It all comes down to the same end result (words on the screen and ultimately in a blog) but there are many different paths to that mountaintop. Some writers like to write early in the morning or late at night, while other scribes can only do the work necessary for their blogs in the basement or in the backroom on the first floor of their homes.
Regardless of how you personalize the process, there are some techniques that have been around long enough to be called traditions. Check out a few of these below but feel free to add you own additions.
- Write the first draft all the way through. You’ve got a great idea and as soon as you start writing, your thoughts meander because there was something else you’ve just thought about to make that opening sentence really sing. Make a note in the margin or write something down in a notebook, but don’t stop. A good thought usually translates onto the screen from beginning to end. If you stop to revise along the way, you stand a chance of having the whole thing dissolve and be lost for good.
- Take breaks. I’ve read lots about burnout and mental fatigue and it is the lot of the writer that doesn’t understand you need to take breaks to recharge the batteries. One of the best pieces of advice (and one I hardly ever follow) is to take a ten minute break every hour. It works wonders to clear you head but is harder than hell to stick to if you’ve got deadlines and time allotments for your working day.
- Learn to rely on self editing. After that first draft is done, you can go back and start to edit words or phases to give the text more clarity and meaning. That generally means looking for words that can be cut without changing the meaning of the sentence. When you start asking yourself how you can say the same thing with fewer words and self edit accordingly, you’ll be surprised at how much better the text sounds.
You can pile you own individual writing techniques on top of these suggestions. Why not share a few right here so your fellow writers can get some insight into what works best for their colleagues?