Last Updated on May 17, 2021 by Jeremy
Recently, I was at an event with a few friends who were looking into getting into blogging more and I was asked what seemed to be a fairly simple question – how do you blog as much as you do?
My normal go-to answer is that since blogging is my full-time job, I have a lot more time to dedicate to writing. But, to me, that is a copout. Even amongst full-time bloggers I still somehow am able to write far more than most and routinely crank out anywhere between 5-10+ articles a week (split up across several blogs).
I took a moment to think about it before answering in this instance, and I realized that I actually engage in a number of writing techniques that help me crank out articles with a fair bit of speed. In this one, I thought I'd share a few of my favorites.
So if you're looking for some writing techniques to help you publish more blog posts or perhaps simply need a new way to keep yourself motivated, these may help.
Write a Post Start to Finish in a Sitting
This technique is exactly like it sounds – sitting down, committing to an article, and cranking it out from a blank screen to a fully polished and published article in a single sitting.
I know a lot of people attempt to do this and find it rather challenging since the process to publish a blog post can take anywhere from one hour to ten hours or more depending on the topic, complexity, and your ability to do many of the ancillary tasks beyond simply writing.
I have to admit that this style only “happens” to me rarely and is a culmination of two things – motivation and my 10+ years of experience in running these sites.
The motivation aspect happens when a light bulb goes off in my head, I have an incredible desire to run to my computer (okay, fine, I'm always at my computer), and must get everything out that very instant. The experience aspect to pull this off is something that simply is developed over time. After years of running a blog many ancillary tasks like editing photos, doing keyword research, integrating links, editing, and the like have become second nature to me in many respects.
Naturally, this mode is the hardest to come. Even for me, it's quite rare (I find about 1,000 words to be my breaking point where I can't do this method). So, I'd say that this happens for about 10% of all my articles (this article being one of them).
Batch Draft Mode (My Personal Favorite)
So, what method do I use the most? I write in batches.
The broad explanation of this is simply opening up a ton of drafts, writing out thoughts on any given topic, saving them, and moving on to the next one in rapid succession. These generally will be anywhere from 10-50% “complete” and often have no filter, editing for grammar, photos, backlinks, and the like.
It is purely about writing out thoughts in as many articles as time allows to get things started.
What I like about this is that over a period of a day or two I may be able to crank out partial drafts of 5, 10, or even 20 articles that I may not get back to for a few days or weeks. When I do ultimately get back to the article to publish, I find myself a bit more motivated to continue with the topic as some of the legwork was already done (it is also great to get thoughts out early while ideas are fresh. I often lose interest in topics if I wait too long and start to forget things).
So in weeks where I can publish 10+ articles, it is likely that 75% of those were partially drafted in a prior week and all I had to do was enter the articles, fine-tune them to some degree, and publish.
This particular style works great for bloggers who have a fairly standardized writing style for many of their articles. The reason for this is because you have more of an ability to write on autopilot and have it still come out sounding nice. Your skill with this, naturally, improves with experience.
For example, all of the reviews on my wine blog follow the same format. I have several series on my travel blog and local blog that are standardized formats as well. For the wine blog, I have a few paragraphs in each review that describe the wine and a section on how food paired with it. When I first started writing these, I'd simply transfer the tasting notes over from my phone, save the draft, and refine it later. Over time, as I transferred my notes over, I found myself writing them in complete sentences that just so happened to be the final sentences I'd use in the article.
I'd still save the draft when it was partially completed, but as I improved in this method I found that the body of my articles were more or less complete in draft mode and all I had to do was write an intro, conclusion, and work on some minor refinements. All I can say is that it helps my motivation significantly when I open a draft and find it was already 50% completed a few weeks ago!
This method is used in more than 50% of all of my articles.
Round Robin Articles to Keep Your Thoughts Fresh
The final technique I use is a tangent of writing posts in draft mode as discussed above.
Instead of writing as many articles in draft mode as you can, an alternative would be to pick two or three and bounce back and forth between them until they are all completed. The second you start to get burnt out or frustrated on one topic, immediately switch over to another one that could allow you to think of something new from a different perspective or is perhaps in a different stage of publishing altogether.
When it hits for that article, switch to another. When it hits on that one, go back to the first. Repeat this cycle until all the articles are finished.
Blogger burnout is a very real thing, and even on a localized scale it is far too easy to simply get bored or frustrated with an article you've been staring at for too long. If you can recognize this occurring, sometimes all it takes is popping over to a different article on a new topic to help increase your productivity. Admittedly, I find that having many unique blogs helps this more than jumping around on articles from, say, a single destination on my travel blog, but this can be applied on a single site in a similar fashion.
I think of this style as a hybrid of the two approaches above. The goal here is to try and get as much out as you can in any given topic, but the second you start feeling bored, frustrated, or distracted move on to another. Instead of doing this with 10 articles like in batch mode, you try and cycle between a core number of articles and keep the progress going on each until they're finished.
Naturally, this process works for me about 30% of the time and is often the technique I'll use when I want to take articles that were drafted in batch mode and work towards finalizing them in a sitting. This is yet another reason why some days I publish zero articles (but draft 10) and others I publish five in just a few hours. It is just how the process works.
Overall, the above techniques still have their challenges in that motivation and experience are strong driving forces in every scenario. We, sadly, cannot help with these too much. But by keeping your writing fresh with some of the techniques you may find that you are a bit more motivated than you were before, and with more experience some of these become second nature as well.
So keep at it! Things really do get better over time.
Do you have a writing technique that helps you stay motivated when blogging? We'd love to hear about it in the comments below!