One easy tip for driving yourself insane while blogging

Many successful entrepreneurs will tell you that one of their critical success factors is clearly demonstrating how their services benefit their clients.  They share client success stories, they give out high-value content, and they make it a point to do whatever they can to stay top-of-mind with their prospects.

An excellent way to accomplish all that is by consistently writing content-rich blog posts.  However, you know that simply making time to sit down and write can be challenging – and that doesn’t even address coming up with meaty content, week after week.  Even if you’re able to successfully overcome these challenges, however, there’s still a sure-fire way to make yourself crazy while writing your blogs.

What is this no-fail secret?

Try editing your content as you write it.

Too often writers are tempted to combine these two functions instead of keeping them separate, and the results are rarely pretty.

Writing the content initially is like putting down the first coat of paint: It’s so much better than what was there before (a blank screen or that pea-green wall, as the case may be), but it’s not nearly as good looking as it will be after you go over it again.

Successful entrepreneurs refuse to compromise their productivity.Here’s the catch: If you try editing as you write, it’s like trying to lay down the second coat of paint before the first is dry.  You don’t have a solid foundation, and it’s hard to see the spots that need extra attention.  In addition, you’re at another kind of writing risk: you may get so bogged down in the fine details that you lose the big picture, or put so much energy and time into getting the first paragraphs just right that you run out of oomph for completing the post.

If that’s not quite enough to make you nuts, here’s a bonus tactic: Put blogging on your “when I get around to it” list.  This is practically guaranteed to create an impressive albatross to hang around your neck, because it’s so easy to NOT get around to something that—let’s face it—takes a lot of creativity, not to mention a fair amount of time and energy.

You owe it to your future success to increase your productivity whenever you can.

One of my MasterMind buddies and I have hit on a system that flies in the face of this crazy-making advice and has at least tripled our productivity when it comes to writing any sort of marketing content, whether it’s web copy or blog posts:  We have a standing weekly date during which we devote two hours to writing.

We identify our topics beforehand, check in with each other at the start of our writing time, and then report back with our results after two hours.  This allowed Pat to almost completely re-write her website copy and enabled me to write and schedule blog posts one full month in advance.  Equally terrific, since we know we have writing time scheduled each and every week, we’re almost never under the gun to get something written NOW.  That means we have the luxury of writing one day, then stepping back from the content and editing it the next day.

Sometimes we find during the review that the writing we thought was so good is actually pretty crappy; we thus have the chance to improve it before posting it.  (This is an excellent strategy for avoiding public humiliation.)  Other times we review our writing and realize that it’s already damn good; then we make some minor tweaks and head for the celebratory chocolate.

So how do you handle your blogging challenges?  Do you schedule your writing? Develop and stick to a content calendar? Enlist a writing buddy for accountability?  Let us know the ways you handle this so we have the choice of how NOT to go crazy when blogging.

By the way, thanks to basykes for posting the going-nowhere-fast image in the Creative Commons section of Flickr.

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