Well, there's always being God to write faster. But while the Ghostbusters might say yes to "Are you a God?" the truth is, not all of us can be a writing God like Larry Correia.
I recently asked Minon Troll to write me the pros and cons of writing fast. At first Minon Troll grumbled. Seems my friend didn't like being taken away from the latest manuscript of Patricia A. Knight's fifth book in the Verdantian series. Which is why the blandness and the slight change of topic and title...but don't worry, I've got my own opinion's in which I'll be integrating for fun! So here it is below.
What Can You Do To Be A Faster Writer?
If you can write faster, you’ll be able to convey your messages quicker, and beat deadlines if there are any. But like any other skill, writing techniques has to be learned, polished or even unlearned before it is refined to a fine taste.
You can learn how to write faster, and write faster, but first you need to understand what it requires. Let’s see what it takes!
Sure thing, Sparky! It's so easy.
Relevant Tips on How to be a Faster Writer
The following tips can help you improve your writing speed:
Research Your Topic
Regardless of your writing skills, techniques, or level of professionalism, you will find it extremely difficult to write faster, if you don’t know what you intend to write about. Simple research is often the answer.
Before you pick up your pen to write or tap your computer keys, conduct some research. Find out more about the topic. See what experts have said; get an insight into the opinions and ideas of others. Make comparisons and pick an angle to cover.
If you did your research quiet well, and pick an angle, you will find it easier to write. Once your writing is easy, ideas flow freely, and speed follows accordingly. If you have little or no knowledge of what you intend to write about, then all you have is often a blank sheet staring at you, as you force yourself to write slowly.
Okay, I have to say that in the beginning, it was easy to write fast. So many ideas, so little time. I'm still like that, but not when it comes to ghostwriting. So, case in point, research actually gives me ideas. Now, I'm a fiction writer, however -- knowing the facts about your characters may require research. Looking up on yahoo answers or googling a topic about my characters line of work helps me collect ideas! Ideas give you plot. Carry on Minon Troll!
Create an Outline
After the research, you can make your writing easier and faster by creating an outline. Your outline should reflect what you intend to cover in your writing, and how you intend to cover it.
If you plan to have four or five paragraphs, indicate that on your outline. Be specific by mentioning the ideas and example you intend to share in each paragraph. You may arrange the paragraphs in the order you want them to appear. Some writings start with an introductory paragraph and ends with a conclusion.
Nonetheless, there are no rules, your outline should be based on how you intend to pass your messages across, and the type of audience it is intended for.
This doesn't apply to those that are not going to write an "outline" anyway. It's like trying to explain infinite chocolate to them. To those who still believe they are "pantsers" (writers who don't call an outline and outline) you actually do outline. It's called a blurb. You have a blurb or a line in your mind, (like Jane screwed Jack, HEA) otherwise, you don't have a story. You have kidnapped words that were taken in the dead of night and forced onto a page.
I usually create an outline because I don't want to get lost as to where I am, writing wise, in the story. I use an outline to know what came before. When I write an outline, all those ideas to take my characters go right out the window once I start writing the long hand. I have a strange process. The outline is the synopsis of the story. When I'm writing a 20K word story, I have 4 paragraphs. These paragraphs represent 5K word scenes. I refer to the outline so that I know what happened. I also strikeout what was the idea and put in what really happened so that I can go back and see what I thought of doing in case it comes in handy later.
Improve Your Typing Skills
Except you still write with pen, you have to work on your typing skill. If you know exactly what you intend to write but cannot type very fast, your writing will still be slow.
Do your best to familiarize yourself with the position of keys on your computer keyboard. Type often, type every day, use a timer, observe your speed, see if you’re improving and don’t give up!
Now wait a minute Sparky!! (For those of you who don't know, I do my first draft with pen and 5X8 flash cards. This is a direct hit on yours truly.) Shakes wild fist at Minon Troll!! Why I...I like my dinosaur ways. I'd rather write slow than not at all.
Really pay Minon no mind if you're like me.
Don’t Push Yourself Too Far
There is no guarantee that anyone will be the next greatest writer of this generation. So calm down, and don’t over expect when you write. You won’t learn how to write a 1000 words article perfectly within twenty minutes in one night.
Learn how to manage your expectations. Personal disappointment can slow you down when you write. Nonetheless, don’t settle for messy write-ups, set a reasonable standard and expectations. Within a short while, you can raise your standard and expectations and be a better and faster writer.
I can't agree more! I've got no wise cracks about this one. Really, burn out is difficult to deal with.
Find a Suitable Writing Time
Writing at any level of speed often requires focus and lack of distractions. You need to find a suitable writing time that can bring out the best in you. Do you find it easier to write faster and better when you are all alone? Or do you write faster when your friend or spouse is around?
At what time of the day do you feel more relaxed and can think better and faster? You need to give yourself an edge and write at the most appropriate time for you. Some writers prefer the early hours of the morning, others prefer daytime, some can write anytime, and most prefer to write while all alone. Only you can find your suitable writing time. Do it!
To this, all I have to say is, find that time and commit!! Treat writing like a date, a marriage, your love affair. Because it is. Don't be afraid to tell other people this is your time to write. Defend the time with your life. Or like you're only happy me time.
If you can write very fast, chances are higher that you’ll require more editing. Speed and accuracy in writing doesn’t often walk hand-in-hand. After you write, you need to edit thoroughly.
Your speed has already saved you enough time for editing. Check for grammar, spelling, vague sentences, repeated ideas in different words, and run-on sentences etc. Speedy writing skills are useless if your final draft is a complete mess. As such, edit ruthlessly!
In my case, writing fast let's me edit. I think you should edit just because it's the professional thing to do.
The more you write, the better and faster you will be at it. Don’t write once in a while, or only when you feel like. Look for a reason to write every day. Write about a sport match you watched, your opinion about a topic on TV or online.
Write about your favorite TV show, and why you love it. Write about your pets, about your spouse, about your kids, siblings and neighbors etc. Write about what inspires you, scares you, and about the things you love and hate. Learn from your mistakes, improve, and you will write better and faster.
How many times have you heard this one? Well, it's because it's #1 on how to write fast. I think Minon was smart to NOT put this first as I'd give Minon the groan and "back to the blackboard with you".
Groan as I may, it works. However, if your schedule doesn't allow it, then you weren't serious about writing anyway. Pft. I'm sure to get a smack for that comment. Really, if you can only write on the full moon of every month, then at least your writing. But if that's your schedule, be patient with yourself. It will take a decade to get a full novel done.
Give Yourself Time to Master Your Speed
Your writing speed will not be constant within few attempts. Sometimes the topic you’re writing on may slow you down or inspire you to write faster. Give yourself time to master your writing speed.
Don’t get discouraged if your speed fluctuates sometimes, it happens to all writers. Give yourself some time for your new skill to sit in. You may use a timer to observe your speed, so you’ll know how well you’re doing or not. In all, speed and accuracy should be your ultimate writing goal.
Well done Minon! The last one is patience. It's the hardest part to be fair with oneself but also be committed. In other words...
My efforts are to make this a learning blog where writers can see the flip side of publishing. If you have comments that will improve your experience or have a certain topic you'd like discussed, please contact me through email - HERE.
~ Sincerley, Your Editor
Troll River Publications
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