Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Ideas for Writer's Blocked Bloggers

Idea-Starters for Stuck Bloggers – Part One

By Mike Hyatt


The dreaded “writer’s block” afflicts us all from time to time. I struggle with it almost weekly. Occasionally, I have an easy run of several days, when the ideas seem to flow effortlessly. But that is rare. Most weeks, I get stuck at least once or twice.
So what do I do? What can you do? Here are some idea-starters. I offer these up as possibilities for lighting a fire when your brain is damp:

Tell a personal story. This almost always works, because you harness the power of your own personal narrative. It is particularly good if it is dramatic, and you feel the freedom to be transparent. It is helpful if you can conclude with a lesson or two that you have learned. Example: “What Does This Make Possible?”

Describe a historical event. This is very similar to using a personal story. History is full of great stories. It’s one of the reasons why I am almost always reading a history book of some kind or a biography. Again, you can tell the story and distill the lessons. Example: “Two Things Great Leaders Must Do in Turbulent Times.”

Review a book, movie, or software program. This is a great way to share some of the resources you have found and why you liked them. It can also help your readers avoid products or experiences that were not so helpful. What are some of your favorite resources? Example: “Book Review: Same Kind of Different As Me.”

Comment on a powerful quote. I can’t read a book without underlining the passages that impress me. Occasionally, I go back and post the quotes that stand alone. Also, from time to time, I post the quote and that comment on why a particular quote was meaningful. Example: “Don’t Wake Up Dead.”

Let a great photograph inspire you. Behind every great photo is a story. You may know the story or you may not. Regardless, you can find one in the photo. Some of the best ones are posted on Flickr.com. You can use these in accordance with a Creative Commons License. Example: “Learning to Recognize Wow.”

Comment on something in the news. This can be something global or something that is specific to your industry. If you are a thought-leader—or trying to establish yourself as a thought-leader—this is a great way to do that. Example: “Why the Authors Guild Is Off Base About the Kindle 2.”

Report on an interesting conversation. I meets lots of interesting people. Some of them I meet at work; some of them I meet in my social life. Regardless, rarely a week goes by that I am not deeply stimulated by a conversation I have had. Why not blog on that? Example: “Twitter as a Leadership Tool.”

1 comment:

  1. My dog was my writers block aid. Now I walk the neighbor's dog instead.


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