We believe there is! How, you may ask? And we will answer…
Did you do your homework, sitting down in front of the TV? Probably not since your parents would not have approved. The same is the case of web content writing. You cannot write your article plopped in front of the idiot box. Like when you were doing your homework, you need a desk, a chair and relative calm. However, some of us used to finish off assignments with music playing in the background. So, do whatever it is that puts you in the mood, (uh-oh…no naughty thoughts!) to get the creative juices flowing.
1. Note to self: Find a nice place to use as your work station and set the right atmosphere.
So, remember the umpteen numbers of calls you used to get as a pre-teen and as a teen? Did you ever manage to finish off work during the calls? Probably not! So switch off the mobiles, and pagers and all the other gizmos. Sign off instant chat too, if possible. We think 2 hours off the radar of modern communication systems will not be too much to ask. However, do use your brains – if you have a toddler in playschool, and they call you for emergencies, you should be available. But, your boss calling you to chat about a possible new project is not an emergency. Leave messages with relatives, colleagues and bosses (yes, bosses too! They are not God) that you are not to be disturbed for a certain amount of time everyday unless it is a dire emergency.
2. Note to self: Find a time slot which will be given over to doing content writing and nothing else.
Could you ever write an essay without reading up on the subject first? If you did, you probably remember the grades/marks you scored for that paper. So, we do not want that to happen to your web content writing job. We want you to come out on top (tut! tut! no naughty thoughts!). Do read up on the area/field/subject on which you are planning to write your blog or content. Ignorance and resultant inaccuracy can cost you your content writing job and reputation.
3. Note to self: Read up on your area/field/subject before you start your web content writing.
Remember those annotations you used to be given? You first stated where the quotation was from, who the author of the original work was, which character had uttered it, why they had uttered it, the context of the utterance, and what it meant. The same holds true for content writing. If you have a few set templates that you could use, your work becomes so much easier. There are a few internet sites that do offer content writing templates. In addition, if you are writing a series of articles, one following from the other, it would help to have a common template that you follow in all the web articles. It makes it easier for the reader to steer through the blog or web content.
4. Note to self: When writing a series of articles or blogs that are inter-connected follow a set template to make navigation easy for the reader.
Did you ever write a school assignment that ran into a book? We didn’t. Why? It was not necessary. The same is true for most web articles. Internet readers are not looking for encyclopedic information on the NET. They need a wee bit of information to get them going. So keep your word count between 500 to 800 words.
5. Note to self: Keep the word count between 500 to 800 words.
Was homework the only thing you ever did at home on school days? The horror! Yes, you need to give yourself time to read for pleasure, watch a movie, catch up with friends, and most important – time for reading up on other things. These could be current affairs, cultural movements, social sciences, biology – the works. Just because you are out of school does not mean your education has to stop. In fact, you need to be abreast of socio-politico-cultural movements. Otherwise your writing style and ideas will become outdated.
6. Note to self: Keep yourself informed on social, political, and cultural movements and shift in ideas.
Language, grammar and spellings – our teachers probably had fun circling all those mistakes with red ink. You don’t want your readers to get the same urge to circle your writing in red.
7. Note to self: Check and re-check your writing for errors/mistakes etc.
Now, compile all these notes-to-self on to a sheet of paper and stick it with cello tape over your work station. Just like when you were in school.