Friday, December 29, 2006


What Does A Writer Do To Find Ideas?

Any writer, or would-be writer knows the feeling. It's called, prepare yourself for the terror, blank.....totally blank! A clean screen or sheet of paper lies before us and we are totally devoid of ideas. Hell, we can't even remember who we are! Okay, maybe not that bad. Here's a few tips for that defining moment of non-greatness.

Writing: Generating Ideas For Articles
By Donovan Baldwin

A couple of points before we get to the meat of this article:

1. I write informational articles, and I focus on that. That having been said, some of the techniques here could kick start the blocked brain of any writer; fiction, non-fiction, essay, poetry, advertising copy, and just about any other field you might think of.

2. Ideas come at strange times and from weird sources, so you need to be prepared. The idea that pops into your head at a party while chatting up a possible future ex-something can go away before you get home, sleep three hours, and take the morning alka-seltzer. Therefore:

Now let's talk about generating ideas.

As mentioned above, ideas can come at weird times and from some off-the-wall sources. My wife and I often preface a remark with the phrase, "rabbit trail". That lets the other know that the next remark will not seem to have anything to do with the previous conversation. The human mind is like that, especially the creative mind. A stop sign can make me think of a big German policeman with a machine gun, which leads me to think about the times I got to fire the LAW (Light Anti-Tank Weapon) in the Army, which makes me think of Clint Eastwood's slip in one of the Dirty Harry movies, which makes me think of get the idea.

Somewhere in all of that is an idea. Be prepared to pounce on it and make it into something.
Whatever technique you are using, get it down on paper. You may look back at notes you made last night or two years ago and have a story or article idea staring you in the face. Even if you start and it peters out, you might come back to it again and make it into something. Be flexible here. Just because you began the story in Antarctica doesn't mean you can't transplant the whole thing to Wisconsin if that makes better sense.

Places I get (or have gotten) ideas:

You probably can, you know. Why don't you go and write something right now?

Donovan Baldwin is a Dallas area writer and network marketing professional. A University Of West Florida alumnus (1973) with a BA in accounting, he is a member of Mensa and has held several managerial positions. After retiring from the U. S. Army in 1995, he became interested in internet marketing and developed various online businesses. He has been writing poetry, articles, and essays for over 40 years, and now frequently publishes articles on his own websites and for use by other webmasters. He posts many of his articles on health at and many business related articles at
. He is the owner of

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