Being a freelance writer or full-time blogger is a time suck of biblical proportions. Getting new clients, negotiating projects, planning, marketing, and creating the actual content can take a lot of time. Throw a family in the mix, and you’ll feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day to burn through your to-do list.
So, how do other people do it? How are some writers able to create content in less than half an hour when you need that time just research the topic and organize your ideas? Are they better writers than you? Do they have better tools? Or did they trade their soul for the most boring superpower ever: the ability create content at lightning speed.
None of the above!
The reality is that web content writing at high-quality, in 20 minutes is a myth. Ask any professional writer, and they’ll tell you that the process is extremely complex. From idea to research and creation, a great article can be weeks in the making.
Of course, you can’t afford to lose that much time on one single piece of content. You want a realistic solution that can help you write quality articles faster.
Here are a few tips.
1. Planning and writing should be two distinct tasks
One of the most common mistake article writers make is that they procrastinate until the day they need to deliver the content and then wait for inspiration to hit. While some people work great under pressure, most people need time to research the subject and come with a fresh and new perspective.
Here’s the thing: when you’re planning and writing your article in just one session, you’re supercharging your brain. If you want to maximize your time, then a better idea would be to separate these two tasks. For example, you could plan your article in the morning while drinking your coffee. You can write it later after you’ve answered your emails or had a nice jog.
2. Plan to write for just 15 minutes
Sit at your desk, set the timer for 15 minutes, and write. It doesn’t matter what you write; the idea is to keep going. Even if you’re stuck and don’t know how to continue a thought, just write whatever comes to your mind.
It’s a cliché advice, but it works wonders.
Getting started is usually the hardest part. So, you tend to avoid it. You sit at your computer and scroll through your News Feed, answer emails, take a personality test – anything that will allow you to procrastinate.
Next thing you know, it’s noon, and you’ve barely written a few words. But, if you trick yourself into thinking that you’ll just write for 15 minutes, the task won’t look so painful anymore. And, once you complete those first minutes, you won’t stop until you’re finished.
Your first draft will look bad. But, that’s ok. The important thing is that you’ve got your ideas out and put them in a structured form. Now, take some time and think about anything except for your draft. For example, go for a 3-minute walk around your building, pour yourself a cup of tea and read a few pages from a book or just watch some cat videos on YouTube.
Once your short break is over, get back to your draft and turn it into an awesome article. Cut long sentences in half, get rid of unnecessary words, break the article into small paragraphs, and so on.
4. Focus on the outcome
The anticipation of finishing a marathon is often the best part. Imagining yourself crossing the finish line, people cheering you, and receiving your medal motivates you to train every day.
The same trick works for writing too. Writing content, especially in a niche you’re not very familiar with, might feel like a burden. But, if you focus on the outcome, the task will become more enjoyable. Set a reward you give yourself after finishing an article. It can be something as simple as a sweet treat or watching your favorite TV show; mind you, the effect will be powerful.
Don’t get frustrated by people claiming they can write an article in less than half an hour. They’re either lying to you or lying to themselves. But, that doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t write faster. You just need a new approach and a few tricks in your sleeve. Hopefully, this article will come in handy.