One of the things that have most surprised me about blogging is how, after a while, it becomes easy to write a post based on the slimmest of ideas.
A single stray thought is enough to craft an article, the idea deepening as you set it down on the page and explore it further.
At first it can be hard to capture those fleeting ideas and flesh them out. But write for long enough and structuring something out of nothing becomes second nature.
The best posts will get your readers wondering too. By involving them in the conversation, it can go in a direction you never imagined.
But how do you turn a basic idea into a strong blog post?
Write it down
If an idea strikes you and you would like to explore it in a blog post, make a note of it somewhere. Let it be for a few days; if it has potential, the idea will grow at the back of your mind until you have something a little more solid to put on the page.
Ask your readers
Social media is a great tool for getting others involved. If you’re wondering what people think about a particular subject, pose the question on Facebook or Twitter and use the answers in your piece.
Do your research
Spend a bit of time online and see what else has been written about your idea. How have other people approached the issue? Can you put a new spin on it?
Whenever I get stuck and find myself with nothing to blog about, I sit down at my computer and just write. Usually I end up with a piece about inspiration or writing itself, but I find some of my best posts have emerged this way. By letting go, you can tap into something a little deeper and write a more personal post than usual.
Conventional wisdom tells us that essays and articles should have an introduction, or a hook to get the reader interested; a middle, where we lay out the bulk of our argument; and a conclusion, where we make our final points or confirm the answer to whatever question we may have posed in the beginning. If you’re struggling to write something, try slotting it into this basic structure and see if that helps.
Of course, this doesn’t just have to apply to blogging; it can apply to creative writing too. How many of you have sat down to write something without really knowing what you wanted to say? Some people have written novels with only the barest of ideas initially and no solid outline.
That’s part of the fun of writing, seeing where the words can take you.
When I sat down to write this post, all I wanted to talk about was constructing something from very little. I hadn’t planned for this to be an advice post, but that’s how it turned out.
Inspiration is a funny thing.