Whether you use your blog as a portfolio, a marketing device, or simply as a place to voice your opinions, you need to be time-efficient. As a professional writer, your time is worth a lot, so while you don’t want to post something slapdash and amateurish, you shouldn’t spend hours poring over a blog post either. So in this article, we’ll talk about why – and how – to write a blog post fast!
Let’s start off with the why.
Why should you write faster?
Writing slow isn’t limited to new writers. I’ve known writers with over two decades of experience to write less than a thousand words a day on average. And the thing is, they’re right to do that. You can’t hurry up a creative process, or you’ll plant yourself on the escalator to Burnoutville. Not the expressway, mind, but the escalator – you don’t have the option to stop and turn around.
So why are we asking you to write faster? Is this article clickbait?
Nope! We’re talking about two different things here. When people normally talk about their writing pace, they talk about professional writing – how many words you can write for your clients per day, while still researching, editing, proofreading, and handling communication. What we’re discussing in this article is writing for your personal blog. That’s a leisure project, where you don’t have a deadline, and no repercussions (apart from guilt) if you miss one. Oh, and you aren’t getting paid for it. Not directly.
The main reason why you should strive to write faster in your blog, therefore, is because you aren’t earning from it. So the quicker you do it, the more time you’ll have to concentrate on paid work. Another reason is that for new writers, it’s good practice. Push yourself and see how far you can go, but since you’re doing it on a passion project, you won’t face any consequences if you fail. Not only will this help you find your own limits, but it’ll also help you improve over time.
How long should it take to write a blog post?
Okay, so you should write faster – but faster than what? Is there a benchmark for writing speed; something that states what’s fast and what’s not? An SI unit for words per hour, mayhap?
As with so much else in this industry, there isn’t a proper yardstick, no. Writing’s strange in that respect. It’s full of ranges and subjective standards.
To give you an idea, however, writers average 500 words per hour for a topic they find easy, and 1,000 words per hour if they’re writing a rough draft. The difference between the two is that the first will need significantly less editing. A rough draft will usually need formatting changes, repositioning, rewriting, and a final round of proofreading. It’ll also involve some cringing.
Now, how long does it take to write a blog post? I’d say 500 words per hour is a healthy average for most of us who merge the writing and editing processes. So we’re aiming to optimize the process and write slightly faster than that.
Tips on how to write a blog post fast
So now we’re down to the nitty-gritty. We know writing fast is good, and we know how fast we should aim for (if we don’t already write at that speed). Now we’re ready to crack our knuckles and get started on the real deal – learning how to write blog posts faster.
Here are some tips to get you started:
1. Write about what interests you
This one’s fairly obvious. Writing on a subject that interests you, and which you understand, is always preferable to writing one that doesn’t match either criterion. However, I’ve met a surprisingly large number of writers who are against this idea. They’re of the opinion that dedicating your blog to a topic you’re comfortable with will bind you inside your comfort zone.
While I agree with the fact that you need to step out of your comfort zone, I disagree that it’s necessary on your blog. Published writing samples are enough for demonstrating your writing abilities; a blog doesn’t need to double as your portfolio if you already have one. Not, at least, if you want to be time-efficient.
So, pick a subject that you’re familiar with, and stick to it for the blog. That’ll make the process overall easier – you’ll be familiar with the terminology, you won’t need to research every paragraph, and you’ll have a better feel for the niche.
2. Keep it casual
Write the way you talk. Usually people talk in a casual style (unless they’re YA protagonists), hence the sub-heading. When you do that, you save a bunch of time because it’s less like writing a report and more like putting your thoughts on paper. The difference is, oh, several hundred words per hour.
You know when people try freewriting? It’s when you take a pen and just start writing. You can write anything, but what people usually end up writing is their thoughts. You can end up with a 2,000-word whopper in under an hour while freewriting. It’s largely because you’re free to write anything, but I’m convinced it’s also because you’re writing to yourself. When wondering how to write a blog post fast, keep this in mind.
The best part is that people like casual. You’ll find it mentioned in numerous sources. It’s an old piece of advice – write to your reader as if he/she is a friend. It helps sell products better. It helps draw the reader in. You aren’t a salesperson or someone looking to make money off them; you’re just someone chatting with them. Casual is good.
3. Cut out distractions
How much time do you waste every day due to distractions? Go on, make a guess. Half an hour? Forty minutes? An hour? The Telegraph found that employees wasted up to three hours a day due to distractions. So if your hourly rate is $30, that’s $90 down the drain every single day.
Distractions are a productivity killer – a costly one. Identify and eliminate the distractions in your life, and you’ll give your productivity a boost. Common distractions include phone notifications, obsessive email (or social media) checking, and co-workers.
Dealing with notifications and obsessive email checking is simple enough. Mute notifications, put your phone in the next room, turn the WiFi off, switch your phone off, et cetera. For email checkers, the same general principle applies – exercise self-control, and make checking emails harder. Make yourself work for it. Noisy neighbors or family can be shut out with earplugs.
Dangle the carrot of $90 daily before your eyes. Or the pizza, if you will. That’ll help.
4. Create an outline before you start
So you have an awesome, lead-driving, super-interesting blog post idea in mind. Great! Now write it down, quick. Write everything down – everything you want to use. The talking points, resources, that one metaphor that used beer to explain investments.
Why, you ask? Because the minute you sit down and start writing, your brain will open up like a sieve and those ideas will start falling through. You’ll spend half an hour trying to remember that perfect sentence for the conclusion, but all you’ll end up with is a mangled mess that puts you in mind of a wet raccoon.
So write things down while they’re still fresh in your mind. You know how writers take a notepad with them everywhere they go, to jot down ideas? This is basically like that, except you’ll actually use the idea.
Another thing this’ll do is keep you going in a straight line. You’ll have the outline before you, so you’ll be less likely to fly off on a tangent.
5. Use templates where possible
Am I suggesting that you, a writer, templatize your writing? Heresy! Kill the witch!
Listen, calm your mammaries. I’m not. What I am suggesting, however, is to use templates in certain areas, where templates are unnoticeable but will save you some time.
Take sub-headings, for instance. Nobody will mind if you use a particular style in your sub-heads. They’re small relative to an article, so they don’t really stick. If you struggle with creative sub-heads that convey the point and sound nice, just find one style that works, and apply it to the rest. The same goes for titles.
Another place where a template could be applied is in the article’s overall formatting. Think you’re good with listicles? Stick to them. Like essay-type posts? Be my guest. A touch of whimsy, perhaps? Beautiful!
The key is to find a style that works and stick to it. It’ll speed things up significantly. You could call it limiting yourself – I call it developing a style.
So these were five tips on how to write a blog post fast. Give them a try – remember, it takes 21 days to form a habit, so if you’re shutting off phone notifications or writing an outline on paper, do it for 21 days without a break.
We hope you liked these tips. Follow us on social media to tag along on our journey. We’ll be covering a lot of interesting topics soon, and we hope you’ll stick around for them!