Blogtober has finally arrived and with very little preparation and a GMT +10 hour penalty I’m clearly ahead of the pack when it comes to publishing a blog post a day for the entire month of October. On the flip side, I’ll be one of the first blogs over the finish line, but that’s 31 days away so let’s not get ahead of ourselves.
Although I usually post on one of my blogs at least every weekday, I almost never commit to writing day after day for one particular blog because my attention span is worse than a two-year-old. Just last night I outlined a plan to focus on the next 3 months, with the first month being Blogtober, and the next two using a little more of my creativity muscle with much less writing.
Of course, when I woke this morning I found myself playing around with month 2’s idea and on a completely different tangent I started looking into a new blog idea. OMG! How am I going to get through this month?
Then I remembered a post by Leo Babauta on Zenhabits which help’s to prevent writers block and to find your focus. Here are the concepts he outlines:-
1. Set a Writing Block – We all like routine and it’s certainly easier to get your mind in order when you know when you write your best work. For me it’s early in the morning and I leave editing until the afternoon. Leo suggests blocking out time on your calendar so go ahead and do that for the entire month of October and let others know it’s non-negotiable.
2. Create Accountability – This one shouldn’t be so hard if you’re active in the blogging community and are regularly using the #blogtober hashtag during this month. To be doubly sure, buddy up with another blogger or create and/or join a link party.
3. Clear Distractions – Before the Internet we used distraction free typewriters, but today’s reality is when you turn on your PC or laptops to write, it’s so tempting to quickly check your email or do a Facebook status update. Turn off the Internet if you can and work offline and leave research and editing for another time and don’t forget to put your phone on silent mode and in another room.
People can also be a distraction so give your kids something to do for an hour and worry about the clean-up later, and if your partner is bothering you, send them on an errand that must be completed in the next few hours, wink,wink.
4. Notice your Resistance – We’ve all been there, best intentions are to get started and then we purposely find something else to do, like the dishes or tidying a room. Geez, these aren’t even jobs we like to do and most likely you enjoy writing and sharing your writing more. So just get started and write without editing and when you stop, it’s ok. Let it flow.
5. Imagine you’re talking to a specific friend – Do you know who you are writing for? If not then write for a friend and solve their problem, it’ll save you the phone call later on and writing for someone you know is much easier than imagining someone to write for.
6. Notice the tightness – The fear and self-doubt when you begin writing is often enough to stop you from ever starting. Try to enjoy the process and know that you’re in control and can always delete the post if it’s not up to your usual standard. But before you do delete it make sure you’ve already written another post because we still want to hear from you, today. Better still leave the unwanted post in draft mode and come back to it when you are ready.
7. Watch the urge to do something else – It’s coming so be ready. Take a break and go for a short stroll to clear your mind. This will also recharge the glucose levels in your brain, if that doesn’t work grab a drink or a coffee, then sit back down and continue.
8. Relax – Remember you’re writing for pleasure, so relax and enjoy the experience.
Now these are great concepts to help you prevent writers block, but will these get you through 31 days of blogging?
Here are a few more ideas…
9. Hit Publish – This is a daily requirement for Blogtober so don’t be afraid to let your blog post swing in the wind. If it’s not well received you always have tomorrow to get it right.
10. Size doesn’t matter – Oh, there are so many jokes I could make but, in reality size doesn’t matter for this month. A blog post could be as simple as a few holiday snaps and some words about them. Or even a round-up of some of your favorite bloggers. It’s important you don’t get bogged down in the detail.
11. If you can’t write then talk – No one gets talker’s block so if you’re getting stuck at the keyboard, try recording yourself and then getting it transcribed. You can get up to 20 mins transcribed on Fiverr.com for $5 USD. Better still use my referral link and get it done for free.
If you need some blog post ideas then check out this mega post I published a while back – 81 Blog Post Ideas to keep you moving. It’s perfect for Blogtober and how can you possibly have writers block when you have so many ideas to choose from.
That wraps up day one and if you’re getting busy in Blogtober then please post your blog link in the comments below, so we can all see what you are up to.