How to Write Fast: 8 Tips for Writing Engaging Content
Recently, I started to blog more regularly, and I must say sometimes I feel like I spend too much time on one article. So I decided to research the topic and improve my writing and publishing process.
The speed and productivity are important, but the value you create in a blog post is not the least important part. I always wanted to find a balance between these two.
In this post, I will share my notes on how to write fast and create awesomely engaging content.
We'll start from the beginning, where you prepare your Topics, Research notes, the Structure of your blog post, Bullet points.
I'll explain a little bit about the tone of writing and the types of sentences that are better to use to make your content more engaging. Also, I have some exciting and useful Bonus Tips at the bottom of this blog post.
Some of those tips already helped me to write this post quickly. Not joking — I wrote my first 1000 words here in under 30 minutes.
Here is a quick summary of this post:
- Keep blog topics ready
- Researching on the topic
- Structuring blog post
- Bullet points
- Introductory sentences
- Answer paragraphs
- Finishing the blog
- Bonus Tips
- Final words
Now, let's talk about specifics.
Keep blog topics ready.
Most bloggers usually start their writing process with topics. Coming up with topics and keywords can take a lot of time. So it's a good idea to do this part separately and ahead of time.
It's nice to have a library of topics any time you feel like you want to write a new blog post or it's scheduled in your calendar. Otherwise, you can easily be frustrated because you don't know what to write about. So it's hard to be efficient that way.
The best you can do is choose a time, sit down and brainstorm topics to write about in the future.
You should have a list of topics as an outcome.
Sometimes, you can add some notes below each topic, but it's also important to research if these topics will work in your niche and if it's something people search for. This part requires you to do some research on the topics you brainstormed earlier.
Researching on the topic
Let's say you have a list of topics; you've selected one and ready to write your blog post.
There are two common ways...
Researching during the process of writing.
Writing and researching simultaneously can be exhausting because it's hard to concentrate on one thing, and you are constantly switching between different browser tabs, websites, software, and activities.
Sometimes it works and actually fun to do it that way, but sometimes it takes a lot of time switching between research and writing modes, and it can actually be quite overwhelming.
Do your research before you start writing your blog post.
Research beforehand helps to prepare the structure of your blog post. Also, it eliminates procrastination, improves confidence, and makes the writing process easier.
It's always easier to write about a topic if you have notes. You can create really great content in a short period of time. It increases the probability that your readers will get any value from your blog post if it's structured and based on research.
Research really is the essential part to speed up the whole process of writing your blog posts.
There are many ways you can do your research:
- You can read other blog posts on the topic;
- Find scientific articles and write some notes from the insights you find there;
- You can watch some videos and documentaries and include some of the ideas in your blog post or maybe even add some video clips you're referring to;
- Podcasts are a great way to listen to conversations and grasp different points of view;
- Talk to people about relevant experiences.
Some people are visual, some understand better with their ears — so it might be a good idea to search for the topic on YouTube or quickly go through some podcast episodes, maybe even create a playlist and listen during the day while you work on something else. You can try speeding up the playback and listen to the audio content x1.2 or even x2 times faster as a result.
Try limiting your research time to 1-2 hours. Take quick notes with key points on the main topic you're going to write about.
It's also a good idea to research related topics and keywords that would be good to include in your blog post.
Structuring your blog post
The structure is a skeleton of your blog post. It happens quite often that writers, during the process, drift away from the actual topic if they don't plan beforehand.
As I mentioned above, research and structure help to create value with your content Basically, stick to the plan to make the information you write about more accessible to your readers.
Structure helps to keep your writing relevant to the topic. A perfect outline is a gold — you'll never have a lack of content if you do the outline part right.
A good way to structure your blog post is to write headings and subheadings after you've done your research. The more headings and more descriptional they are, the better.
In the best-case scenario, you'll need to add 2-4 paragraphs in each heading, and the main part of your blog post is done — more on that in the next tip.
Write key points under each subheading in bullet points format. This will help to stay consistent with your topic even more.
You only need to write a minimum of a couple of sentences for each bullet point to complete this part of your blog post.
Bullet points are an efficient way to eliminate procrastination because you're growing your blog post bit by bit, and you pay attention to the structure you created ahead of time.
Basically, a blog post can be a huge and overwhelming task for some. Structure and bullet points simplify this task a lot for your understanding, and it's easier to move in smaller steps than just sit and write the whole thing from zero to one.
It's really the opposite technique of making notes reading books, articles, or other content. So it should be easy to adopt this kind of routine in your writing process.
Start your writing with a simple and casual paragraph that explains to your reader how you know what you know.
It's a friendly way to put your readers in a good mood and engage with them on a more personal level.
Don't make the mistake of presenting yourself as an expert, even if you are. People usually don't like it, and they tend more to consume content from people similar to them in some sense, but maybe one step ahead.
Just be friendly, share your experience and what you know. It might be that you just one step ahead of your readers, and it's already interesting enough to read about your journeys and the knowledge you came up with.
Write a short teaser of your blog post that partially answers the main question of the topic. It makes your content more engaging and motivating to read the whole thing.
It's better to write it at the end when you are finalizing your blog post, but place this kind of paragraph in the beginning right after the introductory.
Finishing the blog
A simple way to approach this is to write about each subheading, and as a result, you'll have a summary of your post.
You can go further and give some actionable advice and share some related content you wrote earlier or reference notes.
I have several more tips that are more like lifehacks. This can significantly improve your writing workflow.
Cursor & Keyboard Speed Settings
Go to your settings and make sure you maxed out the speed of your cursor and keyboard response time. You don't realize how slow it's by default until you try this. Moreover, you'll notice that you can do faster pretty much everything on your computer, not only writing.
Learn Keyboard Combinations
It helps to use your mouse or trackpad less, and that speeds up your workflow even more. Some people call these combinations Keyboard Shortcuts, and they're really are.
Specific Text Editing Key Combinations
You can navigate and edit your content faster if you know these key combinations:
- Alt + Left Arrow to move one word back.
- Alt + Right Arrow to move one word forward.
- Shift + Alt + Left Arrow to select one or more words back.
- Shift + Alt + Right Arrow to select one or more words forward.
- Command (Ctrl) + Left Arrow to move to the start of the line.
- Command (Ctrl) + Right Arrows to move to the end of the line.
- Command (Ctrl) + Up Arrow to move to the beginning of your text.
- Command (Ctrl) + Down Arrow to move to the end of your text.
- Command (Ctrl) + B make selected text bold.
- Command (Ctrl) + U make selected text underlines.
- and much more.
Limit your time for creating one blog post.
One psychological trick can help you stay on schedule or simply be more productive in a short span of time. You can read more about how it works if you search for Parkinson's Law.
In short, it's about setting a specific time limit, like 2 or 4 hours for one blog post. Try to stick to this goal, and you'll see even if the result is not perfect, as a rule, it's good enough and ready to post.
You can always do finishing touches, re-write parts of your blog post, and add some more content to it later on.
Not setting any time limits can make this process endless and be the main reason for huge time losses.
Great work takes time, but oftentimes, it's hard to be relevant if nobody sees your work early enough.
Keep your mind fresh, and don't forget to do breaks.
Limiting your time is an efficient way to deliver the result fast, but to approach it healthily, you need to take at least small breaks between your workflow stages.
You can do a break after you've done researching the topic. And another break between writing the draft and editing the final version of your post. Another break before creating graphics and publishing your post elsewhere.
Some writers like to write on weekends when they don't have fewer responsibilities or distractions. Different times of the day can also impact your productivity.
Some people plan all stages in a calendar and stick to the schedule.
Figure out the best creative process that works for you and experiment.
Use Grammarly or similar software to speed up your editing process
English is my third language, and quite often, I make a lot of mistakes in my writings. By the way, I apologize if it annoys you in any way. You're welcome to comment down below if you find something critical in my blog, he-he.
I found Grammarly a long time ago, even before it became popular and heavily advertised. I use it as an extension to my browser, and it significantly reduces the time I spent on editing, and now it even helps me to correct the tone of the text I'm wiring, whether it's an article or for work.
Dictate and transcribe
You can dictate the whole article and transcribe your voice into a draft or notes that you can later include in a blog post.
Blogging is like any other skill. The more you practice, the better you'll get at it. The faster you can come up with a blog post, the better it's for your blog as a business.
You don't have to sacrifice the quality and prioritize the speed of your writing. Practice a lot until you find a perfect balance.
Feel free to leave your comments and questions down below. I'm always happy to discuss interesting topics like this one and maybe even supplement this post with fresh ideas and examples.