Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Getting your priorites straight in writing articles.

Here's a hint on one of the first things you should do: look up what is getting the most hits. Read the first 20 or 30 until you start to see the patterns showing up. One of the great urban legends is that all the popular articles either start "How to..." or "X ways to ..." - actually this isn't true.

I'm reminded of Louis Lamour's story. He is known as perhaps one of the most popular and bestselling western authors of all time. (He wrote in other genres as well, but was most prolific in his western.) He tells the story in the back of his books that he learned to write by studying all the truly successful authors and their styles - from Shakespeare to the Pulp Fiction authors of the '30's. From that study, he learned exactly what kept people coming back to those classics. And so his books sold and sold and sold.

When you are writing articles, read a lot of them. You not only get ideas for articles of your own, but you also start absorbing styles and see what you like and how you are distracted by the lack of a new paragraph, or a comma, or hyphen, or bullet.

Once you read enough articles and continue to write and polish your own articles you'll wind up with a great style that works for you. One tip on this is to put your article aside for a day or three, then print it out and read it away from your computer (so you can't correct it and over-edit it). Read it like you've never seen it before - see if your style is something that really draws you in. If not, red ink in the changes, make these and then publish it to the world. If you ever come back to this article again, review it in light of what was most popular. But the only time you are ever going to edit this again is when you put it into a book - based on its popularity.

What you are trying to do as an article author is to simply climb up the Long Tail and get wider use of your works. This will give you more income and greater freedom in your life.

Michelangelo had another point, as he was often told during his life: create a body of work. As he was prolific in his artwork, so must you be ever productive in yours. You seek to leave an abundance of completed works in your wake. This means that regardless of your other profession(s) you are a professional author as well.

If you like this new profession, you can let the others "go hang" or become hobbies. Or you can compartment your life (spending time in allocated slots for assigned activities) and do all the things you've ever wanted to accomplish.

That's what I would think is the reason for writing articles and why you are trying to market whatever you are linking to through that article - you are working to get more freedom for yourself, to accomplish those things in life that you have always wanted to do in your life. Now this is a lot to say in a short note about an Article Directory site. But there's your extra added value.

Pass it on.

ArticleSnatch - Article Directory - Free Article Content for Ezines, Blogs, Newsletters and Websites: "Most Popular Articles"