The 3 R’s of Content Creation

I’ve created a lot of content in my day. Some of it went nowhere, some of it was published (in books, YouTube or on my/a website), and some of it sits quietly in a folder on my hard drive perhaps to be revived again someday. Still I’d often find myself in the trap of always trying to create new things. Until I came to notice that constantly trying to create new things often stopped all creativity; I’d even just plunk myself down in front of mindless TV shows for hours – that’s how blocked my creativity was.

I used to get really harsh with myself for all the time I spent on the stuff that went nowhere: all those “wasted” hours learning new skills, hours that could have been spent doing other things I love to do and the worst self-abuse … hours that could have been used generating “real revenue.” Thankfully I’m over that! Now I know that each hour spent learning and creating is never EVER wasted. None of these creations are really dead. Some were stepping stones to other things and some seem to have been created ahead of time.

So, what can we do with all these creations? Let’s use the eco-friendly 3 R’s!

REDUCE:

While in the eco-world this means using less, here I’m taking it to mean ‘to condense’.

I have approximately 2 years’ worth of audio archives from my radio show “The Clumsy Girl’s Guide to Greatness” in which I explored some really interesting ways we trip over our brilliant selves as we try to “do life right.” That’s a lot of audio hours and while the content doesn’t get stale, the dates in the archives surely do.

So far I’ve transcribed & assembled the topics into my book “The Clumsy Girl’s Guide to Greatness.” It’s actually a quick little read considering all the hours of audio that went into the creation! I’m also able to condense the transcriptions down further into blog posts and articles for various venues. Mmmmm … suddenly I have visions of maple syrup: all that tree sap getting condensed down into sweet syrup and condensed more into even sweeter candy!

One really cool side effect to reducing is that it allows me to build links to my book and the archives for people who are interested in the full story!

REUSE:

To use something as often as possible before discarding.

This is the stage I’ll be working on for a good portion of the New Year! I’ll be taking the creations that have been sitting on the shelf, tweaking them and posting them out into the most suitable channels. For example, back in 2009 I spent hours creating a series of Efficiency Guides for non-business-y people in business (20 – 30 minute presentations on topics like Time & Team Management). They were posted on a version of my website and were never really promoted – of course back then I didn’t have much of a network to promote them to! Well, now is the time for me to take a second look at them, tweak them and post them to my new website (or blog, or YouTube channel – or all of the above!). I suppose I could even turn the group into a whole new book!

RECYCLE:

Items or their components are put to some new purpose.

With the technologies we have today it’s pretty simple to turn an audio clip into a video for YouTube or a line of writing into a meme for social media. And if you’re not technically savvy, it’s easy to find the people who are at a cost that won’t break the bank. (Just ask me; I have tons of resources for this!) This is another great way to build links to more of your content!

I could also take those transcriptions mentioned earlier, find portions that call for more attention, and turn them into entirely new content! Oh the possibilities!

So you see, you don’t always have to creating things from scratch – I know from experience that this can be daunting at best, exhausting at worst. Those times when new creation seems to be at a standstill, take a look back at your past content and see what can be revived/revised and reposted.

OH! One more hint! When you are creating something original, you might consider NOT thinking of all the ways you can use it at once, or post it in all those forms within a short period of time. Allow your viewers to see fresh things periodically rather than get bored by one topic in many forms over and over again. This also allows new viewers to see “older content” without having to go way back into your archives (which they rarely do).

Now go out there and RE-CREATE!

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