Are you overwhelmed?
I mean, if you are a blogger or a freelance writer, you could be overwhelmed by the amount of writing you handle on a regular basis.
Let’s be honest here, please.
I know you love your career as a blogger or a freelance writer – but often times you have too much writing to handle and you’re stuck.
“Stuck” could mean writers block or the inability to finish your gigs/writing tasks on time.
As a blogger or a freelance writer it is mandatory that you create content on a regular basis. Otherwise you simply cannot be present (live and kicking) in this blogging business.
Now, there are various forms of content – text blog posts (or articles), audios, videos, infographics etc. In this article I will concentrate on text format blog posts which require actual “writing”.
And I won’t be talking about writing headlines either. I will focus only on writing the core content.
Before I dive in – let me ask you a question: What do you “need” to actually write a blog post?
(i) An idea for a blog post
(ii) An outline or the big sub-headings within so that you can fill it up
(iii) A message (you need to check on this one before you start writing your post; and if your post doesn’t seem to have a message, don’t write it)
Basically that’s it.
And, some SEO knowledge, eye-catching image(s), ability to proof read, etc. – all of these are needed after you finish writing your blog post and are not directly related to the “core” writing process.
The core writing process is actually the hardest bit which most bloggers hesitate and some actually struggle with it.
So let’s dive in –
The blog post idea
If you are not getting ideas for writing a blog post I’ll say you are finding an excuse. Any living brain is capable of thinking and generating ideas (I don’t mean just the idea for your blog post here).
But all it needs is fodder.
So if your brain is on a halt and refuses to generate any ideas, just feed it and you will get the output. How can you “feed” your brain.
If you are a blogger, you gotta have a reading list. You should not be producing content on a monotonic basis. Reading other blogs in your industry helps you keep up to date on happenings in your niche. You don’t want to sound like an idiot and write about a very old strategy that doesn’t apply any more.
In addition to that, reading helps improving your writing. You can write pretty fast if you are a regular reader. Your brain gets its nourishment and enough work out when you do a lot of reading.
You can (and should) actually do a lot of “off-niche” reading as well, since this will help your brain relax (with some fresh air). What can you read out of your niche? There are so many wonderful blogs that are not about blogging, internet marketing and business (if you know what I mean, these are all the serious stuff!).
Subscribe to a handful of off-niche blogs and visit them once a week (or lesser if you don’t have the time).
In addition, do not forget real books – I mean, books made of paper.
Shop (online of offline) for real books that are totally un-related to your business (I know people tend to fill their bookshelves with books related to their business, but this is also important).
Feed your brain and see the magic.
Capture the idea
This step is so crucial. Most bloggers don’t fail to generate ideas, they do; but they fail to capture them and the result of both is the SAME.
It doesn’t matter if you are able to generate tons of ideas for your blog posts or not, unless you capture them, they will be gone and you will be like just any other failed blogger who cannot generate ideas.
Not capturing ideas = inability to generate ideas (I mean, the end result is the same).
How can I capture blog post ideas? There is no excuse (especially in the current age we are living) for not doing that.
We have so many facilities available as opposed to people who lived 20 years back. We have the cloud, smartphones, email, wonderful applications, computers, and notebook+pen is still in use!
Never miss any idea.
I’d recommend collecting all your ideas in ONE place – say a notebook, Scoop.it, Evernote, a folder in your computer, a folder in your email, whatever – and sort them in some fashion that is convenient for you.
Setting the blog post outline
Do not start writing a blog post unless you have the outline for it. The outline is something very simple to put into.
Start a blog post without the outline and you will most probably end up rambling.
Ask yourself – what are the points I want to convey in this post? Write them down, re-arrange them, add or remove points to see if you deliver the message. See that the post delivers useful, practically applicable stuff with the points you have written down.
And that’s it! You have the outline.
When you have the outline it is easier to fill in the separate bits. And then you can re-work on the post to make the flow smooth between different bits.
Having your first draft quite fast will actually make everything else faster (I hope you know what I mean here). There is a big difference between starring a blank screen and polishing a big piece of content. The second is usually done pretty faster.
And how to get to the first draft faster? – By writing your outline first.
Write a useful blog post fast: Takeaway
I wrote this very blog post in the same manner I have explained above. In fact I write all my posts in the same manner.
I get ideas from different places and at different (and usually odd) times. I capture them, save them and pick one when I want to write a post.
Having an idea bank also has another advantage – instead of pushing myself to write on one topic and eventually starring at a blank screen, now I have a handful of ideas to write a blog post on.
So if I am currently not in the mood to write on topic 1, I can simply put it off for now and choose topic 2 from my bank and start writing it. I can pick a topic that suits my mood at that time; this way I am not “pushing” my brain to write.
And, writing becomes more enjoyable and it usually gets done pretty FAST!
PS: I want you to take advantage of the free course “Write Killer Content” to help you create killer content for your blog/business on a regular basis.
Please don’t leave without taking action. Let me know your thoughts in the comments and start writing your next blog post FAST by using these tips.