By Renee Settle, Content Consultant | Author | Copywriter For Hire
The single most important thing to remember when you are writing your content is that your first draft will look like crap. You should expect it to look horrid and not in the least bit readable to anyone who has two brain cells to put together. I’m exaggerating, but you get my point. Many of my clients are so afraid what they write will be horrid, that they don’t write anything. But, we are our own worst critics, so what’s in your head looks worse than a churned up pile of worm meat. Some people fear that if a professional were to read it, they would think it was crap.
Let me tell you something, in case you didn’t know it. Professionals write a lot of crap. Yes, even professionals start out thinking that what they just wrote wouldn’t be fit to burn, let alone be read by anyone, especially their peers. They KNOW it’s going to be crap and they write it anyway. Then, they sift through it, water the good parts, and grow an amazing piece of work with help.
Many people think that a writer sits down at a table with their favorite writing instrument and create the “Greatest Testament Known to Man!”
Do you really think Truman Capote, Sun Tsu, or Winston Churchill sat down at their desks and wrote, then submitted and published “In Cold Blood“, “The Art of War“, or “The Second World War“, respectively, in one sitting and without rewriting, editing, formatting, or any guidance whatsoever? If you honestly contemplate that, it’s not realistic. Any more than it’s realistic to get a full year’s workout in one hour at the gym. You do not promise to work out and do it one time expecting to look like a model, do you? Writing your story is the same thing.
If you are struggling to write, remember that whatever you write is going to be a pile of worm meat, but inside that pile is a diamond or three that will wash up clean and bright. And if you sift through all your piles of worm meat, you’ll be guaranteed to find what you really wanted to say, in the exact words that needed to be said.
And if you don’t find it, your team will most certainly find it.
So write crap. Get messy and write the horrid stuff without the grammar, word usage, or spell check. Then, when you’re exhausted from writing, go back and read over it. Sift through the pile, find the gems and get rid of the other stuff. Worry about grammar, word usage, and spelling during the second and third time you read it.
The Real Truth
One of the biggest messages I give my clients is this. “I can’t help you write your amazing story, if you don’t write it badly first. Just write it.”
I’ll be happy to consult with you about writing your content story, but if, after this reading this, you still don’t want to write it, hire me or another professional to write it for you. We are used to the process. And a bonus is it’s nicer than working out, because you can have someone else do it and still reap the benefits. So if you’re interested in hiring me, reach out here. I’ve only got a few slots open and I believe in your story as much you do, so let’s do this!