Tips to Become a More Productive Writer

by AlexandriaIngham

Fed up of not having enough hours in the day? It could be that you're not using the time wisely. It's time to become a more productive writer.

So many writers wish they could have more hours in their days. I know I’m one of them. No matter how much you get done, there is always more to do and just not enough time to get through it all. It’s why I’ve been a little quiet on Wizzley for a while.

More hours in the day is not going to happen. You need to become a more productive writer. What does that mean? It’s utilizing the hours you have available better. Over the last month I’ve been making some changes to the way I use the hours in my day. Except for being sick one day this week, I’ve been able to get more done throughout the week, and by tomorrow will be back on track. This time last month I was drowning in pieces that I needed and wanted to write.

I want you to learn from my mistakes, so I’m sharing my tips to become a more productive writer right here.

Do you feel like there aren't enough hours in the day?
Do you feel like there aren't enough ...

Look for the Hours You Waste Time

Which hours are you not utilizing in the best way possible?

There are chances that you waste time when you could be doing something useful. I found that the hour before starting work was when I really wasted my time. Because I study part time and work full time, I decided to start using that hour to study.

It’s when my daughter is watching her cartoons and eating her breakfast, so all I used to do was browse the internet and drink my morning cup of tea. By getting the studying done in the morning, I gave myself an extra hour in the afternoon/early evening to get through work.

Look for the hours that you’re wasting in the day. There may be more than you expect. See what you can get done instead in those hours, and use them more productively.

That doesn’t mean every minute of every hour needs to be taken up with writing, or the research. You will need breaks here and there, lunch is a requirement, and there are other things in your life that you want to do. After all, isn’t that why you chose to write online?

Use Your Smartphone or Tablet

Let technology help you out

I’ve finally found a good use for my tablet computer, and not just to keep my daughter entertained or for watching TV while I study. I have Evernote installed on it, and use it for note-taking throughout the day. Wherever I go, my tablet is in my handbag so I can pull it out and make notes whenever I need. It’s so much better than carrying a physical notebook and pen around (although I do still prefer writing on that!).

The benefit of having the Evernote app is that it syncs with my other devices. I can access my notes anywhere.

If you have a smartphone or tablet device, it’s time to use them better for writing. Do your research on that, so you can keep the internet uninstalled on your computer. Use it for writing out a draft article when you’re away from the desk—like waiting for your doctor’s appointment—or to take notes about any ideas that you come up with while out.

There are other apps that you can download to help with productivity. I don’t have many of them yet, so I can’t recommend any decent ones right now except Evernote. But I have heard that there are a few that are great. If you write on Blogger or WordPress blogs there are some apps for them, so you can post directly from your phone!

Wizzley Articles to Help Find Productivity Apps

Track Your Time

Keep track of how you spend your time at the computer.

If you don’t already, I highly recommend tracking your time. It’s really easy to do, and you only need a spreadsheet so no expensive or technical software. It just lets you know how long it really takes you to do that research or write that article. I’ve found this has really helped me become a more productive writer.

It's amazing how much you can get done really
It's amazing how much you can get don...

By time tracking, you are more conscious of how you are using your time. When I started, I found that I kept taking breaks in between articles, such as to check Facebook or read more into research than I really needed to because it was interesting. Now that I track my time, I procrastinate less and less.

When you are tracking the time spent writing, you should also track your breaks. It helps you stick to set timeslots, and encourages you take regular ones. Contrary to popular believe, taking regular breaks will actually help you become a more productive writer, because you will give your brain and body the rest they need.

I do now have a time tracking app on my phone. I can just click a button and it will start a timer. I can also track the time I sleep, eat, use the internet and more, so I really get to see how I use my time. I’m not sure if it is any more useful than just using a spreadsheet, but it is much easier than trying to type in all the details.

Split Your Time on Activities

How long does it take you on activities on average? Block out certain hours just for them to make sure you do everything.

There are certain activities in your day that will make you more money than others. As much as you may hate it, your marketing makes you more money than you really believe at first. The marketing brings the readers to your content, and encourages them to share it with their friends.

I used to split my hours up in my diary, so I would spend a certain amount of time on clients, time on marketing and then time on other tasks that needed doing. I had to stop that lately because my daughter never likes sticking to my plan (and I can’t really blame her) but now that she is at nursery for two days a week, I’ve started doing it again.

It means I have the hours in the day for everything. Once the clock clicks to say 2pm, I know that it is time to do an hour of marketing. At 3pm, it is time to move onto writing a piece of Wizzley. Those are just examples, but you get what I mean. Nothing is allowed to run over, unless it’s for a client, I have promised to get it done at the last minute and I am usually paid extra for it.

Become a More Productive Writer With This Wizzley Article

Working from home can be full of distractions, with your output highly dependent on you alone. Thank goodness for productivity tools which can help you work better!

It’s Time to Become a More Productive Writer.

Better productivity will make you a better writer over all, and you feel like you have more hours in the day. I now tend to look at the clock after working for my clients and thinking “oh, it’s only that time!” It really feels like I’ve been working longer because I have gotten through so much.

I really hope the tips above work for you. Put them in place, if you don’t already, and see what you think. If they work, great! If not and you find something else that does, feel free to leave a comment (I encourage comments anyway). Maybe your productivity tip will help someone else become a more productive writer.

Updated: 04/04/2014, AlexandriaIngham
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AlexandriaIngham on 08/24/2015

I've been away from writing here, Mira. Haven't had much time with becoming a Weight Watchers leader, so had to cut down the sites that I write at. This one has suffered. Maybe I'll get back to it soon. Even just once a fortnight would work for me.

Mira on 08/18/2015

Hi Alexandria, where have you been?:) I enjoyed your tips. Writing can be so consuming that you lose track of time.

AlexandriaIngham on 08/17/2015

Great to hear Evernote will save you a lot of time, Katie. I love it and still regularly use it between my devices--just not as much as I used to right now.

katiem2 on 08/10/2015

Great tips I am installing evertnote I can not tell you how much time you have just saved for me. I have been writing novels and the vast word content makes integrating messy. I have been using another app that shall remain "nameless" but evernote is amazing thank you, Thank You, THANK YOU!

sheilamarie on 04/23/2014

I don't have a tablet or smartphone, but your advice is good even without the apps. Having a schedule makes you more accountable. Thanks for sharing your techniques. It's amazing what you can accomplish even with a small child!

AlexandriaIngham on 04/05/2014

Technology is great until it stops working! But 4.5 years isn't that bad for a device. I barely last two with most. My current laptop is coming up to the two year mark and the battery needs replaced. My laptop before that still runs and is almost 10 years old now! I have to be connected to the mains all the time for it until I get a new battery for that, but it's there as a backup just in case. I often wonder if my tablet is made to last...probably not...I am hoping it really improves my productivity here because there is so much I want to catch up on!

Guest on 04/04/2014

My dear old PurpleBerry doesn't have EverNote, but I'm sure when I upgrade I'll have a smartphone that is compatible. I used to use the text file app to draft articles and send them to miyself but that bit of the old brick no longer works (it's failing fast after 4.5 years in my possession!) so I can't do that any more. You can see what it's done for my productivity here too...

AlexandriaIngham on 04/04/2014

That's great! Yeah, the issue with the iPad (and my tablet, which is a Galaxy Note) is that a Wi-Fi connection is needed. My phone has the mobile internet, so it's not that bad.

ologsinquito on 04/04/2014

Hi Alexandria, the portable notebook and my iPad work well for me as well. I can quickly research things with the iPad if I'm somewhere with a wireless connection.

AlexandriaIngham on 04/04/2014

Hope you get some time to write :) I hate when I don't have time to do what I want, so really decided it was a time to look at my time differently and how I was doing things.

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