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octagon template for quilting
It might seem like a simple step. Simply open a new file and begin typing, right? Nonetheless, it’s rare for that to work for me. I like to have a strong working title and a summary before I write too much. John’s written about this before, after he found he could accelerate his writing procedure ~600% by producing an outline first.
As I wrote an outline for a post this week I realised I had been repeating the exact same process for every new post 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 create a few templates for myself.
I started by creating a template for the common Ghost blog post arrangement. Since that arrangement’s particular to me, I created a template based on how John constructions his posts, and another based on a writer whose work I admire.
For each template I’ve made a gist to show you what they look like. They are only Markdown files, so go 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 on the bottom of each list to observe the plain text version, which you may copy to a new file in your favorite writing app.
With this template, I can begin by answering each dot point using a couple of notes about what I need to write in that segment. By the time I’m done, I will 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 make them flow to each other well, since I understand the structure of the whole piece beforehand.
Using the template, I discovered that my outlining process became more involved. I’d actually planned to perform a complete 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 other hand, I’d over 1600 words composed in my outline, along with a solid idea about what each section would contain and how they’d work together to create a sense of flow in the article. Even though outlining took more than usual, drafting took time since I had set myself up for success. Writing the draft was only a matter of taking each chunk of notes from the outline and filling out it into a readable paragraph or 2.
It was quite a different process to how I normally do the job, and that I had been tempted a couple of times to prevent the extra research or thinking required to complete the outline properly. I frequently put off these things until I am drafting, which is when I should be centered on writing rather. I adhered to it, however, and by the time I got around to writing the draft I was glad I had.
I’ve really coined my outline and study process by using this template. It is a more productive part of the procedure now and makes printing easier. Hopefully it will lead to better work, also.
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