You’re reading my 100th VeryGoodCopy article.
The last 58 were published (basically) weekly.
I took a break to get married and honeymoon but, otherwise, I’ve kept a fairly consistent publishing routine. It’s been challenging, sure, but in a good way, a way that doesn’t feel like work.
That’s in part because I’ve had some practice over the years.
To date, I’ve published over 400 articles.
I’ve written sporadically for brands like HubSpot and Hootsuite and Forbes. But I’ve also built blogs in-house, publishing on a weekly basis at WorkForce Software (75 articles over 75 weeks) and Workplace Systems (120 articles over 70 weeks). Plus my agency work.
So here’s my well-practiced advice…
If you want to publish articles on a consistent basis…
JOIN THOUSANDS OF SUBSCRIBERS
ONE. Starting is the hardest part.
Most days I don’t feel like sitting down to write. But once I start, I almost always get into it. And then I don’t want to stop.
Inertia is a powerful force.
TWO. Stick to a consistent format.
A format will help you get started because you’ve been there before and don’t need to think as much.
Plus, consistently formatted writing denotes professionalism, which is always good.
THREE. The more you publish, the easier it gets.
Try getting on a monthly, weekly, or even daily publishing streak.
“Streaks require commitment at first,” wrote Seth Godin in his 4,015th daily article, “but then the commitment turns into a practice, and the practice into a habit. Habits are much easier to maintain than commitments.”
FOUR. Being passionate helps a lot.
If you’re not passionate about your subject, your motivation to write and publish — to keep your streak going — will wane.
FIVE. If you let yourself, you could edit an article for the rest of your life.
It takes as much discipline to start writing as it does to stop, take a breath, and let it go.
Perfection is an illusion.
“A poem is never finished, only abandoned." - Paul Valery
SIX. Always always always write down your ideas as they come.
Because if you don’t, you’ll get demotivated when you forget an idea. And you will forget.
Either you’ll forget it outright, like it was never there, like amnesia. Or worse, you’ll remember how you felt when the idea first came to you — the excitement, the promise — but when you try to recall it, the substance won’t be there. It will be too late.
SEVEN. Limit your writing time.
When I asked Austin Kleon about productivity, he told me he works against the clock.
“I’m a time-based worker,” he said. “I try to go at my work like a banker. I just have hours. I show up to the office and whatever gets done gets done.”
I love that. But what if you’re under a deadline? What if the work must get done?
In that case, lean on Parkinson’s Law, which states: “work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.”
In other words, if you give yourself 5 hours to write an article, it may very well take you all 5 hours to finish. But if you only give yourself an hour to write the same article, it will take you an hour.
I promise you it will.
What did I miss?
Let us know in the comments below.
See you next week.