Writing For The Web: Where To Get Article Ideas
A friend and I were talking the other day about writing. He liked to write,
but even so his biggest problem was finding things to write about. My friend
was astounded at the volume of writing that I do - at least one article and
something as many as six, per day. Where do I get all of the ideas from?
I, in turn, was astonished myself. Why on earth would anyone have any
trouble finding things to write about? In fact, my main problem has been I
have so much to write about that I often find myself locked in a silent
battle over which subject should be put on paper first.
People find it even more amazing when I tell them I try very hard to only
write about positive events and provide helpful articles. Only rarely will
you find any of my writings containing criticism, complaints or, worst of
all, whining. Occasionally I will write an article which recommends against
purchasing a product, seeing a movie, reading a book or visiting a web site,
but these are the exception.
The world is a huge, amazing, wondrous place. Things are going on around us
all of the time. There is so much good to see and do all over the planet, so
very many wonderful things going on all over the place, that it's easy to
find something to communicate about if only you open your eyes and look.
One of my passions is the internet. I've written over 1,000 articles about
all aspects of this massive communication medium. Much of this is taken from
my 23 years of experience in the computer field, and the rest is from
research, reading and, most of all, questions from other people.
Although much of my writing is about the internet, I also find time to
communicate about many other subjects as well. These include relationships
(marriage and romance), raising children, building a career, handling office
politics, current events, hobbies and history. I have yet to find a subject
which I don't have something useful to contribute to other people.
How do I find so much to write about? Let me tell you some of the ways:
Many of my article ideas some from real life - For example, I have a long
and happy marriage, so I like to write articles which help people with their
relationships. I've also worked hard most of my life, as have most people,
building a career, which is another area where I enjoy passing along tips to
Question and answer sites - Sites like askme.com and askjeeves.com are
perfect places to visit once in a while looking for ideas for articles. I
visit and just scan the questions (and there are thousands of them), looking
for anything which looks interesting. When I find something, I write an
Newsgroups - There are over 70,000 newsgroups. Most of these are worthless,
but several thousand of them contain useful information and varied
conversations. Lurk in any active newsgroup for a while and you should find
something worthwhile to write about.
Yahoo and DMOZ - Visit any big directory site and you will find thousands of
subjects to explore.
Egroups and Topica - There are thousands of email discussion lists available
at these two sites. Sign up for a few and get articles ideas from them.
There are many other places to look for article ideas all over the internet.
I tend to avoid looking at things like ezines, ebooks and web sites for
article ideas. Why? Because when I look for article ideas I am not looking
What I tend to look for is questions. What kind of questions are people
asking? Is there a question which begs some further analysis and a little
more explanation than a simple sentence? It does not matter if someone else
has already answered, as my primary purpose is not to provide raw
My primary purpose is to help people understand. You can find out raw
information from any number of books or encyclopedias, but finding out how
to clean up the clutter in your bedroom, well, that takes something
different. That requires the experience and knowledge passed from someone
who has had to go through the experience of cleaning many times, so many
times that it has become easy.
Interestingly, I've found that television is not as worthwhile as one would
expect for article ideas. Excluding a few reviews, I've found television to
be a vast wasteland, void of anything but the most trivial or violent
concepts in our society. The exceptions are, of course, channels such as
Nova, History channel and Discovery.
So the next time you are trying to figure out something to write about for
your own ezine, web site or ebook, just check out a newsgroup, elist or
directory on a subject which you find interesting. Sooner or later, you will
get an idea and you can start writing.
About the Author
Richard Lowe Jr. is the webmaster of Internet Tips And Secrets. This
website includes over 1,000 free articles to improve your internet
profits, enjoyment and knowledge.
Web Site Address: http://www.internet-tips.net
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Daily Tips: mailto:internet-tips@GetResponse.com