Forgot your password?

Lessons from A Newbie to Online Writing

By Edited Nov 13, 2013 3 14

I have been involved in online writing about eight months. I also manage two blogs. I also have a full time job. When I fell into online writing, I thought I had discovered life on a new planet. I had wanted to write for a long time. Here was a venue. I didn't want to write a thick book manuscript and risk rejection from publishers. To be totally transparent though, I would like to do that some day. I could learn writing skills online. Plus, the concept of passive income appealed to me as I am approaching retirement.

After about twelve articles submitted and published on some online sites, I discovered that my intellectual well was not as deep as I thought. I found myself running out of ideas. Actually, it was not lack of material, but rather lack of writer's discipline that would keep the creative juices going. How did I figure this out? I went to sites like InfoBarrel and read articles about dry wells and encouragement. To be honest, money is not rolling in yet but I am having a blast writing and having people respond to what I write. One goal I don't have down pat yet is the number of articles I would like to write in a given time. However my productivity is improving. Here is what I have learned and how it's working for me.

I have established two writing times. I commit a minimum of one hour a day, five days a week to writing something. On my days off and weekends, I block off several hours in a day to write. I may reflect on ideas, work on drafts, or organize material. Sometimes, I have several articles going at once. Occassionally, I will give my mind a rest and skip a day.

I carry a small notebook wherever I go. I jot down ideas and do some writing when opportunities present themselves. I tried to trust my memory but painfully discovered that for the life of me, I could not remember the idea for that fantastic article that I had thought of two hours previously. Additionally, the quickly jotted note on a tissue, piece of newspaper or paper napkin usually was lost.

I have a computer file for each site I write for, and subfolders for ideas, titles and topics. It's all backed up. I have used two online word processing sites, Google Docs and Zoho. Both have lots of good features. There are others but these are the two I use. I rotate between Word and these sites in order to keep the typing fresh for me. I like variety. Sometimes, after writing on one of these sites, I will copy and paste the material in a Word document so I can easily access it offline. If I am going to travel, I may copy from Word to one of these. I can always access it if there is a computer with internet access nearby. It frees me from having to carry mine around.

I read forum discussions and articles by people who are writing well for online sites. I am looking at their styles, their tags, their article structure, and taking their suggestions to heart. These articles are not only full of tips, tricks and insights, they are encouraging. I am starting to comment on their articles and network with other writers.

I'm one of the new kids on the block with lots to learn. Who knows, I my first earnings pay check may come sooner than I think.



Aug 29, 2010 2:54pm
Excellent article telling it the way it is, can be tough at times. I can see you are going to be an asset to this community. I use many of the same ideas for articles. My own best writing time is 6-8am so I get up at 5am and catch up on the forum while I wake up. I find it helps me to start writing if I sort out three titles the night before, rather than soend productive writing time brainstorming.
I try to write three long articles a day, if I cannot think of good titles I do three short articles instead, but try to keep to three a day.
Aug 29, 2010 3:07pm
Good idea on 3 a day. I am getting passed being discouraged if I don't come up with 3.
Aug 29, 2010 3:38pm

Good for you. When I was going to college to be an engineeer I underestimated the importance of good writing skills. Nice article.

All the best,

Aug 29, 2010 4:25pm
Thanks a lot for the words of encouragement.
Aug 29, 2010 4:35pm
Hi, Lifelearner, I am a IB newbie, too. Trying to learn my way around the site, and pick up tips from the many successful writers here.
Aug 29, 2010 5:12pm
Hi Southerngirl09. Thanks for encouragement. This is the most beginning writer friendly site I have found.
Aug 29, 2010 9:04pm
Writing on a consistent basis is one of the best things you can do to become a better writer. You know what they say the more you do something... Keep up the good work.
Aug 30, 2010 6:15am
Thank you, Sonni57. I appreciate the encouragement.
Sep 3, 2010 5:41pm
I, as a fellow newb, enjoyed this article. The gazillions of dollars are not flowing in (...yet haha!) and likely never will, but I am also having a blast learning the ropes and just writing!
Sep 3, 2010 5:51pm
Merwyn, thanks. I (haha)
Sep 5, 2010 6:46am
This is a great article and it should help other newbies. good luck with earning as well dont forget to do some backlinking once you have written a few and keep records of where you put each article so you do not double up cheers rated up
Sep 5, 2010 7:18am
Have done one set of back links and realized have to keep where I put what. LOL Thanks
Sep 6, 2010 9:09am
Sounds like you have a good system going lifelearner. A writing schedule is a great idea, something I may consider implementing. I also like your idea of carrying a notebook for ideas. I'm still in my late teens and even my memory fails me! O dear.
Nice article. Thanks for sharing these anecdotes. Good luck with your future articles on InfoBarrel and on your blogs!
Sep 6, 2010 9:13am
Thanks gibberade. I am approaching 60 and I wish I had started at your age for keeping a notebook. I wish you well.
Add a new comment - No HTML
You must be logged in and verified to post a comment. Please log in or sign up to comment.

Explore InfoBarrel

Auto Business & Money Entertainment Environment Health History Home & Garden InfoBarrel University Lifestyle Sports Technology Travel & Places
© Copyright 2008 - 2016 by Hinzie Media Inc. Terms of Service Privacy Policy XML Sitemap

Follow IB Entertainment