Affiliate Bootcamp - Level 3 - Lesson 6
Today's lesson was Power Writing Gone Wild. Our tasks were to write for 30 minutes and to discuss our result on a discussion thread.
Here is what I wrote in my 30 minutes:
This is the question posed by Kyle in today's Affiliate Bootcamp exercise. He tasked us to write content for 30 minutes to see if we could produce more than we thought ourselves capable of. I decided that it would be a great way for me to write a longer than normal WA blog with the results of this 'test.'
I spend a lot of time in LiveChat doing support, but I have to admit that I don't spend a great deal of 'focused time' on my content creation. At least, not like I did in the 'old days.' I have a pretty good idea about how fast I can generate content from years of being a content provider. My rate of writing is about 750 words in 20 minutes, so in 30 minutes, I should be able to product approximately 1125 words (although, doing the math just there slowed me down a few seconds).
How did I get so fast at writing content? Well, it's a combination of many things. I learned to type on a manual typewriter in eighth grade. Even on a manual typewriter, I could type 60 wpm. When we made the switch to electric typewriters, my rate climbed to 90 wpm. Then, with the advent of computers, my max rate topped out around 110 wpm. If you don't type fast, you can't write fast. First skill to develop: Typing speed.
Typing anecdote: I used to be employed as a typsetter. One of the guys I worked for used to charge me for mistakes after 3 in a day. I had to pay 0.25/ft for galleys with typos in them. I was only making $4.00/hr. at the time, so you could see that having to re-run a long galley could wipe out my earnings for the day. As a result, I became extremely accurate with my typing. I only paid him $1.00 the entire time I worked for him.
The second thing that contributes to my writing speed is experience. I have written content of some kind or another every day of my life since I was 15 years old. Content isn't just about a website. Content could be books, letters, journals, Facebook entries, or even chatrooms. You write far more than you realize, and if you stop writing in a way that makes you think of English clas, and more like you talk, you will be able to create far more content than you have ever dreamed.
Another factor is the years I spent freelancing as a transcriptionist. I used to type insurance subrogation letters for a company. I had the use of a foot-pedal controlled cassette tape recorder that the insurance agents would speak into and I would transcribe their results, cleaning up all the ums, ahs, and stumbles along the way. The average person speaks approximately 85 words per minute, and I would make more money the less I had to back up the tape and listen to it a second or third time (although, at times, it could not be helped). Again, this would contribute to my writing speed years later because I can pretty much type out my thoughts as fast as i can think them.
As my friend, published author R. Mark Coleman once told me, "Writers write." Don't ever turn down an opportunity to write. In fact, seek out opportunities to write for things other than your website. It will help you create your content when the time comes. Volunteer to write an article for your kids' school newsletter, or pen a lengthy diatribe to your local newspaper. Any writing is good writing. It is how you hone your craft.
You will find that eventually, there is a 'tipping point' where you no longer dread having to sit down and write content. Your ideas will flow out through your fingertips onto the screen with a Zen-like mastery. That is when you will be able to ramp up production on a second site. Make sure you've found your groove before you add to your workload.
I'm lucky. When I retired, I was able to move to a location that fosters writing. I live on a ridge on a half an acre with only one neighbor, who happens to be a long-haul truck driver who is only home a couple of days a month. A state highway backs my property, and there are no houses on the other side of the highway, and no houses across the street in front of my house either. It is peaceful, and quiet except for the sounds of birds most days.
I did this deliberately because I have a few books I want to complete in my golden years. I'm in no hurry to finish, the journey of writing has s lot of benefits for me. So this exercise is enjoyable to me because my passion is writing. It always has been for as long as I can remember. I love writing here at WA, providing folks with glimpses into my past and tips for future success.
I really do mean and live the messages of my two tattoos "I exist to assist, How may I serve?" I'm getting ready to learn more about video production so that I can start creating more training material in earnest. Not just for WA, but for Udemy and an idea for a training site of my own that I have. I enjoy learning new stuff almost as much as I love writing, so that's good.
I still suffer from being a bit scattered at my age. I don't procrastinate like I used to, but my ADD is much worse these days. Even many of the coping strategies I learned over the years don't keep me as focused as they once did. I'm actually a little surprised that I have been able to keep this stream of consciousness writing going as long as I have. I have to be nearing the end of the timer though, because I just hit 1000 words, and I have done a lot of backspacing as I went along to correct typos.
This is a really good exercise, and I'd like to see more people employe it. You don't have to write content for your site. Write your kid a bedtime story. Write your spouse/signficant other a love letter. Write your future resignstion letter to your boss. (I really like that idea - you can post it on your wall to motivate you to work on your sites). Just write. Write about your fears - let them go. Once they're on a page, you can burn them and release them from your life. It doesn't evem have to be any good. Good comes with time and with practice.
I hope you've enjoyed my exercise. I've enjoyed creating it My timer says there is about a minute to go. I wil type three exclamation points and a word count when I get to the end, and then wrap up anything I was thinking about to finish the post itself. I mean, I wouldn't want to leave you guys hanging mid-sentence.
Stop thinking, just write. Your heart has many words fo you if you just let it!!! (1200 words) I think this is a good place to end after all.
Lesson 6 - Time invested* - 35 minutes
Phase 3 - 5 hours, 35 minutes
Phase 2 - 15 hours, 40 minutes
Phase 1 - 8 hours, 20 minutes
Total time to date: 29 hours, 35 minutes
*Does not include time spent creating this blog.