Teen Scene from comic book page template , image source: ww2.cityofpasadena.net
comic book page template
It might look to be an easy step. Just open a new file and start typing, right? But it’s rare for that to work for me. I like to get a strong working name and an outline before I write a lot of. John’s written about this before, after he found he could accelerate his writing procedure ~600% by creating a summary first.
As I wrote an outline for a post this week I realised I was repeating the same procedure for every new post I work . Like any good programmer, I realised repeating the exact same work over and over means that is probably a good opportunity for automation.
So I decided to create a few templates for myself.
I began by developing a template for my common Ghost blog article arrangement. Since that structure’s particular to me, I also created a template based on how John constructions his posts, and another according to a writer whose work I respect.
For each template I’ve created a gist to show you what they look like. They are only Markdown files, so go right ahead and save , 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 observe the plain text version, which you may copy into a new file in your favourite writing program.
With this template, I can begin with answering each dot line with a few notes about what I need to write in that section. From the time I’m done, I’ll have a rough sketch of what the final piece will look like. This should make it easier to expand my notes to fully-formed paragraphs and cause them to flow into each other well, because I understand the arrangement of the whole piece in advance.
Using the template, I found that my outlining process became much more involved. I’d really planned to do a complete rough draft of the post in the early hours, but it took me a couple of hours just to get the outline done, so I set the draft off for another day.
On the other hand, I’d over 1600 words written in my outline, along with a solid idea of what each section would contain and how they would work together to create a feeling of flow in the post. Though outlining took more than usual, drafting took less time because I had set myself up for success. 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 2.
It had been quite a different procedure to the way I normally work, and that I was tempted a couple of times to prevent the additional research or thinking necessary to fill out the outline correctly. I frequently put off these things till I am drafting, which is when I should be centered on writing rather. I stuck to it, however, and by the time I got around to writing the draft I was glad I had.
I have actually overhauled my outline and research process by applying this template. It is a more productive part of my process now and makes drafting easier. Hopefully it’ll lead to better work, too.
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