With a bold headline like that, you might think it would be easy to “cop out” and give you a ridiculous strategy that would be stupid to try. Instead, I’m going to give you a strategy will do three things to your writing:
- It will make it part of the top 1% of the best writing online
- It will make people sit up and listen to you
- It will generate more action than any other writing you’ve done
What’s this fancy new secret, you ask?
Here it is: write everything at least three times.
I can almost hear the groaning and complaining. You thought I was going to hand you a “magic bullet” of blogging and productivity strategy; one that will immediately–and without an once of real work–shoot your efforts to the moon.
You might wonder how super-producers like Danny Iny can craft such compelling, thorough content, literally churning it out at inhuman speeds. Chances are he’s gotten to that point by practicing: literally writing, rewriting, and rewriting some more.
Unfortunately, I don’t have a magic bullet. However, this strategy does need to be examined just a bit more.
First, let me give you the “three-step” process I’m talking about:
- Write. As in “free-writing.” Unhindered, brainstorming-like, free-flowing thought. No editing allowed.
- Write again. This time around, work on taking out words like “very,” “really,” and many instances of the words “that” and “so.” Chop 10% off of the total word count.
- Write one more time. Think your work’s ready to be sent out the door? Think again. I rewrote my first novel about four times, and that was easy–it was all made-up. If you’re writing a blog post, article, or anything worthy of anyone else’s eyes, give them the benefit of your best work.
You may not like the idea of writing everything thrice (I knew I’d use the word thrice some day in a blog post!), but let me assure you:
Your writing will improve drastically, and quickly.
And that is the secret of this technique: While the initial process is time-intensive, counter-productive, and sometimes downright hard, you’ll notice that the more you implement these steps, the quicker your writing will improve.
Eventually, you won’t need to follow the formula every time. The words will flow, your thoughts will magically orient themselves into an organized stream of outline-worthy notes, and the overall feel of your style and clarity will shine through.
Until then, though, give us all the benefit of working through your copy at least three times before you publish it!
One final strategy.
Lastly, if it’s really bothering you to chop up your content that many times, “trick” yourself into it by using this writing/productivity method:
- Write first in a minimalistic editor, like OmmWriter, or Byword.
- Then, copy/paste the text into a second editor–something like Evernote–that lets you add in links and additional notes.
- Finally, paste the content into a “real” text editor, like Microsoft Word or Pages, for final editing/publishing.
I know most of you won’t try this–that’s why I wrote a headline like that. Many people will continue pushing “Submit” on half-finished content, eventually burning out from a lack of an audience. But to me, that’s good news.
The fewer people there are truly striving for the best writing they can produce, the less competition there is for guys like me!
(Photo credit: Fountain Pen and Notebook via Shutterstock)