Are you Stuck with Writer’s Block?
Every author, freelance writer, ghostwriter, or blogger has experienced writer’s block. Wondering what to write about and how to keep the content ideas flowing are just some of the problems writers face during this time.
How long writer’s block lasts is unpredictable and varies from person to person. However, it is solvable. There are tricks of the trade to prevent or minimize these blocks from happening.
Listed below are five ways to produce a continuous stream of engaging content to delight your audience and keep those magic fingers typing at lightning speed.
Note: These tips are especially well-adapted to small business owners and beginning content writers.
1. Write What You Like to Read About
One of the best things to write about is what you are passionate about! Readers can see and feel what any writer is passionate about and what they are just blah about. You do not have to be an expert in the subject you are writing about as long as you research your topic and are prepared to make the proper disclosures.
When it comes to advising about mental and physical health, readers, of course, will want to know what credentials the author has. Be clear about what your interest in the topic is. Make it personal if appropriate. For example, you could write about a mental health issue you or someone close to you has experienced. Explain the situation that prompted you to learn more. People love stories! You do not have to have a degree to write about the difficulty of trying to cook a great meal at home for those picky little eaters, all while trying not to die from tripping over the family pet that refuses to stay out of the kitchen.
Whether you’re writing about staying healthy, website design or the craziest things you have seen tourists do while you were people watching on your lunch break, there are people out there who share your passions.
If you’re a small business owner, chances are you read a lot about your own industry and expertise. Perfect! If you read an article on a topic that makes you feel like nerding out, write about it and share your own point of view.
2. Ask Your Audience
No matter what social media platform you prefer to use, you have accessibility to your audience that was not so readily available to writers and authors of the past. As a business owner, you have social media you can leverage to find out more about what your audience’s pain points are. These platforms are some of the best places to ask for content ideas. You can ask a daily question about what your readers would like for you to write about, or you can do a weekly or monthly question. It is common for YouTubers to ask their audience what topics they would like to see to keep their pages going, why should you be any different? There is nothing wrong with asking for help and everything right about asking your audience and potential customers to engage with you.
3. Check Quora
If you are not comfortable about asking your audience what to write about on your media platforms, then you can use a question and answer based service called Quora, which launched in 2009. Quora is a platform where people from around the world with different degrees and in a wide variety of careers and fields come together to ask and answer questions in either opinion or fact-based ways.
In a way, Quora acts like a “social marketplace” for professionals and can act as another form of LinkedIn. Use Quora to find out what people are asking in your service or product area.
Pro tip. Another good thing about Quora is that it can help to bring more business to your page. Start answering questions related to your business. If you can do it in a non-spammy way, link to a topic you’ve written about that sheds even more light on the question. This is an advanced method because Quora’s guidelines are strict about self-promotion.
4. Try Google Search Suggestions
A famous saying among the younger generations is “Google it.” When it comes to creating engaging content during a writer’s block, sometimes the best thing you can do is to type some keywords into Google to see what topics come up. Google itself will try to guess what you are trying to type, so why not let this popular engine tool give you some ideas? A suggested search is based on other people’s searches, so you know that people are looking for the topic. Also, using the keywords in your own content will help boost your rankings. Choose keywords that are based on what you are passionate about or the products and services you are selling.
5. Make a List of What is Important to You
Sometimes the best thing you can do is to sit down and have an honest discussion with yourself. Make yourself comfortable and write down a list of everything that you are interested in and what is important to you. Go through the list and see what you have already written about and what you can write about next.
Ask yourself if you feel like sharing about the things you have written down. If the answer is yes, then see if some of the topics can be made into one article or if you want to tackle each item individually. Taking this time to refocus can help you figure out what to write about next. There are lots of other creative exercises you can do to recharge your writing.
Pro tip. Keep track of what you have written and plan to write in an editorial calendar. Your editorial calendar can also help you find your own content to link to, which will encourage people to stay on your site and help your organic search rankings
Key (word!) Take-aways
Getting stuck with writer’s block is not fun, but it can happen at any time, to anyone. So don’t be too hard on yourself. That will only make things worse. Following the tips listed above will help you figure out what you want to do next to keep your readers interested and coming back for more. The next step is to write!
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