This is a guest post by Leigh Peele, one of the very first graduates of Blog Mastermind who went on to build a successful online business powered by her blog.
Writers block can be a nasty bug to catch. An equally nasty bug can be wading hour after hour over material that just isn’t coming out of you. The next thing you know, you have spent an entire work day filled with worrying and nothing to show for it.
The goal of this article is to not only help you snap out of writers block, but to help you hand yourself a completed article in 15 minutes.
1. Have A Title List
There are some people who enjoy an idea sheet, but I am not a fan those unless specific. Instead, I like a title sheet. While they may seem like the same thing, there is a distinctive difference. Here is an example –
Idea sheet: Write an article about blogging traffic
Title sheet: 10 Ways To Get Traffic (You Didn’t Know About)
By having the specific title it automatically inspires you to pour out the words. In fact, I am inspired to write the article above right now. Always be specific. Allowing for fewer choices will make for quicker decisions.
2. Borrow Ideas From Other People
Now wait, before you think I am suggesting something unethical, give me a moment. All your work should be 100% yours. That being said, you can get phenomenal ideas reading other people’s work. Here are a few ways you can turn their work into your own:
- Dig deeper than they did
- Elaborate where they did not
- Debate against what they wrote
- Get inspired by a similar topic
Most ideas do not need complete reinvention. Most ideas just need a little inspiration.
3. Lists And Bullet Points
People have thousands of distractions to choose from every day. Since you have a short time to capture their attention, you can keep it uncluttered with lists. Why do lists work so well?
- They keep information concise
- They attract the eye
- They help with compression
- They make points stronger and more urgent
The lists above speak for themselves.
4. Write In An Editor Program
If you need to edit frequently before you publish, save yourself the time and write the article in the editor. It may seem straightforward, but having a program automatically spell checking and looking for errors saves you a lot of time. There are free document editors like Google Docs or one I mentioned in a previous article called Grammarly.
5. Pictures And Links Say 1,000 Words
One of the easiest articles to write is a link or picture article. You can point to other people’s work, blogs or affiliate promotions. This is a terrific way to build relationships with your peers while also providing quality information to your readers. You can also use this to make “Best of” or “Top 10” articles featuring pictures and short captions as the majority of the content.
6. Get Worked Up
Excitement over a subject is the best way to let the “ink flow.” If you are excited about what you are writing, the session will fly by quickly. Excitement can present itself in all types of forms, such as happiness or debate. Don’t be afraid to walk away from an article because it isn’t working or you are bored. You can always go back to it later if you feel the inspiration has returned.
7. Block Out The World
You can’t write quickly if the TV is on or your phone is getting 20 text messages. If you take the time to devote your undivided attention to your article, you will have more time for the funnier things in life. Remember what mom said, “You can’t go outside and play with your toys until you finish your homework!”
8. Learn To Quote
Plagiarism isn’t cool, but quoting someone’s work is. Often someone can say something you want to say better. They can also say something you would like to debate. Whatever your stance, don’t be afraid to use large quotes from other sources and write about how it makes you feel. You can instantly turn up a 1,000 word article when you only had to write 200 words on your own.
9. Stop Overthinking It
Simple is smart. Quick is good. Don’t try to turn your article into something it isn’t just to make it different or longer. The best ideas genuinely can be the simplest ones.
10. Keep Your Hand On The Pulse Of The World
What are people talking about? What do others want to read about? Pay attention to what people are questioning this week or what they are up in arms about. From day to day people have different needs and individual struggles. A fast article can be putting their thoughts and concerns in your own words.
11. Keep A Pad With You At All Times
Ideas strike you like a bolt of lightning. While writing this article alone, I have been struck with three ideas. I took a quick moment to write them down on the pad beside of me. When I am done with this article, I will have more ideas to choose from. I will look over my article title list and decide which one I feel like writing about the most.
If you utilize these tips, you will have a more successful (and less stressful) article writing experience.