design your own plain black and white Double Sided from plain business card template , image source: www.zazzle.com
plain business card template
It might seem like a simple step. Simply open a new file and begin typing, right? But it’s rare for this to work for me. I love to get a solid working name and an outline before I write a lot of. John’s written about this before, after he discovered he could speed up his composing procedure ~600 percent by producing a summary .
As I wrote an outline for a post this week I realised I was repeating the same procedure for every new article I work on. Like any good programmer, I realized repeating the exact same work over and above means that’s probably a fantastic chance for automation.
So I decided to make some templates for myself.
I began by creating a template for the common Ghost blog article 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 made a gist to show you what they look like. They are just 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 on the bottom of every gist to view the plain text version, which you can copy to a new file on your favourite writing app.
With this template, I can start by answering each dot line with a few notes about what I need to write in that segment. From the time I am done, I’ll have a rough sketch of what the finished piece will look like. This should make it easier to expand my notes into fully-formed paragraphs and make them flow into each other well, since I know the arrangement of the whole piece beforehand.
Using the template, I found that my outlining process became much more involved. I’d really planned to perform a full rough draft of the post in the morning, but it took me a few hours simply to get the outline done, so I set off the draft for a different day.
On the flip side, I’d over 1600 words written in my outline, and a good idea about what each section would contain and how they’d work together to create a sense of flow from the article. Even though outlining took longer than usual, drafting took less time since I’d set myself up for victory. Composing the draft was only a matter of taking each chunk of notes from the outline and filling it out into a readable paragraph or 2.
It was quite a different procedure to the way I normally work, and that I was tempted a few times to prevent the extra research or thinking necessary to complete the outline correctly. I often put off these things till I’m drafting, which is when I should be centered on writing rather. I stuck to it, however, and from the time I got around to writing the draft I was glad I’d had.
I’ve actually overhauled my outline and research procedure by applying this template. It’s a more productive part of the process now and makes printing easier. Hopefully it’ll lead to better work, too.
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