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template certificate of appreciation
It might seem to be a simple step. Just open a new file and begin typing, right? Nonetheless, it’s rare for this 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 earlier, after he discovered he could speed up his writing procedure ~600% by creating an outline first.
As I wrote an outline for a post this week I realised I had been repeating the exact same procedure for every new article I work . Like any good programmer, I realised repeating the exact same work over and over means that is probably a fantastic opportunity for automation.
So I decided to make some templates for myself.
I began by developing a template for my most common Ghost blog article arrangement. Since that arrangement’s particular to me, I also created a template based on how John constructions his posts, and another according to a writer whose work I respect.
For every template I’ve created a gist to show you exactly what they look like. They are just Markdown files, 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 the”view raw” link to the bottom of each gist to observe the plain text version, which you may copy to a new file on your favourite writing app.
With this template, I can begin with answering each dot point using a few notes about what I need to write in that segment. By the time I am done, I will have a rough sketch of what the final piece will look like. This should make it simpler to expand my notes to fully-formed paragraphs and cause them to flow to each other nicely, since I know the structure of the entire piece in advance.
Using the template, I discovered that my outlining process became much more involved. I’d really planned to perform a complete rough draft of that post in the morning, but it took me a few hours simply to have the outline done, so I put the draft off for a different day.
On the other hand, 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 feeling of flow from the post. Even though outlining took longer than usual, drafting took time because I had set myself up for victory. Composing the draft was just a matter of taking each chunk of notes from the outline and filling out it into a readable paragraph or two.
It was quite a different process to the way I normally do the job, and I had been tempted a few times to prevent the extra research or thinking required to complete the outline correctly. I frequently put these things off till I am drafting, which is when I must be focused 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 actually coined my outline and research procedure by applying this template. It is a more effective part of my process now and makes drafting easier. Hopefully it will lead to better work, also.
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