

          It's weird, I'm usually really groggy in the morning but my productivity is so much higher than at any other time of the day.
          That is so funny that you said that because I am the same way. I hate getting up early and feel extremely tired at first, but I find that if I get up, shower, have some coffee and get started then I am much more productive than if I procrastinate until later in the day or evening.
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7044858].message }}

Trending Topics