3 Brainstorming Tips for Your Next Writing Project

Be prepared to jot down writing ideas whenever you get them. (Photo: janeb13)

For many people, one of the hardest things about writing is choosing a topic. Once you choose the topic, it gets easier from there because you can begin narrowing your focus.

Whether you’re writing text for a marketing brochure or a novel, you’ll probably need to brainstorm several ideas before choosing the final topic.

If you’re struggling at the brainstorming stage, you’re definitely not alone. Here are three tips to get you on the right track. Continue reading “3 Brainstorming Tips for Your Next Writing Project”

Writers: How to “Steal” an Idea and Put a Personal Spin on It

Don’t steal. But do let other writers’ ideas influence your own. And then build on them, ethically. (By: Sebastien Decoret)

Have you ever read or heard something that influenced you, but you didn’t want to use it in your writing because you were afraid of stealing someone’s ideas?

If so, that’s a normal feeling. Many writers and artists have had the same fear.

But it can also be a mistake. Sure, you don’t want to plagiarize or completely copy a person’s work, but it’s human nature to be inspired and influenced by others, so it’s better to embrace that.

Let’s say you work at a company and recently got some great ideas from a business book. You would like to include these ideas in a blog post or white paper, but you’re a little unsure because you didn’t come up with them yourself.

There’s no reason you can’t use the ideas in your writing just because someone else has covered them already. It’s important, however, to do this in an ethical way and put your own spin on it.

Here are some tips for doing just that. Continue reading “Writers: How to “Steal” an Idea and Put a Personal Spin on It”

5 Techniques to Help You Get Over Writer’s Block

Sometimes the best way to beat writer’s block is to take off for a while. (Photo: Sevak Aramyan)

If you’ve written anything, and we all have, then you’ve surely had the experience of struggling to get your words down on paper.

Whether it was a professional assignment last week or an essay for homework back in fifth grade, it can be daunting to stare at a blank page and try to get your ideas down.

Writer’s block is universal, but the good news is that there are several effective strategies for getting over it.

If you’re struggling with writer’s block, try any of the following techniques and see what works best for you. Continue reading “5 Techniques to Help You Get Over Writer’s Block”

7 Steps for Overcoming Writer’s Block

Frustrated? It’s time to get up and go for a quick walk outside. (Photo: J.R. Bale)

“The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one.”
—Mark Twain

Mark Twain, who worked as a journalist as well as a novelist, should know a thing or two about writer’s block.

All writers struggle with filling a blank page or screen at some time in their careers. Reasons include anything from anxiety to exhaustion, and from distraction to confusion.

We can experience a block at the very start of a project or at its conclusion.

What every writer experiencing a block has in common, however, is the frustration that comes along with it. Here are some strategies to try the next time you’re stuck with a blinking cursor and nothing to say. Continue reading “7 Steps for Overcoming Writer’s Block”

Multitasking While You Write: Bad Idea

(Photo: kzenon)
When you’re writing, stick to one thing: writing. (Photo: kzenon)

Hey, writers—do you like a little noise while you work?

Most of us find an optimal environment for creativity somewhere between total isolation and orchestrated chaos.

A surprising number of business writers say that silence in itself is distracting—they need at least some music playing softly in the background.

Sure, minimal sensory input such as soft background music may help your writing. However, multitasking (for example, trying to write an annual report while watching a YouTube video) will actually doom your writing efforts. Continue reading “Multitasking While You Write: Bad Idea”