Tag Archives: Writing

6 Reasons You Need a Focus When Writing…

Why do you need a focus?

It makes your writing direction clear.

Without a Focus:

  • You’ll continually start new projects
  • Not be able to decide what to work on
  • Have multiple ideas with no direction
  • get frustrated
  • Make your family frustrated
  • Fight depression, anxiety, and more

So pull together all those ideas you’ve had in the past while, pick the ones you are most passionate about and make a decision on one of those projects considering:

  • Which one have you done the most research on
  • Which one do you have the most knowledge or experience with
  • What was your passion, your original reason, for starting it

Once you’ve made your decision stay focused on that and work through to get your project finished.

Pick up  a FREE Book Brainstorming Planner at: www.BringOutThePotential.com

 

5 Strategies – Bust through Procrastination…

Why is it people procrastinate in the first place –

Any of these sound familiar?

I’ll Do It Later

I’m Too Busy Working On Small Tasks Which Are Easier

Perfectionism

Fear of the Unknown

Not Sure How To Get Started

I Lack Motivation

I’m Easily Distracted

Laziness

“If you put off everything till you’re sure of it, you’ll never get anything done.”

So Start Where you Are

With What You’ve Got

JUST START!

5 Strategies to Bust through Procrastination:

  1. Procrastination-Busting Strategy #1: Write down, list your goals. Make them Achievable, Attainable and Meaningful
  2. Procrastination-Busting Strategy #2: Identify your procrastination habits. Examples: daydreaming, having another cup of coffee, pulling into your shell,  doodling or keeping yourself busy with small tasks.
  3. Procrastination-Busting Strategy #3: Designate a writing space specifically for writing or creating, with no distractions. Make it your sacred space.
  4. Procrastination-Busting Strategy #4: Leave your preconceived limitations
    at the door.Common limitations: It’s not perfect. What if I fail? What if no one likes my work? This has been done before.Replace with: It doesn’t have to be perfect! What if I succeed? What if people do like my work? I have a unique voice for someone to hear.
  5. Procrastination-Busting Strategy #5: Get support. Get it from friends, family, online, with a mentor.

Do you have other strategies for busting though procrastination? Let us know in the comments. We’d love to hear from you.

[Writing Process Broken Down] 9 Short Simple Writing Sessions – Get Past Overwhelm – Get On to Writing Your Book…

Feeling like you don’t have enough time to write?

Let’s make time!

First with limited time it’s important to use that time wisely. So turn off any distractions, put up the do not disturb sign and have everything prepared ready to go before you sit down to start writing. This will save you from wasting time.

Below I’ve broken the writing process down into short simple writing sessions you could do in the time you have for a coffee break.

Ready to finally get on with your writing?

Session 1 – A Brainstorming session to start getting those book ideas flowing. Write everything that pops into your mind down with no censorship or criticism.

Session 2 – Review ideas and pick out the ones that resonate with you. Write each separate idea down on its own sticky note ready for organizing in a “Post It Wall” outline.

Session 3 – Build the characters for your story. Write them on your sticky notes. Give them special attributes and characteristics. Try to be as specific as you can to make them more believable and life like. Again this is a brainstorming session so try to get into your character and write down ALL your ideas to flesh them out.

Session 4 – This will be your actual first writing session to come up with a catchy opening paragraph. Include your setting, introduce your main character(s) and start the momentum happening. Most importantly come up with some kind of hook to capture your reader’s interest and draw them into your story.

Session 5 – Revisit the beginning of your book and enrichen it. Bring your reader right into the setting of your book. Make your characters come to life. Develop your style and let the story unfold.

Session 6 – As we move into the middle section of our book our plot and subplot unfolds along with the conflicts our character is working through. Now’s the time to put together an outline for your book. Got back to all your sticky notes and using the Post It Wall outline paste those sticky notes to a blank wall and start to organize them and create a direction for your story. Fill in any gaps and add descriptive words or phrases to start fleshing out your story. Revisit your Post It Wall outline as often as needed.

Session 7 – Now that you have an outline and some direction for your story you can get on to writing a quick rough draft to your book. This will be the first of many drafts. Doing it quickly will give you a clean trajectory following the outline of your story. If you blast your way to the ending this will give you a much better sense of what belongs in the beginning and middle sections of your book.

Session 8 – With your outline and the rough draft you should have developed the key principles, parts and milestones as benchmarks to move along within your story structure. When you did the strategizing and plotting of your main story points in your outline you probably have a pretty good idea of how your story will end. If you’re not quite certain here is where you’ll do some brainstorming to arrive at a strong ending for your story. Write down a few endings and read them with your whole story to see which one flows the best and is best suited to your story.

Session 9 – Time for revision – recite and rewrite. With a rough draft completed now is the time to get more critical and revise your work making sure each paragraph leads to the next. Each page leads to the next page. Reread your work (reading it out loud). Look for the flow. Ask yourself questions such as “What exactly is happening here and what effect does it have on my character? Have I expressed my ideas in a way that will give my readers the perspective I was hoping for, engaging them and guiding them on the path of my story? You the writer will always be controlling the direction of your story. Does each scene deepen your reader’s connection to the story?
This is where you will be doing your cutting or reworking of weak areas. Recite them once more and rewrite until you are happy with what you have created.

These tips were taken from my book “The Coffee Break Author”

Make sure to read the complete version of “The Coffee Break Author” by Patrice Porter found at http://bringoutthepotential.com It is full of tips and insights to help you through your writing process.

Want easy access to what these writing sessions are?

Writing Sessions is now available FREE to download onto your Alexa devices.

https://www.amazon.com/Patrice-Porter-Writing-Sessions/dp/B07F8PMPKJ
No Alexa device – no problem you can get the Reverb app for Mobile phones FREE.

Writing Cheat # 10 The formula for writing faster than you ever have before.

Earlier, I talked about how important it is to create efficient systems in business. It’s best to have a streamlined process you follow for everything you do.

It’s time to create an efficient process for your writing life. This isn’t meant to crush your creativity, it’s to get the “what do I do next?” question out of the picture. You’ll have a process for what you’re doing next, leaving room for you to be more creative and better at what you do.

Here is an example narrative to help you figure out your process:

“First, I come up with story ideas. I generate story ideas by _______________________.

I write my story and book ideas as they come to me. Next, I choose the story I am going to work on next. When I can’t decide, I ______________________________.

Then, I research ideas to include in my book. I only look for relevant and specific research. I organize my notes as I go.

Next, I follow these cheats as I get ready to write my book:

____________, ____________, ____________, ____________, ____________

I am now prepared to write the book. I write during these times: ____________, ____________, ____________.

If I get writer’s block, I ____________ and ____________ to get back on track.

Then, I ____________________________________.

Finally, my first draft is complete.”

This example can become anything you want it to become. The important thing is that you create a personalized system for writing. You cover your bases and leave nothing to chance. You have steps and solutions for everything. Consider this both a contract and insurance policy for yourself– you’ll never have to get off track.

Putting These 10 Cheats to Use

Choose the cheats that are calling out to you. There was likely one that gave you an “ah ha!” moment.

Start by implementing that one.

Play around with the ideas, put them to use, and watch your productivity soar.

What’s more is that these tips should invigorate your writing. You’ll feel good about what you’re doing. You’ll be able to release more for Kindle than you could have dreamed before, and your readers will love it.

It’s all about being efficient, removing mind blocks, unleashing your potential, and letting your creativity shine through.

Don’t let these ideas sit here, unused.

Writing better and faster with less work? It’s a dream come true, and the gift is sitting here, waiting for you to use it

Get a FREE Copy of “How to Be a Writer Who Flies High, Makes Money and Dazzles the Folks Back Home” CLICK HERE

Writing Cheats #9 You’re a Character

Writers psyche themselves out constantly. Maybe you’re about to write your first book and don’t even think you can call yourself a writer yet. Or, maybe you envy another writer’s style and don’t think you can measure up. Or, maybe you’re feeling so stuck and uninspired lately that you can’t complete your projects.

Whatever it is, it’s time to get over it. It’s zapping your creativity, output, and…your wallet.

It’s time to go outside of yourself a little bit. It’s time to think of yourself as a character. That might sound strange, but it really can help. Just as you would create a character sketch for someone in your books, create a character sketch for yourself as a writer. There are three steps to this:

  1. Invent yourself– Brainstorm who you are as a writer. What you look like, think about, and talk about as a writer. Now brainstorm who you ideally are as a writer. What is your process? What do people say about your work? Where do you work?
  2. Picture yourself– Next, close your eyes and picture yourself writing. See yourself smiling with confidence as you type away. See yourself finishing the piece. See yourself publishing it on Kindle, happy all the while. See the praise rush in as people read the words. Get a very clear picture in mind– create a vision board to really cement the images.
  3. Interview yourself– Finally, interview yourself. Create a list of questions you’d ask any writer you were interested in. Then, answer the questions, honestly and completely. Your answers may surprise you. They will also give you deeper insight into who you are as a writer.

This process helps you come into your own as a writer. It gives you the confidence and assurance you need to produce outstanding work, more quickly.

Writing Cheat # 6 – Know exactly what you’re doing, and when.

Do you write haphazardly? I know some writers who “write” all day long. I know some business owners who “work” all day. They’ll claim to spend 16 hour days working or writing and are at their breaking point. They definitely give their blood, sweat, and tears to the craft.

If you’re that type of writer or worker, I want you to look hard at what you’re actually doing.

  • How often do you check your email?
  • How often do you visit news sites?
  • How much time do you spend on Facebook?
  • How often do you find yourself getting into debates on Internet forums?
  • Do you check celebrity gossip sites?
  • Do you find yourself getting up for a drink, to use the bathroom, to get a snack, to check on the cat dozens of times in your work day?
  • Do you find yourself at the end of a work day, wondering what in the world you did all day and why you don’t have more of your project done?

I’ll be the first to say that I work long days. But, my days are pretty tightly focused. I frequently check in on my forum members and my Facebook group members. You’ll rarely find me flittering my days away doing nothing. It takes dedication to get to this point and I won’t say it’s always easy– the Internet is an endlessly distracting place with any number of rabbit holes.

I want you to give yourself a maximum of 3 hours a day to work at your computer over the next three days. That’s it. You’re not allowed to be on your computer, for any reason, longer than three hours.

These 3 challenge hours will include the following activities:

  • Writing
  • Marketing your Kindle books
  • Checking email
  • Spending time checking news outlets, gossip, and funny cat pictures

Yes, you have big projects to complete. You have goals and deadlines.

You still have those goals and deadlines…but you now have much less time to work on them for three days.

Don’t worry– I’ll wager that you’ll get a lot more done than you usually do. There are two things at work here:

  • You naturally work better, faster, and more efficiently when you’re crunched for time. You don’t have 16 hours a day to work during this challenge, so your conscious and subconscious will find ways for you to work smarter.

You’ll neither have the time nor the inclination to check out time wasting sites. You only have 3 hours– those dancing cats aren’t that interesting. You also won’t feel the pull to do something fun while you work so hard because

  • you won’t feel like you’re missing out. You have 21 hours to do whatever else you’d like to do (assuming you don’t have an outside job– even then, your “free” hours truly become your own). Read a book, go for a walk, or watch tons of trashy TV if you want. The rest of the day belongs to you.

Do a self-evaluation after the experiment. Did you get more done than normal? You probably did– working a fraction of the time. Adjust your work day from there and think about what you have to do and what you really want to do. Those low-value time wasting websites are sucking away your productivity and time away from activities you really want to do.

“Create an EBook today. Publish It on Amazon. Profit From It for the Rest of Your Life!” Get a FREE Copy CLICK HERE

Writing Cheats #5 Change where you are.

Writers are creatures of habit. They do the same things the same way. Sometimes, this works well– maybe you have a lucky chair or desk you write in. Sometimes, though, this sameness causes things to go stale– and it shows up in your writing.

If you’re feeling stuck, bland, or uninspired, you need a change of scenery. Here are some ideas of things you can do to jumpstart you physically, mentally, and emotionally:

  • Do something you’ve never done before.
  • Go to the beach and brainstorm or write there.
  • Go to a busy Starbucks or local cafe and write there.
  • Go for a walk through the woods by yourself with no electronics.
  • Take an entire week off with no access to electronics.
  • People watch for an entire afternoon
  • Read something in a genre you’ve never read before
  • Re-read your favorite book from childhood
  • Call someone you haven’t called in a while
  • Apologize to someone you need to apologize to
  • Pay the toll for someone behind you
  • Spend the day on a farm
  • Visit the “poor” section of town
  • Volunteer in a homeless shelter for an afternoon
  • Visit the ritzy section of town
  • Dress up like someone you admire
  • Read about the life of a writer from two centuries ago

… you get the idea. It’s time to break out and do something completely unexpected. You may have heard this advice before, but you likely haven’t seen anything like this list before. One or more of those ideas stood out to you. Now, do them.

You’ll come back to your writing with a new perspective, a new jolt of creativity, and total freedom to write something awesome much more quickly than you would have had you just stared at the blinking cursor for hours on end.

“How To Be a Writer Who Flies High, Makes Money and Dazzles the Folks Back Home” Get Your FREE Copy Click Here

Writing Cheat # 4 Take away all questions before you start

Some writers try to write with only a vague notion of what they are going to write about. That can work for some writers, but you might not be one of them if you struggle with writer’s block, inconsistency, plot holes, and a number of other issues that will sink your Kindle book.

Many writers “interview” their characters before they sit down to write. They pretend to have their characters tell them about their lives, past, present, and future. This is a really great technique, but let’s take it a step further. You are going to ask your characters how they feel about everything that happens in the story.

At this point, you likely have your major plot points figured out. But, every writer has experienced the frustration that comes along when they just don’t know how to move the plot forward or how to solve a plot hole that doesn’t make sense. Stewing about these problems can put a giant kink in the works. It’s almost impossible to move forward if these questions are hovering over you, unanswered.

Here’s what you can do instead– answer these questions ahead of time. No, you can’t predict every question or issue you’ll have. But, you can be way ahead of the game and can be prepared to solve any issue that comes your way.

List the major plot points you have planned. Then, interview every character who will be affected or even present at the time of the event. “Ask” your characters what they saw, who they saw, what they felt, what happened (for them) before and after the major plot point. Remember to do this for each character in turn-even minor ones. This helps you see the plot from all angles so you can plug up any holes. This can be as quick or as detailed as you want to make it.

Now, when you run into questions or aren’t sure what to write next, you can just look at what your characters told you. You’ll never get stuck and your writing will be even more powerful and creative.

You can also do this with non-fiction, to some extent. It depends on your topic and your goal.

“Create and E Book Today. Publish It On Amazon. Profit From It For The Rest Of Your Life!”  Get Your FREE Copy CLICK HERE

Writing Cheats #1-See the End before the Beginning.

Not really cheats but it’s more fun to think of them that way. Really it’s tips and methods for efficiency and ease in writing.

Writing Cheat #1 –  See the end before the beginning.

You’ve been told to create outlines before you get started writing. You’ve been told that this takes away writer’s block and gives you a smooth path as you write. All of that is true…there’s just one problem. Your writer’s block and uncertainty can be so severe that you can’t even get that far. What do you do then? If you’re like most writers, you sit around feeling anxious with your fingers motionlessly poised over the keyboard. You waste minutes, if not hours, with this uncertainty. It zaps your creativity and your best ideas.

This problem (I think we all go through it) got me thinking about what I know about success. Masters of productivity and goal setting tell us to create vision boards, mind movies, and things like that to become more successful. We’re supposed to use these visuals to motivate ourselves to drop the weight, boost our incomes, or whatever will lead us to our goal.

The more I thought about it, the more I realized the same thing can apply to writing a book. We

can think about the smaller pieces (the outline) all we want. But it doesn’t mean anything unless we know what the result will be. Where is the story going? What is the point?

We know that we can be more successful if we have a vision in mind of what success looks like. By the same token, we can be more successful if we have a vision of what our book looks like. What’s the ending? What’s the purpose?

I’ve written about this quite a bit recently, and I call it “visualizing Point B”.  In other words, if you have a destination in mind, whether a trip, a goal, or in this case a completed book, before you start on your journey, you need to know where you’re going… getting from Point A (where you are now) to Point B (where you want to end up).

Now, I want you to think about the book you need to write.

If fiction: Set a timer for 10 minutes and brainstorm your ending. Where will your characters be by the end? You may know how the book will start or who will be in it, but how will it end? Have fun as you brainstorm. No idea is too crazy.

Then, go through and choose the ideal ending from what you’ve brainstormed– choose the one that stands out to you the most.

The pieces of your outline should now fall into place when you go to create the rest of the outline and start to write. You know where you’re going, so it’s much easier to map your course for getting there.

If nonfiction: The process is a bit different with non-fiction, of course, because you’re not really coming up with an ending. In a non-fiction book, the ending generally summarizes everything the book contained. You try to inspire people and get them thinking, caught up in what they’ve just learned or felt.

Go ahead and write that ending section now (it only has to be a few paragraphs for this exercise) You have your ending, so now you can easily work toward it– it’s a more freeing way of outlining. Sure, you may not know everything that will go into your book yet and you may never actually use this “ending.” But, it will relieve your mind of the duty of thinking as you write, leaving room for creativity and solid writing.

This is a mind trick as much as an organizational trick. We all want to get to the end, right? Writers don’t like to write; they like to have written (a spin-off of Michael Kanin’s, “I don’t like to write, but I love to have written”). Well, you’re at the end already. Your mind is at ease and you’re ready to put the rest of the pieces in place.

This isn’t to say that you can never change your ending. Your story will tell you where to go. The point is that you now have direction and you don’t have to think about it. You can be as creative and free because the pressure of “the perfect ending” is gone.

Find all 10  Writing Cheats at: http://bringoutthepotential.com/2017/10/03/writing-amazing-kindle-books-with-these-10-easy-cheats/

Write to be read. What you need to know and do to turn every word you write into the word that gets results.

by Dr. Jeffrey Lant

Allow me to  introduce myself. I am a writing machine. My first article
was published when I was 5 years old, 64 years ago; I’ve been a writing
machine ever since. I’ve made a fortune knowing how to manipulate the
incredible English language.

Sadly, I am in the minority. Having taught writing courses at many
institutions of higher learning, including Harvard, I long ago came to the conclusion
that most people would rather get a root canal than struggle with the dicey business
of writing so people will read, understand and respond to what they write. Needless
to say this costs them big bucks, since if you cannot use your own language, the
lingua franca of the world,as the essential tool it is for business and life success, you
lose much of the value of that language. And that is a crying shame.

I want to help you out, and I’ve therefore created the list below of key points
which when mastered dramatically improve the way you write and the results you
get.

1) Just because you’re a native English speaker doesn’t mean you know anything
about writing our complicated, sophisticated, absolutely splendid language.
Speaking and writing are two separate, though related, things, and must be seen
as such.

Start from the proposition that you are, shall we say, “challenged” by writing in
English. There are many reasons why this could occur: you weren’t properly taught.
Although teachers unions may strongly disagree, the fact is most teachers are not
trained to write words that get results. Thus, they are unable to teach their students,
who thereby start off their life-long relationship with writing the right words on the
wrong foot. What’s more, most never manage to overcome this poor start; instead
of trying to overcome the problem, they find ways to minimize or even avoid writing
altogether. That is surely what throwing the baby out with the bath water means.

2) Admit you have a problem that’s not going to get better on its own.

As a business writer for my entire (now long in the tooth) adult life, one of the saddest
things I see is respected business leaders not only unable to write the Queen’s
English proficiently but proud of themselves because they mangle it in both its spoken
and written manifestations. Yes, proud of themselves… each embarrassing misusage
and mistake proving their warped satisfaction that they are therefore “people of the
people”, thereby immune from proper usage. Just to state this proposition is to prove
what a zany idea that is… yet it is common.

3) Force yourself to write more and better.

Like so many things in life, the more you write, the better you’ll get. Most business
people are poor writers because, being VIPs, they delegate such “minor” tasks to
others. What seems at first glance to be something rational and efficient, upon
second glance proves to be nothing more than a means to slough off something you
strongly dislike. Now hear this: even if you are the Chief Poobah of the world, indeed because
you are that self-same Poobah, you need the ability to write the right words to get the
results you must have to expand your clientele and business  altogether.

This means no longer delegating all writing projects which ordinarily accrue to people
of your dignity and position, but accepting at least some of them, not least to give
yourself necessary practice… with the clear understanding that practice does most
assuredly make perfect.

4) Less is always more.

Brevity, it is said on the highest authority, is the soul of wit. It’s also the key to ensuring
that what you write will be carefully read and easily understood.

Poor writers are prolix writers; they write too much, edit too little, and manage to
kill any fruitful results that might come by burying the objective in verbosity thereby
suffocating the writing and ensuring its failure.

When you sit down to write any document whatsoever, your objective, 100% of the
time, is to

state what you aim to achieve

Then, succinctly, marshal your arguments, with the preeminent and clear focus
on what the recipient gets from you by taking the promptest possible action.

This means that if you want results, your invariable focus must be on the “you”
you are writing to; getting this person’s attention, interest, then action is what all
good business writing is about… such writing may never win the Nobel Prize for
Literature… but who cares? It can make you rich.

5) Use numbers to structure what you write.

Good writers, particularly good writers in a hurry (are there any others?) use numbers to
ensure readership and clarity. Thus,

“I have three reasons for contacting you today….”

“There are 6 major reasons why you must respond today….”

“Here are the 5 reasons you’ll want to take advantage of this offer now….”

Get the picture? Numbering provides structure, and it makes both writing and reading
of what you write easier.  Remember, you do not need to win prizes for your prose;
it need only be good enough to get the results you desire.

6) Always write for the “you” receiving your writing.

Good writers, and by that I mean fast, efficient, easy to read writers, know a secret
which, until now, has been unknown by you: that English prose sings when you
make it “you” centered, the you in question being the person you are addressing your
words to.

All people are egotistically and I-centered. Don’t fight City Hall on this one; take advantage
of this fact, to your substantial advantage. The words you write should always be about,
for, directed at and done (whether explicitly or not) for “you”, the person you must never
forget you are writing for.

7) Read your words aloud… and save your breath!

Want to know whether what you’ve written will achieve your purpose? Read it aloud
to yourself. If you find yourself meandering through dense thickets of words and
punishing verbosity, difficult “show off” words and elusive meaning and directions,
you need re-write (as every Hollywood director knows).

Sentences should never be longer than you can comfortably read in a single
breath, no fudging either.

Key points should be made, emphasized, stressed… but always in short sentences.

Your writing should have a cadence which reading aloud will demonstrate. The best
writing is writing that moves you briskly through the subject at hand, without a single
superfluous word.

Start today.

As you implement these steps and begin to see tangible results which will only
improve, you will be glad, even blissful, that the bugaboo of being a poor writer
is now gone… never to return.

What will fill its place is one result after another achieved by deft use of the written word
you feared at the beginning of this article… and now rejoice as one of the absolutely
essential tools for enhanced business success. And that’s a fact you can write home
about!

Get a FREE Copy of “Create An E-Book Today. Publish It On Amazon.com. Profit From It for the Rest Of Your Life!” by Dr.Jeffrey Lant Get Your FREE Copy CLICK HERE