I am an accomplished multi-tasker. I love to be as efficient as possible in the shortest amount of time. When I started writing, however, I found myself wasting time. It took hours to do something that should take minutes and the simplest tasks became giant stumbling blocks. Today I’d like to share a few tips that have helped me become more productive and efficient without sacrificing the quality of my work.
1. Be prepared to blog. Don’t wait for opportunities to arise before putting together blog posts. Pick a few topics that you would consider your specialty (memoir writing, deep POV, structure, etc.) and put together a couple of posts on each topic in various lengths (250-500 words and 500-750 words). Then when you hear of someone looking for guest bloggers you don’t have to take time to craft a new piece – you’re set to go.
2. Repeat yourself. If you sold an article once, pitch the reprint rights to someone else. If you find a favorite quote, share in on Twitter and Facebook and LinkedIn (just don’t do it all on the same day at the same time). Do you have a blog post that scored a ton of hits? Re-post it.
3. Know your worth. There are a few publications to which I contribute because I believe in their missions, not because they pay a lot (if anything). I enjoy these publications and the voids they fill, but you can’t make a living writing $5-15 articles. If you’re just starting out, write a few to gain the experience and get some by-lines, but know what you can afford to write and what you can’t afford to write. Don’t waste time on things that aren’t helping you grow.
4. Steal from others.I don’t mean plagiarism, but definitely learn from others and copy what works. The first three items on this list are all things I saw someone else do first. I’ve adapted them to fit my personality so I can make the most of my time and talents.
5. Know yourself. This should be #1 on the list, but it’s important enough that I wanted it to be the last thing you read: know what works for you. Not all techniques work for all people, but you can adapt their methods to fit your madness.
Don’t waste time reinventing the wheel. Start applying a few of these tricks in your life and see how much time you save. Good luck!
What time-saving tips have you learned that have helped you become more efficient?