Your calendar says it’s blog o’ clock, so you sit down at your laptop, open a new Google Doc… and start to word vomit.
Has this happened to you?
Or maybe you’ve been avoiding blogging because you’re worried it will?
No worries! I’ve got your back with a simple plan to turn that barf into blogging gold!
Step 1: Keep Writing
If you’re spewing out words like there’s no tomorrow, that might be a good thing. Just like regular barf, idea barf is better out than in.
So make like an orphaned Disney princess and “let it go!”
My guess is you’ll get a lot out of writing down all your ideas so you can see what you’re working with. Let yourself keep going until the ideas dry out. Think of it as long-form brainstorming: You’re simply emptying out all your ideas on paper to see what’s in there.
Try setting a timer so that you don’t use more time than you can afford. I know you’ve got other tasks you need to do in your business besides blogging.
But turn off any judgment that might have crept up as you started to write. If you’re thinking, “I should be able to write a short, succinct post without rambling on and on” let go of that thought. It’s harder to write something concise.
A long, rambling post is actually a sign that you’ve got a lot to say on a topic. Great! That’s evidence of your expertise.
Step 2: See What You’re Working With
Once you’ve dumped out all your thoughts, read back through what you’ve got and take stock.
- What main ideas are coming through?
- How, if it all, are the ideas and topics related?
- Can you see more focused topics start to emerge?
I’m a big fan of color-coding at this point in the process. Here’s how to use it:
- Start skimming, looking for ideas that feel related.
- When you find ideas the are connected, highlight them in the same color.
- Create a legend by naming each color. For example, purple = blogging in less time; turquoise = reasons why you need a blog; red = objections to starting a blog.
- Create new categories with new colors as needed, and add them to your legend.
If color-coding isn’t your jam, simply copy and paste text about the same topic into the same spot in your doc.
Step 3: Break it Up, Break it Up!
Once you’ve got a few (or maybe a ton of) categories, try to narrow them down even more.
Let’s say I look back at my color-coded or moved-around braindump and realize I have a ton of ideas about saving time on your blog.
That’s good evidence that saving time is one of my core topics. I’ll likely want to have it as an ongoing theme on my blog, rather than a one-and-done post.
When you break up a core topic into multiple posts, there are quite a few benefits:
- readers get the information in smaller doses so they don’t get overwhelmed by a fire hose of information
- you end up with more topics to write about = more blog posts already planned
- readers and Google bots get the message that you’re an expert on this topic
A great strategy for dividing up your topics into bite-sized posts is to come up with some working titles, aka titles that get the main idea across but aren’t pretty.
Here are some working title examples I might use if I realize I have a lot of ideas about saving time while blogging:
- Write a Killer Blog Post in 1 Hour by Curating Content
- Publish Your Posts Faster with Smarter Proofreading
- How to Come UP with 25+ Blog Post Topics in 30 Minutes
- Save Hours Each Month by Batching Your Blog Posts
Those titles are kinda clunky and might not be the final versions I’ll use, but as working titles, they’ll help me stay focused on one single aspect of blogging faster, rather than trying to unpack that whole topic in one go.
Be Grateful for Word Vomit
Having a lot of ideas about a topic is a blessing, not a curse! Writers who sit down with no clue what to blog about would happily trade places with you.
The key to cleaning up your verbose verbal vomit is simply to let it out, see what you’ve got, and then break it up using working titles.
BONUS: Once you start creating categories and subcategories, you might be inspired to think of even more topics in those categories. Oooh la la! Even more content for your blog!
That’s the nature of brainstorming: Once you open yourself to new ideas, they tend to come flooding in. Especially when you give yourself some parameters by naming categories. Then it’s basically like you’re playing Family Feud — but with no time clock.
Want some support breaking up your bohemeth blog post into smaller topics?
I’m here to help. Schedule a writing coaching session with me and we’ll break up that word vomit into a handful of engaging blog posts topics.
So you can show up as an expert and build rapport with your readers — without making their heads spin.