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How Do You Write Faster?

If you’ll ask me that question, I wouldn’t have an answer for you because I don’t consider myself a fast writer.

Writing faster depends on a lot of things.

Your mood, the type and topic of your article, your sleeping hours – its length and quality, your environment, even the weather, could all affect how fast you’re able to write every day.

Like right now, I’m writing this post while in a mall, using the free 1 hour WIFI provided for customers because we lost power and internet connection at home due to a recent typhoon.

Since I know I only have 1 hour of internet connection, I dumped all the words I wanted to write for this post on a rough draft of 300+ words with the intent of editing it at home.

I also have some articles due this week for clients so I did my research for those in 30 minutes. And I plan to write the articles when I get home too.

So I’ve accomplished 2 tasks in less than an hour – researching and writing a rough draft. All because I’m under time pressure by this mall’s WIFI access restriction.

What do you think? Is that fast or fast enough?

On regular days though, distractions abound while lack of focus seems scarce. Researching and writing even just 300 words could take a whole day. Or worse, nothing job-related gets done.

To make sure the required words (or more) get written in less than 24 hours, below are the things I often put in place.

Templates

Using templates doesn’t mean you always have the same format and output. Templates give you a starting point in organizing your ideas which contributes to faster writing. There’s no rule that says you can’t deviate from templates but isn’t it much better to have something to work with when you begin rather than staring at a blank page?

Custom Work Schedule

Researching, writing, and editing are the main things we do as web writers. You can do all these at the same time or the same day. Or you can choose to focus on only 1 thing per day.

The latter works better for me.

I’ve found that when I only work on one thing at a time, I actually finish the tasks faster. So on a typical day, you’d see on my planner – article research on one day and write article on the next. This would often be for two or more articles. And the other items would consist of marketing or admin tasks.

It’s true though that while researching you may have the urge to jot down some words. Just go ahead and do it. Don’t completely cut that part off because those words could either remind you of the point you got from that source or it could be part of the final article text.

Content Calendar and Swipe Files

If applicable to your projects, set up a content calendar. A week’s worth of topics is already a good source. A one-month plan is better. If you can plan three to twelve months ahead then that would be outstanding.

However, if it isn’t suitable, having a list of possible article topics a.k.a. a swipe file also speeds up the writing process.

But whether you choose one over the other, both types of record will cut off your working time in the long run.

Specialization

Choosing to write about specific niches only increases the pace of your skill too. It helps you expand your knowledge of your chosen niche, making it easier to write about it. It also reduces your research time because, as you study the niche, you’d learn where the best sites to get data would be.

Specializing also helps you learn the words your chosen niche or niches often use. Picking up words to make sure your article fits its target market would then be, almost effortless.

If you’re still having a hard time picking your niche, here’s a previous post to help you out.

Time for Leisure

Don’t discount reading a book, watching funny movies or TV shows, exercising, and listening to soothing music. These leisure activities all stimulate your brain and improve your mood. You can find some studies about these here and here.

We may be different but most writers I know also say that reading helps them write faster and much better. And that their mood affects their productivity for the entire day too. So set aside 10 to 30 minutes of your time, I suggest, everyday, even for just one or two of these activities.

A happy disposition and sharp mind will always give you a leg-up in your freelance writing career.

You can try putting these in place too and see what will work for you.

But if you’re still asking how to write faster, I still won’t have an answer for you. What I can say is find ways to organize your days and ideas, choose your niche and be an expert in it, and keep your mind and body healthy. All these will help you make the words flow quickly.

Do you have your advice to share on writing faster?