Are you looking for a way to speed up your writing productivity? Think you've tried everything in the book on working faster? Perhaps you've even considered the possibility of networking household devices together for this purpose. Does using multiple computers speed writing productivity? Perhaps my experience with this method will help you decide if it will work for you.
Why Should I Set up Multiple Computers?
Setting up two or more computers may help speed up productivity for some article writers. You might delegate all internet activities to one and all the writing to another. This can help save the time it takes to switch back and forth from web pages to writing documents. It may seem like a small amount of time. But if you write articles for a living, that time really adds up. Even if you are not doing any web research at the moment, you could still make use of multiple computers. Splitting writing documents between two or more computers might be easier than flipping back and forth between documents on just one computer.
How to Set Up Two or More Computers for Article Writing
When setting up multiple computers to increase article writing speed, there are several factors to consider. First, be sure the computers are in very close proximity to each other. The computers also need to be angled in a way that makes it easy to transition from one to the other. For instance, if one computer is facing toward you and one is facing the complete opposite direction, you will need to move your chair or computer every time. If you will need to move across the room to switch computers, this will not be convenient either. It may even waste time instead of saving it. You can even network the computers that share the same operating system to save you from transferring files by disk. If the computers do not have the ability to share a network, you can also use cloud storage, such as Google Drive or OneDrive. A USB flash drive is also a very fast option for sharing files back and forth.
Tips for Using Multiple Computers
Results may depend on the person. Some may get stressed at the thought of multiple computers. Others, like myself ,may naturally fall right into it. Signs that it may work for you include the ability to quickly navigate one computer between documents and websites, being a multitasker, and having the ability to work in changing situations. Signs it may not work for you include having little knowledge of operations on just one computer, getting stressed easily, and not being able to perform in varying situations or under pressure. Like anything else, it will only save time for the person who feels comfortable doing things this way.
*I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network
A Writer’s Interview on the Self-Publishing Experience: Just Write the Damn Thing!
by Amy Kampstra, Contributing Writer
An independent and voracious reader tends to be a better author. That may be partly why bonafide word addict, Sarah Winter, effortlessly weaved together a spicy, character-driven plot in her romance novel, Snowbound.
Throughout the pages, Liam and River are two 30-somethings stuck together in a Wyoming cabin during the blizzard of the century. He is a flourishing movie star from Europe, and she’s a tomboy living in the middle of nowhere after cancer rips her life apart. Is this change meeting merely life-saving or will it allow them to live their lives to the fullest?
Then, Winter didn’t stop with writing the thing! She took the reins, embracing the newness of self-publishing with an open mind, navigating through the steps like a bright reader charting the dark waters of a Stephen King novel.
Yes, self-publishing involves a plethora of tasks that can make any top-notch writer stuff their manuscript in their nightstand and dream about their dream of words in print -- instead of actually going for it.
Whether you love or hate her first novel, Winter vows to accept all positive comments and criticisms with open arms. Yet, she makes no apologies for her first effort. She believes authors need to give themselves permission: to read, write and explore self-publishing.
Heed her words! Winter’s Snowbound (2014) was a quarter-finalist in the most recent Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Contest.
Amy Kampstra: Can you share a bit about the scope and process of self-publishing for fellow authors that may be considering or even starting their own self-publishing venture?
Sarah Winter: It takes longer to design a cover for the book than to actually have it ready for sale. Createspace is an Amazon company, so getting the book on paperback and Kindle at the same time is part of the process, and choosing your sales channels is another. Through just one simple step-by-step online process, I was able to make Snowbound available through every channel that a traditional publisher can. Self-publishing, once you have a finished manuscript, is easier than I expected.
AK: As a self-published author, how do you market or advertise your book? And, is it more work to write the book or actually market it yourself?
SW: I use social media and have the book listed on every website I can find that doesn't charge to list books that are available for sale. Tweets, Pins, and Facebook posts drive traffic to the sales pages and
to my blog as well. Also, by entering the Amazon contest, my book got exposure to the other entrants through the message boards associated with the contest.
I think the ratio of work on a self-published book is about 15 percent writing, 30 percent editing, and 55 percent marketing, especially if you don't have money set aside for marketing. If you're looking through free marketing options, a lot of time and effort get spent on that. Everything that a publisher handles for you when they sign you to a book deal, you have to do yourself. It's quite an undertaking.
AK: What is the best thing about having your words in print?
SW: Seeing a book on a shelf with my name on it. It's satisfying to have done something even I wasn't sure I would ever do. I can't lie though; royalties aren't bad either even if they don't amount to much.
AK: Now that you've penned your first novel, is there anything you'd do differently if you could do it all over again? For example, the recent buzz is that author J.K. Rowling now seems to have regrets about her choice to have Harry Potter characters, Ron and Hermione, end up together. And, she's written a short story about Harry and friends in their 30s. A) Would you have done something different with your plot or certain characters? B) Is it a possibility that you will resurrect your characters in future projects?
SW: I don't think I've had time to really think about what I'd do differently. I'm happy with the way Snowbound turned out, and don't think there's really anything I would change about it right now. It's always possible I could resurrect them in a new work, but I don't see that happening just yet, either. I've left the cabin for now.
AK: Do you have any goals left for "Snowbound"? That is, are you looking at shopping it around to publishing houses, selling a certain amount of books in a set amount of time, or entering more contests?
SW: I would love to get it published by a traditional house, and I will probably shop it to agents starting next summer, once I have another work released. (I'm shooting for a January release of my second novel).
I intend on entering one of the two in the Amazon contest next year, and hope it works out as well as it did this year.
AK: In retrospect, would you have done something different with the marketing or publishing of your book?
SW: The only different choices I could really have made are ones that are still available to me, even after publishing. I still have the option of getting my work accepted by agents and publishers, so I don't think
I went wrong or made a decision that I regret. I would have set aside some funds for marketing campaigns, but with two young kids there's always somewhere that money needs to be other than paying for promotion.
AK: Why do you write under a pseudonym? Would you advise other authors to do so?
SW: There are several reasons people choose pseudonyms. My motives are really simple. I like the surname Winter, but also it's for a separation of the two versions of me: the mom, wife, daughter, sister, and friend; and the writer. It’s a matter of personal choice and, if you have a pseudonym you want to write under, go for it.
Pseudonyms have been used since publicized writing began for people who are trying to break into a genre dominated by the opposite gender. The Bronte sisters each used male names when they were first
published. Benjamin Franklin wrote under three different women's names, one of them in direct protest to women being punished for having illegitimate children while the fathers went unpunished. Romance author Leigh Greenwood is the pseudonym for Harold Lowry, who served as the president of the Romance Writers of America for two years.
AK: Are more Sarah Winter novels (or other works) on the way?
SW: I mentioned it in an earlier question. I have another romance novel in the works that I hope to release in January just like Snowbound. We'll see how it goes, as I plan to go back to work part-time this fall.
AK: On your blog you've written a past post in regard to authors giving themselves permission to write. Can you tell readers and any fellow writers a bit more about this concept, and do you have any other honest and helpful tips for anyone stuck on penning their first novel?
SW: Giving yourself permission, to me, is just about letting go of your hang-ups. They're your hang-ups to have, but they're also your hang-ups to let go of. It ultimately comes down to a choice: you either give up
your hang-ups or you give up your dream. It's unpleasant to think about those two options, but they're really what it all boils down to.
I don't mince words so for other advice, I say this: stop dicking around and write the damn thing. It's not going to get written by the excuses you make for not getting it done. If you're stuck on page five and make excuses for why [you] don't write for ten years, you're still only going to have five pages of a novel and 10 fewer years to write it in.
Because online article writers can sometimes earn their money based in part or in whole on views, promotion can come into play often. If you are a freelance writer and aren't earning much for your content, not enough marketing or the wrong kind of promotion could be part of it. Here are some easy promotional techniques for online article writers that can be implemented right away.
Sign Up for Twitter and Start Tweeting
If you write online and haven't been tweeting, you may be missing out on a fair amount of exposure. I recommend that all online article writers at least try Twitter. If done right, this easy promotional technique has the potential of putting your work in front of people you may not find elsewhere. The unique dynamics allow people you may or may not know to spread the word about your content quickly and easily. Online article writers should remember not to be a spammer that only posts links. Like any other social networking site, there should be some social involvement. If you sign up and don't like it, you can always cancel your account.
Utilize RSS Feeds
Utilizing RSS feeds is another easy promotional technique. Many content sites have an RSS enabled profile where the work of each writer is displayed. Submitting the RSS feed to RSS directories of the appropriate topic is another way online article writers can promote. The more ways that people have to find your work, the more likely you are to get noticed. You also can post RSS feeds of your content onto your blog or website so that your readers and fans can easily find more of your content.
Frequent readers are probably saying "Oh no, here she goes again with the SEO talk," but it is true. For online article writers, this easy promotional technique is a must. It may seem odd to refer to SEO as easy, but some aspects of it are and implementing it gets pretty simple once you get the hang of it. There also are some simple techniques that even beginners can use. If you don't know what SEO is or are still confused about it, pick up some books and learn more. You might even wish to take some classes. To get started, read Easy SEO Tips For Online Article Writers.
Blog About Your Articles
Your own personal or commercial blog is a great way to promote your work. Blog about the topics of your articles and link to them within your posts. This gives your blog readers something extra and can also lead to more views of your articles. Blogging can be a great way to get targeted readers to your content. Targeted readers may be more likely to stay longer, which could mean more views and more income. This form of promotion has that benefit and also the benefits of RSS and SEO capabilities. The RSS feed helps get your blog posts indexed with search engines. It also creates a way for readers to get instant updates of your posts. Implementing SEO into not only your online articles, but your blog posts is also a great promotional technique.
Start a Facebook Page
Facebook is another great way to promote your articles. Once you have signed up, you can even create a Facebook page specific to your online business. People can sign up to be a fan. If you use both Twitter and Facebook, the applications can be connected so that whatever you post on Twitter also posts to Facebook. This is a great way for busy people to post in two places at once. Just remember to actually interact with people. Otherwise, only posting article links can look like spamming. Also, be sure that your family and friends are aware you’ll be sharing your work. You don't want to overwhelm them all at once.
Some forums allow a signature line to be attached to each post a person makes. Where allowed and appropriate, this can be another effective method of promotion. Simply place the link to your work in your signature. Some forums may also allow you to share actual articles where appropriate. Always follow the rules. Posting where it isn't allowed is a promotional technique that can have opposite results than intended. If you become known as a spammer, your work may instead get ignored.
Yes, here I go mentioning SEO again -- that magic three-letter abbreviation we hear often. Using easy techniques can help online article writers significantly. If you haven't heard of SEO or if you haven't heeded the advice, you likely are losing out big time. A large portion of Internet traffic comes via search engines. If you expect search engines to find your content and deliver it in search results, you need to talk their language. Here are some simple techniques you can incorporate right away to help increase traffic and bring in valuable readers that stay around.
Focus, Focus, Focus
Focusing clearly on the subject at hand is a very easy way to draw people in. Not only should online article writers focus in on the subject without rambling, but focus should be in one specific aspect of that topic. For instance, the subject of this article is 'techniques for online article writers.' For focus, it was narrowed down to 'SEO techniques,' and more specifically, 'easy' SEO techniques.
A good way to narrow your focus is to search your topic on the site you're writing for, as well as your favorite search engine (mine is Yahoo), to see what already exists. Go for an angle that focuses on something useful or interesting, but focus on an aspect either not covered enough or not covered in the manner you intend on covering it. When I searched on this topic, I found many SEO articles, but none that were as specific or as simple to understand as I'm hoping this is.
Remove Modifiers and Fluff
Ever tried to read an article where the use of words such as "and, at, that, to, but" etc. is excessive? Not only is this bad for readability, but it takes up space and lowers the importance of the relevant words. Obviously, you need these words in some areas, but remove them where possible. For instance, instead of saying "She thought that it would have helped her, but it didn't help, " you might say "She thought it would help, but it didn't." See how much easier that is to read?
Being too descriptive or using too much storytelling can also take away from the SEO and the valuable info. Creativity is good, but don't be excessive. This is useful info to remember when writing the article, as well as during proofreading. Remember that web writing differs from other writing. Instead of saying something like "Jenny hurried across the green, grassy lawn to take a potted flower to her grandmother's house and enjoy a well-done steak dinner, " you might say something like "Jenny rushed home to her grandmother's with a potted flower, to enjoy a steak dinner with her." It still gets the point across, but is not so drawn out.
Latentic Semantic Indexing (LSI)
Latentic Semantic Indexing (LSI) is a technique that can easily be implemented with others. It shouldn't be the only method used, but when used in conjunction with the techniques above (and more as you learn), it's a great technique. Here's a simple way to remember LSI. It's basically the action of using words related to your key topic. There is a more complex explanation. However, we're keeping things simple here.
To find related words, simply use a word cloud generator. Type up a phrase or word that best represents your topic. That will give you results with some related terms. You can do this with various words and phrases. You also can use keyword tools, such as the Google Keyword Planner. Once you have all your related terms, sprinkle those throughout your content. These do not need to be used often and should be natural and not forced or overly used. Ignore the ones that actually are not related and do not make sense within your content. You still need to make sense and provide something functional to your readers.
WRITING TIPS JOURNAL
Lyn Lomasi is founder and owner of the Brand Shamans Content Community. Services include ordained soul therapy and healing ministry, business success coaching, business success services, handcrafted healing jewelry, ethereal and anointing oils, altar and spiritual supplies and services, handcrafted healing beauty products, and more!
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