• Melanie Wilson

When it Comes to Writing: Just Do It

Updated: Jan 27

What is something that you have been working on this decade?

What a scary question. Let's break it down to this month ..or even this week.

I have joined a wonderful new mastermind group with a few really bright, really supportive women, and one of our weekly projects is to state--for the rest of us to see--what exactly is on our plates at the moment.

I just finished my exercise for the week.This little project made me realize that I have a LOT of balls up in the air.What do you do when you are working on a lot of different projects? How do you prioritize?

Some people make a detailed schedule. Plan your work then work your plan. And it works great. For them. My mantra is more of a put-out-whatever-is-on-fire approach. Eventually, everything gets done, but often it is just before it really has to.

Take writing. A lot of people put off writing their blogs. They know that creating new, original content for their web site is critical for their sites to show up in web searches. Yet, they put it off. I don't blog on a schedule, but, rather, write when something inspires me.That inspiration can come several times in one day or not for a week or two. If it is something about my kids, I might send it off for consideration to the Grown & Flown website. If it is a story with a local angle, then it is a perfect piece for my TAPinto Melodrama column. If none of those, I must decide whether to post it here, on my melaniewilsonmedia blog, on the newly launched Women Who Write Facebook group, or as a personal page post.

I attended a presentation yesterday given by Digital Marketing Consultant Dori Eldridge of Image Prescription, and she agreed that to get people to your website, the best thing to do is to share original content there--such as a weekly blog--and then share that post to various social media. This is what I am doing with this post. You also must be cognizant of important keywords, so google knows that you are out there. This, for me, is a work in progress.

I tell the women in my networking group who own businesses that the important thing is that they keep writing. Actually, there are two schools of thought on that.

First, is the “Brave, Not Perfect” approach which is to just get it out there. And while I do agree with Author Reshma Saujani’s theory--that “the desire to be perfect holds us back in so many ways. We don't speak up for ourselves, as we know deep down we should, because we don't want to be seen as pushy, bitchy, or just straight-up unlikeable. When we do speak up, many of us agonize and overthink how to express ourselves, trying to hit just the right note of assertiveness without seeming too ‘bossy’ or aggressive. We obsessively analyze, consider, discuss, and weigh every angle before making a decision, no matter how small. And if we do, heaven forbid, make a mistake, we feel as though our world is falling apart.” So, basically, just put it out there.

Then there is the (insert Catchy Name of Approach here) approach, that absolutely every i must be dotted, every t crossed.

I believe the best approach falls somewhere between the two. Don’t agonize too long about what you write. Just make sure that it gets your point across, and that it doesn’t offend anyone. Spelling is critical and grammar is of significant importance. If I was to look back on something I published last week, last month, or even yesterday, I would have edits. I always do. And if it’s something that gets printed, there is so often a little typo that sneaks through, no matter how many sets of eyeballs have signed off on it.

What would be a shame is if you had an idea for a blog, or a series of articles, but then became paralyzed because you didn’t know where to start. So my advice, borrowed from Nike: Just do it. Don’t let the fear of starting hold you back! An approach that works well for me is just to start jotting down my thoughts. Let your piece grow organically. Don’t worry about an outline. Don’t even worry about starting at the beginning. When I go back through what I wrote to edit for the first time, I often find my lead a couple of paragraphs down.

For example, just today I received a newsletter from a friend, and her lead was actually at the very end of what she wrote.

And that, ironically, brings me to what I find is the hardest part of writing. The end.

#Mastermind #bravenotperfect #womensempowerment #blogging #believeinspiregrow #inspiration #googlesearches #googlekeywords #planyourwork #workyourplan #grownandflown #theend #guestblogging #writingworkshop #writingcoach



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