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What's Your Process?

 Notice the 5 Steps to the Art Studio Process from this image:

1. Plan and Practice

2. Begin to Create

3. Revise

4. Add Finishing Touches

5. Share and Reflect


How many times do we go through those steps without even realizing it?


When I visit schools, I like to take lots of pictures of the many interesting things I see.


The trouble is that I don’t always remember all the pictures that I have taken …

So there are times I like to look back through the folders of digital pictures that I have.

I remember taking this one in an Art Classroom. I liked the colors and paint splashes.

When I saw it again today, a few months after I captured this image, I saw so much more than just the colors and the image … the 5 Step Process really jumped at me.

I started considering how this process could be used in other areas …

My process of writing blog posts immediately came to mind.

Think about yours ….

How do you come up with an idea to write a blog post or a story or a report? Do you find a topic you think is interesting and then see how you can connect it to other things? Do you write part of the post in your head? Do you figure out a way to start the post to bring the reader in? Do you write portions of posts and the come back later to finish?

I do many of those things … maybe not every time but most of the time …

That sounds like step #1 to me … Plan and Practice

After I have an idea, I would like to say that I make plan or a bubble map or something like I encouraged my writing students to do, but I normally just start writing and see what happens. There are times, many times, when I may start with idea but when I start writing, it just seems to take a journey of its own …

So by the time I get to the end of my post (or any written piece), it may not be the same as what I had planned in the beginning but that is OK because I feel like those are the words and ideas that needed to come out …

I do a pretty good job of talking in a circle and connecting seemingly unrelated objects and ideas … I guess there is not really a plan for that ….

But it does sound that step #2 … Begin to Create

So I might do this one out of order, but many times as I am in the process of creating, I am already thinking about what things I can add … like images, videos, line breaks, hyperlinks …. so not really focused on content but more focused on appearance …

That could sound like step #4  … Add Finishing Touches

I really, really, really don’t like reading back over my posts (or papers) before I hit publish. I know that is what I am supposed to do, but I have found that when I try to reread before I publish, I don’t catch my mistakes because I know what it is supposed to say and that is how I read it!

Anyone feel like that at times too?

Reading to find mistakes and things that needed to be changed to make it better does happen, even if not right away at times … that sounds like step #3 … Revise

After I write a post, I really think about the ways it can connect to either other posts I have written or read. I try to make sure my posts do a good job of representing the message I want to share. I try to connect my posts to the main focus of my blog: learning, creativity, and/or instructional technology.

I also like to use social media to get the word out about the ideas I share in my blog posts …

And go back through my old posts … especially the ones from  the same month a year ago to see if they still relate or can be connected in any way

That really sounds like step #5 … Share and Reflect

I don’t necessarily realize that I complete each of these steps, in a linear or non-linear way, but I guess I do in many ways …

I don’t think about the Writing Process posters I had hanging in my classroom but in many ways I do work through a process  …

Even if it is a process of my own!

What about you?

Think about the things you write, blog posts or not, do you follow a process … even if you may not realize it at times?

Is true learning represented by doing something without even realizing or thinking about it?


Reader Comments (22)

Finding a system that works for you is key to productivity. When I get writer's block, I go back to my plan:
1. Set a blogging schedule - a category or topic for each day
2. Choose topics a month in advance - kept on a calendar
3. Write on a full page - the empty space is already filled
As I follow my plan, I eliminate distractions and write my heart out. In using time wisely, finding your system is a great return on your investment. Happy discovering!

January 19, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterTracy @ Using Time Wisely

I think you have great ideas here. I am on a cake decorating course and I have to plan and design my own cakes. I use the mind map idea all time. Thanks for sharing

January 19, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterjollyjillys

I write what pops in my head or on products that I just reviewed. Some of the post flow easily, and I post the day of...others not so easy and I save in draft. (And, usually forget about them until I clean up my blog.) I am thankful for my husband because he let's me read out loud each post thatI write. It is then when I find my errors - the sentence doesn't flow or a word is missing. After posted, I share ONCE on each social network, and I move on to the next thing. Blogging is unique to everyone because of their focus and dreams - kind of like our brains. Good luck & write on. :))

January 19, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJennifer

I do have a blogging calandar which I put down themes for the month, a schedule based on the memes that I participate weekly and also any product/ book reviews which have to be completed on the blog.

January 19, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDominique Goh

My process is:
1. think of memories from my daughter's childhood
2. Select a favorite and recall it on paper
3. Schedule a post
4. Wait for comments
5. Bask in the glow of remembering my little girl
6. Sit back and wonder how she grew so quickly into a teenager!

January 19, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterC. Lee Reed

That is perfect that people can take the loan and that opens new possibilities.

January 19, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterTanya26MCFARLAND

Sounds like some good steps to take! Unlike you, though, I do enjoy reading and re-reading (and correcting) before I hit "publish".

January 20, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSusan

I love how you outline your thought process. Like you, I don't like going back to reread before publishing either. I don't catch my mistakes because it all looks right to me. I reread later on, and sometimes I do find embarrassing mistakes, which I correct right away and hope no one noticed! As for ideas, I look at the different "days" that are celebrated, or months. Like, January is Clean up Your Computer month. That gave me an idea for a post that I have coming up. I also write sponsored posts or reviews on my calender so I know when they are due. I write a lot in my head too. I think I write my entire post in my head before it hits paper.

January 20, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterNikki

I don't really have a process. I think of something and I write about it at times and sometimes I don't. I try not to stress out about blogging as I did before.

January 20, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterNickida

When I write, I find myself expressing myself as I type. The words just come. Sometimes I don't know what I am going to say until I start writing. As a new blogger, I am finding that a calendar has helped me plan out substantial posts. I like how you are tying your blogging into your day job. Keep up the good work.

January 20, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJennifer Allen

i don't think i have a process - i just do....:D

January 20, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterandi

I am fairly new to blogging but I am finding that topics seem to come to mind for my blog and I ensure I write them down for days when I am less motivated

January 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKim (babyw8)

I never really thought about it very much but I suppose I do somewhat loosely follow a process as I write. I usually write part of my posts in my head over the course of a day or more depending on the subject. If the subject is something super basic like posting about my weekly menu plan, then I just sit down at the computer and get it done. I think I am still trying to find a blogging process that works well for me though.

January 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJean

Step 3--Revise--I always have my husband proof my blog posts and he always finds some goofy error that I didn't notice. And thank goodness for spell check!

January 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterCarrie Wood

Hmmm...I usually write about products that I try and most recently, information about my new diet plan and recipes.

If I don't want to forget an important detail, I will jot down information for later. If I am really moved, I quickly write the entire blog. Right now, I have A LOT of things I want to write about, but having settled down to because of a busy work schedule.

I take the pictures for later if no other opportunity will be available in the coming days, but the process of getting them off my digital is TIME-CONSUMING waiting for all of them to load. I think that is a part of the process that slows down my overall progress.

Mostly, I write and immediately publish when the information is time sensitive or when it's a review for a company.

Lately, my personal posts kind of collect until I'm ready to get the photos situated. That reminds me...I really have to start addressing this issue.

I guess, I'm all over the place when it comes to writing blog posts.

January 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterYona

Writing a blog post is a process for me. I usually start with a list of topic ideas. I then outline the article with 3 or 4 main points. After the outline I will 'fill in the blanks' with supporting sentences. Finally, I actually write the post. I do try and read over my work to catch mistakes but often time it is when someone points out a mistake or I'm re-reading the post after someone makes a comment - it is then that I catch errors which stick out.

First thing I noticed in the picture was the Process - it was only when you mentioned the splattered colors did I notice that. Hmm, wonder what that says about us?

January 22, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSara

I haven't really thought about it, but I guess I do follow a process when writing my blog posts.

1. I tend to brainstorm topics or happen across them when reading other blogs, online news sites, parenting magazines, etc etc. I then write down the ideas on a notepad or put them into my editorial calendar on Wordpress.
2. I pick one to write about and just write, no real planning before hand.
3. I then revise and add in hyperlinks and images.
4. Then publish and share on my social media accounts.

January 22, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKecia

Great information!!! I had to sit back and think of what I do and I guess I do have a process in some sorts. I try to use a blogging calendar but I, also, have a journal I keep with me to jot down notes and ideas (my planning stage). Looking at my draft posts, I have quite a few that are in the beginning stages and waiting for me to finish up or combine or just scratch all together.

January 22, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMichelle

I have a deal blog, so my posting method isn't that I just try to give my readers the information in a to-the-point way, because they don't want to wade through a lot of stuff, as they are reading a ton of posts each day.

January 23, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterErin @ My Mommy Word

This is a fantastic process! Apparently I've been doing it for a very long time, but never realized it until reading your post. It's amazing the things that we do without actually thinking about it. Great post!

January 23, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterFelicia

What a fabulous post and process! I love seeing how other people think and create.
I need lots of space to create and to lay all my ideas before me.
I got a huge "Inspiration Board" for my office a few months ago to help me unleash my creative process!

Would love it if you would share this with us at Inspire Me Monday at Create With Joy !

January 23, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterCreate With Joy

I do not have a process I just let my imagination go. I am happy to find so many good points here in the post, writing is simply great, thanks for sharing

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