I posted the other day that over the course of 14 days I was going to write 20 blog posts. Given work, my family, and the fact that this falls smack dab in the middle of the Stanley Cup playoffs, it’s not a remarkably easy task. But it’s in lieu of something that’s even easier to do. In fact, it may be the easiest thing to do. I’d wager that you’re doing it right now. What is this incredibly easy thing to do? Not writing.
That’s right. Not writing is the easiest thing that you’ll ever do. It takes almost no time, takes zero effort and is absolutely painless. And this is precisely why writing sometime seems so daunting. We know how easy it is to just stick our head in the sand and “plug” away. I can’t write today because I have a meeting. I can’t write today because the kids are really busy. I can’t write today because it’s a day that ends in a Y. If you’re looking for an excuse not to write, I promise you you’ll find one.
Over the course of the last year, I’ve recommitted myself several times to my blog. I’ve focused on useful, relevant and regular content. I’ve focused on writing with purpose and on providing my readers with something they can actually use. I talk and write all the time about the importance of staying regular with content…and then I take extended hiatuses from writing because it’s summer or I’m tired or I’m busy at work or I’m on vacation or I don’t want to. It’s exactly what I warn my clients about. Why am I guilty of the same thing? Because it’s easy. It’s incredibly easy to not write and even easier to not write regularly.
I looked at my schedule for this summer and realized that there was no way I was going to be able to write for a good chunk of the summer. So how was I going to balance planning posts, writing posts and publishing and promoting posts without any time? Simple. Start now. First, I identified a list of topics. In the past, I’ve always done so in a very passive manner. Essentially, as ideas came to me, I took note of them and then, when I had time, I would write about them. This time around I decided to be much more active. So, I decided on a number. I needed to cover the next 15 weeks of blogging at 1 blog per week. So I opened up the brand new moleskin I purchased recently (I’ve been craving a new notebook) and I wrote down the numbers 1 through 15.
I was worried. Usually, I come up with 3 or 4 pieces at a time. 15 was a stretch. And then I sat down and came up with 15 things I wanted to write about. Easily. Quickly. All directly related to my clients and their needs. Then I continued numbering up to 20…and then 25. In the end I was left with 25 topics that I wanted to blog about. Great. That’s a huge part of the problem solved. I now had topics. All I needed was to write the actual pieces. Easy, right?
There were a couple of ways I felt I could approach it. The first was to focus on writing a couple of pieces a week for the next couple of months. Second was to just write one of those pieces a week until I was finished. I went with the third option; go big or go home. I decided that I would do all my writing over the course of two weeks, get it all done, put it all in place and I could spend the next few months promoting rather than writing.
This is the first piece that will be posted as part of this work however it’s not the first piece that I’ve written. That’s the other part of the way I’ve organized the project. I’m not going down the list and writing each piece in order, I’ve decided to just look at the list and see what suits me, at that moment. And two weeks from now, I’ll have completed 25 blog posts and I’ll be able to truly enjoy my summer.