Writing is frustrating – especially when you don’t have ideas. Welcome to my life.
At times, I draft and finish an entire article in under an hour. There’s no brainstorming, or thinking involved – words just flow. Frankly, that’s rarely the case, and almost never when I urgently need to produce content.
Finally, I’ve had enough and created my own creativity and writing process. I didn’t just want to publish anything, it had to be quality content I was happy with.
Before I ever log in to WordPress, I start with a sheet of paper and pen. One idea or thought forms the basis of this brainstorming process, I write it in the middle. Slowly, related ideas or topics come to mind, and occasionally I use these as a starting point of an entirely new article – and repeat the same process there.
Doing this on the computer quickly leads to surfing the web or procrastinating. I’ve learned to rely on good old paper for brainstorming ideas and it works well.
It doesn’t take long until I have a couple of bullet points and ideas – at least enough to start drafting the article in WordPress. The title will be whatever comes to mind and refined at a later stage.
Then, it’s as simple as following the 5 steps below.
Everything from the brainstorming session is now copied into the draft where I create structure by using headlines, subtitles and paragraphs. Nothing fancy, really, just making the article easier to write by having different sections rather than one long piece.
This is where I start writing without any regard to errors, typos or logic. They key is to keep writing without filtering thoughts and let it all out. There’s a target number of words (500) that I want to reach as a minimum and I’ll keep writing until then. Literally whatever comes to mind, it could the dumbest thing.
I don’t usually write an entire article from draft to finish on the same day. I’ve found it to be inefficient and now do things in bulk. I might draft a couple of articles one day and finalize all of them the next day.
In the meantime, I have some space to think about all the ideas and occasionally re-write or improve parts or the article.
The is the hardest part of all – making sure everything is grammatically correct and has great structure. Errors aren’t allowed anymore, everything needs to be on point. Whereas the previous steps allow to just go with the flow, this part requires concentration.
Sometimes, I end up changing parts or re-writing the entire article. In most of my drafts, I unconsciously use filler words or add unnecessary information – this is the stage where I remove all of them and make the content smoother.
The end result has to be top-notch, anything less is unacceptable.
I have a look at the published version of the post and read through it. Particular attention is paid to paragraph-structure, the way headings and titles look.
In most cases, it takes 2 days to finish an article. The important thing has been creating a process on my own and not blindly trying to make somebody else’s work for me.
The best productivity tool for each stage is using a timer. By limiting the time available, I am creating a sense of urgency and automatically work faster. Currently, I am using the online timer E.ggtimer.com