My 14-inch TV was muted. There was absolute silence in my sitting room as I sat down on a white plastic chair cracking my brain in search of an idea to write an article …
Whenever I stumbled on one or two points, I’d quickly write them down with excitement, breaking the silence with my keypads. Ever since I started writing for a living, I’ve written a gazillion number of blog posts and articles in different niches. So I’ve developed a formula for generating ideas and for bringing those ideas to life.
Remember: every quality article is a conglomerate of ideas builds logically in one piece of writing. And because ideas are the backbone of an article, you should search them with caution. To continually craft a piece of a quality article, you need to become an idea-generating machine.
If you find it difficult to come with ideas for your writing, here are three simple ways to guide you.
Engage in deep thought.
If you’re looking for tips and tricks for generating writing ideas, you’ll find a million tips and tricks that will confuse you.
Some so-called “professional writers” and “content marketers” will tell you to go to the toilet with your pen and paper in hand so you could be able to catch great ideas—because great ideas come while having a shower.
While it’s true that we often get ideas while in the bathtub, there are other great ways we can get ideas from. And that’s because ideas are like hidden treasures. You’ll have to engage with yourself, communicate with your psyche, and dig deeper into your soul to uncover them, not just wait until you prepare for a shower to trap them.
Since they’re the by-product of mental thoughts, one of the best ways to find ideas is through peaceful conversation with your mental self. If you want to find a great idea for your next blog post, the first rule that you must follow is …
- Engage with yourself (dive into deep reflection),
- Think smartly (apply logic to your thinking); and
- Jot down whatever pops into your head.
The moment you gather some ideas, review them. Go ahead and make some changes, tweaks, and re-writes, as some ideas and drafts may look terrible at first. But don’t trash them all; nurture them—they’re the building blocks of your posts.
Ever wondered why Steve Jobs walks barefoot around his company during his Apple days? Sure: He wanted to find some ideas. The strolling enabled him to engage in private reflection with himself.
It would help him to have private time alone, communicate with himself, and generate new ideas. As a digital e-commerce vendor, you may not have to walk on the streets of California before you could find an idea to write a compelling post that your audience craves. You could simply turn your audience’s question into a great article.
Here’s what I mean.
Answer a reader’s questions.
Just because you can find ideas within you—through self-reflection to uncover the hidden gems within your thoughts—that doesn’t mean you can’t explore other options.
You have many, many, many other options. One of those options is to answer your reader’s questions.
Your readers are the most important personalities of your business, as a writer, whether you’re a fiction or non-fiction writer; whether you’re a blogger, article writer, or ghostwriter. If you’re a blogger, for example, your readers may ask you a lot of questions. One of the places readers often dropped their questions is at the end of a post, in the blog comment section.
Great writers review every comment written by their readers, and when they see a question, they see an idea for an article.
You could also go through your Frequently Ask Questions (FAQ) section on your company blog and turn a few questions into a blog post. It works every day, and those questions turn out to be more engaging when you’ve turned them into an article because they are your readers’ expected questions.
Sometimes you need to look for questions outwardly as well.
For example, you can search for questions related to your niche on Quora and use the questions as your headlines for your next blog series.
In addition, you can even visit your competitor’s blog, read their posts, and scroll down to the comment section to see whether their readers ask any question. If you find a few, there you go: Use them as your ideas for your upcoming blog posts.
Still, find it difficult to generate some awesome ideas for your next article?
Well, try this simple trick. It’s helping me come with many, many great ideas…
View a post from a slightly different angle.
You may think that once a post is written, then it’s over.
That’s not the case. You can bring older posts back to life again…There are dozens of ideas embedded in every piece of writing, whether that writing is a year old or a thousand years old.
But, of course, that depends on how sharp your eyes are to be able to see the ideas.
Here’s a hack for how I find fresh ideas in every written article:
Assuming you posted an article on your blog entitled: “5 Ways to Write Beautiful Sentences.” I can find a number of article ideas based on that topic. For instance, I could slightly modify the article in different ways:
- 5 Ways to Write Shorter Sentences.
- 7 Tips for Writing Crystal-clear Sentences
- How to Write Short Sentences: 5 Tips for Beginning Writers
It all depends on your ingenuity and creativity.
The bottom line
You can write every day and never run out of ideas—if you know how and where to get them. The fun thing is that there’s no secret to finding fresh ideas for your blog posts and online articles … because ideas are everywhere.
- You can get new ideas by engaging in private reflection with your thoughts.
- You can get new ideas by answering your reader’s questions.
- You can get new ideas by slightly modifying an article base on your interest and creativity.
It’s all about developing a writer’s mindset. Only then would you be able to see things that no one—other than a writer like you—could be able to see, as Neil Gaiman said. “You get ideas from daydreaming. You get ideas from being bored. You get ideas all the time. The only difference between writers and other people is we notice when we’re doing it.”