I'm stepping a little outside the norm today to bring you guys a class that I think many of you will find beneficial to your careers. I recently had the chance to take Help Me Naomi's Speedy Freelancer: How to Write Faster course, and oh my gosh, you guys. I needed this so much!
By now, you probably already know that I work 12 hour shifts as a 911 Dispatch Supervisor. We're short-staffed and training a bunch of new dispatchers, so I've been working 60 hour weeks, pretty much nonstop since December. I've also had three books release since January, with three others in queue to release in May and June. I have no free time. None. When I'm not working, I'm prepping for a release or trying to keep my house in order or working on other writing projects. And I am ALWAYS behind.
Anything I can do to help take a little of the stress off and get things done more efficiently, I'm willing to give a shot. So when Naomi asked me to test her new course, I jumped at the opportunity.
Writing Faster? Heck yeah!
Freeing up a little time? Double heck yeah!
I wasn't sure how beneficial her course would be to me as a seasoned author versus a freelancer, but I was more than willing to give it a go. And I'm really happy to tell you guys that it doesn't matter if you're a freelancer, a career author, just writing as a hobby, or a mix of all three. It doesn't matter if you've been writing for years or are new to the game...this course has something to offer.
The structure is super easy to follow. Each section is broken down into a short video (15 minutes or less). It's easy to fit this into a busy schedule. Only able to make it through a section or two at a time? That's cool. You can always pick up where you left off and replay as needed.
But don't go in thinking that because the course is so user-friendly that you won't get anything out of it. Speedy Freelancer: How to Write Faster encourages you to ask yourself the tough questions and step outside of your comfort zone.
It also holds you accountable for the bad habits that keep you from being as productive as possible.
If you're like me, you bounce from task to task to task. You're a writer one minute, an editor the next, and then you're on to marketing or engaging with your readers. All within the span of a couple of hours.
Turns out...that's probably not the best way to handle things. This course will teach you how to Time Batch, so you're able to get the most out of your time. And trust me, y'all...this is SO helpful. With my schedule, I struggle to manage my time effectively. There is always so much to do, and I try to dive in and take it all on in one sitting. At the end of the day, I end up accomplishing less than I planned, and am more stressed out than I was to begin with.
Speedy Freelancer encouraged me to STOP DOING THAT by offering helpful, relevant tips for working free of the distractions we often find ourselves gravitating toward.
Since I took the course, I've been consciously working to change this bad habit and to group or batch tasks. When I'm in the writing zone, I focus only on writing. When I'm editing, I focus solely on editing. When I'm working on marketing or social media or author branding...I strive to work only on those tasks now. This has helped me get so much more done, much more quickly.
Also incredibly helpful to me was the section on Sprint Writing. I've done Sprints intermittently for years, but I tend to allow myself to become distracted. I would stop in the middle of a sprint to check my phone or do anything other than what I was supposed to be doing: Writing. Speedy Freelancer called me out on that, and made me strive to stop allowing myself to become so easily distracted and to focus on my sprints. As a result, I've gone from putting down a 1k or 2k a day to getting 5k and 6k words a day onto paper.
With my characters running amok and doing everything but what my super detailed plot needs them to do lately...being able to write faster has helped so much. I've, literally, written entire chapters just to appease the jerks I call characters...and then had to go back and rewrite the entire chapter the way it was supposed to go
(because I was right and they were wrong and if they'd listened to begin with, I wouldn't have been forcing them to listen to Can We Talk by Tevin Campbell on repeat for a week straight. I don't negotiate with terrorists. And also that song is great.)
Sometimes, you gotta do what you gotta do. But writing two versions of more than one chapter is time consuming! But with Sprints, I'm getting it done. And I'm getting it done much faster than I would have prior to taking this course.
If you're one of those writers who waits until the last possible minute to get things done, this course can help you overcome that habit as well by giving you sound advice and relevant tips for keeping yourself on task and using your time to your advantage. No more fake deadlines. No more last minute rush to get things do. No more making excuses for why you aren't done when you said you would be.
Do you get stuck in your head worried about what readers are going to think? This course can help you too. Get writer's block frequently? Naomi has you covered.
I LOVE that this course not only calls us on our bullshit (and let's be honest, as writers, we feed ourselves a bunch of bullshit to excuse why we aren't getting things done), but helps us find ways to overcome our personal hangups and areas of weaknesses. Also included are resources you can use to get yourself on track and keep yourself there.
I can't recommend Speedy Freelancer highly enough to those of you who are like me: In need of a little motivation and help to find effective methods for overcoming areas of weakness and get things done more quickly. This isn't a quick fix. You have to put in the time and make the changes to get anything out of this course. You also need to be open to looking honestly at your habits and your weaknesses.
This course doesn't include a lot of fancy bells and whistles. It's not designed to be something pretty to look at or to waste your time and make you feel like you did something productive. It's written for people who have shit to do and are ready to dive in and get to work from the word go. If that's not you, then this course probably isn't for you. But if you're willing to dive in and get to work on making your life a little easier, I'd highly recommend giving Speedy Freelancer a look.
Naomi is tough, but gentle. Like me (and probably you), she's a writer. She's been in the business for over fifteen years, focusing primarily on copy-editing and ghostwriting. She's the author of Amazon bestseller Everything I Need to Know about Parenting I Learned from Watching Star Trek. She's also crazy busy with other life responsibilities, like running helpmenaomi.com. She gets how hard it is to find a balance, and helps you navigate as you try to find what works for you.
You can register for the course here. If you do take it, let me know. I'd love to know how the course helped you and what you thought!
Disclaimer: I didn't get paid to write this. I don't get paid if you take the course. I did take the course for free. And I loved it.