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red carpet invitation template
It might look like an easy step. Just open a new document and start typing, right? But it’s rare for that to work for me. I like to have a strong working name and a summary before I write a lot of. John’s written about this earlier, after he found he could speed up his composing process ~600 percent by producing an outline first.
As I wrote an outline for a post this week I realised I was repeating the same procedure for every single new article I work . Like any good programmer, I realized repeating the same work over and above means that’s probably a fantastic opportunity for automation.
So I decided to make some templates for myself.
I started by developing a template for the most common Ghost blog article arrangement. Since that arrangement’s particular to mepersonally, I also created a template based on how John structures his articles, and another based on a writer whose work I admire.
For each template I’ve created a gist to show you exactly what they look like. They are just Markdown documents, so go ahead and save , rename them if you like, and copy-and-paste the contents into a new file whenever you are ready to write. Click on the”view raw” link to the bottom of every list to observe the plain text version, which you may copy to a new file on your favorite writing program.
With this template, I can begin with answering each dot line using a couple of notes about what I need to write in that segment. From the time I am 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, because I know the structure of the whole piece in advance.
Using the template, I found that my outlining process became much more involved. I’d actually planned to do a full rough draft of the post in the early hours, but it took me a few hours simply to have the outline done, so I put off the draft for another day.
On the flip side, I had over 1600 words written in my outline, along with a solid idea about what each segment would comprise and how they would work together to create a feeling of flow in the article. Even though outlining took more than usual, drafting took time because 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 two.
It had been quite a different procedure to the way I normally do the job, and I was tempted a few times to avoid the extra research or thinking necessary to complete the outline correctly. I often put off these things until I am drafting, which is when I should be centered on writing instead. I adhered to it, though, and from the time I got around to writing the draft I was glad I had.
I have really coined my outline and study process by applying this template. It’s a more effective part of my process now and makes drafting easier. Hopefully it will lead to better work, too.
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