People think I’m an imposter.
“How the heck does he write so much? He must have a ghostwriter.”
Sadly, no. I’m not that smart and no one can use grammar as bad as me — not even a ghostwriter who read the 6000+ articles I’ve written online.
The answer to how I write 480,000 words a month (8 articles a week, excluding LinkedIn/Tweets) isn’t as complicated as you think. It’s something you can do too.
Write as fast as Speedy Gonzalez
When I write I look like a guy at a rave festival who’s just snorted ten lines of coke. You’d think something was wrong with me.
Writing fast has a huge advantage.
You get out of your head. You just get thoughts onto the screen and stop overanalyzing or thinking “what will people think of me?”
Pretend you’ll never publish anything
I pretend I will never publish anything I write.
It sets me free from the prison of imposter syndrome. It might surprise you to know every time I hit publish it’s difficult.
The more difficult a story is to publish the faster I publish it.
I want to feel sick if I can. It means I’ve written something meaningful and it’s authentic. So much writing is inauthentic which is why it’s boring and gets close to zero views.
Mantra: “I ain’t gonna hit publish. Ever. This is just for me.”
Get a decent keyboard
I use a wireless Apple Keyboard that can go a month without charging.
The keys are soft to touch and they feel nice on my big-ass fingers. Having the right keyboard is underrated. Go test a few and then get one that you love smacking the buttons of.
Research on non-writing days
Trying to write and research at the same time is hard.
Yet this is what many writers do. Don’t do it, it’s a trap. On days when you don’t write, research. Make research fun too.
- Look up topics you love.
- Subscribe to oddball newsletters.
- Follow your curiosity.
If the process isn’t fun and creative, you’ll never write 480,000 words in a month.
Take notes even if you don’t think you’ll come back to them
I used to never take notes. I’d rely on my bad memory.
No wonder my wife calls me a grandpa with Alzheimer’s. I can barely remember my kid’s birthday. Luckily she was born 11/11/22 so even a nuff-nuff like me can remember.
Don’t rely on your memory. It runs on out of date, faulty software.
Get yourself a note-taking app. I use Apple Notes for fast notes and Roam Research for long-form, categorized notes arranged by topic and date.
Beautifully organized notes are such a big writing hack.
Whenever my mind goes blank I can reach into my personal database and lift out an idea on any topic. Writer’s block is impossible with a library of notes. Start building one.
Write stupidly simple outlines
I can write 5 articles in one day. Some days, more.
Blank pages are for losers. I never start with nothing. I always write headlines whenever I come up with them and a few dot points below them. That way it feels like the hardest part is already done, which is important, because writing takes an enormous toll on your mind.
Proactively easing the mental load is crucial. Otherwise your mind will get lazy and writing will feel like a prison yard activity.
Use this state of mind to make the process effortless
I never write in a normal state of mind. I always write in a flow state. The way I make this higher state of consciousness possible is by:
- Eliminating distractions
- Throwing my iPhone in the nearest lake
- Going to the gym before I write
- Pumping house music to up the vibes
- Keeping the office door shut
- Starting in the morning
- Skulling some coffee to pump the energy
You’ll never guess this one in a million years
This one’s odd…
But I actually love what I do. Some people hate writing and then want to be a writer. It makes no sense. If you don’t like writing then don’t write. Do something else. Make TikTok videos if you want, or start a podcast.
Loving what you do makes the process 10x easier. Hard to come up with excuses when writing is in your blood and pulsing through your brain as if you’re insane in the membrane.
It’s not a goal, it’s a system
Writing goals are for schmucks.
You’ll never write 480,000 words a month if it’s a goal. No. Prolific and effortless writing is a system.
I started with a borrowed system a guy from Perth gave me. Over time I adapted it to my own tastes and schedule.
My process is documented and has been repeated 1000s of times over the last 9 years. It’s far from a perfect system but it works well enough. The thing with a system is you always have to iterate it. Why?
Different systems work for different stages of life.
My self-help, “I’ll die on this 4 am cold shower cross” worked for a while. Now I got a snot-faced kid who likes to fling poo at dad. I can’t write 24/7 and never take a break and scream h-u-s-t-l-e-e-e-e-e-e harder b*tches.
My system has had to change as life has changed. And that’s normal and to be expected. The same applies to you.
Make it a simple-stupid habit
Writing doesn’t happen due to random inspiration.
It’s a habit. I write on the same days and times every week. My mind and body know when it’s time to write and they just do it without being forced to. Too many writers never write much because it’s not a habit.
Worse, it’s not a commitment.
It’s a wishy-washy dream. It’s full of “I’d like to one day publish a fantasy novel and be chosen by a major publisher.” Good luck. It ain’t gonna happen.
The best writers aren’t the smartest. They just have a writing habit they can’t kick, the same way an alcoholic can’t give up the drink.
Too many writers are copy-paste sheep.
They spend so much time looking at formats, templates and what’s going viral, that they forget to live life.
Readers buy your experiences, not someone else’s.
It’s easier to write 480,000 words a month when you have other people’s ideas mixed with life experiences you’ve actually had.
Observe tiny details
This is a work in progress for me.
The most prolific writers can describe the smallest of details. They can give vivid descriptions that make you taste, smell, feel, hear, and see what someone else is experiencing.
The way to get better is to become a watcher.
Sometimes I sit down at busy shopping centers and just observe the human beast. We’re strange creatures. Then I write what I see in the Apple Notes app on my phone. I try to capture every detail.
Over time this creative pursuit makes writing easier and more interesting.
Don’t give a f*ck
A.k.a write unfiltered.
My newsletter is called unfiltered for a reason. Unlike every other platform, I can write my weekly newsletter 10x faster. There’s no chance I will get banned or be canceled or have my content restricted or shadowbanned.
With that freedom of speech I can write without any blockages. I can get the gatekeepers out of my head and focus on the reader. That relationship becomes deep real fast when you do.
It explains why my unfiltered newsletter has grown to 74,000 subscribers in just over a year. Find a way and a place to write where you can let your hair down. I call it true writing freedom.
Many writers have never experienced this brain org*sm.
How much you write isn’t the point.
I’m not here to go “I write more than you, ya slob.” No. Obviously, you don’t need to write 480,000 words a month to be a successful writer. That’s probably too much if I’m honest.
But you do need to write a lot to collect data and understand what your audience wants from you.
Make writing a habit, have fun with it, use outlines, and focus on writing faster. That’s how you can write thousands more words that’ll rewrite your future and make you a successful writer.