Yesterday on Twitter, I revealed to my followers that I was taking a 15 minute break from my “Content Creation Day”. Suddenly I got a flurry of tweets about what it was and how I came up with the idea. So in the spirit of jumpstarting my blog again, let’s talk about creating content.
I first got the idea this past summer after reading David Lakhani’s Power of an Hour book & listening to his audio program. The book centers on the technique of creating 60 minute intervals of focused “getting it done” time blocks throughout your day. I also get my daily inspiration from Copyblogger, Problogger & the Blog Squad. When I coach my small business publicity clients on how to create media plans, I suggest they choose a publicity day once a month to focus on getting more publicity for their small businesses. “Content Creation Days” are great for authors who swear they never have enough time to blog or work on their books.
Between business building and client projects, my blog posts have been lacking and even worse my creative writing muscle has grown flabby over the summer, so I instituted weekly “Content Creation Days” to get my creative juices going again. Here is how it works.
First some ground rules. You are only allowed to create:
-Copy for sales pages, emails and auto responders.
-A Chapter in your book.
-Revising & editing
- I use the 5/75 rule. That’s 5 hours with 4/15 minute breaks. That’s 300 minutes which leaves you with 240 (4hrs) minutes to put your booty in a chair and write.
- I choose one day out of the week to devote 5 hours to doing nothing but create juicy, relevant content for my target market. I can usually get 3 articles, a short podcast and extensive revisions fitted into this 240 minute time slot. My Content Creation Days are on Wednesday’s, not during the weekend. Weekends (Sunday specifically) are used for reading, outlining, planning, and mind-mapping.
- Work in focused 75 minute blocks of time with 15 minute breaks. This is the only time I check & respond to email, use twitter and check facebook.
- Use an egg timer. You want to time your focused writing periods as well as your 15 minute breaks.
- Create a Content Creation Day folder where you keep all of your ideas, notes and inspirational swipe files.
- No cell phone, internet or television during this time. I don’t even plug in my internet connection during my 75 minute writing times.
Do’s and Don’ts
Don’t do any Outlining or Planning on this day. This day is strictly about creating content. I often feel like writers (myself included) use outlining more as a procrastination tool than to actually get things done. Content Creation day is for getting it all down on the page. Use another “CC” day to revise, rearrange and edit.
Do inform your family and your little ones of Content Creation Day. I don’t have kids, but I’ve shared this technique with a very close friend of mine of has two kids and she says it’s been working miracles for her. She chooses one day to write while her kids are in school. She doesn’t stick to the 5/75 rule, completely but she still gets in 3hours of good solid content creation at least once a week.
Don’t overwhelm yourself from the start. I came up with this plan to motivate me to write, but if you try to overwhelm yourself with 3 or 4 “CC” days too quickly, you will procrastinate and lose focus. This strategy is about getting the juices pumping consistently and not waiting for your muse to strike you.
Do institute other challenges throughout the week to get you writing. So for example in addition to my Content Creation day, I’ve promised myself to write 1 short article a day. Nothing too taxing. Jeff Herring, The Article Marketing Guy, has a great technique for writing short and powerful articles that are from 250-350 words.
Do put your “CC” day on your calendar. Schedule it like a weekly client appointment.
So that’s it. That’s how you implement “Content Creation Days” into your schedule.
The Book Savvy bottom line: The key to marketing your book & info products better is to create really amazing content. That takes applying your butt to the chair. Although there are techniques that can help you write your book quickly and easily, focused time and commitment is the only thing that’s going to give you the results that you want. In the meantime while you’re writing your book, start setting up your book’s marketing system’s now. If you haven’t read my special report:How to Quickly Grow Your Network, Create More Fans & Build Your List Using Social Media go to the sign in box above on the right-hand side of the blog and download your copy.