How To Write 1,217 Words A Day Every Day

Karen from Sacramento emailed me and asked how to write more blog posts. I write between 1,000 and 3,000 words per day. The way I do this is to have a writing framework that lets me define the topic, write the post and publish it very quickly. Here’s how I do it.

How To Post Every Day On Your Blog

I was thinking about this at the weekend, more to see how I can get more impact and where to focus. A few things about how I write:

  • I use Windows Live Writer to do the publishing, great time saver.
  • I use an Editorial Calendar to plan what’s next. This keeps me focused and give more structure to what I do
  • I use Google Reader to bring all the sites I like to me, rather than chasing them down. Also, I try to stay focused (loyal) to these.
  • I do Emergency email first in the morning. The rest waits.
  • I turn on Facebook for 20-30 min in the morning, do my stuff and then close it. Back to work.
  • I write everything, including emails, in Microsoft Word. And then copy/paste into Outlook etc. I know Microsoft Word inside out and take advantage of things like the auto-correct features. Another timesaver.
  • I don’t answer the phone at work. Ever! Except from my wife.
  • I swim/run every second day to stay sane. This really helps. Otherwise, I get burnt out, cranky, depressed. Swimming helps the most as it gets the tension out of my neck, i.e. from all the PC work. Badminton also helps.

To the blogging…

So, I guess there are three things involved:

  • Finding the time
  • Doing the writing and
  • Getting it published

How To Be More Prolific

Here are a few ‘scenarios’ that work for me. I guess I should structure it a little better, but I hope you get the idea.

When I’m washing the dishes…

When I’m washing the dishes, I think of what I want to write today for the blog. For example, ‘how to write 1000 words per day every day.’

Next, while doing other household stuff, I do this:

  • Problem – what is it? 1 sentence
  • Solution – how to fix it?
  • Break out 5 bullet points

What next? What the reader should do next.

And that’s it. While doing the mundane stuff, I sketch out the article. Then, when I get 5 min, instead of reading the news, checking the sports etc, I get it into Word.

Back to household stuff….

When junior is gone to bed, I put my words around the material and try to get draft ready.

The next day, I spend 10 min on it, and get it into Live Writer. Publish.

I use the same technique when driving, on the metro, shopping, at the mall etc.

At the mall…

We were at a kids party today. 3 hours. The usual. I slipped away for 30 min or so. I have a notepad and did a quick outline in MacDs and also some photos, and a quick video with the camera. About 2 min. Then back to the party, pick up the kids etc.

So, I guess, I’m looking for ways to make 20-30 min here and there, get something started and then work towards completion.

Other things…

On LinkedIn, if I contribute something I usually write:

  • 1 sentence only – but make it count. Something that makes the reader pay attention or
  • 100 words — and then reuse this 100 words for an article elsewhere re: the topic on LinkedIn.

On blogs

  • I do the same thing. I have all the technical writing blogs in Reader and then go thru them in 30 min, adding a sentence here and there.

BUT when commenting:

I almost NEVER give high fives. I try to add one observation that stands out. Just one sentence.

Actually, it’s an interesting exercise in brevity and after a while it become second nature.

The key for me is to do as much prep work as possible.

If I can do the outline while washing the dishes or sweeping the floor, then I just have to type it out on the PC. Without reason, of course. But I rarely sit down cold at the PC and start. It takes forever to get anything out.

Does that help?