I thought some of you might find it helpful to have a step by step template for writing your blog posts. Here’s what works for me:
1. Find an image that fits your post. Many bloggers don’t use images, but I think images add so much. Most of my pictures come from stock.xchng and Flickr. For more information about using images including copyright issues, check out this post.
2. Write your title. If you don’t have any experience writing headlines, check out Copyblogger’s great series: How to Write Magnetic Headlines. Also, consider using one of these 22 headline templates.
The title, or headline, is by far the most important words in your post, so don’t rush this step.
3. Make a list of your points. I got this from Tim Ferriss. He writes:
Think in lists, even if the post isn’t a list. Separate brainstorming (idea generation) from synthesis (putting it all into a flowing post).
I find it hard to start writing sentences and paragraphs right away, but writing a simple list is easy. This list is rougher than the first draft so I don’t worry about grammar or even writing complete sentences.
4. Take your list and craft your first draft. Create sentences and paragraphs based on the points on your list. Once I’ve written on a point, I cross it out. This gives me a sense of progress as I “use up” each point on the list.
The key to this step is quantity not quality. You’re only writing the first draft so don’t edit while you write. This will slow you down. You can fix any mistakes in the next step. Your goal right now is to write as many words as you can.
5. Edit. Read your whole post once or twice. As you read, make necessary changes to polish up your post. This could mean adding subheadings for easier reading, rewriting clunky sentences, moving sentences and paragraphs around to make your post more organized, fixing grammar mistakes, and cutting out unnecessary words.
6. Click “publish”. Congrats, you’ve given birth to a new post!
If you’ve found this template helpful, feel free to bookmark this post or print it out for reference sake.
Over to You
What does your posting template look like?