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Writers tips

Keeping Your Time in Check as a Freelance Writer: 11 Proven Techniques That Will Make Writing Efficient

Writing is an amazing career, but it has some drawbacks. When you’re starting out, expect low pay and tight deadlines. This can be a problem when you have a mountain of work, and no time to do it! You need to write a 1000 word article and give yourself an hour to complete it, but it never happens. One of the worst things is spending an hour crafting a well-written article, only to find you’ve reached the grand total of 200 words. There are some amazing writers’ tips for 2019 and we’re sharing them. Try these 11 proven techniques and up your writing game.

1. Leave the Spellcheck Until the End

Starting a new article means you need to get in the zone and let your creativity flow. It’s annoying when little distractions take hold, and one of the worst is those little red lines that appear under your work. However, stopping to fix them interrupts your flow and once you lose attention, it’s hard to get it back.

We all want our work to be perfect, but leave the spelling and grammar checks while you’re writing. Turn off Grammarly or your default spelling checker and you’ll notice how much quicker your writing is.

2. Improve Your Typing Speed

Some people’s hands fly over the keyboard at rocket speed while others sit tapping at the keys. As writers, we’re used to having ideas and, our minds often work a lot quicker than our hands. It’s a problem many writers have, but there are things you can do to improve your typing speed.

Typing tests are a fantastic way to improve your typing speed and doing them regularly will improve your words per minute. One great typing test comes from Key Hero.com. The repetitive elements of the tests will show you where your typing goes wrong and help you improve on it. Imagine being able to write without stopping or losing your train of thought!

3. Challenge Yourself

Writing an article or blog is a daunting experience because others read it. That means they will form an opinion about your work and nobody wants that to be negative. Sometimes our fears of producing poor writing can make us unnecessary perfectionists. We advise you to throw caution to the wind and set yourself a time limit.

If you need to write a 500-word article, only allow yourself half an hour to complete it. If the feedback is negative, then you probably need to accept that writing a great article will take you longer than others. However, many writers find they worry for nothing and nobody notices the difference!

4. Build Your Skill

Perfection doesn’t exist, but the more you practice at something, the better you’ll be. Writers often spend their time focusing on the quality of their writing but don’t train themselves to write faster. Set yourself little tasks and see how much you get done each time. This could be seeing how much you can write while your tea steeps or your bathtub cools down.

Keep a record of how many words you write within a certain time limit and you’ll notice your writing speed improves with time.

5. Use Automation Tools

When you have to write repetitive copy, it gets very frustrating. Even worse is cutting and pasting text, which can take hours. Nothing is more distracting (or boring) than writing the same copy over and over, but you can find some useful tools to speed your writing up.

Automation Tools are great for speeding up your writing and will save you a lot of time. One of the best tools available is TextExpander. This useful tool enables you to create custom keyboard shortcuts for frequently used text. For example, if you work for a company, you can use a custom abbreviation to shorted your typing time.

6. Save The Bathroom Trips

That uncomfortable feeling in your bladder is brilliant for speeding up your writing. We should mention here that this technique could cause a bladder infection. The term “secretary’s disease” comes from secretaries holding their bladders in and getting infections. Maybe not one of the best writers’ tips for 2019 but we’ll let you decide if it’s worth trying!

7. Avoid Over-Researching

Writing an informative article requires research, but some writers spend loads of time on research instead of tapping away at the keyboard. Try to write from your mind and see how much you remember. If you interview someone, write everything that’s fresh in your mind, then look over your notes when you’ve finished.

If you need to find statistics or sources, then you can make a note and go back over the article afterward.

8. Leave the Editing

It’s tempting to edit as you write, but similarly to performing spell checks, it’ll slow you down. Editing your work after it’s finished ensures you don’t get rid of vital information and can work with a complete picture rather than piecing together bits of content.

9. Save Your Research

There will be times when you need to write similar pieces of work. This means you’ll have to find more statistics online. Save your research and split it into topics so you can access it quickly. This takes time, but you’ll notice how much it speeds up your writing.

10. Say What You Need

If you don’t have a specific word count to follow, think about whether you need to write so much. We often go into long-winded explanations, but consider your readers. They want accessible information, so try to leave out the fluff and focus on the facts.

11. Follow the Micro Break Rule

There’s significant proof that regular breaks can make you more productive. However, most writers don’t allow themselves breaks and focus on finishing the task. Writing for half an hour, then taking a ten-minute break can boost your creativity and motivate you.

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