Weekly Menu Template from weekly menu planner template , image source: doliquid.com
weekly menu planner template
It may look to be an easy step. Just open a new file and begin typing, right? But it’s rare for this to work for me. I love to have a solid working name and a summary before I write a lot of. John’s written about this earlier, after he discovered 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 was repeating the exact same procedure for every new post I work on. Like any fantastic programmer, I realised repeating the exact same work over and above means that’s probably a fantastic opportunity for automation.
So I decided to make a few templates for myself.
I started by creating a template for my common Ghost blog post structure. Since that arrangement’s particular to mepersonally, I also created a template based on how John structures his posts, and another based on a writer whose work I admire.
For every template I’ve created a gist to show you what they look like. They are only Markdown files, so go ahead and save them, 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 on the bottom of every list to view the plain text version, which you can copy to a new file on your favorite writing app.
With this template, I can begin by answering each dot line with a couple of 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 nicely, because I know the arrangement of the entire piece beforehand.
Using the template, I found that my summarizing procedure became more involved. I had really planned to do 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 I put off the draft for another day.
On the flip side, I had over 1600 words written in my outline, and a solid idea about what each section would comprise and how they would work together to create a feeling of flow from the post. Though outlining took longer than normal, drafting took time since I’d put myself up for victory. Writing the draft was just a matter of taking each chunk of notes from the outline and filling it out into a readable paragraph or two.
It was quite a different process to the way I normally do the job, and that I had been tempted a couple of times to avoid the additional research or thinking required to fill out the outline correctly. I frequently put off these things till I am drafting, which is when I must be centered on writing rather. I stuck to it, though, and by the time I got around to writing the draft I was glad I’d had.
I have really coined my outline and study procedure by applying this template. It’s a more productive part of the procedure now and makes printing easier. Hopefully it will lead to better work, too.
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