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Six Strategies That Have Quickly Improved My Writing

https://lifehacker.com/six-strategies-that-have-quickly-improved-my-writing-1510969008

lifehacker.com

Six Strategies That Have Quickly Improved My Writing
In the past six months that I've been a content crafter at Buffer, I've been writing a lot. I've also been trying to write regularly on my own blog and for my startup. That's a lot of writing. During this time, I've been experimenting with small changes in my workflow, my writing process, and the types of content I produce.

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Pay Attention and Take Notes

Pay Attention and Take Notes

Taking copious notes prevents you from forgetting things and saves you the time you would spend searching for it again.

Whether you have a notebook handy or an app to capture something digitally, keeping track of quotes, books you've read, phrases and words you like, interesting concepts, and ideas you have is worth the effort.

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Read (And Do) More Widely

Read (And Do) More Widely

The wider the information and experiences you have, the more chances you have to generate new, creative ideas or come up with interesting angles for what you want to write about.

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Get a Lot Of Feedback

Get a Lot Of Feedback

Having feedback can help you spot issues you tend to overlook. Also an uninvolved opinion also prevents you from investing on something that is bad because you are emotionally attached to it.

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New Formats And Structures

New Formats And Structures

Writing in different styles and formats lets you find and hone aspects that apply to multiple formats. You also get to exercise your skills as the writing won’t come as easily as it would if you were writing in the style you’re comfortable with.

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Experiment With New Methods

Experiment With New Methods

Experimenting with different technologies, methods, environments, and schedules is really helpful in determining what works and what doesn't and can increase your efficiency.

Researching, note-taking, brainstorming, outlining, and drafting are particularly useful for the initial phase of writing. 

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More Practice, Less Theory

More Practice, Less Theory

It's easy to unintentionally keep researching or reading or tweeting and not writing to the point it becomes procrastination. To fight against that, limit the time you spend on those activities and stop subscribing to sources of content that don’t add to your work.

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Expose It to Different People

Expose It to Different People

Feedback is very important. Having someone read over your writing can highlight issues like typos or grammatical issues,  and help you to clean up your work.

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Experiment with New Formats

Experiment with New Formats

New formats are exciting and scary, and definitely worth doing if you want to stretch your writing muscle.

Try new kinds of content (articles, opinions, announcements, etc.) and play with different formats, to see what works best (images usually make a post more interesting, regardless of format).

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Change Your Workflow

Change Your Workflow

Try different methods, environments, and schedules in your quest for a workflow that suits you.

Experimenting is really helpful in determining what works and what doesn't.

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More Practice, Less Theory

More Practice, Less Theory

Reading and researching a post are the most nefarious distractions. It's so much easier to keep researching or reading or tweeting and not get around to putting words down.

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David McCullough

"There's an awful temptation to just keep on researching. There comes a point where you just have to stop, and start writing."

David McCullough

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Read More Widely

Read More Widely

Be open to reading more fiction, more nonfiction, more research papers, to help you add knowledge to your life.

The more widely you read, the more chances you have to generate new, creative ideas or come up with interesting angles for what you write about.

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Pay Attention and Take Notes

Pay Attention and Take Notes

It will help you with keeping track of quotes, books you've read, expressions and words you like, interesting concepts, and ideas you have.

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Productivity strategies

Experiment with them and find which one better suits you.
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Writing Daily

To build a habit of daily writing, try to get three pages of writing done every day. It can be about anything and it’s important that you write all without editing or censoring.

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Set Accountability Metrics

Come up with trackable goals like a number of words or pages per day. The specificity is important because being able to measure it allows you to keep track of your progress and better change your behavior. 

Make It a Regular Practice

Keeping track of streaks is a very powerful tactic for developing any new habit. Knowing that you have consistently succeeded for a number of days helps you push through the days who are unmotivated.

Other ways to foster regularity: writing in a different style or genre, and doing your writing first thing in the morning.

3 more ideas

Personal Mission Statement

It consists of thinking long and hard about your life and work. Write down everything that is on your mind, then consider what is most important.

  • You want to know where you want to go...

Acknowledging Progress

Progress can sometimes feel like endless staircases where you climb and climb, but can never see the end.

A personal mission statement allows you to look back and see how far you've climbed.

Putting Things Into Perspective

A personal mission statement reminds you where you're coming from and puts your life in perspective. When you feel frustrated, you can go back and read how much you've progressed over a specific time.