How Do I Write Long Articles?

Invest the Time Before You WriteReading a long article is so easy when the author has invested time in the essential preparation for the writing phase. No one can sit down with a blank screen and just start rambling. Even the most experienced writers follow the writing process to ensure that the work is done before writing long articles. You can master any length of writing piece when you follow this basic series of steps.

The amount of time you spend writing will be reduced greatly when you complete all of the preparation.

Examine the Topic

Before you begin, you will want to look at your topic of choice. In all honesty, is the topic the right size for the piece you want to write. Some topics require sufficient supporting material to fill an entire book, which is more than 30,000 words. Other topics are so simple that few people could write more than 1,000 words no matter how much material is found. Carefully worded online searches will reveal the breadth of your main subject.

Expand the length of your article if your initial online research reveals that there are many points you can make. You will want to write about 400 words for each of your points. Each of the points should be expanded to support the entire article. Research about each point must be complete and interesting to create interest for your reader. Substantial sentences must exist throughout your piece to draw your reader forward. You will not want all of the substance in your article to be in just one section.

Research Until You Learn

As you think about some of the articles you have read recently, can you remember anything that you learned? Your long articles must be packed with valuable information if you want your readers to stay with you until they have read your entire article. You can think back to articles that you didn’t have to read because the author wrote the entire piece from his own memory. Readers will recognize a shallow article that is not supported by many sources.

Write Long ArticlesYou might think you have a topic mastered and can write about it from your experience and memories. Your research activities are essential to bring authority to many of the subjects that are worth your time. Somewhere in your reading audience, an expert on the topic will discover your article and start to read. Once that expert gets frustrated you can be sure that he will challenge you. Your articles will appeal to a broad audience when you write for the novice, the expert and everyone in between.

Build a Framework

Your readers will praise you for a well-organized article that flows easily from beginning to end. The easiest reading happens when the writer does all of the work and the reader is able to enjoy the article. Poor writers expect the reader to figure out what the article is trying to say. Your writing will be much easier if you will complete these steps before you start writing.

  • Order matters – You will want to look at your points and consider the order of those points. Chronological, step-by-step or logical order covers all of the material you could ever want to write. You can write each point on an index card and then order the index cards. Your reader must be foremost in your mind as you decide which order is best for your topic.
  • Outline guides – After you have written your high-level outline, you will want to use your research material to complete your article. You can refer to your outline often as you write each sentence and allow your thoughts to flow. Your memory will serve you well as you follow your outline and make your points clear for your reader. Writing is easiest when you prepare your mind through adequate research that fills your thoughts.
  • Points remind – Major subtopics must support your main topic so that your writing flows from one point to the next. A high-level outline reminds you to stay on topic in the paragraph you are writing. You will not wander into future points if you look at your outline often during the writing phase. Redundancy will not happen because you are following your plan.

Depth Develops in Revisions

Those articles that you love to read are written through multiple phases of edits that add depth to every sentence and paragraph. Whenever you find a weak sentence, you can add some facts and figures from your research materials. Some writers save the details for the editing process so the revisions are useful and placed carefully within the text. You will want to use every pass through your new article as the opportunity to improve the structure and meaning of the text.

If your article is not long enough, the best way to expand your entire article is to find all of the places where you could insert another full sentence. Your first editing pass offers the perfect opportunity to add all of the research that you left out of the article when you wrote the text. As you insert more thoughts, you will want to smooth out the transitions and be certain that you have not made any assumptions. Your writing should be easy to follow and read for the first time.

Writing Long Articles Requires Time

Write Long ArticlesIf you have ever heard an author talk about his best work, you will hear him tell of the number of revisions required to make the piece publishable. No one writes an article for the very first time and deems it perfect. Great authors spend hours and hours reading and rewriting the text. Your best writing will come from investment of your time and effort to improve every sentence.

Your earliest pieces will surprise you when you go back and read what you thought was acceptable. Multiple attempts to write about the same topic will yield amazing results. If you want to see what happens, you can make your first attempt to write about your topic. Then, for your next attempt, you can start over with a blank screen and write about the same topic again. You will be amazed at the result. Sometimes the best approach is to start over completely.

Your willingness to write well, no matter what is required, will show through to your readers when you write long articles.

Any length of writing follows the same process.

How do you stay on track and write long articles?

2 Comments

  • Hi Mialei,

    Extremely helpful.
    I am gradually finding that it is much easier to construct
    at minimum an outline of the items to be covered under a
    topic before I start writing.

    Also much easier to keep flow in order if you have a “time line” in mind
    before you begin.
    Eliminates a ton of editing and moving things around.
    Thank you for the very helpful article.
    ~Cararta
    Sugar Control Diet

  • Mialei Iske

    Hi, Cararta,

    All of your preparation time will pay enormous dividends in your writing. As we pause to research and construct an outline, our minds will order the material and remember our plans while we write. Jumping in without a plan results in scrambled paragraphs, which will confuse and frustrate our readers. Everyone wins with that preparation time.

    Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts.
    — Mialei

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