Yesterday I was babysitting Max, and the dog, on my own for the first time.
A full seven hours while Holly was working!
And it wasn’t so bad 🙂
During the time I bought a book called 5000 Words Per Hour: Write Faster, Write Smarter
It’s not a big book, which is why I managed to read it in the few hours Max was sleeping yesterday.
I think it’s important to read these kind of books alongside any that you read for pleasure.
They help to make you think about what you’re doing, the processes you’re using, and if you can improve.
For me, I personally like to take nuggets out of them. I’m not someone who’s going to follow a regime set by someone else, and then follow it to the letter. I know, I’ve tried, and I never get very far.
Instead, I take what I find useful and put it into my own working pattern and lifestyle.
The book, which I recommend if you want to use a method and exercises to allow you to write that quickly, uses principles that I’ve been talking and teaching for years.
* Get a quiet space in which to work
* Turn off all communication and notifications
* Know exactly what you’re planning on doing
* Take a regular break
It’s even easier if you do it at a time when nobody’s around. For me, my day is starting earlier and earlier.
Max wakes up at 6:30am and the builders are on site at 7:30am, that means there’s a lot of distraction. Although Holly does an incredible job of keeping Max away from my study.
However, if I start working at 6am, I can get a huge amount done before Max is even awake, and by the time the builders arrive, most of the days work can be finished!
So I’m thinking about starting even earlier, maybe 5:30am or 5:00am in order to get the whole day finished by the time everyone else is awake.
Anyhoo… one of the things that the book mentioned, is using dictation software to write with.
I’m a fast typer, I type around 95 words per minute, and I just did a test to check it:
I took the test at http://www.typingtest.com/ if you want to have a go yourself.
Now, if I was able to consistently type at that speed, which I can’t, that would be 5700 words per hour.
However, realistically, over a long period of time that speed will probably drop to more like 80 words per minute and 4800 words per hour.
Still not bad.
Using dictation, you should be able to speak at least 120 words per minute, and with practice, as much as 160 words per minute.
That’s between 7200 and 9600 words per hour.
Which is frickin mental!
Imagine the output you could have in one hour a day. With the average business book being between 50,000 and 75,000 words, at this speed you could write the first draft in just 10 days if you commited to writing an hour a day.
Whoah. Now a lot of things start to become possible!
So… as I mentioned earlier, before I drifted off the subject, a number of years ago I tried using Dragon Dictate, which is leading dictation software.
But I didn’t get far.
Because I couldn’t be bothered to go through the learning process. You see, I know I type quickly, so why would I want to type any faster.
A few years on, I read a book thinking how good it would be to be able to type 5000 words per hour. On finishing it, I learn that I do actually type around 5000 words per hour already, but I can probably get that closer to 7500 words per hour if I use dictation software.
And now… I have a reason to want to do it. There’s less time in the day because I want to spend time with Max, which means I need to be even more efficient.
So I’m gonna give it a go.
Which means my next email may very well be dictated.
I’ll let you know how I get on.
In the meantime, if you’re not yet a member of our private Facebook group, here’s the place to go.
It’s a safe space where you can ask the group any questions you like.