All of us from time to time will run into the issue of finding a topic to write about within our niche. Sometimes we come against a wall and discover our minds blank and void of any ideas. Over the past 15 years, I hit this proverbial wall many times and sometimes it made me miss my deadline (when I had one set).
But through time I found ways to help me have a steady stream of content to write about on each scheduled day, no matter the niche I was in at the time. Technology is a tad bit easier until you get into the sub-niches like myself and my love for Linux.
No matter the niche I found ways that help me have a topic at hand. So when the time comes to sit down and write, that is all I have to do. I advise keeping a journal, so you have a single place to hold all the ideas as they come to you.
Journaling is one of the best practices to get into as it helps us organize our thoughts, keep track of progress, and list out our daily events. The system that I use is the topical journal, where I have individual sections for specific topics, mixed with a bullet journal.
4 Ways To Always Have Content
The good old-fashioned brainstorming method is always the go-to when we find time to sit down and focus. The key to making the most of this time is to spill any and everything on the page. There are no wrong ideas, even if you do not like one or it does not fit your niche still write it down.
The first bunch of ideas will not be top notch, but that is the point. The more you spill those ideas onto the page, the better your chances of having an epic thought flow from your brain. Also, do not overthink about what you write. It's best to get the sensation that the words flow from your mind to your page in one swift motion.
Getting Into The Brainstorming Flow:
Find Boredom Let your mind go and forget anything you think you have to do. Being bored will allow you to get silly and creative and it is in that state that you can come up with some unique ideas. Some of the ideas could put you at the forefront of your niche.
Be Alone Don't let people distract you if you have time in the morning when you are alone using it! What about the evening? If you are the last one to go to bed that may be the best time for you to kickstart your brainstorming list.
Stimulate (or don't) If you are an early morning brainstorm-er than a cup of coffee or tea may help you get the gears moving. Coffee does not work for everyone though, and you may find that being a bit groggy while brainstorming gives you ideas that are much more unique.
Draw It Out A visual person should draw out their ideas in a mind map or something similar. What the mind map allows you to do is see your thought progression. Start with your niche in the center of the page. Than stem off ideas as they come to mind. If a thought springs from another, then stem off that idea to add a sub-idea.
- Take a break When all else fails just walk away, there is no use is forcing creativity because that does not have creativity works. It's better to get up and leave it to sit for a while. The time away could be as little as five minutes or as long as several hours. But make sure you have a pen handy to write any ideas that come to mind while on your break.
Use Everyday Life
As a spin-off or the fifth way to brainstorm, we can use everyday life to find ideas. As we just said it is good to have a pen and pad with you when taking a break. But this also goes for everyday life. Why miss that great idea because we could not write it down right as the inspiration hit?
As a journal-er, I am partial to a good pen and paper, but this may also work with your mobile device. If you do not have your notebook with you when an idea hits, use a portable note-taking app to record the thought. Then rerecord the concept into your journal or diary. This way all your great ideas (and terrible ideas) are it one place.
Poll Your Readers
It is always a good idea to ask what your readers would like to hear about. They read your content for a reason so why not let them contribute? As I do at the end of many of my posts, I ask that the reader comment any topics that they would like my point of view on.
Polling the readers helped me many times when I was in a pinch for a topic to write about. As always, you should record the ideas from your readers into a notebook. But make sure to write the username along with topic so you can thank them with a short shout-out in your post.
Re-Vamp Old Content
Reusing old content is a bit of a touchy subject, so I made sure to call it "re-vamp" and not "re-use." Your old content may have some great ideas sitting on them that you can use in future posts. Read over the ones that did not receive a lot of engagement and think about how you can rewrite to make it better.
Never merely copy and paste the content just because you feel it did not get the rewards it deserved. Take the material, make notes on what you said, and rewrite it as a fresh new post. There is no problem having a post on the same topic as you did months ago but make sure it is a clean and updated look at the same ideas.