3-Step Productivity System for Writers
Capture, write, organize
I need three things to be productive as a writer:
A way to quickly capture ideas and drafts wherever I am
A tool to structure and write content
An organizational system to store, organize, and archive my work
Here’s what I use.
Capturing ideas might seem like a simple task, but it isn’t.
The best ideas come at the worst times. When I sit in my car and drive, when I shower, when I lie in bed, I get an idea. And I have no place to write it down.
Here’s what I try to do.
When I drive, I use voice commands to quickly capture thoughts. Since I have an iPhone and Apple products in general, I use Siri and Apple Notes to remember ideas or write short drafts. In my car (with CarPlay), I use voice commands and Siri to create a new note in Apple notes and write down what I remember.
In bed, I sometimes turn to my phone to write my idea down in Apple Notes, although I generally avoid using the phone at night.
In the shower, I don’t have a solution just yet. I could shower with an Apple Watch and use Siri there, but let’s not take this too far.
Overall, a simple note-taking app works wonders to quickly capture ideas. Although I do use Notion for my main workflow, it’s not perfect for quick capture on the go for two reasons:
The mobile apps are pretty slow
It’s not perfectly integrated into the iOS ecosystem like Apple Notes (which isn’t Notion’s fault)
Notion does play a huge role in step 2.
Notion is vital for my writing business for three major reasons:
It’s customizable, the organizational structure is unlimited, and Notion supports Markdown which is my favorite for writing efficiently.
With Notion’s databases, it’s easy to manage multiple writing outlets with tags, details, and relations.
It’s free and offers unlimited add-ons, integrations, and plugins.
As you may know, I created a comprehensive Notion writing system called Write OS. This is my writing system. I use Write OS to create content, add details like tags, timestamps, categories, etc., and organize & backup all my work.
Many of you have tried Write OS since I released it earlier this summer, and the feedback has been fantastic. I appreciate all the praise and support!
A writing system like Write OS has numerous upsides:
I can quickly search and find previous articles by title, tags, dates, relations, and more
I see patterns, like the connection of Medium curation and view counts, or tags and reads
I highly recommend every online writer have a writing system in place and a fitting tool at hand to utilize this system efficiently. It doesn’t have to be Notion, of course.
For some, a simple note-taking app like Apple Notes, Google Keep, and Microsoft OneNote will do. These are usually well-integrated into their respective operating systems with functions like voice commands and quick actions.
Others prefer to use word processors like Word, Google Docs, or Apple Pages. They offer advanced styling & formatting options and export functionality.
I know many people who prefer note-taking and structuring tools like Evernote, Obsidian, Roam Research, RemNote, or all the other apps that do notes and much more.
The bottom line
No matter what app you prefer, a system is the way to go for efficiency and optimization of your workflow.
My preferred apps have a quick access feature like voice integration or quick actions on the phone via long press on app icons or interaction from within the control center (on iOS).
Of course, no app can help you write your content. That, you need to do yourself (unless you use AI). But apps can help with the surrounding workload and task management so that you and I can focus on writing.
Here’s Write OS, if you’re interested in my system:
Otherwise, tell me about your writing system! What do you use, and how do you capture, create, and organize your content?
Have a few seconds left? It would mean the world if you shared this post on your socials or with friends who’d be interested. It only takes you seconds, but it’s a huge deal for me. Thank you!