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Writing Strategies And Techniques 

If you have ever wanted to get Paid To Write visit us at http://tiny.cc/idnkf

 

 
 
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Published:  January 18, 2012
 
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Slide 1: ==== ==== Get Paid To Write! Click the link below! http://tiny.cc/idnkf ==== ==== Strategies For Preparing Yourself To Become A Writing Ideas Generator(TM)! First, before we start talking about the actual techniques you can use, let me intimate you with a thinking strategy I employ to make myself constantly able to generate interesting, and useful titles or topics to write about on a daily basis. The truth is even if you start and finish writing it, if your chosen writing topic(and content) is not one that will interest and benefit readers, you are unlikely to get the positive exposure and resultant rise in credibility that you desire, in the mind of your target audience . So, remember this at all times: You must continually analyse the activities you engage in(what you see, hear etc), to help you identify potential writing topics. In particular, look out for those issues you find you feel strongly about, which often make you wonder, "Can't someone do something about this?" or "There's got to be a better way to do this!" etc. You can also write to share your discovery of a new way of doing something, or an experience you had - good or bad - which helped you learn something that turned out useful etc. You will be looking to write titles that relate to issues that you have a passion for, and which - if you were woken up in the middle of the night - you would be able to speak about, almost without having to think. In my opinion, sometimes your subject does not even have to relate directly to your area of expertise. I believe that as a business person, one must demonstrate an awareness of his/her environment. Evidence of this would be demonstrated by an ability to write about current affairs or issues in society in a way, that enables you apply your professional expertise or specialised knowledge to contribute to development of people and society. Make doing the above a habit, and you will be amazed at the speed with which you'll subsequently be able to generate a constantly growing list of new topics. You would consequently have to work doubly hard to write content for each article topic, even as you spontaneously add more topics to the list. Believe me, this will happen! Specific Actions For Preparation The actions described below are to be done continually, till they become deeply ingrained habits. 1. Find/Use YOUR Best Time To Write. You may find that the best time to write will be during periods when your work demands have slowed down. That could be after close of work, if you are not too tired. Or it could be when business is actually slow! At this time, rather than dwell on that
Slide 2: fact, you might want to do some writing and get your stuff out there for syndication - and more marketing exposure which could lead to new business. 2. Enlist The Support Of Trusted Others. Depending on how self-driven and disciplined you are, you may find it useful to deliberately enlist a trusted person, with empathy for what you wish to do, to periodically ask you about your progress. Could be your best friend, business partner, spouse or mentor. Agree a date or a specific interval when s/he will ask to know how far you have gone. You can also think up some "sanctions" s/he can impose on you if you do not "impress". 3. Create Quiet Time For Deep Thinking. To ensure you really come up with an original piece of writing, you need to dig deep within yourself. Again, people differ. Some may not need to do this, but I have often found it useful to withdraw from people(even if only "mentally"), so as to reflect deeply about an issue or topic I consider of writing potential. During this time, you are able to generate YOUR own ideas for discussing the subject and come up with original perspectives for analysis, solutions etc. Of course, if you have chosen a subject you have little knowledge about or experience in, you are unlikely to come up with much that would be of any use. That's why I said choose a subject you feel strongly about and/or have a passion for. Human beings are never at a loss for words when they have to contribute to discussions about issues they feel strongly about. Ever noticed that? One more thing on this. Only AFTER doing this step(i.e. deep thinking on your own) should you pick up ANY previously written material by yourself or anyone else, to read on the subject you want to write about. It can take you days, weeks or even months, depending on the topic, to get enough ideas. Remember, you write in order to make people believe you are credible/knowledgeable, and have something useful to offer, which your competition may not. If they read your writings and keep thinking, "Well he never seems to say anything that has not been said before", you are unlikely to get much of what has been called "share of mind" amongst them! 4. Always Set A Target Date. Even though I touched on this when talking about your trusted "others", it's still worth mentioning again. This time I mean YOU setting specific target dates when you will finish writing say "ten(10) new articles". For example, this article you are reading is one of over forty new ones I chose to begin uploading to my website from 1st April 2006. A few of them will also be submitted to other websites(like [http://www.ezinarticles.com]) to generate additional exposure for me. 5. Be Thorough - BUT Don't Go Overboard! Spell-check with your word processor, then "eye-spellcheck" it again. Don't stop there. If possible, have someone proof-read it for you. For some reason, one or two naughty ones always "escape" getting caught by YOUR eyes, and only those other "helpers" just mentioned will save you! It's true that aiming for perfection can lead to work that never leaves the table. However, effort must be also made - constantly - to achieve certain standards of writing that will impress your readers enough to make them accept you as the authority you claim to be(or seek to become).
Slide 3: 6. Constant Self-Development Work hard on yourself, so you can become a better writer. Read wide, and reflect often - deeply too - on what you read. Improve your vocabulary. Use a dictionary. To find words with similar meanings, use a thesaurus. All this should enable you intelligently spice up your writing with variations that keep your prose from becoming boring. A WARNING! As they say, Keep It Simple. Avoid using needlessly complex words that could alienate some of your readers. A rule of thumb I am aware is well followed on the net, is to make sure a sixth grader can easily read and understand anything you write. That way, you can be sure majority of your readers will have little - if any - difficulty making sense of, and enjoying your writings. Specific Writing Techniques You Can Use In my experience, you may sometimes begin a writing project using one technique, and get stuck at one point(say, due to say "writer's block"), only to pick up your pace again by switching to another technique, instead of having to wait till you can continue using the former technique. I provide practical examples as I progress. 1. Use A Mind Map This is my number ONE tool! I use it every day to keep myself sane :-). As I mentioned earlier, you will - if you follow the advice offered here - likely get to a point where you are constantly battling to scribble down multiple suggestions of ideas and discussion points for different article titles in your head! I go through this every day. Know this. If you fail to write them down YOU WILL FORGET most, if not all. Anytime that has happened to me, I always felt like I had lost a huge sum of money. Losing money gives a bad feeling. That bad feeling taught me over the years to ALWAYS remember to write them down. The Mind Map is useful in doing all this, when you're in your quiet time. Google the string "How to use a mind map" for useful resources that will teach you how to use that powerful thinking and learning tool. About two years ago, I helped out a client who had a phobia for speech writing by "Googling" the string "How to write a speech in five minutes using a Mind Map". The results returned were most helpful to him! You can also read Tony Buzan's books on Speed Reading and Mind Mapping, to learn how to use one. I find the old fashioned method of sitting in a quiet corner with my pen on paper suits me best. Maybe that's because I work in a country where electricity supply still remains quite erratic, making it necessary for me to improvise for those periods when I do not have access to the computer :-). The best part of using the mind map however, is that it saves you having to write so much in order to put down another relevant thought. Yet when you look at the short phrase, keyword or acronym in the web-like mass of linked lines, you are still able to make sense of it, and even use it to generate additional ideas to develop the map further. As a speech writing(or speech making) tool therefore, it can be simply invaluable. Even if you decide to discard everything else you read in this article MAKE SURE YOU HOLD ON
Slide 4: TO THIS ONE. Becoming proficient at using Mind Maps for your thinking, learning and writing, will boost your productivity dramatically! This article you are reading was prepared using a Mind Map, about 48 hours before I wrote it. Believe me when I say Mind Mapping can make your writing feel effortless, and at the same time quite pleasurable! 2. Prepare A Dummy Presentation Imagine you want to give a presentation to a very important group of people who are likely to use your performance as a key factor in deciding whether or not to hire you to execute a project for them in your area of expertise. Pretend you have to prepare a set of presentation slides based on their chosen topic. Let's say you have only 20 to 30 minutes to speak, after which you will have to take questions. Ask yourself the following questions: a. What are the most important things you need to make sure you say that will show that you KNOW your subject and get you a standing ovation. Write those down. b. What are the likely objections some members of your listening audience will have ? Write those down too. c. What are the proposals you want to make for action the audience may need to take Write those down as well. d. What is/are the most important lessons you want your audience to remember, AFTER they have departed fro the venue about YOU and YOUR presentation topic that will make them tell others ? Write those down too. Go through the collection of bullet point ideas you have and arrange them in the logical order you would want to present them, if you had to speak. Now, sit down in front of your PC and use those notes you generated to type out a draft of your article. Polish and refine it, till you're sure it's done. 3. Develop And/Or Use A Writing Template Although this technique is easily applicable for other purposes(like writing of articles/books), I have found it particularly useful for writing quick proposals in the workplace. Back in paid employment, I was a highly self-motivated employee who chose to function as a positive change agent. In this regard, I was very much into the habit of writing proposals. In many cases, my proposals were written to senior management, sometimes resulting in changes being effected in the way things were being done. (Read my article titled Achieve Recognition and Attract Career Advancement Opportunities By Being A Change Agent to learn how I used my proposals to influence positive changes in my last workplace.) In writing my proposals, I had a format or template that I always started with, then modified to suit whatever my intended purpose was. The format I used was based on an understanding I had developed of my intended target audience: Senior Corporate Executives in the technical function. These were usually highly numerate individuals with prior lower management experience in the
Slide 5: technical function they now oversaw. They were very busy people, and time was often not something they had in generous amounts.Such people therefore naturally lacked patience for lengthy proposals. But I felt I had a few ideas I wanted them to consider, and which I was determined to have them respond to/take action on. So, I developed a format that enabled me present my entire proposal at anyone time on ONE A4 sheet of paper, in a straightforward manner, sticking only to relevant facts and/or notable exceptions. The top of the paper, always had the company name, date, my name, department etc. Next came the proposal topic. Then the body of the write up comprised the following sub-headings: (a). The Current Situation (b). The Problem Identified (c). The Alternatives Proposed - or sometimes (d). The Solution Recommended I would use the above sub-headings to highlight key technical issues in such a way that my proposed solutions would be easy to evaluate in terms of direct, and measurable benefits that could be derived. The point of the foregoing is to suggest that you develop a format or template of your own that will stimulate your thinking better, so that you quickly generate an outline and content for your article topics. 4. Start A Series This is probably the easiest technique anyone can successfully use to write and publish a book. I'll narrate a true personal story to explain how it works. In May 2002, I began offering a FREE onehour talk - Ten Ways You Can Use Self-Development To Create The Future You Want - to various organisations that fit my target audience profile as a means of marketing my Self-Development talks, seminars and coaching programs to them. After delivering this talk to a number of audiences for about three months, I decided(based on the good responses and high ratings in the completed speaker feedback forms returned to me by those who attended), to convert it to an Internet email autoresponder course. My speaker notes were only bullet point outlines, so I knew I would practically have to write each of the Ten Ways(or lessons) the way I normally spoke about them to my audience. One afternoon I did that for the First Way, and set it up as the first of ten auto responder email course lessons accessible by activating my auto responder at http://www.getresponse.com. Next, I sent an email out to people already on my mailing list inviting them to sign up for the ecourse, requesting that they recommend it to others, if they liked what they read in the first one. By the afternoon of the next day, I noticed about five people had signed up. Then I realised I was in trouble. Now I HAD TO make sure the lesson for week 2 of the course was ready before the autoresponder was due to send it out, else the subscribers would get nothing and I would look very bad. To cut the long story short, I found myself working very hard to write each week's lesson well ahead, sometimes setting up lessons for two consecutive weeks in one week so as to buy myself some time to do other things . By the time the ten weeks were over, and the e-course was completed by the first subscriber, I
Slide 6: realized I had effectively written a complete book! Today, I have purchased copies of the manual from one of my online stores located at http://www.lulu.com/sdaproducts - and even sent one out as a gift to a friend in another country. The experience I gained from doing it all opened my eyes to income generating opportunities via POD publishing. I have narrated the above story to show you how I discovered that starting a writing "series" can help one start and finish writing a book. You could, for instance, write one article and publish it with a footnote or byline saying it is an excerpt from a forthcoming book. Then you would work hard to finish the book by writing more articles on a similar theme till you're done. You'll end up with a set of published articles, and a new book ready for publication. Talk about killing two birds with one stone! 5. Prepare A Sales Advert I once read an article in which the author proposed that to write a book, start by writing a sales advert for it. In order for the advert to be successful, it must contain details that will convince those who read it to buy the book (and hopefully not return it). The above logic - though unusual - is easy enough to understand. Basically, you would use the advert you have written to decide what to say/write in the article - or better still, a book. In your own sales ad, you could decide to write a dummy testimonial, in which a reader highlights useful value s/he got from reading your (yet to be written) book. That will then guide you to write content in the book that you expect will elicit responses close to that in your dummy testimonial. It appears a bit clumsy, but given some thought and with practice, you might find it helps to think like this in generating ideas of what to say in your new book. Choose the topic. Then prepare the sales advert . Next write content that ensures readers of the finished book will agree, that its contents fully meet the expectations raised in the sales advert you wrote for it. If you are not sure you can do this objectively enough, get someone you know to look through it and give you some qualitative feedback. Finally, it might be useful to ask yourself this question : If I saw this ad in a newspaper or on the net, would I feel an irresistible urge to purchase a copy of the book it describes? If you get a NO, then go back and RE-WORK IT. 6. Use Excerpts From Your Books Books you have written (they may or may not have been published) in the past, could provide an excellent source of new writing topics and ideas. Writing can be an interesting experience. Whenever I write, I have noticed that sometimes there are points I would love to discuss further or elaborate on a bit more. But when I look at the topic I am supposed to be focussed on, I decide it might be better to leave them as they are. What then happens is sometime in the future, I come across that part of the article, report or book I wrote, and realise some new experiences have given me even more ideas on it, that could make up a
Slide 7: new article. Some days or weeks later, I would have written another article based on that insight. Evidence that this happens is probably what is sometimes seen at the end of some articles. There the writer adds a heading such as "Related Articles", with a listing of click-enabled article titles or URLs. From a website usability and web marketing point of view, adding such related URL links at the end, or in the body of your writing is very likely to help you keep a visitor that fits your target audience profile on your website longer than if you had not used such techniques. And that may eventually lead to her becoming impressed enough to order a product or service from your site, or possibly contact you, thereby giving you a chance to close the sale. Summary The strategies and techniques I have described in this article require the user to apply them for his/her purposes with commitment, if s/he is to record the results described. That is why you MUST choose to write on topics that you have a natural interest in, and/or an enduring passion for. Lastly, in writing this article, I will point out that I make no claims to having perfected the art of writing. What I have done here is to share with the reader, a number of ways by which I strive daily to become more proficient in my writing. I do so, based on my understanding of success in any endeavour as being a "never ending journey in the pursuit of excellence"(i.e. a process of continuous improvement) that any individual can choose to embark upon. I wish you success. This article is one of twenty-five contained in Tayo Solagbade’s Ebook titled "25 Articles/True Stories On Self-Development, Entrepeneuring & Web Marketing To Help You Succeed More Often”. Self-Development/Performance Enhancement Specialist – Tayo Solagbade - works as a Multipreneur, helping individuals/businesses develop and implement strategies to achieve their goals, faster and more profitably. Download your copy of his 25 Articles Ebook from http://www.lulu.com/content/268555. You get full reprint rights for each article. Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Tayo_Solagbade
Slide 8: ==== ==== Get Paid To Write! Click the link below! http://tiny.cc/idnkf ==== ====

   
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