If you're new to writing or haven't written since school, blogging may seem like a daunting task. A common fear is not knowing what to write about.
Try creative free writing.
Schedule a part of your day or week to either handwrite or type anything and everything that comes to mind. It may be personal, it may be about your business; it doesn't matter. It's just a practice of getting your thoughts on to paper (or on the screen). Set aside a certain amount of time that seems easy and doable.
For me, it's 20 minutes a day while I wait for my coffee to brew. Every morning I come in to the office, start the coffee pot, turn on my computer, set my timer for 20 minutes, and I'm off and running. I'm amazed at how fast the 20 minutes goes!
Here's another important thing to remember when you're free writing: the goal is to only do a brain dump. Aim to continually hear yourself typing (or see yourself writing)! There may be a slight pause as you gather your next thought, but aim for continually writing. I love the freedom of just writing and typing with no pressure from anyone (especially from myself) that I have to have a finished product when I'm done free writing.
Here's another tactic to try: no backspacing or deleting! Yes, that's right! If you made a mistake in spelling, grammer or in your thought flow, just keep typing! Pretend that the backspace or delete buttons don't exist. Yes, I know how hard that is!
Here's the thing -- writing and editing have to be two separate activities. (Thank you Tenaya for that reminder!) If you made a mistake, just retype or rewrite the correct word or phrase and keep moving!
Often the perfectionist in us holds us back in getting any ideas down. So speak very nicely to your inner spelling and grammar critic. Tell her she can take a nap for 20 minutes. When you're done freewriting, she's allowed to come out and have at it. Or she can even take a the whole day off and come back tomorrow at your next writing session!
During my first writing session, I didn't even look at the screen while I typed! It ws just too hard to not correct myself. And it was interesting to experience that constantly stopping also constricted the flow of ideas. Editing too early was creating a writer's block.
Now my routine is to free write for 20 minutes one day, and the next day edit and publish.
So give free writing a try.
Free writing is a wonderful practice to not only get started with blogging, but to also get into the practice of writing out your thoughts and sharing your ideas through social media.
What techniques do you use when you're writing and blogging?
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