Start Strong: 7 Must Follow Steps For Clear, Stress-Free Writing

Nicolas Cole
4 min readFeb 7, 2024

Imagine assembling an IKEA BILLY bookcase — without the manual.

Insurmountable, right?

The same is true when you try to, “Just sit down and write what you know.”

So, to help you avoid the anxiety inducing “I hope it turns out OK” strategy, we put together a simple 7 step framework for achieving 100% clarity in your writing, so you’re never left holding the blank page again.

Let’s dive in.

Step 1: What type of content is this?

Walk into any library in the world.

Everything written is 1 of these 3.

  • Original: Like an autobiography, stemming from personal experiences.
  • Curated: Think of anthologies, gathering the best from various authors.
  • Researched: There are walls of academic journals filled with pages of research.

Half the battle is knowing which of these 3 roads you’re going to travel down.

So, before you sit down to write, ask yourself: Is this your own idea? Someone else’s idea? Or lots of ideas grouped together?

Decision number 1, check.

Let’s move to step 2.

Step 2: How are you saying something “different?”

A cover band never outshines the original artist.

Why? Because they don’t bring anything new to the table.

To truly differentiate yourself you can do 1 of 2 things:

  • Modify an existing category. “It’s not a car. It’s an ELECTRIC car.”
  • Frame, Name, and Claim a new problem. “It’s thinking fast AND SLOW.”

You, as the writer, have the opportunity to educate your readers on something new and different by helping the reader see what they really need instead of what they think they need.

For a deeper dive on these ideas, check out Category Pirates.

Let’s keep moving.

Looking to become a prolific Digital Writer in just 7 days?

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Nicolas Cole

100M+ Views | 5x Author | Co-founder of Ship 30 for 30 | Want to start writing online? Get the Ultimate Guide: https://startwritingonline.com