How to Write Articles, Reports, and Books Quickly
Do you have trouble getting your thoughts and ideas down into an article? Do you find it difficult to put 'pen to paper' to get your book started? Do you sit facing a blank screen struggling to find the words to write? If so, here are some tips and strategies you can use to get your material written quickly.
1. As daft as this may sound, don't worry about the words. Most delays appear to be trying to choose the words. You don't do this when in conversation. The words come naturally. By trying to be careful over the words, you are interrupting your brain's word selection processes. The result is that you can't choose the words - because you are trying! So, don't try to choose the right words. Just get writing - your brain will choose the right words. Trust it, just as you do in conversation.
2. To make it easier for you to get writing, start off as though you were speaking to an individual. As I write this I'm imagining I'm talking directly to you. When you write for an individual it is so much easier. This is because your brain is in 'conversation mode'. The words come more easily then. Plus...and this is important...conversational English is easier to read than 'written' English. Many business reports are difficult to penetrate and fail to communicate their message because the authors have spent ages agonising over the words to write them in 'business-ese'. Forget it: make your reports easy to read - and easy to write - by being conversational.
3. Get the words down and do the editing later. This is how newspapers and magazines survive. They get thousands of words first, then they knock them into shape later. Editing 'as you go' doesn't work. It slows things down. Switch off your spell checker and grammar checker. When it shows you with squiggly lines what's wrong, you'll be inclined to go back and check it. This will slow you down. Check the spelling and grammar once you have finished. That way you'll get your work done more quickly.
4. Set a deadline which is absolutely fixed. Do not set deadlines like 'next Wednesday'. Instead, set a deadline of 10.15am on Wednesday. Give yourself an immovable deadline and stick to it. The difference between newspapers, magazines, TV and radio and the rest of the world is that their deadlines cannot be moved. Each day a national newspaper produces the equivalent of two novels in terms of number of words. They can do that because the deadlines are completely fixed. The pressure of the immovable deadline is a tremendous motivator to getting the words down on paper. I know many potential authors who still haven't written their book because they keep moving their deadline. Don't do that, you'll never get your article, report or book written. Most people move deadlines because they are worrying about 'getting it right'. Forget getting it right, get it written.
5 If you really do find it difficult to put 'pen to paper' or 'finger to keyboard' tape record your thoughts, ideas, knowledge etc. into a tape recorder, or onto your PC in some way. Then get the material transcribed and use this as the basis for your written material.Or get yourself interviewed by someone in your field, then use the interview as the basis for your printed material.
6. If all else fails get a ghost writer (try http://www.elance.com). You'll only need to pay a small fee to get most things written. A book, for instance, will only cost you a few hundred dollars.
Graham Jones is a psychologist who has specialized in the way we use the Internet. He is an author of 27 books and thousands of articles. He runs Infoselling.com where you can get a FREE report on how to sell your own information products, ebooks, reports and articles online.
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