One of the toughest obstacles in article writing is actually starting the article writing process. No matter how many articles we write, it is something we want to avoid because we sometimes don’t know where to start. Since article writing has become a form of marketing that almost anyone can do and afford, now is the time to take on this challenge head on.
Creating an outline is one of the best methods to use when writing an article. Having an outline provides a foundation of your article. In other words and outline gives you a starting point from which you can build into a story. An outline will make the article writing process easier and faster.
Brainstorm Your Ideas
To start off your outline, brainstorm and jot down your ideas. I love using the mindmap method of brainstorming. Set up about a 15 minute time frame and write freely. Try not to over think when you are writing down your ideas. This process does not have to be formal so write freely. Think of some ideas you would like to cover and supporting points for that idea. Review your notes and now organize your outline.
Organize the Outline
When you organize your outline, identify and ensure the purpose of the article. The purpose of the article should help you figure out the introduction of your article. Then identify key points of your article. Now that you have a frame for that article, you need to come up with ideas supporting those key points. As you come up with more supporting material your outline will build and you’ll have an expectation of the length of the article.
After this process you should have an outline of all of your paragraphs (i.e. the body of the article). You now need to outline a conclusion. The conclusion outline should be similar to the introduction of the outline and supportive of all the main points of the outline.
Create the First Draft
Now you should have enough material for a first draft of the article. Your draft should be a similar process to your brainstorm. Just write. Don’t worry about being perfect. Think of it this way, no one will read your first draft. Plus, you will be refining the draft into an article. As you move through this process, you will see the article form.
Always refer to your outline and let it serve as the central point to your article. From my experience it is very easy to move away from the purpose of your article. Your outline will keep you on track to the purpose of the article (is you use it).
An outline does not only provide a plan for your article it serves as a way to get started with writing the article. Your outline skills will be something you will refine with practice. You’ll build momentum to creating the first draft of your article. You will eventually trust your self and become a very productive tool in writing articles quickly and effectively.
Why don’t you share your ideas on how to get started writing an article? Do you have a method that would work for others? Please comment and share.