This is the second to last “How To Become A Better Writer” post! I’ve tried to pack this series as full of value as possible and I’m going to try to top that with the final two posts! This penultimate post deals with one of my favorite subjects within writing: coming up with enough ideas for posts/books/articles such that you can continue writing forever.
1. Simply Keep Writing
It sounds obvious… But that’s because it is. Writers who love to write continue writing forever simply because the action itself brings them so much joy!Writers who love to write continue writing forever. Click To Tweet
The way to never get bored with what you’re writing is to keep writing about whatever you think about or encounter in life. Adam Grant pointed out in his book Originals that people who are remembered as highly creative or deeply original are those who produce massive amounts of work. Not everything you produce will be of utterly perfect quality, but this is okay – done is better than perfect. Enjoy the moment as you’re writing and let the appreciation of the work bring you to new heights!
2. Add New Interests
As was mentioned in the first point of this article, discovering new interests and writing about them is one of the best ways to constantly have new topics to write about. You may think that everything on a given topic has already been written, but this is not the case – familiar topics need new voices! The fact that you can produce a written work of quality and value for a new crowd on an old topic proves that there is never too much overflow for a topic.
This is similar to the phrase of “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.” The idea here is that what one person finds uninteresting another person will utterly crave. In other words, not everyone is going to love your writing, but that’s okay, because some people will! It’s not about being a perfect writer – it’s about writing perfectly to the ones who are already interested in your writing!
3. Take On A New Genre
Similarly to finding and adding new interests to your repertoire, taking on a brand new genre of writing will stretch your thinking and writing skills to new heights! There’s nothing like trying a new project to force you to expand abilities you didn’t know you had before.
4. Comment On Your Favorite Works Of Others
Commenting on and discussing the works of others you’ve come to love is a fantastic and often-overlooked way to continue writing forever. Oftentimes, people think you can only produce your own content to be considered a writer. Nonsense!
Commenting on the work of others is just as much writing as any other form of written communication. In fact, we’re all writers – there are only a handful of us who associate that word with our identity. In other words, nearly everyone is writing emails, sending texts, preparing letters, composing notes, updating statuses and even crafting blog posts. However, since not everyone identifies with writing on a personal level, only those who pursue it with noticeable effort as a professional or hobbyist are labeled “writers.”
Regardless of this, don’t let the idea of “being a writer” dictate what you can and cannot compose. Sure, in order to build an audience or serve an employer there are specific codes of conduct for your final piece. But outside of these contexts, don’t let anyone tell you what you can or cannot do as a writer! Writing is eternal; don’t let your legacy be snuffed by what others think is worthwhile or not!
5. Compile The Works Of Others
One unique way to build your impact as a writer is to compile the works of others and produce a new product. Take influential works of others and provide your commentary on it.Take influential works of others and provide your commentary on it. Click To Tweet
This is a convenient opportunity for you to showcase individuals who have influenced you as well as offer your thoughts to the public on specific works. There’s a high chance people will learn something new simply by reading your thoughts that comment on someone else.
6. Support The Work Of Others
Speaking of compiling the work of others, supporting your contemporaries is a great idea too! Sometimes it seems like there’s this unspoken undercurrent rule that to be a writer you have to write a ton every single time you sit down. Not so! A quick blurb on social media sites and honest commentary on their work as is goes a long way.
7. Continually Add Value As You Go
There is nothing, and I repeat, nothing more influential than continually adding value within your work as you proceed through your professional life. Seeking ways to produce or share unique insights for those who want to learn from you fosters loyalty and satisfaction in your customers. The more they appreciate how well you go out of your way to help them, the more they will tell others about you, and that in turn will continually bring more people to learn from you. It may sound like a lot when I mention “going out of your way” to help others, but this is the only way to succeed long-term in this world.The only way to succeed long-term in this world is to help others. Click To Tweet
As the old phrase goes, “people don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care. Click To Tweet
8. Make New Compilations Of Your Own Works
Compiling old works of your own into new formats can be a creative way to engage your audience. You need to make the information fresh and make sure there’s something new and exciting about the new piece, otherwise people will see through it and recognize it’s simply old material with a new face. A few ways you can spruce up old works are:
- Adding a revised or expanded list of technology recommendations for a specific procedure or project
- Adding self-study questions or prompts for the ends of book chapters or blog posts
- Creating a small course to go with a previously published eBook
- Creating a new Q&A section based on customer feedback from prior months/years
Speaking of sprucing up old material…
9. Release An Updated Version Of An Old Book
Doing a revised version of an older book is a brilliant move for a particularly popular book. The likes of Tony Robbins, Tim Ferriss, Robert Kiyosaki and other authors have all taken this step. The reason a revised edition works so well is because it provides increased leverage through a proven brand while giving the reader more value than before. Readers (and consumers in general) want high value for a reasonable price. Often, this means going above and beyond to deliver immense value for $10 or less.
Granted, some books are more than $10, and this is okay. The idea for successful sales is to always give more in value than you ask in price. This may seem like a no-brainer when you first hear it, but it’s shocking how often we pass over this in real-life, working scenarios. You can charge $1,000 for a product or service, but no one will buy it if the perceived value does not exceed that price. Likewise, you can sell something for $7, but if the perceived value is $1, this will not go over well.
With your book, add modern websites, resources, tech tips, names in leadership and other practical tidbits that will cement a lasting impact for them. Don’t worry about offering too much in value – the most successful are those who are the most generous. Speaking of generosity…
10. Give Gifts
Finally, my favorite (and arguably the most powerful) of all… Being generous and giving gifts is the all-time best decision you can make as a professional, and certainly as a writer. Jeff Goins said it best: “A writer’s worst enemy is anonymity. The way to beat anonymity is through generosity.” Put another way, you can’t expect to be a successful writer if few to zero people have heard about your work.You can't expect to be a successful writer if few to zero people have heard about your work. Click To Tweet
Writing is a social craft by nature, especially in today’s world where anyone can become a writer overnight. To catch people’s attention and (more importantly) keep it, you must be generous. You must astound them with what you’re willing to give, and your promises of free goodies must deliver on value.