If you are an author or writer, then you know how difficult it can be to find time to write. Between work and other responsibilities, there is simply not enough time in the day for most of us!
This article is specifically for those who want to learn how to double their writing speed and free up more of their time for themselves. I’ve included five tips that will help you achieve your goal of doubling your writing speed; these include:
- Write every single day
- Write with a timer
- Write without distractions
- Write via dictation
- Write using word sprints
So let’s dive into these five tips on how to become a lightning-fast author.
5 Tips to Double Your Writing Speed and Free Up Time for Yourself
Tip #1: Write Every Single Day
Of all of the tips I recommend for people that want to increase their word speed, my top recommendation is to write every single day.
Now, I realize this is a lot to ask for a lot of people. Therefore, I do not recommend that you write a lot every single day. The important thing here is that you develop a habit. At first this habit can be just showing up. Just start writing, and if you only write two sentences, that’s fine. You don’t have to write your whole novel at once.
All you’re trying to do is develop a regular habit. If you can do this, you will find that those books tend to write themselves over time, and you will wonder how it happened so fast. Because, honestly, the real reason why most people don’t write books fast is because they spend large stretches of time without writing at all.
If you can develop that regular habit, you will not have to worry about going for weeks without writing.
Tip #2: Write With A Timer
I’m a big fan of the Pomodoro technique, which is a method of time management where you set a timer for 25 minutes, then at the end, take a five minute break. You do this in alternating chunks of hyper focused work and short breaks.
What this does is allow you to refresh your brain periodically, move around, get some water, take a few deep breaths, then get right back into the work.
This technique increases your focus and your physical health, and is one that I recommend for everybody. You might have to adjust some of the timing on each session. But I have found that it increases my focus and productivity immensely.
Tip #3: Write Without Distractions
One of the things that I try to do with most books that I write is turn off my internet connection.
This does a couple of things: one, it ensures that you don’t start reading articles on the latest gadgets and gizmos on Facebook and end up wasting your time; two, it prevents distractions from popping up; three, it ensures that you don’t waste your time on social media, because you are simply unable to do so.
Now I know this can be difficult for some people who work in an office or are otherwise unable to turn their internet connection off, but if possible (and even if not), find a way to unplug from the world and just focus on writing.
If you can’t unplug from the Internet, there are a number of focus apps that will help you remove certain distractions, and block certain sites like Facebook or Twitter. These apps are incredibly helpful for those who want to improve their focus.
Tip #4: Write Via Dictation
Dictation is another great way to increase your writing speed. In fact, it’s probably one of the best ways to do so. Dictation can easily double your writing speed (or even triple it), and if you have good software, it can do so with minimal errors.
A lot of people have trouble getting into dictation because of the way you have to think differently to do so. But imagine if you had to learn to type all over again. Would it be intuitive for you to learn? Most of us don’t think about this because we have already learned how to type, but honestly, typing on a keyboard is not a naturally intuitive thing that we do.
That is why dictation isn’t actually as hard as we think. With home devices now relying primarily on spoken commands, the technology for this is only going to get better. The general familiarity with dictation among the larger population will only increase.
That is why I recommend to many authors that they give dictation a try, and really allow themselves to go through the full learning curve. I think you will find that it works well for you in the long run.
Tip #5: Write Using Word Sprints
One great way to increase your learning speed is to try dedicated sprints. To do this, set a timer for five minutes, then write as fast as you can in that five minutes. Don’t edit yourself. Don’t look back at what you wrote. Just write as fast as you can.
When you’re done, you can measure how many words you wrote in those five minutes. I think you will be shocked at how many you did. That is especially true once you scale up those five minutes to an hour, and see how many words you could potentially write in that hour.
Do this consistently, and you will start to improve at writing fast. You will learn to block out distractions while you write. You will also get in the habit of your fingers flying over the keyboard (or speaking at the speed of thought if you are dictating), and your writing speed can only improve.
This, combined with the other tips above, is one of the best ways to improve your speed at writing. It’s one of the few methods of deliberate practice that can have a tremendous impact on the number of books you can put out.
If the above tips seemed a little overwhelming for you, don’t worry. I don’t recommend you try to do everything here at once. Doing so would be jarring, and you are likely to stop writing when you’re trying too many new things.
Instead, I would pick one thing on this list, and start with that. Personally, I would start with a regular writing habit. Because once you have that, the words will keep coming, even if they are slow. But slow and steady wins the race every time.
Once you have developed a writing habit, then I would move to dictation or writing sprints as a way to increase your writing speed. But not before you have developed the habit.
Taken altogether, you will become a writing machine that can write like crazy and produce multiple books in a year. Believe me, many authors have done it, many authors are doing it, and you can be one of them.
I look forward to hearing some of your experiences. Be sure to sound off in the comments below if any of these work for you, or if you’ve tried any of them in the past.
This is a guest post from Dave Chesson, the creator of Kindlepreneur.com, a website devoted to teaching advanced book Marketing which even Amazon KDP acknowledge as one of the best by telling users to “Gain insight from Kindlepreneur on how you can optimize marketing for your books.” Having worked with such authors as Orson Scott Card, Ted Dekker and more, his tactics help both Fiction and Nonfiction authors of all levels get their books discovered by the right readers.