Content Writers, How to Dictate Creative Content
Recently, I talked about the features and advantages of mind mapping. Mind mapping lets you remove some of the pressure of creating content by permitting you to merely doodle notes about your content. In turn, dictation allows you to create as fast as you can talk. You’re not encumbered by typing constraints. Dictation allows you to take mind mapping another step forward. Dictate creative content into Word, Pages or Docs.Just as in mind mapping, with dictation you can make notes about what you want to say in your content. But try dictating these notes. You can cut-and-paste these notes into a blank page and see how the ideas work.
I use dictation software that comes with my Mac, rather than a dictating machine. As I speak, the words appear magically on my screen and confirm what I thought I said.
If I misspoke or the Mac misheard, I know that too. I try to make a mental note of the error and continue with my dictation of the first draft. Other times I give in and make a correction with my keyboard.
Relax, just tell your story
But the best thing about dictation is that you can tell the story just as if you were speaking to another person. My intent with this story is to tell you about the advantages and convince you to try dictation.
When I write, I like to start out by saying “let me tell you a story.” I move the cursor two spaces forward and then dictate the story just as if I were telling it. This subterfuge frees my mind to think about the story I want to tell, rather than the mechanics of getting it down on
I’m not a speed typist. Sometimes I have ideas racing through my mind that get away from me before I can capture them. With dictation, I merely speak them without
After all, I’m just creating a draft, and I can make those corrections when I finalize the piece.
Dictation offers the following advantages:
1. It adds spontaneity to my content.
2. It allows my thoughts to flow faster than the speed of a mediocre typist.
3. It lets me focus on the story and not the keyboard.
4. I can complete my first draft in record time.
5. I am more able to resist the urge to revise my first draft until it is completed.
6. If I have questions about a view, I can quickly Google an open question to the network, read about the issue, think about what I found and then summarize my thinking.
All of the dictation software has different ways to control the cursor and the content. The software has keywords that control the cursor, like “spacebar”, “enter” and “new paragraph” that you must memorize.
Since your hands are free, you are able to make some minor adjustments on the screen using your mouse. But only if you promise to go back to your dictation and not stay with the keyboard.
Dictation software learns to correct itself
You should speak naturally into the microphone, and you’ll see soon enough that the software understands you. I use an inexpensive Apple earplug and microphone combination for my dictation.
I can see the software enter what it thinks I’ve spoken but then as it understands the context of what I’ve said it makes the necessary revisions itself.
You must be in a quiet place to use dictation. The other day my wife interrupted my writing, and we had a brief conversation. When I returned to the screen, I was surprised to see a whole paragraph of our discussion.
The software that I use tolerates low music, and I can enjoy some light jazz as I write.
Save time, dictate creative content
As final proof of the value of dictation software, I was able to finish this 700-word draft in just about an hour. It would’ve easily taken me two hours or longer if I had conventionally typed this piece. So, why not give it a try? You’ve nothing to lose and maybe some time to gain.