8 tips to create a successful writing marathon
You could sit down once a week to write your blog post or you could write a bunch of them in a big writing marathon. Writing marathons are 4-6 hours long (because that’s all our brains can focus), where you crank out a bunch of copy.
With a bunch of copy ready to be edited and published, it will help you feel Inspired, give you momentum, and help you feel energized by what you could create when you focus on one task for four hours. You’ll be able to get ahead, freeing up more time for selling, client work, or sitting on your porch with a glass of wine.
Why batch writing is a smart idea
It’s a great way to write a lot of copy quickly. And if you post to your blog or email your newsletter subscribers once a week, all you’ll need to do is review, edit, and post when it’s time to publish. When you spend a few focused hours on a similar task, you can go deeper than if you were bouncing around from idea to idea or task to task.
Some things you could write during a copy marathon:
A bunch of blog posts or blog post outlines
A dozen emails for your newsletter
Your welcome email sequence
Work on an opt-in
A big start on an ebook or book
Outline and write most of your website or sales pages
Here are some suggestions for how to make the most of your writing marathon:
Dream up a big list of topics you can write about.
To do this, think about what people are always asking you about. What do you know about that you can share? What experience gives you an edge? What can you teach people? Start brainstorming, and then keep going. In 30 minutes, you could come up with at least 6 months of ideas.
Choose your favorites.
Once you've brainstormed a huge list, highlight your favorites. Which ones are you most excited to write about? Which ones light you up? Start with those.
Prepare your titles.
Create a fresh document with each title and a few bullet points that come to mind. When it’s marathon time, flesh out your bullets, one document at a time.
Set a goal.
Your writing goal could be to draft a month’s worth of blog posts, write your online course, you could plan your content for the year, or you could have a word count goal.
Embrace the Shitty First Draft (SFD).
All my blog posts, sales pages, about pages, and even the book on your nightstand—all started as an SFD. Most writers are intimately familiar with it. The point of writing quickly is to get your ideas out of your head and onto the page as quickly as possible. Try not to overthink it and don’t edit while you write. You’ll go back and edit later. Know that it's supposed to suck (a good portion of it anyway).
Fuel like a marathoner.
One foot in front of the other, steady pace. Fuel with energy-sustaining foods (think protein and fat, not ice cream and waffles). I used to run half marathons. I'd fuel with sports drinks and dates, and on one special race through Ontario's wine country, I fueled with wine (not recommended).
Set the scene for success.
You've blocked your calendar, removed all distractions, have a full belly and a big cup of caffeine and are ready to write. Just like a marathon, you probably don’t want to eat a huge bowl of pasta or a massive steak right before, or you’ll be headed towards nap-town. Maybe you’ll do this at a cafe, at a nearby hotel, or on your couch.
After your writing marathon, you’re going to need to rest. Plan for a day off, but if you feel compelled to write from all the momentum you’ve built up, by all means, go write! This is why it might be best to schedule your writing marathon on a Friday or Saturday so you can easily unplug and take the next day off to let your brain recharge.
Writing a whole bunch of copy in a focused chunk of time will do wonders for your momentum and inspiration. The best part is that when it comes time to publish you're more than halfway there. Hello creative energy!
Want to participate in a writing marathon a few times each month with a super small group? You can do that here!