Business Hours Signs from office hours sign template , image source: www.mydoorsign.com
office hours sign template
It might seem to be an easy step. Simply open a new document and start typing, right? But it’s rare for that to work for me. I love to get a solid working name and an outline before I write too much. John’s written about this before, after he discovered he could speed up his writing procedure ~600% by creating an outline .
As I wrote an outline for a post this week I realised I had been repeating the same procedure for every single new article I work . Like any fantastic programmer, I realized repeating the same work over and over means that is probably a good opportunity for automation.
So I decided to create some templates for myself.
I began by developing a template for my common Ghost blog article arrangement. Since that structure’s particular to me, I created a template based on how John structures his articles, and another according to a writer whose work I admire.
For every template I’ve created a gist to show you exactly what they look like. They are only Markdown files, so go right ahead and save them, rename them if you prefer, and copy-and-paste the contents into a new file whenever you are ready to write. Click the”view raw” link to the bottom of each gist to view the plain text version, which you can copy into a new file on your favorite writing program.
With this template, I can begin with answering each dot line using a few notes about what I should write in that segment. From the time I am done, I will have a rough sketch of what the finished 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 understand the structure of the whole piece in advance.
Using the template, I discovered that my outlining process became more involved. I’d actually planned to do a complete rough draft of the post in the morning, but it took me a couple of hours just to get the outline done, so I set the draft off for a different day.
On the other hand, I had over 1600 words composed in my outline, and a good idea of what each section would comprise and how they would work together to create a sense of flow from the article. Though outlining took longer than usual, drafting took time because I had put myself up for success. Composing 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 procedure to the way I normally do the job, and that I had been tempted a few times to avoid the additional research or thinking necessary to complete the outline correctly. I often put off these things till I am drafting, which is 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 grateful I had.
I’ve actually overhauled my outline and study process by applying this template. It is a more effective part of the procedure now and makes drafting easier. Hopefully it’ll lead to better function, also.
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