Do you ever get writers block?
Do you ever think, “Wow! If I could write like them…” or “For the love, this writing is killing me! How do I keep up?
Maybe you’ve even said to yourself, “I’m a crappy writer! How do people do this everyday and how do they make money doing it?”
You want to know the dirty little secret?
They’ve embraced their voice.
Really. It’s that simple. And YOU can do it too.
The only extra special thing about a great writer is their distinguished voice and practice. You can have both of those. Once you embrace your voice and have some practice behind you, writer’s block will be a thing of the past. Sounds to good to be true, doesn’t it?
The only thing holding you back is yourself. So here are five surefire ways you can learn to embrace your voice, build your audience and never have writers block again.
#1 QUIT WORRYING!
There is no one else in existence like you. Embrace that. Be confident about that. It will be the catalyst to your writing success. When you embrace your unique voice – the one that God gave you – you will dissolve the main frustration of writers block: not knowing exactly what to write or which direction to build a story or post.
There are some who may be ‘natural-born writers,’ it may come with a little less practice for them. But those are far and few between. Learning to write well is as much of a learned skill as it is a gift or talent. So, if you don’t feel ‘gifted’ in the writing arena, don’t dismiss yourself and don’t lean on it as a crutch. With practice and your own voice you’ll be writing and building an audience in no time.
#2 Get Over the Rules
Your a blogger, a storyteller, a reporter, a detective… use your voice! Don’t let rules get in your way. Be confident enough to write your own rules. Traditional, conventional rules will cramp your style, they should always come last. They’ll give you a writer’s block migraine if you let them control you.
Have you ever dreaded writing? Is it the worst thing on your ‘to-do list’? Do you do everything else before you write? Do you want to write, and know you should write, but you just can’t bring yourself to do it regularly? If so, then you’re probably letting the rules of writing run your style instead of letting your voice do the talking. When you’ve embraced your unique voice – who you are – and learned to let the rules go by the wayside, you will find yourself waking up in the middle of the night bursting at the seams to write. It will be therapeutic for you and engaging for your audience. So don’t let the rules run you.
#3 Use Your Language
Use your language, your words….. brand yourself without trying! Just be YOU.
Your language is part of your brand. Write naturally, the way you converse with someone. Use your funny, quirky phrases that brand your voice and define your style. Don’t be afraid of you.
Think about when you get that epiphany for your next post, you get all giddy inside and you can tell the whole world how you feel about the topic in social media, on the phone or face-to-face, but as soon as you try to put it into a post, something crazy happens, you get writer’s block!
Because you try and ‘write it’ instead of speak it! Speak it to the world through your writing. Give them the chance to be in your home, at your office or in the car with you while you talk about this awesome idea or principle that will solve their problems. Quit writing and start talking.
#4 Get Into the Flow
Once you’ve embraced your voice, let the rules go and just started talking, it’s time to get in the flow and practice. With those three foundational principles in place, now your ready to practice like the pro’s.
Your voice and writing will be more deliberate, more succinct and more powerful if you’ll embrace this ‘warm-up’ strategy from Copyblogger. It’s fast, it’s simple and it’s something you can and should do everyday with your voice and your rules. They talk about warming up, I’ll add my two-cents about organizing your warm-ups for long-term success too…
The concept is great:
- Set the timer for three to five minutes and just write.
- Don’t write for quality, write for quantity.
- Once you start,don’t let your pencil come off the paper or your fingers off the keyboard. Just write. Purge what’s in your mind and let it naturally come out onto the paper without any formatting whatsoever.
This is a great warm-up idea. I highly suggest you start every writing session with it and some fresh air. Then here is what I would add, keep your brainstorm sessions together. I use Evernote, you can use Google docs, Word or a notepad. Whatever works for you. Keep your notes together for three reasons:
- For a sense of accomplishment. This ‘journal’ will be a way for you to measure your growth and be proud of yourself!
- To be accountable. I date every brainstorm session so I don’t miss a day. Call me compulsive, maybe, but it works. I don’t want to have a journal that misses a day (unless it’s Sunday, I like to take Sundays off no matter what.)
- It becomes your own encyclopedia of ideas. Use it as a tool to get content ideas and outlines.
#5 Don’t Force It
Don’t force it. If it’s a short post – great, leave it. If it’s long, fine. But don’t ever confine yourself to a certain number of words. Don’t let anything control and guide your writing except the idea you are writing about and of course the AUDIENCE you’re writing for.
And remember, overtime your voice will change, that’s OK. Let it evolve naturally. Don’t force it, don’t shy away from it. Let it be. Let it be who you are and what your brand is all about.
Now, get out there and #MAXthat writing potential. Let your voice be your brand. Don’t hide behind someone else’s!
Questions about your writing voice? Leave them in the comments or send a tweet @weMAXthat and we’ll be sure to answer.
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