Time is money when it comes to freelance writing. The more projects you finish, the more money that you can earn.
So, how can you become a faster writer? Here are a few tips and tools that can help you finish your articles and projects at a speedier pace, without jeopardizing quality.
1. Don’t Edit While You Write
Editing while you write takes time because you consistently stop and think about what you wrote.
Copyblogger writes that writing and editing use different sides of the brain. Getting these two sides to support each other can turn into a duel that can slow you down.
One way you can get rid of this habit is to turn off the spell checker. Not surprisingly, the red squiggly lines can distract you and force you to look back as you write.
Here are some tools that can help you break the habit of editing while you write:
- Earnest – lets you write in a setting with no distractions. There’s no spell-checker, format, grammar checking and you can’t even edit the words that you’ve written.
- Ilys – Ilys functions the same way as Earnest. Once you start writing, there’s no going back to edit or delete anything until after you’ve reached your goal.
2. Track Your Time
Another trick to faster writing is to pressure yourself.
Set a specific time or duration for writing or finishing a blog post. This forces you to start writing and not to look back on your mistakes and errors.
We recommend using the Pomodoro technique where you get a timer and force yourself to write for 25 to 30 minutes straight. You can enjoy a 5-minute break afterward.
There’s no need to be picky when it comes to timers. You can use a cellphone timer, timer app or extension – as long as you can track your writing time.
3. Leverage Automation
There are lots of automation tools that can automatically correct capitalization or writing, and provide predictive text.
One of our favorite tools is Text Expander which lets users insert “snippets” – such as email addresses, chunks of code, images, and signatures through keyboard shortcuts.
Freelance writers writing theses and academic papers can even set up a snippet group with the author’s name, frequently used terms or academic theory. This ensures that the common terms and citations are auto-corrected if they’re misspelled.
4. Block out distractions
The Muse writes that having 3 or more tabs on the web can harm your productivity. While you might ignore them as you type, the image of multiple tabs can distract your eyes.
- OneTab – converts your tabs into a list so they don’t appear on the screen while you’re working on a piece.
- OmmWriter – lets you work on your projects in full-screen mode without the tabs above the screen. This ensures that nothing can disrupt your creative process.
There’s a lot of ways you can speed up your writing but the ultimate trick is to stay focused.
Make it a habit to write faster without editing it from the start. Block out distractions so you can write more and save time.