How To Organize Your Writing Life - A Guest Post By Mariann Foster

If you've had that book or blog post in the back of your mind for quite awhile, but have yet to see it through to publication, maybe now is the time to get it into print.  Sometimes great ideas stay stuck in people's hearts and heads because they aren't sure how to organize it all.  I hope I can help you when that happens. I love talking about writing.  I'm a reading/writing specialist and have published two children's books.  Writing is something that I'm passionate about helping people with.  I hope that this article helps you to get your writing ideas published sooner than later.

Get Your Ideas Down On Paper

Do you already have great ideas for what you want to write about?

Get out your keyboard, or if you prefer the old-fashioned way, take out your pen and paper and start brainstorming of things that you could write about.  Do not worry about spelling or how your handwriting looks if you are doing it the old-fashioned way.  Just get some ideas down.

Write whatever comes to your head, even the silly and ridiculous ideas.  The main thing is to get writing.  If you feel stuck or tentative to start, then get a stopwatch out and press start with a 1-minute goal to have some writing on the paper.  At the end of the minute, stop writing and look at what you wrote. And if you feel like a minute is too short, then, by all means, repeat this exercise for several minutes. The goal here is to push yourself to get ideas on paper.  Some people like to call this the prewriting stage.

Organize and Get Writing

This next step is highly individual.  Depending on your writing style, you may want to dive right in and get writing.  Or, you may need to organize topics first.  If you are writing a novel, for example, you may want to organize your thoughts into chapter titles or subtitles.  Many people, though, would rather let their words just flow on out from their brains to the keyboard, and organize as they go.

Many years ago before spellcheck, I would tell kids to not worry about misspellings on the writing stage.  But nowadays with spell check and autocorrect, many people (including myself) like to correct as they go along.  The important thing here is not to stop too long and get bogged down worrying about grammar and spelling.  Instead, you want to concentrate on getting content down.


Now that you have what I like to call the meat down in print, it's time to look at what you wrote.  This is the stage to add, remove, rearrange, and replace content.  Try to look at what you wrote critically.  You may have let your thoughts flow so well that you don't want to change a thing.  I love when that happens!  But it doesn't happen very often.  Sometimes, I need to go back and take out, add or copy, and paste what I wrote in a different order.


Now is the time to get a magnifying glass and look more closely for grammatical errors.  Also check for clarity, repetition, and punctuation. With programs such as Wordpress, our jobs at writers got a lot easier. If you are self-publishing, it's going to be extra important to make sure that you have everything correct.  If you have an editor, you will still want to turn in your best work. 

Marketing Your Work

If you wrote a book or blog post, then share it.  Social Media is a great place to share your publication for free.  You can even put a link to Amazon if you have your book there or a link to your website.  Your friends and family members will most likely be the first ones to want to read what you wrote.

Make sure to have your work on a website or somewhere that people can find you.  You may be surprised at who contacts you to come in and share your book.  For me, mine was a children's book, so I was invited to read it at my local library. But then to my surprise, I got a call with a hefty stipend, and all expense paid trip to my state Capital to read it to children there.  They found my book on a state-wide author's page.  I'm so glad that I listed it on my state's authors page. It was free to do and paid off when I was invited to the state capital.

Final Thoughts


Writing may sometimes come so easily for you that it may be hard to believe you were present when you wrote it.  Other times, it may be drudge work.  Whatever type of writing it is, these steps should help you keep the writing moving along to the final goal stages of publishing and marketing. Happy writing!

Mariann Foster is a content writer at OurStart is a lifestyle blog that publishes content on pregnancy, parenting, family, and marriage. When she is not writing, you can find Mariann homeschooling her daughter and running her alpaca farm.