Focus doubles your effort and saves you time… and time might equate to money. It does for me. If you’re a writer of some shape or flavor (and especially if you’re a translator) I’ve got some WorkFlowy tips that will create that much more focus right there in the thick of your workflow.
Of course, you do know that zooming into a bullet brings clarity and focus… But what if your workflow calls on you to transfer information from one part of your outline to another quite frequently?
I suspect this might be one of your pet peeves too: (before) when I used to write in WorkFlowy, I almost always had a trailing list of ideas below my writing space – sometimes the product of brainstorming, sometimes outlines pulled in from my “Backlogged” section or even just thoughts bombarding me at the time that I had to jot down. Something like this:
I used to furiously hit Enter half a dozen times to push that material further down the screen and out of my field of focus. Somewhere, anywhere away from where the writing zone was. Only thing is, a string of trailing bullet points did not give me zen-like feelings.
One solution I’ve made part of my workflow is to set up a “Ghost Bullet” (one of the many writing tips I deal with in my book). A Ghost Bullet is basically a parent node without a title (or just 3 suspensive points), under which I nest any material I’d like to expand on at a later stage. One can then expand the Ghost Bullet to pull out the next snippet to write about…
… and then collapse it for a distraction-free writing experience:
When your Ghost Bullet is collapsed, you have this premonition that something is lurking there beneath the surface: There’s a gray aura, just as with any collapsed parent node. BUT… now you also have added focus and less clutter.
Completed Items for translators
Before I discovered WorkFlowy, I used to translate all kinds of things in MS Word. That meant that most of the time my cursor was surrounded by text – above and below.
Now I use a Ghost Bullet and pull out paragraphs one at a time into my writing/ translating area. That way, what I’m working on is always in the last paragraph. Much better for focus.
If you’re a translator, I’m sure you’ll agree with me that it’s essential to see the context of a paragraph… and it really helps if you see things flow in one language. So instead of, say, Portuguese, English, Portuguese, English… it would be nice to see English, English, English… to see if you’re getting the tone right – plus it makes for a quicker revision. This is where I use WorkFlowy’s complete feature (Ctrl+Enter) to complete the paragraphs of the language I’m translating from (once I’ve already translated them)… and then to hide all completed items, I use the Ctrl+O keyboard shortcut:
Once you’re done translating, you can then hide all completed items and transfer all visible text (in one language) over to a new outline. You now have 2 separate outlines – the original and the translation. You’re good to export. Or you could just hide your completed items and export the translated material directly. Whichever organizational approach you prefer.
Any writers in the house?
Whether you’re a mini-sized or super-sized writer, the WorkFlowy community would sure appreciate the writing tips you’re sitting on 🙂
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