Label Template 5160 from 30 labels per sheet template , image source: www.printablelabeltemplates.com
30 labels per sheet template
It may seem like a simple step. Simply open a new document and start typing, right? But it’s rare for that to work for me. I love to have a solid working name and a summary before I write too much. John’s written about this earlier, after he discovered he could speed up his writing process ~600% by producing a summary first.
As I wrote an outline for a post this week I realized I was repeating the exact same process for every new article I work . Like any fantastic programmer, I realized repeating the same work over and above means that is probably a good opportunity for automation.
So I decided to make a few templates for myself.
I began by developing a template for the common Ghost blog article structure. Since that structure’s particular to me, I created a template based on how John constructions his posts, and another according to a writer whose work I admire.
For each template I’ve made a gist to show you what they look like. They’re just Markdown files, so go right ahead and save them, rename them if you prefer, and copy-and-paste the contents into a new file whenever you’re ready to compose. Click on the”view raw” link to the bottom of every gist to view the plain text version, which you may copy into a new file in your favorite writing program.
With this template, I can start with answering each dot point with a few notes about what I should write in that segment. From the time I’m done, I will have a rough sketch of what the final piece will look like. This should make it simpler to expand my notes to fully-formed paragraphs and make them flow to each other well, because I know the structure of the whole piece in advance.
Using the template, I found that my summarizing procedure became much more involved. I had really planned to do a full rough draft of the post in the morning, but it took me a couple of hours just to get the outline done, so that I put the draft off for a different day.
On the flip side, I had over 1600 words written in my outline, and a good idea of what each segment would comprise and how they would work together to create a sense of flow in the post. Even though outlining took more than normal, drafting took less time because I’d put myself up for victory. Composing the draft was just a matter of taking each chunk of notes out of the outline and filling it out into a readable paragraph or two.
It was quite a different procedure to how I normally do the job, and that I had been tempted a couple of times to avoid the extra research or thinking necessary to fill out the outline correctly. I frequently put these things off until I am drafting, which is when I should be focused on writing rather. I adhered to it, though, and from the time I got around to writing the draft I was grateful I had.
I’ve actually overhauled my outline and study procedure by applying this template. It’s a more productive part of the process now and makes printing easier. Hopefully it will lead to better function, also.
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