Jeremy isn’t interested in writing a book. He wants to write better blog posts. That’s what he told me in his email. With another quick exchange, I established that he writes a weekly blog where he shares his expertise. He doesn’t have an editor.
If that’s your situation, read on. You’ll learn that writing a better blog is about establishing a work rhythm that’s comfortable and that helps you write great posts.
Learn Your Idea Development Cycle
Analyze what it takes to develop an idea so that the idea is ready when you’re ready to write a post. That usually starts with capturing the ideas that you get throughout the day. Then, do something with them. Put them in a file or decide not to. Write them in a journal. Or maybe decide that you don’t want to start thinking about them just yet.
When it’s near time to write your blog post, decide what idea you’re going to base the post on. For Jeremy, that’s probably about a week ahead of his publication date. This is a very individual thing, and it varies all over the map. Find what works for you.
Next, do whatever research you need and work on your post. Try putting the ideas in order and find stories and facts you can use. Then, it’s time to write.
Establish A Regular Writing Routine
There are exceptions, of course, but most of the good writers I know have an established writing routine. They write in the same place and at the same time of day. They use the same equipment. All the tools for their writing are near at hand.
Pick a place where you can eliminate distractions. Pick a time when your mind is fresh so you can bring the maximum mental power to your writing.
Read Your Writing Aloud
I recommend this to writers of all kinds. The truth is we write for the ear, not the eye. Another truth is that your tongue will trip over things your eyes thought were fine.
Reading out loud also slows you down and makes it easier to concentrate on your words and rhythms.
Do Several Revisions
No matter how good you are, you’re not good enough to get by with a first draft. Good writing is iterative.
How many revisions? That’s personal and it will depend on your maturity as a writer. I’ve been writing for publication for half a century. My blog posts go through at least four revisions every time. They go through more if my first draft is not good.
Give It Time
It’s natural to want to learn how to write blog posts well and be done with it. The truth is it will take you a while. Even after you’ve learned the best writing rhythm for you, you will probably continue to tweak the process. If you fall in love with the craft of writing, you’ll also fall in love with tweaking your process.
Learn your idea development cycle.
Establish a regular writing routine.
Read your writing aloud.
Allow time for revisions.
It will take time for you to develop your effective rhythm.
Keep tweaking it to get even better.