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cover letter template doc
It might seem to be an easy step. Just open a new file and begin typing, right? But it’s rare for this to work for me. I like to have a strong working title and a summary before I write a lot of. John’s written about this before, after he discovered he could speed up his composing procedure ~600% by producing an outline .
As I wrote an outline for a post this week I realized I was repeating the same procedure for every single new article I work . Like any good programmer, I realized repeating the exact same work over and over means that is probably a fantastic opportunity for automation.
So I decided to create a few templates for myself.
I started by creating a template for the most common Ghost blog post arrangement. Since that structure’s particular to mepersonally, I also 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 only Markdown documents, so go right ahead and save them, rename them if you like, and copy-and-paste the contents into a new file whenever you’re ready to compose. Click the”view raw” link on the bottom of every list to view the plain text version, which you can copy into a new file in your favourite writing program.
With this template, I can begin by answering each dot point using a few notes about what I should write in that section. From the time I am done, I’ll have a rough sketch of what the final piece will look like. This should make it simpler to enlarge my notes to fully-formed paragraphs and cause them to flow to each other nicely, since I know the structure of the whole piece beforehand.
Using the template, I discovered that my outlining process became much more involved. I had really planned to perform a full rough draft of that post in the morning, but it took me a couple of hours simply to have the outline done, so that I put off the draft for another day.
On the flip side, I’d over 1600 words composed in my outline, and a good idea about what each segment would contain and how they would work together to create a sense of flow from the article. Even though outlining took more than usual, drafting took less time because I had set myself up for success. Composing the draft was only a matter of taking each chunk of notes out of the outline and filling out it into a readable paragraph or 2.
It was quite a different procedure to how I normally work, and I had been tempted a couple of times to avoid the additional research or thinking required to fill out the outline correctly. I frequently put off these things until I’m drafting, and that’s when I must be focused on writing instead. I adhered to it, however, and by the time I got around to writing the draft I was glad I had.
I have really overhauled my outline and research procedure by applying this template. It’s a more effective part of my process now, and makes drafting easier. Hopefully it’ll lead to better function, too.
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