Becoming a Writer – Work-in-Progress

Writing is a creative impulse. It is very easy to write when the words flow and fingers type away with no effort. It isn’t easy at all if you don’t feel like writing. I couldn’t really digest the numerous articles I read on the best writing tips and effective tools to improve writing. I am fairly new to professional writing but soon enough I have been able to come up with a system of my own that helps me not only to keep a track of What I am writing and when but also to analyze at what time and on what days I write more.

Planning My Content

I require one blog post or poem every week for my personal blog (I republish the same on Medium). Along with this, I need a relevant image and caption to promote this post on Instagram. I like to be at least a month ahead with my content, which means I must have 4 posts ready. I use a simple Google Sheet to track my upload schedule.  My schedule usually has the list of posts for the next two months, 60% of the posts would be ready and others would be ideas or post titles on which I intend to write.

The link to the sample Google Sheet:

My Writing Schedule

I don’t have a fixed writing schedule (This is mainly because I have a full-time job and I also do most of the household chores). I intend to write a lot more. The vague guideline is to write at least one blog post and one poem every week (I almost write more than one blog each week but poems are very much about emotions for me so they come when they come). I give myself the freedom to write any day and anytime and only panic if more than a week goes by and I haven’t written a single word. In the same content planning sheet, I have a sheet for content creation in which I update as soon as I complete a post or poem. Incomplete posts or just ideas don’t go into this sheet.

Learning and Development Targets

For the year 2021, I have two main targets:

  1. Reading 2 books per month
  2. Learning 1 new skill every month

The current update is that I am miserably failing at achieving target one. After two months and zero books (but many articles on Medium and other online research) partly shifting to audiobooks and intend to complete my two books for March. Target two has been going well until now. In January I learned the basics of Word Press, February was dedicated to learning Instagram and Social Media Posting and March is all about getting a hang of the medium platform, its publications, etc. I update all of these in my worksheet as well.

My Little Green Book

Every random thing from a blog post idea to a newly discovered copyright-free Images website goes into my little green book. Everything that lacks form and structure and I feel I would require someday in the future is documented here. The book is a mess with random lists, ideas, plans, etc but it is very useful for two reasons.

  1. Nothing is ever lost. I have to find it in the mess, but it is definitely there.
  2. When I am low on motivation or out of ideas. I like to go through each page to find something unique and I am never disappointed.

The Trick to Save and Better Utilize Blog Ideas

It is my favorite trick to make myself write a blog. Whenever I have a blog post idea that has some structure to it or I am 100% confident that it is an amazing title and I can make an entire post around it, I create a new word document in my Blog Posts folder and rename it with the title. Those that are not structured or are just random ideas that may or may not see the light of day go into the little green book. This not only gives me a clear picture of the posts I am going to write but also every time I open the folder (which is usually a few times every day) I become more aware of the work that is pending, the ideas that I already have in my head but I am not putting in the effort to write the complete article.

Taking up a challenge

It is very overwhelming to take up a 30-day challenge, so I wanted to take up something that was doable. Poetry comes more naturally to me and it takes up less time compared to planning, writing, and structuring an article.

Motivated by various Medium Posts I decided to take up a poetry challenge for April 2021. The challenge is simple, to write one poem a day and publish it on Medium and my blog, with the exception of Sunday when I usually neither write nor publish, but the target is to write 31 poems and I compensate for Sunday on any other weekday when I am inspired. Also, post it with a customized image and caption on Instagram. I usually publish my previously written poems as I feel I need some time to let my writing sink before I can decide to edit or publish it.

Trying Freelancing

Eventually, I intend to be able to earn enough from writing. I have started with both Fiverr and Upwork. Completed about 2 jobs on Fiverr and none on Upwork. As a beginner, I am trying to explore all possibilities and make the most of the time I have. Hoping for a lot more work in the future.

Things I Haven’t Figured Out Yet

  1. How to monetize my writing? (I am from India and the Medium Partner Program is not available for my country)
  2. How to network and reach other writers and editors?
  3. How to build an audience and reach a larger audience.

If any of you have answers or good articles on these topics. I would definitely like to read.

Way Ahead

This is how my action plan looks now:

  1. Try to put as much content as I can on my blog and Medium.
  2. Find and take up a writing course on Coursera.
  3. Learn in-depth about poetry.
  4. Read more fiction and complex literature.
  5. Exploring and writing in different Blog categories.

I would like to connect with writers who are starting out like me and also, learn from those who have already achieved a lot in this field. Looking forward to making amazing new connections this year.

The link to the sample Google Sheet:

Happy Reading!! Happy Writing!!

9 thoughts on “Becoming a Writer – Work-in-Progress”

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    Fairly certain he will have a good read. Many
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