Christmas t certificate Christmas Spirit design from gift card design template , image source: templates.office.com
gift card design template
It might seem like a simple step. Just open a new document and start typing, right? Nonetheless, it’s rare for this 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 earlier, after he found he could accelerate 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 procedure for every new article I work on. Like any fantastic programmer, I realised repeating the exact 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 creating a template for the most common Ghost blog post structure. Since that arrangement’s particular to me, I created a template based on how John structures his articles, and another based on a writer whose work I admire.
For every template I’ve created a gist to show you what they look like. They are just Markdown files, 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 the”view raw” link on the bottom of each list to observe the plain text version, which you may copy into a new file on your favourite writing program.
With this template, I can begin by answering each dot point with a few notes about what I should write in that section. By the time I’m done, I’ll have a rough sketch of what the final piece will look like. This should make it simpler to expand my notes into fully-formed paragraphs and cause them to flow to each other well, since I know the arrangement of the whole piece beforehand.
Using the template, I found that my summarizing procedure became much more involved. I had actually planned to do a full rough draft of that post in the early hours, but it took me a few hours simply to have the outline done, so that I set the draft off for another day.
On the flip side, I had over 1600 words written in my outline, and a good idea about what each section would comprise and how they would work together to create a sense of flow from the article. Even though outlining took longer than usual, drafting took time since I’d set myself up for victory. Writing 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 2.
It had been quite a different procedure to how I normally work, and that I was tempted a few times to avoid the additional research or thinking required to complete the outline properly. I often put these things off till I am drafting, and that’s when I must be centered on writing instead. I stuck to it, however, and from the time I got around to writing the draft I was glad I had.
I have really overhauled my outline and study procedure by using this template. It’s a more productive part of the process now, and makes printing easier. Hopefully it’ll lead to better work, also.
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