40 Organizational Chart Templates Word Excel PowerPoint from free org chart template , image source: templatelab.com
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It may seem to be an easy step. Simply open a new file and begin typing, right? But it’s rare for this to work for me. I like to get a solid working name and an outline before I write too much. John’s written about this earlier, after he found he could accelerate his composing process ~600 percent by creating an outline .
As I wrote an outline for a post this week I realised I had been repeating the exact same procedure for every new post I work on. Like any fantastic programmer, I realized repeating the same work over and above means that’s probably a good opportunity for automation.
So I decided to make a few templates for myself.
I started by developing a template for the most common Ghost blog post structure. Since that arrangement’s particular to me, I also created a template based on how John constructions his posts, and another based on a writer whose work I respect.
For every template I’ve created a gist to show you what they look like. They are just Markdown documents, so go right ahead and save , rename them if you like, and copy-and-paste the contents into a new file whenever you’re ready to write. Click on the”view raw” link on the bottom of each gist to observe the plain text version, which you can copy to a new file in your favourite writing program.
With this template, I can start by answering each dot point using a couple of notes about what I should 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 enlarge my notes into fully-formed paragraphs and cause them to flow to each other nicely, because I know the arrangement of the entire piece beforehand.
Using the template, I discovered that my summarizing procedure became much more involved. I’d really planned to perform a complete rough draft of that post in the early hours, but it took me a few hours just to get the outline done, so that I put off the draft for a different day.
On the other hand, I had over 1600 words written in my outline, along with a good idea of what each section would comprise and how they’d work together to create a feeling of flow from the post. Even though outlining took more than normal, drafting took time because I had put myself up for success. Composing the draft was only a matter of taking each chunk of notes out of the outline and filling it out into a readable paragraph or two.
It had been quite a different procedure to how I normally work, and that I had been tempted a few times to prevent the extra research or thinking required to fill out the outline correctly. I often put off these things till I am drafting, and that’s when I should be focused on writing rather. I adhered to it, though, and by the time I got around to writing the draft I was grateful I had.
I have really overhauled my outline and research process by using this template. It’s a more productive part of my process now, and makes printing easier. Hopefully it will lead to better function, too.
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