Gather up fellow content writers. I have a theory. About Superman.
You know that he is busy saving lives and all, rescuing damsels in distress, aka Lois Lane, beating bad guys, AND writing articles for the local newspaper, right? Well, my theory goes like this.
Clark was actually Superman when working as a writer because there is no way in hell you can be a superhero AND have time to write at the same time.
And yet, here we all are. Being asked to do our marketing gigs AND write awesome, unique content that piques readers’ attention and beats all other content in the digital warzone we find ourselves in. Daunting task, I know. Yet, one, we are asked to perform nonetheless.
Worry not. From one fellow writer to the next, here is a comprehensive list of tips to help you write as fast as Super(wo)man (can’t swear on the saving the world part, but you can try).
1. Excuse Me, Do I Know You?
Ok. This is very important, so keep mental notes. You have to write in such a way that each individual reader feels that your writing is directed specifically to him. When you know your audience, your writing flows really quickly and effortlessly. Writing for someone you know is a seamless task, much like talking to people you know and feel comfortable with. However, trying to talk to strangers and talking (or writing, for that matter) turns into a tedious task where you have to doublethink and evaluate everything you plan to say before you actually say it. Talk about a time-consuming task! So, get to know your audience. Craft accurate reader personas and write as if you are talking to an old (or new) friend.
2. Jump Into Your Very Own Idea(l) Pool
Here’s a cool idea. Keep an idea journal. You know how an idea jumps into our heads at really, really weird times that we stash away in our brainbox to keep it safe for later retrieval, but then we seem to forget where we put it? (kinda like I do with my keys, ALL the time). Keep a journal handy and write down your idea. When you have a pool of ideas to choose from, writing gets quicker because a significant chunk of our writing time actually goes to deciding what to write about.
3. Ah, The Magic Of Outlines
When I was young (in the faraway distant past where dinosaurs may or may not have been extinct yet), I used to hate having to write essays for university and craft outlines. But our professors (who are probably fossilized by now) were adamant about the importance of outlines. They kept stressing the practicality of having an outline as an extremely time-efficient tool in our hands. Fast forward to today, and I find outlines to be my favorite thing (yeap, I am that old) when writing. It is the time when I take an idea, and I actually organize it on paper and see it come to life before my eyes. And, then, filling in the gaps with text becomes a breeze.
4. Killer Subheads And Superman Moves
There is a war going on in the digital marketing arena. But if you create killer subheads before you get going, you will be perfecting your superman moves. Breaking down your article into smaller chunks, and using killer subheads, will help you write faster. Writing a 200-word paragraph under a subhead is quicker than writing a 1500-word article under your title. Bonus gift: Killer subheads can also inspire you to write and enjoy what you are writing. Never mix business with pleasure unless, of course, you are Superman. Then you always mix business with pleasure.
5. Timetravel box
Timebox your content writing. Set a specific timeslot during the day, roll up your sleeves, and get down to writing. Remove all distractions, and focus on your article. Devote your energy and time 100% on that. Keep a clock near you and check your pace. That way, you can monitor yourself and ensure that you stick within your time frame. Sit down at your desk at a leisurely pace, without a set time limit, with a cell phone, music, snacks (ok, I am guilty of snacks, I admit it) to distract you, and you have a recipe for disaster. You will be writing till the end of time.
6. Tomorrow Never Dies
Tomorrow Never Dies. Yeah, I know, it’s a James Bond movie, but he was kinda like Superman, right? Saving the day, rescuing the world, getting the girl(s), and whatnot. The point being here that you always have tomorrow to edit. Write your text, call it a day, and go back on it for editing the following day. The longer you spend on writing a piece, the slower the process seems to get. You get tired, feel drained, and the writing becomes forced and laborious. So sip a dry martini, shaken, not stirred, and take a break.
Do It The Super(wo)man Way
Writing can be an arduous, tedious, and time-consuming task. But there is a light at the end of the tunnel. You do not have to work yourself to burn out or wear a cape, for that matter. But you can do it the superman way, follow these tips, and save yourself time and energy. If you feel burned out, you can always join Iris-Academy for writers, where we teach you how to be like Superman, and all the other superheroes, in digital marketing.