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Blog TipsWriting Tips

How To Write A Blog Post In 15 Minutes Or Less

By Aug 23, 2011October 25th, 2014118 Comments

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I recently polled a number of women in my community on what they thought the most difficult aspect of blogging is.

In my head, I was thinking the responses might focus on how to increase your readership, reader engagement, finding relevant photos, or struggling with knowing where to draw the line in terms of information shared with readers.

What I received was a unanimous cry for more time!

Time management. Of course. I forgot that some of you are actually still sleeping out there!

Writing Tips: You only have so many hours in a day to work on your blog and live life. These tips will help you write a blog post in 15 minutes or less, a great writing skill that can revolutionize your time management.

How To Write A Blog Post In 15 Minutes Or Less

Because all of us can use more hours in the day, here is a list of tips that will help you to write a blog post in 15 minutes or less.  Following these tricks will save you time and ultimately make the writing process a snap!

1. Keep Paper Handy

If you write ideas down as they come to you, the time you need to spend actually brainstorming at the computer will decrease dramatically. When I sit down to write a blog post, I spend at least 15 minutes looking at drafts, compiling notes, and thinking about what topics I can tackle. When I keep notes and have a specific goal in mind, I can write a blog post in no time.

2. Write A Blog Post When Inspiration Strikes

If you write a blog post the moment inspiration strikes, letting your thoughts flow out of your fingers without editing them, and then click save? What you have is a draft waiting to be polished. The next time you sit down at your computer and feel uninspired, simply thumb through your drafts, edit your thoughts, and publish.

3. Record Your Conversations With Friends & Family

Actually recording conversations might be a little much…but every conversation you have with someone has value. When you hang out with your best friend, consider jotting down topics that you touched on. You may not be able to post about Aunt Becky’s awful Tater Tot Casserole at Easter Brunch, but what about a post on Potluck Etiquette? Chances are you’ve already hit upon most of your main points during your conversation about the topic, so putting it in writing should be a breeze!

how to write a blog post

4. Take Pictures

Snapping photos takes relatively no time at all. So many of our phones come equipped with cameras. You’ll also find that a small point and shoot camera takes up little space in your purse. When I’m feeling completely lost for a blog topic I glance through my most recent photos and allow them to inspire a blog post.

5. Follow a Template

An insightful post is an insightful post regardless of who developed the structure. Fill in the blanks of this “Where I’m From” template and you’ll be surprised to find how quickly you can put together a unique perspective for your next blog post on a tried and true template.

6. Keep It Short

An insightful post is an insightful post regardless of the length. Try your hand at creating a Six Word Memoir. They can be funny, deep, moving, or just plain silly. Pair it with a great photo and BAM…you’ve got a blog post.

how to write a blog post

7. Archives Are Your Friend

What were you doing last year at this time? How have things changed? Has anything come full circle? Taking a walk down memory lane might remind you that you never did post about the solution you found to your daughter’s sleep problems you had talked about last year. Not only are your archives perfect for post inspiration and require little to no time, but it’s also a superb opportunity for back linking to old posts…which is great for SEO.

8. Hi, I’m Mama Kat & I have a Writing Prompt Generator…Have We Met?

If coming up with something to blog about is what’s clogging the creative process for you, then please do utilize the many sites out there built to inspire you. And by “many sites” I mostly just mean mine. Filled with over 1,000 writing prompts you can click your way to the perfect post topic! Click here to get started.

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How about you? What are your secrets for success when it comes to writing a blog post quickly?

118 Comments

  • Mimi says:

    Great tips. Thanks!

  • Charlotte says:

    These are all excellent tips–thank you! There are definitely times when I stare at a blank screen and then I find myself frustrated with my writer’s block, but it’s not a bad idea to jot down ideas when they come to mind. I have found myself doing that a bit more lately, and it’s helped tremendously! Though I still wish I could just find an extra hour or two each day… 😉

  • Thanks Kat! It takes me way too long to write my blog posts. I just want to be sure that I give really good useful content. I worry about my readers and want to help and inspire them. I am going to put some of these ideas you and other have listed here.
    Even though it takes me time to write blog posts I do use a hand recorder and my phone tape a talk feature. I jot notes and then write from those later. I also put a pad by the bed. When I travel I do a lot of videos too. It seems my brain kicks in about the time I fall asleep.
    I thank everyone for being so sharing.

  • Jenn Staz says:

    If I come up with short ideas, I’ll type them into my phone (with the simplenote app, which also can be accessed through an internet browser and all keep synced). If I come up with longer ideas, I keep a legal pad in my purse so I can map out more complicated ideas. To get inspired, all I need to do go through these two stacks of notes and I’m golden!

  • Thanks for sharing. I wrote drafts of posts this week, and I have to say, it has given me more time this week, and editing was a breeze instead of drafting and writing in blogger.

  • This is a great post. I started reading it this morning, but then had to start working. I finally got back to it 12 hours later, at a time when I need some inspiration. I think the key thing you said was about length. I just wrote a really long post (possibly too long), and mentally it took a lot out of me. I used to write shorter things, I think I need to go back and see how I actually did that. I’d feel better if I could post more often. Thanks!

  • Lisa says:

    The major problem I have about writing posts when inspiration strikes, is that I don’t always flesh them out into polished pieces. I’ll either post right then and there or save it and never end up editing because, even though at the time of writing it I thought it was an absolute gold mine, I have second thoughts about it. So I have a bunch of unfinished drafts that I can’t bear to delete, but that I’m not sure if I even like. It’s like the saying goes, you are your own worst critic.

  • Great ideas! I don’t have a problem coming up with ideas but the time management is definitely an issue. I aim to write a post every 2 days or so. At this point I have more ideas than time to write them. I’ll definitely check out your writing prompt machine. lol

  • Great tips! I like to keep notes on my phone so that when inspiration strikes (which is rare), I can write down my ideas right away, or else I won’t remember what I thought of 2 seconds ago….dang mommy brain!

  • I’m really trying to work on editing…I always write too much.

  • Awesome tips. I have been struggling with time management lately and am determined to get back on track now that the school year, and hopefully a routine, have started again.

    I actually have started recording my ideas into the voice recorder on my iphone while driving latey. I usually have my best thoughs while driving, or in the shower. I haven’t figured out how to record or write anything in the shower yet, but I’m still brainstorming.

    Thanks for sharing your ideas.

  • Judy Harper says:

    I’m so glad to read this! I’ve sort of felt I had to write a short story for a blog post. So many tips to use!

  • I have random thoughts written down all over the place and in my iTouch. Now if I can remember where I put them???? Great ideas, Kat! I will partially write a post and then save until I have a few minutes to tweak it and publish it. Some weeks I am swamped so nothing gets done so I will publish some pics and let them do the talking!

    • Kat says:

      That’s funny…I write a lot of my blog ideas on the back of receipts and am often found shuffling through my purse for “that one Target receipt”. Haha!

  • Stacia says:

    Wow these are all great ideas!!! I just wrote about having a total blank mind today. oye!!! i debated on whether or not i should post it. i did but it wasn’t anything to sneeze at. i use my phone to keep ideas of things i should write about, that and post-it notes.

  • Laura says:

    I keep a notebook & pen by my bed, because I’m amazed at the ideas that pop into my head before I hit that REM sleep 🙂 Of course, I don’t write the whole post then, usually a really good sentence or 2 will pop into my head on a certain topic, so I sit up & jot it down.

  • Jen says:

    I have an idea journal that I keep with me all the time. When inspiration strikes, I write down some notes.

  • Stefanie says:

    Terrific tips! It’s so rare that I’m able to “whip” up a post in less than an hour or two. I’ll definitely give some of these tips a try.
    Thanks 🙂

  • Life As Wife says:

    Great post! I tend to blog when baby is asleep. Biggest issues usually are that nap time is not long enough and/or by the time bed time rolls around, I want to go to bed too!

    I write ideas on my phone so web I do get to the computer the post is drafted. another thing that helps me is taking advantage of the good nights and writing several posts at once.

    Mommies: sometimes it is ok to choose sleep over your blog (at least that’s what I tell myself…)

  • Lisa says:

    Great post. Not all blogs have to be lengthy and take hours. Sometimes things just present themselves for you to write, as you said “inspiration strikes.” I have people ask me questions about social media or websites and I think – maybe I should write about that to share the info. Other times, like the other day, I saw our non-existent garden, took a picture thinking since we’ve been blogging we’ve had no time and did a blog post about it.

  • Writing about something that is happening in our family or my life usually comes fairly quickly, but I also blog different creative mediums, anything from a craft to writing fiction & memoir to working on my photography (aka relearning how to use an SLR, this time a digital one after years of using a P&S) and those all take more time simply because there’s the time to complete the creative process and then the time to blog it.

    • Kat says:

      Such a great point!! I agree, parenting posts that are funny or tackling a personal issue are usually really easy to write up…but craft posts?? Oh my goodness, with all the steps and photos involved? Those definitely take more time!!

  • angela says:

    These are great tips! I love my little writing notebook.

    Also, I sometimes compose in word, then copy & paste. And click the wireless button on my laptop off, so I am not tempted to open TweetDeck “just for a minute” or check my blogroll “just for one post”.

  • Kimberly says:

    Great tips! I go through my phone pics for ideas ALL THE TIME. And I also sit back and look around me for things to write about- which usually ends up being an annoying toy or some kind of organizational tip I should be using myself. haha

  • Anne Galivan says:

    I doubt that really quality posts can be written in fifteen minutes. A rough draft of a shorter post, sure. But truly quality posts require thought and LOTS of editing. There are few things that will turn a reader off, in my opinion, than a post that looks thrown together, full of grammatical errors, etc. just because someone wanted to make sure to get a post up that day. And believe me, I’ve seen plenty of posts like that…and I don’t go back to those blogs either. If a blogger doesn’t respect my time enough to put the time into their post, well you get the picture.

    I believe quality is better than quantity and so I have set a goal of publishing every other week. Requiring more than that from myself and I get pressured and it’s no longer fun. On the other hand, I publish educational, informative posts that are full of lots of meat for my readers. I don’t think they’re interested in reading “fluff” when they come to my site, so I make sure that they get what they bargained for. Perhaps for some niches, shorter posts are appropriate but I want to give my readers more.

    I’d also like to say something about the caption in that photo that says the average SAHM spends only 4 hours a week playing with their kids. The point of having your kids home with you isn’t to spend hours a day playing with them. There are many reasons not the least of which it gives your children the opportunity to BE kids…to play and create on their own without running here and there and being told to sit and be still and be quiet, etc. I’ve been a SAHM for 27 years and a homeschooling mom for over 20 and no, we don’t spend hours a day together playing OR doing schoolwork. Over time my children are taught to take more and more responsibility for chores and their studies but when they’re young, they get to be kids and play – and they don’t need mom (me) to be supervising all their play time either!

    • Kat says:

      I’m glad your system is working for you Anne.

      I have written posts that have been thoughtful and have taken days to craft that have received wonderful feedback from readers.

      I have also written posts that been thoughtful and written in 15 minutes that have received an equal amount of wonderful feedback from readers. I feel pretty confident when I say that a great high quality post can be accomplished in 15 minutes. Is it for everybody? No. But it can most certainly be done.

      You know your readers better than I do Anne, and if you can manage to be successful at growing your site by publishing twice a month than I think that’s great for you! I do think your niche as a home school blogger has a responsibility to publish a different type of blog post that probably takes a bit more time to research and edit.

      The caption of the photo you are referencing really has nothing to do with this post. I used it only to illustrate how you can take an interesting conversation with someone and use it for inspiration for a blog post. In this case my sister had thrown out that stat and I shared our conversation with my readers here: http://www.mamakatslosinit.com/2010/07/mother/

      I can see how reading it out of context my cause some unrest, but again it was just an example.

      • Anne Galivan says:

        Kat:

        More often than not my posts require a lot of research! For instance, my post this week is about teaching your high school student to write a research paper. Since most parents haven’t written a research paper in quite some time, I made sure to include links where they could find information on how to do specific types of research. And I spent 30 MINUTES just finding those links that would really be helpful to my readers. Thirty minutes just looking for helpful links.

        My post is over 2000 words (which it needs to be in order to cover the subject adequately). I worked on the draft of it three separate times for probably one hour each time. Then I edited it carefully, made sure it was readable, and found an appropriate pic to add to the appeal. So this one post took several hours to put together but it is a resource that homeschoolers all over the world can use for years to come.

        In very rare instances I have put up a short humorous post that didn’t take near as long to put together but again, for the most part that’s not what my blog is about or what my readers are coming to my blog for, so I can’t make that central to my blog.

        And I guess I want to make the point too that I have seen plenty of blogs where people clearly didn’t put the time in to make the post readable or enjoyable. They may have even had a great idea but the presentation so detracts from the post that they are not likely to keep people coming back.

  • I’ve used all of these suggestions! Great tips 😉

  • Um. I totally need to bookmark this….

  • Mimi says:

    Oh my gosh, that’s so awesome! Love that way for coming up with a topic!

  • Carri says:

    I am a huge notepad fan. I carry it everywhere I go because my best posts have always come from the top of my head. There are so many things around us that can prompt a creative flow!
    Now I just need to start using an editorial calender. I feel totally unorganized when it comes to scheduling posts.

  • Jessica says:

    I write really late at night when I’m so tired that I’m inspired to get the words out. Seems to work.

  • Time is of the essence! I totally agree about how your archives can be your friend… in a pinch, I’ve gone to the archives for inspiration or to re-use a post that is still good content. Thanks for the tips! Love Mama Kat’s Writing Prompts 🙂

  • I definitely write when the inspiration strikes, and love my queue of drafts. But I love the idea of revisiting what you wrote about 1 year prior. Will be using that one for sure!

    • Kat says:

      Sometimes I go even further back! It’s fun to see what how things have changed over the course of all the years I’ve been blogging. 🙂

  • Great post. I’m a planner and organized person so I’ve created a blog calendar where I write down what I plan to blog about each day. I keep a running list of ideas and every Sunday, I fill in the calendar for the week. If a new topic comes up spur of the moment, I may shift my calendar or maybe post twice in one day. Knowing what I plan to blog about allows me to gather information and photos ahead of time and helps me manage my time.

    • Kat says:

      This is EXACTLY what I started doing recently. I can’t believe how much easier this kind of organization has made the blogging process for me. Granted, there are still days where I look at what I had “planned” to publish and at the last minute change my mind…overall it’s really been a lifesaver.

  • patti says:

    ooooh, I needed this. my best blogging time is late at night when my kids are asleep, but sometimes I’m just tooo tired to think! I usually start a a post and finish it in the morning when I’m fresh. I like the idea of writing when it flows and saving it for later. thanks for these tips! I signed up for the prompts 🙂

    • Kat says:

      I’m the same way. I start writing when the kids go down, but lately I’ve been starting drafts on the weekends when they’re asleep and then finish them up on the weeknights. I think it’s good not to force something to happen when you’re tired. A fresh set of eyes is always a good thing. 🙂

  • Eva Gallant says:

    There are some great ideas in this post which I will definitely be using in the future!

  • Love these. Love. Some I do, some I need to do better…all are sage advice.

    ps – Been meaning to grab a Mama Kat prompt and link up for a while now…perhaps this week will be THE week.

  • Sasha says:

    Great tips! 1 and 2 are my constant writing saviors! My biggest problem is not the writing itself, that always comes easy, it’s the editing, uploading pictures and formatting the post that is so frustrating because it takes forever! I hate that side of blogging!

  • Excellent article. Time is my biggest issue as well. My best posts are the ones when something happens and I sit right down and tell the story…you know, when my kids spread poop across the room or something.

    I think I need to invest in some paper/pens.

    • Kat says:

      There’s something about being fresh in the moment that just makes the writing flow! I always try to bust out a quick draft when I’m feeling it because I know later I won’t be able to capture it the same way.

  • Grams says:

    Great tips. I have developed the habit of sending myself an email any time inspiration strikes. That way, no matter where I am when inspiration strikes, I don’t lose the idea. Usually just a few words is enough to trigger my memory.

  • Mama Mary says:

    This is one of my biggest issues because writing posts takes so much time for me. I do take notes on my iPhone when I’m out and about, and that helps a lot. Thanks for the tips.
    Oh, and I need to meet that “Three Monkeys” because I have recurring Justin Timberlake dreams too.

    • Kat says:

      Mary I’ve also been making use of that handy microphone recorder that comes on the iPhone! It’s great for when I’m driving in the car and want to talk to myself about something post worthy.

      Not at all strange.

  • These are wonderful tips! I have a wonderful three year old that acts as my tip generator.

  • amber says:

    Thanks for sharing – I tend to spend tons of time writing each post and leave the others rumbling around in my head…sounds like I need to start just writing up drafts!! Amber 🙂

  • Elizabeth says:

    I write the most amazing posts in my head while in the shower or at 3am. It’s the getting it down on paper that is the tricky part. I can generally remember the topic but not the awesome wording.

    I find that keeping a notebook helps to remember subjects I wanted to discuss or when I need inspiration while I’m out running errands, ec. Old yearbooks have come in handy too or old school papers/journals. I keep drafts on funny things my kid says as well. Keeping drafts in the computer works best for me when I’m at my desk, notebook for out and about.

    I really should consider an editorial calendar in my spare time – HA!

    • Kat says:

      Elizabeth editorial calendars are the BEST!

      And I’m like you, I jot things down when they come to me and then I add them to the computer so that they all live in one spot. I love that you pull ideas from your yearbook…oh dear, that could be a dangerous path for some of us! Haha!

      • Elizabeth says:

        I tend to use them around Class Reunion time – both high school and college yearbooks. Although I have a post in draft about the great concerts that came to my university while I was there. I have also used my senior year English class writing journal too. The teacher gave us topics to write about and I use that as my post, asking what others think now and what I would change in my answer now (if anything).

    • Anne Galivan says:

      Elizabeth:

      Some writers just do spend a lot of time writing in their heads. I’m one of those writers too. I’ve literally written whole books in my head. It might seem a waste to some, but I can’t agree. If that’s who you are, the type of writer you are, then it all helps as far as I’m concerned. (And one of these days I’m going to actually write a book – I have the title and outline in my head already!)

  • Nicole says:

    Usually, I try to write in my head first! Just like you said, jotting down ideas is half the battle!! My other difficulty is increasing reader engagement…sometimes my posts will get a ton of comments and response, sometimes I’m lucky if I get five comments. So, for me it seems like a luck of the draw! So it’s sort of a learning process for me, especially because it’s a little new for me (blogging only about three months!)

    • Kat says:

      Nicole the beginning is always a slow go. I think responding to people who comment on your blog, reaching out to new folks on their blogs, and interacting on Facebook and Twitter are great first steps. The people will come!

  • Holly says:

    Thanks for the tips! I’m quite new to blogging and any suggestions are appreciated. I really like the idea of jotting down ideas as they come to mind. I’m thinking a mini notebook is in need! Also going to keep in mind the archives suggestion for the future. Thanks again for the tips!

  • Denise says:

    These are great! I just starting jotting down notes on paper since it was difficult for me to remember all the thoughts that jumble around in my brain. I haven’t yet tried out the writing prompts but I am on the list and will one of these days.

    • Kat says:

      Denise I’m a paper jotter too! I also use the handy notepad in my iphone, but I have to admit poking around those keys can kind of be a pain in the neck. 🙂

      Hope to see you joining the Workshop soon missy!

      • Denise says:

        Yeah, I tried using my phone but I just hated typing that much on the touch screen. Hoping the notebook will work better.

        Maybe I should promise to do the workshop this week. Maybe that will motivate me 🙂

  • I have to write when I feel creatively inspired. If I sit and the post isn’t coming together, I walk away. So I like to have many drafts at a time for those days when I have nothing to say:)

    • Kat says:

      Sometimes walking away is all we CAN do right? I hate that feeling. My last stab at coming up with something meaningful is to leave the computer and go take a shower. Sometimes that little break provides me with the “non pressured” think time I need.

  • Truly great tips and exactly what I needed to read. I’ve been doing some of these, like carrying around a notebook to jot down blog ideas. I absolutely LOVE the idea of the writing prompt! I’m going to explore that further.

    Happy Tuesday!

  • I have a difficult time with formatting the post visually. I can get the writing done, but the editing and formatting can take forever! Maybe a bit of a perfectionist? 🙂
    Bernice

    • Kat says:

      No I definitely spend a lot of time on that too…mainly when it comes to pictures and getting them to display just where I want them to! Can really be a pain!

      • Penelope says:

        I really struggle with photo placement since I moved to WordPress. Any tips?

        • Kat says:

          Are you on self hosted WordPress?? I got so tired of uploading and moving photos when I was on Blogger that I started to simply hold all my photos on Flickr. Now I just grab the Flickr code and insert my photo exactly where I want it. On SITS, however, we upload photos directly to the post using WordPress. The only thing I find tricky about that is the bit of extra time it takes to scale a photo down to a normal size. What are you having trouble with?

          • Penelope says:

            In Blogger, I could just drag the photos around until they were in the right spot. On WordPress, the code has to be in the right spot. I’ve just started centering them to savetime.

  • Hope Easter says:

    I do mine the old fashion way. I sit down with loads of paper, and just start writing titles that pop into my head. Then I decide which ones I really want to do a blog post on.

    Great article Kat! I’m checking out the writing prompts now!

    Love always,
    )(ope*

    • Kat says:

      This is super interesting to me!! You write the titles first? I’ve never thought of doing that, but it kind of sounds fun!

      • Laura says:

        I write my titles first too. I have a ton of drafts that are just titles/topics I came up with & when needed, I’ll go back & write the content for that title.

  • Mel says:

    Awesome tips! I’m going back to school soon so my blogging time gets really limited, but I appreciate finding ways to make blogging and working work.

  • I think for me the challenge is not so much to generate content, but to generate excellent content. To generate something I would value reading myself, and not just putting something out there for the sake of putting something out there.

    I try not to let that thought paralyze me, because I recognize that that thought COULD cause paralysis: excellence is a high bar.

    I guess it all depends on what your priorities are.

    If you’re trying to work past a writer’s block, then, I think this post is right on target.

    And honestly, sometimes, some of the best stuff comes out serendipitously: I don’t know that I have something significant that needs to come out till I start the ball rolling and just WRITE!

    • Kat says:

      And “excellent content” is always debatable isn’t it? Sometimes the posts I spend 15 minutes pouring my heart into receives just as great of a response as a post I spend three days hemming and hawing over.

      • Excellent content is certainly in the eye of the beholder.

        What I find to be excellent, many readers may not.

        I refer in my comment to content that I myself find to be excellent.

        And you’re right: a post that I’ve spent 15 minutes firing off sometimes ends up being one of the best.