We’ve written before on this blog that nothing beats high-quality writing. Even if you need to drastically cut down the amount of posts you’re putting up per week to keep you content consistently high-quality, your reader still wins in the end (and, by extension, so do you). However, it would be nice to have the cake and eat it, too, wouldn’t it? So, how do you maximize the amount you write without sacrificing quality?
For maximum efficiency, you need to plan you what you write beforehand. At the start of the week, carve out an hour or two to do just this.
First, brainstorm topics you’d like to cover. Write them down, and select the best ones. Save the rest for later — even if you didn’t like them now, you might come around on them later or rework them into something new. When you have a list of articles you want to put up this week, take the time to jot down at least a few ideas on what you’d want to see in each of them, an how you’d like them to be structured. This will come in handy when making the outline proper.
Save the list in your to-do app of choice, or go analog if you’re into that sort of thing. When you get article ideas during the following week, make sure to write them down, too. This will make brainstorming easier next time that part of the process comes around.
Research and Outline
There is no substitute for high-quality, extensive research. Ideally, this is how you will spend the bulk of your writing time.
As you research, save interesting and applicable quotes and extracts into the document with the outline for your article. When you feel like you’ve exhausted the resources available to you, mold the saved excerpts and ideas for the article’s structure into an outline.
Consider structuring out an article one day, and writing it the next. Outlines need an editor’s eye as well, after all, and eliminating something from an outline that obviously doesn’t work early on will potentially save you hours of work. And since you’ve planned out your work early, you’ve already got stuff you need to be working on anyway, so it’s not an excuse to be lazy.
You know that article you outlined yesterday? It’s time to write it! Since you’ve researched and outlined this thing backwards and forwards, it should be a piece of cake, unless you’re out of writing shape.
Writing everyday will keep your writing skills sharp. For consistently high-quality writing, this is a must. Now that the easy part is done, it’s time to kill your darlings.
Ideally, editing should be done by someone other than the writer, but that’s not an option for everyone. Try to take at least 12 hours off from looking at your work before sitting down to edit. This is how you make sure that you’re looking at your writing with fresh eyes and maximum scrutiny.
When editing, don’t be afraid to lose entire sections of writing completely, or even rewrite the post in its entirety if you need to. Upping your content output will also mean upping your standards, lest you become a one-writer content farm with no quality checks.
Fine-tuning your writing process to maximize output while keeping quality at high levels is a process, and it won’t happen overnight. Tell us how you do it in the comments! We’d love to hear some success stories.
Read this article published via Write!