by Diana Adams
Some bloggers take 30 minutes to write a high-quality blog post. Other bloggers take several hours on multiple days to write the same blog post. If you are a busy professional with big blogging goals, and if you’re taking more than one hour to write your blog posts, this article is for you.
I consulted my friend and colleague @CarlaYoung as I wrote this post. She is a freelance writer who is famous for writing high-quality blog posts in 30 minutes.
First, I’d like to tell you a blogging secret. Any blogger who tells you he or she wrote a high-quality blog post in 30 minutes has done some pre-blogging work.
They’ve chosen their topic ahead of time, they’ve mulled over what they want to say, and they know exactly where to go to get great images (or they’ve already chosen the images). I do these things before I sit down to write every post.
If you don’t do this pre-blogging work, it will be difficult to shave time off your writing. If you don’t do these things before you start, you can’t compare yourself to someone who is writing their posts in 30 minutes. It’s not comparing apples to apples.
Let’s say you’ve done your pre-blogging work, and you’re ready to write. There are some simple things you can do that will help you write faster without sacrificing quality.
1. Let go of being a perfectionist
Perfectionism combined with blogging can be crippling. As my friend Carla Young wrote in her post How to Power Your Way Through the Writing Process, you’ve got to know when to call it done. It’s fun to play with words, but eventually, you need to move on.
2. Get rid of all distractions
It can take me two or three times as long to finish a post if I have distractions in the room. Clear all distractions so you can power focus and just get it done!
3. Once you start typing, don’t stop until you’re finished
Don’t stop writing to look up facts or do research. Don’t edit as you write. Get into the writing flow and keep going.
Like Carla Young told me, “Don’t get caught up trying to find the perfect wording. The best way to write quickly is to get it all out in whatever messy format you need and edit later.“
4. Write a lot – the more you write, the faster you’ll produce each post
In the article How to Create and Keep a Consistent Blogging Schedule, I wrote that blogging is like exercise. The hardest part is starting.
When you use your blogging muscles often, they’ll become leaner, sharper, and more flexible. You’ll start pumping out three posts in the time it used to take you to write one.
5. Do a quick post plan
Another useful tip from my friend @CarlaYoung is to do a quick post plan. She starts with a jazzy headline, decides what she wants to discuss in the post, and then brainstorms three to five key points. This is basically creating an outline. Then just fill in the details.
6. Be an organized blogger
You will be surprised at how much faster you can write your blog posts when you’re an organized blogger. I described this as the pre-blogging work at the beginning of this article.
To get organized, keep a folder on your desktop with your blogging ideas, topics, and images/credits that you want to use someday.
Also keep handy any login info that you’ll need, sites that contain facts and research info, and any blogging tidbits that cross your mind daily (it will all be useful at the right time).
Then, when it’s time to write, you won’t dilly-dally with trying to get prepared. You’ll be ready to power write.
7. Use blogging tools designed to help you write faster
There are tons of blogging tools designed to help you get the job done. The best part is, most of them are free. You can check out an outstanding list at 39 Blogging Tools to Help You Work Faster, Write Better, and Land More Readers.
8. Completely finish your blog post in one sitting
I’ve read stories about people who write their posts, then set it aside for a day or two, then go back to them. What is all that about? If you are only blogging once a month, I suppose that’s feasible. My advice is to sit down, write your post and get it done!
9. If you’re rushed, push out a nicely written 300-word post
Not every post has to be long and thought-provoking. I love short and sweet 300-word posts too. I can write those in 15 minutes.
It’s only four paragraphs – an introductory paragraph, two paragraphs for the body, and a conclusion paragraph. Add some compelling images, and you’re done! #boom
10. Most importantly – set a time limit for yourself
This is something @CarlaYoung and I both agree on. If you’re just leisurely writing with no time limit, one post can take all Saturday afternoon. Instead, set a timer and get focused.
According to Carla, by setting a time limit, “you ensure that you don’t get stuck in the perfection loop that has you fussing with details people aren’t going to notice anyway.“
I hope these tips help you reclaim some of the time you spend blogging without changing your publishing frequency. If you have some additional tips, please share them with us!
Photo credit: Pixabay / wilofcom
Diana Adams is the founder and CEO of Adams Consulting Group, Inc. in Atlanta. Established in 2001, her company is now an esteemed member of the Apple Consultants Network and is rated one of the top independent Apple consulting firms in the southeast.
She’s written 4,000+ blog posts about technology, social media and geeky innovations. She loves new technology, Java Chips with extra drizzle, and any form of creativity. She’s also one of the biggest Star Wars fans in the world and is a frequent user of the force.
Diana graduated from USC, and she spends most of her time on the east coast. She is a social media addict, and you can find her on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook almost anytime of the day or night. Send her a tweet and say hello!