The actual writing process has become second nature to me, since practice is one of the best ways to improve your writing, but finding good subject matter can sometimes be more of a challenge. This isn’t as much of the case when the topics are clearer, as is the case when I receive a specific product in hand to review or I’m assigned a freelance writing project, but what about finding post ideas for a personal blog like Beyond the Rhetoric?
What I learned very early on in my blogging career is that you need to keep an idea pad. This is a simple notepad that you can keep at your desk, but I find it very valuable to keep a notepad at my bedside as well. It doesn’t matter if you go with a paper-based notepad or you use a “notepad” app on your phone; the key is that this list of blog post ideas must be maintained and it cannot live solely on your computer.
The main reason for the latter is that the computer can take time to get started and you may not feel as inclined to make a note of a great post idea if you have to wait for that to happen. The trouble is that if you don’t write down your post idea, there’s a good chance that you’re going to forget about it. Keep a notepad close at hand at all times.
For me, the most powerful blogging tool is not my main computer nor is it one of the numerous free online tools at your disposal. Instead, it’s something as simple as a pen and a pad of paper.