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Wednesday
Jan112012

Guest Post Wednesday - Nine Ideas for Original Writing

We are very pleased to present a wonderful blog post from an Australian author, Summer Goodwin, for Our Little Books Guest Post Wednesday. How many times have we, whether writing fiction or non-fiction, been stumped in coming up with something to write about? Summer has come up with nine different ideas to get us moving forward again. Enjoy and be sure to check out Summer's blog while you are at it!

Mum and I are both authors - she writes fiction and I write non-fiction. In deciding what to contribute in this guest post, I asked mum what subject she would find most useful. She said her greatest challenge was coming up with new ideas.

I can certainly relate. I often struggle with generating ideas for my blog. In today's world, where we self-publish online in blogs and social media, producing fresh content on a regular basis can be quite challenging.

So, mum gave me the idea of writing about... well, ideas and how to get them. Here's nine to start the conversation, I'd love to hear your ideas too.

1. Ask your audience.

It may be helpful to ask your target audience - for me, that's other writers - what they would like to read. If an audience member suggests a subject (like my mum did) other readers will probably relate too.

2. Tell the story again.

American journalist Barbara Grizzuti Harrison said: "There are no original ideas. There are only original people." Even if a subject has been covered a thousand times, you have a unique voice and perspective. As a writer, your voice is your greatest asset. So, be yourself, feel the fear and do it anyway.

3. Start tweeting.

If you're a writer, you have to be on twitter. Twitter is like Disneyland for us. There are so many wonderful people and so much great content, it's a virtual treasure chest of ideas.

4. Share a secret.

In her autobiography, Australian publishing icon Ita Buttrose disclosed she was once so angry with a former boss that she wrote his name on a piece of paper and stuck pins in it. This confession not only surprises the reader but shows Ita's humanity. Readers empathize with human frailty. The truth is very powerful.

5. Think like a journalist.

If you generally write opinion in your blog - and most of us do - get inspired by journalism. You could produce a feature about a local event or interview a person relevant to your readers and write a Q&A piece.

6. Explore a new genre or medium.

Writers are artists, we use words like a sculptor uses clay. Experimenting with a different genre or medium can be fun and produce some interesting content too. If you usually write non-fiction, why not try fiction? How about photography or producing a video? You may even discover a hidden talent or passion.

7. Voice your views.

Share your thoughts about news and current affairs. Even if everyone is talking about the Royal Wedding, for example, you bring a distinctive voice to the conversation.

8. Find inspiration in the everyday.

French author Anais Nin said: "My ideas usually come not at my desk writing but in the midst of living." A poem on a fridge, a conversation with a friend, a sentence in a book - all have inspired ideas for my blog.

9. Don't Google it.

The first thing writers tend to do is research. But if you Google your idea, you'll find it has already been written about. So, just write from the heart. Even if the idea is unoriginal, you are an original person. Your writing will be original if you write first and Google later.

How do you get ideas? What inspires you?

 

 

Summer Goodwin is an Australian author, journalist, blogger and public relations professional. Her blog Summer's notebook aims to connect, inspire and support emerging and established writers. She is currently writing her autobiography.

Twitter:
@summer_goodwin
Facebook: Summer Goodwin

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    Guest Post Wednesday - Nine Ideas for Original Writing - blog - Our Little Books

Reader Comments (3)

I love Twitter for writing ideas. Every day someone will either inspire or annoy me to the point that I need to write about it.

I think something else that is good to remember is that, if you THINK that you are a writer, then you ARE a writer. I used to get bogged down in the idea that because I wasn't a professional writer (or even a very good one), then it meant I wasn't a writer. That is not true. So what if my only inspiration is that the dirt on my window screens is annoying me? If I can string some words together about it, then I'm a writer. Thus, something I'd like to add is that your ideas don't have to fit some criteria. Feel free to look around, pick an inanimate object, and write about it, if you need to write but you're stuck for inspiration.

January 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLindaMadHatter

Love this blog Sum! I'm delighted and excited to read your tips and know that I'm semi on track :) Armed with your tips, I aspire to only get better at writing!
ps I'm also feeling warm and fuzzy at seeing your blog here - Our Little Books is where I 'published' my first guest blog! And I'm doubly excited at seeing Linda's response - a beautiful mutual tweep who I agree completely with.
ps Candace I LOVE the way you've used the title "Author" instead of "Name"

January 12, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBronwyn

Hi Linda and Bron, thank you both so much for your comments.

Linda, I love your advice about believing in yourself. I agree - if you write, you're a writer. While it may be true that with experience we gain more polish, I still love my first article because it's written completely from the heart. It may be clumsy and long-winded in parts but it remains one of my favourites. Sometimes I feel like we trade passion for polish as professional writers.

Bron, I'm so glad you enjoyed the post. And it's lovely to know I'm walking a path already walked by you.

Summer xx

January 12, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSummer Goodwin

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