Article writing tips, techniques, strategies

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

The Forum Phantasm Method Of Writing

Having trouble writing? You may need to shift your writing mind to a different mode.

Whatever you’re writing, whether a chapter in a book, a blog entry, or a new article, transmute that piece of writing into a forum response… at least while you’re writing it.

You don’t actually have to post it on a forum, just think of it as an off-the-cuff reply to a forum participant. Take these steps…

SHRINK YOUR TEXT AREA

First off, are you using a full screen word processing page to write? Then here’s a trick that just might kick your writing into high gear…shrink that full screen page down to something less intimidating.

Here’s why…even though you have trouble filling a full page, I’ll bet you don’t have any problems with responding to a discussion forum post.

What’s the deal? For one, since you have a smaller text entry area, you’re absorbed with the thought at hand. When you have a big space to fill, you worry about what you’ve already written, what you’re writing now, and what you think you should write next.

The small entry space of a forum allows you to lose yourself and your writing in the current moment, since that’s really all you can see.

WRITE IN FORUM MODE

And think of yourself as responding to an actual forum member. If you approach a blank page with a formal task mindset, that’s when the stage-fright and intimidation sets in. But if you can imagine you’re answering a real flesh and blood person’s questions…someone who needs an answer right now…then you’ll be more apt to knock out that article, podcast, or blog entry.

ASK QUESTIONS

And speaking of questions, another thing you can do is…ask questions. To get the feel of a forum response, you can turn your topic into a question and then answer it.

One question probably won’t be enough, so take your article outline and turn each topic sentence into a question and answer them one by one.

VISIT FORUMS AND HUNT FOR MORE QUESTIONS

And finally, here’s a great way you can get into the forum mindset…visit your favorite forums and look at the questions people are asking. This is a good research exercise that will connect you with actual concerns held by your audience. Doing this will also give you insight into your audience’s emotional hot buttons. And you can be sure, if one or two people are asking a question, it’s also on a lot of other people’s minds.

If these tips work for you, then just maybe you’ll find yourself writing more frequently and with greater impact than before.

Michael Taylor is the publisher of The Copper Fox website, which provides information to information product developers and marketers. Visit The Copper Fox today!
http://www.thecopperfox.com/

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