Last week in Where Ideas Come From , I announced the start of a month long series, an "Idea Clinic," (Tuesday's in April) to cultivate fresh, and interesting writing ideas for Kicka$$ Content.
While in graduate school, I learned from one of my instructors, there is such thing as a bad idea. Generally, a bad idea is one that leaves your reader with not enough researched information... poor content. Yes, I said the "R" word. Unless your post is ALL about your personal experience, research is a key element to a great post. First things first, we have to get to the great ideas.
In this series you will participate in exercises to spark those great ideas.
You should have an idea notebook... a notebook for ideas ONLY! No grocery list, "to-do" list, or anything else. If it is a sectioned notebook, you may use one of those sections for writing post from your ideas.
Why an idea notebook? When an idea strikes, instead of scribbling them on a sticky notes, a napkin, or the back of an envelope, you'll have a central location for all of your ideas. Carry this notebook with you at all times. Ideas come from nowhere, and everywhere without warning.
Week 1 - Yellow Pages Exercise
a.) Find a page related to your blogging genre or category in your phone book's yellow pages, and select one page. If you're a fitness blogger, check fitness, gyms... Foodie blogger try restaurants, gourmet... Travel blogger - travel... if you can't find anything pertaining to your genre or category... b.) Select any page at random.
With the page you selected find five ideas, and write them in your idea notebook.
Assignment: Take one of those ideas brainstorm, research, interview, or make a visit. Write a post before next Tuesday, make it work for your blog. Don't forget to link your post in the comments of this post.
Note: Ideas can be one word, a sentence, paragraph, or several pages. It depends on how much thought or inspiration comes with that idea.
My random yellow page is 'Fence - Fire' - 5 ideas:
1. Fertilizers - Reviving almost dead house plants... I have a brown thumb, and through the winter, I've almost killed my philodandrons. They're brown and green, so maybe there is hope.
2. Fire escape route for my family
3. Financial planning for retirement
4. Time to replace the fence in the backyard
5. A backyard retreat