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Writing Prompts

Writing Prompts: The Author’s Remedy for Writers Block

Writing prompts can act as a sanity saver when your creative juices have run dry and the dark, threatening clouds of writers block loom overhead. Even the most productive writers turn to a prompt or two on days when stringing a coherent sentence together seems like more effort than it’s worth. If you’re a writer, you probably know all about the struggle to conjure up a worthy idea from time to time, let alone develop it into a full-blown story, or article.

Writing Prompts Defined

Prompts are words, phrases, or pictures. They are quotes, memories, or lyrics from your favorite song. Quite simply, prompts refer to anything that kick starts your creativity and gets the words flowing. Picture, if you will, prompts loosening the gunk clogging up your gray matter, prohibiting you from developing a single writable thought.

The Writing’s on the Wall

As a professional writer, a lack of ideas could pose a danger to your livelihood. Imagine going to a client empty-handed. How can that be? You’re a writer! You’re an artist, a wordsmith, a master of written expression. You’re capable of weaving words into magical literature that makes people dream, hope, form opinions, and if you’re a copywriter, buy. You ignite the imagination of others, so where is yours?

Doesn’t sound credible does it? A writer who can’t write. It certainly doesn’t sound like the kind of person your prospect wants to hire. Whether you’re just starting out, at the height of your career, or mellowing a bit, there is no reason for you ever to be a has-been, washed-up author. When all you see is a lifeless writing career, you should take the time to reboot your creative system with a few writing challenges to save you from your rut.

Freeing Yourself from the Jam

Believe it or not, writing prompts make all the difference. They are tremendously helpful during brainstorming sessions as they dislodge the ideas waiting to be written. When you need a burst of inspiration, a prompt is the answer.

In addition to helping with dreadful writer’s block, you can use prompts to practice your skills. No author is perfect, but certain mistakes can be avoided, and bad writing habits eliminated. When you practice with prompts regularly, you will quickly find there is an overall improvement in the way you write.

Sometimes writing tends to get a bit stale and redundant, especially if you write about the same topic every day. It’s only natural to go through writing hardships, so don’t worry if it’s happening to you. A prompt goes a long way in jogging your brain, and enticing fresh ideas that can be fleshed out into complete articles.

You can use prompts for all types of writing, including novels, movie scripts, short stories, sales copy, and web content. These and many other forms of writing have benefited from a prompt or two. The results are often amazing, which allows writers to reassess their ability. Sometimes all it takes is a word or an image to unlock a world of incredible ideas and imagination. Something good can be something great with the help of a prompt.

Keeping a swipe file of interesting writing prompts is an excellent idea. You can refer to it when you need a little distraction, or simply want to practice your talent. Prompts make you challenge your ability and push you when you need it most. They are great for gaining a new perspective and helpful for navigating your way around those tricky dead ends. Just when you think you’re down and out, a writing prompt can put you back in the game. Never underestimate the power of a picture, or a word.

Learn SEO Article Writing

Defining SEO Article Writing

Let us be honest. Writing is hard enough without having to worry about making sure every article you publish is SEO optimized. Or is it?

SEO is shorthand for Search Engine Optimization. Put the two words together and you have the definition of an article that is optimized for search engine visibility. When I first started writing, I learned everything there is to know about this subject by researching hundreds of articles, blog columns, books, and case studies. The recurring theme, repeated repeatedly, was that either the writer was 100% for it or he or she took a hard-line attitude against it because it cramped his or her writing style.

Seeing the world in black and white with a little bit of gray matter in between it is not such a bad thing. You can bet that once you learn how to optimize your content for seo purposes and you see the results, you will be hooked and never turn back. If you research this topic with an open mind, it will take you less than a few weeks to start optimizing your own writing style. You will not even be conscious of doing it. It will become second nature.

The hardliners against seo article writing often think “by educating others on the subject they might steal my coveted search engine listing.” Alternatively, they might simply think, “Let’s be honest here. Writing is hard enough for some of us without having to worry about making sure our articles are seo optimized.” The second frame of mind is a prime example of being sluggishly complacent and doing just enough to get by as a writer.

As a writer, your main concern should be to get visibility of the content you write. Common sense says you can be a great writer but without the right exposure, you will never become popular. Optimizing your content to rank high within search engines will in fact get you the exposure you deserve. How is this accomplished?

Applying SEO Techniques

picture of two woman writing on laptop
It all starts with keyword density. Keyword density is the percentage of times a word or phrase is found within a webpage in direct correlation to the total number of words on that page. The calculation goes like this:

Target Keyword Count/Total Word Count * 100 = Density %

The optimal density range is from 1% to 3%. The Content Authority takes a middle ground with a 2% keyword option on written content.

SEO article writing is not limited to keyword density though. In order to have a fully optimized article you have to conform to the World Wide Web Consortium (w3c) standards. These standards include properly filling in image alt attributes, using a variety of heading tags, and quoting your sources to name a few. Search engines look at the W3C standards and base parts of their algorithm on these areas of accessibility for the impaired.

Summarizing Keyword Density

When you begin to write your next masterpiece or even a simple blog post, I want you to reflect on what is most important to you as a writer. A little research, some work and application of the right seo techniques to your content can help you rank faster and higher than you have before. The idea behind keyword density stems directly from search engines wanting to present the most relevant and well-written content in their search engine result pages (serp) to the user. It is actually rather simple once you learn how—you might even find you already write with the 2% keyword rule and I hope to help you over the next few blog columns to do just that.

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