5 Secrets To Finding Fresh Writing Ideas Within The Same Subject

by Anne Wayman

where do writers find ideas?I got this response one day to may daily “Who can I help” post on twitter:

@AnneWayman you could help me by telling me how to come up with ideas when I’ve already written 20 articles about the same thing…

Melanie Jones who blogs at It’s all a bit Pony and Trap

Melanie assured me she’s getting paid well enough for these articles, but not surprisingly, was feeling a bit stuck to write more and keep them fresh.

I didn’t record my answers, but here’s the sort of idea generators I may have suggested:

  1. Make a bulleted list or several of them. I find it’s fairly easy to build on each item. I could go into more detail here as an example, but I won’t.
  2. Take a walk. Almost anything that gets me moving helps freshen my mind which usually results in new ideas.
  3. Let the project rest overnight, or even longer. Not always possible, but always helps spark fresher writing for me.
  4. Work on a totally different writing project for an hour. I keep severeal assignments going at once so when I slow down on one, I have something to switch to. Writing on a different topic or taking a break with something like CreativeCopyChallenge truly helps.
  5. Read the first piece I’ve written in the series to see what else I might write about. I can’t think of an idea that doesn’t have many more ideas within it to write about.

Ideas are everywhere. I’d forgotten, but I wrote 33 Ways to Find Blog Ideas To Write About awhile back year ago.  I’m tickled that they all seem valid today.

How do you keep your writing fresh within the same topic?

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

sharon hazard August 28, 2011 at 5:16 pm

A a non-fiction writer, many times I try and tie one of my books or a chapter in one of my books into a specific date. For instance, I have written about Mary Todd Lincoln’s visit to the Jersey shore many times, but this week marked the 150th anniversary of her arrival here. I used that date, August 22, 2011 and tied it in with what was happening at the time ie, the Battle of Bull Run. From there, tomorrow August 29th I plan doing a blog as to what the weather was like during her stay. There was a storm, not as bad as the one we just had her over the weekend, but enough to cancel some of the outdoor festivities planned in her honor. Now you have two more avenues to help with new material, the Civil War and the weather. For history buffs one is of interest and the other is of current interest as a comparison to weather conditions during the month of August during the last 150 years. It was sweltering in Washington, D. C. I wonder if they thought about global warming way back then. Hope this helps.
Sharon Hazard

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Ron August 23, 2011 at 10:55 pm

These are great. Sometimes I get ran out of ideas when writing and I don’t know what to write specially when it is on the same subjects. Thank you for your post. It really would help me formulating ideas and topics.
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Ron's SEO Copywriting Tips August 23, 2011 at 11:36 am

If a writer doesn’t know how to write, that’s sad news! It’s the job of a writer to find new angles to the same topic. That’s what we are here for. That’s why the clients pay us.
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Lori August 23, 2011 at 8:52 am

Having written about insurance and risk management for eleven years, I can tell you that nearly any topic has new angles. Hey, if I can manage another workers compensation article, you can write one more article on spot remover/auto repair/real estate. :)

I like to look at things in my everyday for ideas. Going to yard sales can generate stories like frugal shopping tips, how to customize yard-sale finds, ways to save on your decorating budget, phenomenal yard sale discoveries…..

Like you, Anne, I get outside, too. I sit down on the swing and just let my mind head into the garden and away from the work. It’s amazing how much comes flooding in when the mind is allowed to rest.

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John Soares August 22, 2011 at 6:13 pm

Good suggestions Anne. I’ve had to write about some hiking trails a half-dozen times between my hiking guidebooks, magazine articles, newspaper articles, and my hiking blog. It can be difficult to look at the same topic with fresh eyes.
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