There’s something about writing faster, at a more rapid pace, and with minimal hesitation, that’s both alluring and fascinating. How do writers do it? What’s the secret?
For the couple of years that I’ve been blogging professionally (as in sometimes I get paid for it) and for the many before where it was restricted to just a hobby, I always envied those who could articulate ideas onto a page quickly and with ease. I’m not an expert, but I tend to read and write much more than the average person and in doing so I’ve picked up on some hacks that have helped increase my speed and efficiency. Will they work for you? I’m not sure, because everyone has different writing habits, but in putting them down hopefully you can take away one or two ideas that will help with your own writing
Before sitting down in front a blank page, decide what topic you’re going to write about and how you want to convey the message. In this article for example, I knew my topic was going to be about writing faster and I knew that I wanted to break it down into several points. After that I was able to work up a headline and by the time I sat down at my computer I already had most of the article planned out.
Try using an outline
When I sit down to write more than two paragraphs, I spend a couple minutes to think about the structure of the article or I use a notebook to sketch an outline. I know there’s going to be an introduction and conclusion, and the rest is all usually paragraphs that support the theme and message of what I’m trying to say. Having a map beforehand makes the middle portion easier to get through.
When you’re indifferent about the outcome of your writing, a huge weight will be lifted off of your shoulders. Don’t be indifferent towards quality, but rather the expectations of your work. If you write quickly and the finished product isn’t up to par, you can always go back and edit. Good writing rarely happens on the first attempt, but usually surfaces through thorough editing. It doesn’t matter how sloppy the first draft is, because it’s only a draft. Get your ideas on the page and clean them up afterwards.
Tackle writers block head on
Writers block is a major headache and nobody is immune. Instead of ignoring it and hoping it will go away, my advice is to take the bull by the horns and write through it. It may seem counterintuitive, but fighting fire with fire helps in this case. The moment when you don’t want to write is the time when you absolutely must be writing.
Repetition is the key to mastery in almost anything. The more you write, the faster it’ll come to you. Journalists and authors don’t become professionals overnight. They keep writing and never stop. It may be difficult to swallow, but honest work and effort has its rewards.
Do you have anything to add to this list? What’s your secret to writing faster?
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