A lot of us are often pressed for time. Between multiple projects, family and just…life, it can be difficult to sit down and write some stuff and write it well. You may find yourself fidgety, distracted and anxious with your lack of time to focus on completing your writing tasks.
If we simply limit our distractions, abandon certain practices, and create some beneficial habits, writing will come to us easily and quickly. You’ve come to the right place to read tips on how to master writing fast, while still keeping your work coherent and professional.
There are a few great ways to implement efficient writing habits that will have you meeting your deadlines within a timely manner.
- Set a timer for yourself, or someone else, and write within a specific time frame.
- Gather research before you write to make the process quicker.
- Create an outline to hit on all of your paper’s important ideas.
Honestly, sometimes it is better to not have a “set plan” with how to write. it doesn’t have to be pretty and it doesn’t even have to make sense.
Sit down, pick up your pen, and allow your mind to guide your words. Literally, just use your hands to write down whatever words are popping up in your brain.
You can always go back and look over the section you freestyle and edit it as more details of your article or story come to you. This method is less stressful on yourself and there are no high expectations. You are living and writing in the moment. This helps with the anxiety and pressure that may crop up when you are on a deadline. Just breathe and write.
2. Time Yourself.
Set a timer for 10, 20 or 30 minutes, then sit in front of your electronic device and get to writing. It’s okay if you can’t think of anything to write for half or most of your time, as long as you write something down, it’s a start!
Once your timer is off, step away from your computer even if you’re on a roll. Leave your brain wanting for more. If the timer proved ineffective in jump-starting your writing process, then take a break and come back to try again later.
Keep along with setting timers until your writing project is finished. You will be surprised with how far you’ve gotten. You can start training your brain to focus on your task when the timer is on. Then when your timed session is done, you can breathe and know that your time spent writing was not wasted.
By the way, your timer doesn’t have to be a clock. You can write after you’ve put dinner in the oven and use that for your timer. Put down your pen and paper when the oven dings and treat yourself to a delicious meal. After all, you certainly deserve it!
3. Nix The Spell Checker.
Those little squiggly, colored “error lines” in Microsoft Word can distract you and compel you to stop your writings, right click, and see what spelling or grammatical error that you have.
So if you’re one of those writers who get bugged by the built-in spell checker, you can easily turn it off. For Microsoft Word 2010 and above, you can simply click on the dark blue tab on the top left side of the software, then click on the Option > Proofing, and uncheck “Check spelling as you type“.
You can also uncheck any other option that will interrupt your writing process, such as “Mark grammar errors as you type”. You can check all these errors later by clicking on the Review tab > Spelling & Grammar Check.
By temporarily turning off the spell checker, much like the freestyle writing point mentioned earlier on, you will find that your writing will flow more naturally. Again, you can pretty it up later.
4. Do Your Research.
One of the ways to make writing go by faster is to have all of your facts gathered before you start writing. Prior to you sitting down to write your article, make sure that you have your references on hand, or you’re well versed in what you’re writing about. By doing this, all your references are already there, either in your notes or your head.
Researching before writing will also stop with procrastination. If you decide to research and write all at once, you may be tempted to get off track with certain Youtube videos, google articles or social media posts, which in turn cuts into your writing time.
Allot some time, anywhere from a few days or a few hours before writing, to gather your inspiration from different kinds of sources.
5. Create An Outline.
This is absolutely one of the most important tips for writing fast. Think about what you want to write, then outline it. If it’s an article, scribble down the subheadings. If it’s a web copy, jot down the points you want to cover. If it’s a fictional book proposal, write down the character names, locations and overall plot themes. This process is to get your important key points listed down on paper in order to keep yourself and your project on track.
Outlining also gives you an opportunity to spawn more ideas for yourself in the writing stage.
Most importantly, once you have the outline, writing will be a breeze and doesn’t take much time. After outlining, all you have to do is add more “meat”, or details, to your work. Before you know it, the work is done!
6. Get A Writing Partner.
Some people work better when they have the support of another person to fall back on. If this is you, consider teaming up with a writing partner(s). A writing buddy not only writes with you, but they also can be an accountability partner to keep you on track with scheduling.
If you have a lot of writing to do or have a big project that needs to get done, partnering up with a friend can keep you both motivated and on track with your deadlines. When you’re both done with your timed sessions, treat yourself to some dessert or a friendly game night!