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Where To Find Ideas For Your Writing

Where To Find Ideas For Your Writing

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Published by rockinmagic
If you have ever wanted to get Paid To Write visit us at http://tiny.cc/idnkf
If you have ever wanted to get Paid To Write visit us at http://tiny.cc/idnkf

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Published by: rockinmagic on Jan 18, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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05/13/2014

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 ==== ====Get Paid To Write! Click the link below!http://tiny.cc/idnkf ==== ====Have you ever read someone else's writing and thought one of the following things: Where did he get such great stories?Why can't I think of examples like that?How does she always develop amazing illustrations?The answer is: content. In writing, content is KING. (Duh, right?) But every book, article, report, manual, sermon, speech,poem, even bathroom stall graffiti, has this one thing in common. Content is the stuff good writingis made of. But the one vital step too many writers fail to address is the compulsive collection ofcontent. Everything you write has the potential to be spicier, funnier, smarter, more interesting and morerelevant. And the steps you must take to make this happen are as follows: 1)Open Your Eyes and Ears 2)Write It Down 3)Write It Out 4)Develop Your Own System In this article, I am going to take you through this process by using one of my favorite pieces ofcontent as an example. STEP 1: Open Your Eyes and Ears April 4th, 2004: the anniversary of Martin Luther King's death, the day my friend Drew ran the St.Louis Marathon, and the day I came to the conclusion that Americans are the most impatientpeople in the WORLD. After the race I took Drew out for lunch to celebrate his admirable accomplishment. We finishedour meal at Galleria's The Pasta House and headed out to the parking lot. In the empty spot a fewspaces down from my car I saw a tattered, ripped up box. God I detest litter. "One sec Drew; I'll be right back..." I walked over to take a closer look. A plastic bag that read Kay-Bee Toys slowly brushed upagainst my jeans like a suburban tumbleweed. On the pavement lay a credit card receipt and
 
discarded instructions for a toy truck. I picked up the receipt and noted the date and time of purchase: April 4th, 2004. 11:56 AM. My watch read 1:41 PM. Unbelievable. The only thing I detest more than litter is impatience. Okay, that was one of my favorite illustrations that I've used in various writings/speeches before.Now, that wasn't the whole story. And I'm sure based on that incident, I could have used othermetaphors or taken a different angle on the trash. But I chose impatience. Because impatience just KILLS me! However, the only reason I'm still able to share that experience is because Ifollowed the first step, which was to Open My Eyes and Ears. I could have easily hopped into my car and taken Drew home. But I noticed that big, colorful pileof trash, and just HAD to go over there. Do you ever notice, hear, smell, see or experience things like these? Have people walked by andsaid phrases that stuck in your head? Good. That means you have a writer's ear. And next timeit happens, don't walk away. Be curious. Don't be nosey, but take an interest to the point whereyou might discover some valuable content. STEP 2: Write it Down Then, you MUST capture it. This is part where many writers fail, most likely because they're notprepared with content capturing tools. If you're a writer and you don't keep a pen, paper,notebook, journal, camera, tape recorder or charcoal rubbing sheets with you at all time, you'remissing out on some great content. In fact, I can't think of a single possession that's been morevaluable to the successful collection of my content than my pen and notepad. It's leather, aboutthe size of a business card holder, and I don't go anywhere without it. Ever. And I can whip it outand be ready to write in less than three seconds, not unlike a cowboy's gun or a guitar player'spick. A notepad like this is easy to find at any luggage store. They cost about 15 bucks. Or, if you'remore of a journal person, awesome! But whatever content capturing tool you use, be certain it'seasily accessible in your car, bag, office or on your person at all times - because you never knowwhen inspiration might strike. The whole point is; you don't want to find yourself saying, "If only Iwould have written that down!" Now, you don't need to write down very much. All you need to do is record a few sentences thatexplain what happened. You're free to write some details as well, but concentrate more oncapturing as opposed to creating. This will come in handy when you look at your notes later. Anddo it fast. If possible, write it down as soon as something happens. This is why you should alwayshave your capturing tools ready to go. Because not unlike forgetting names, jokes and phonenumbers, content is something the mind easily displaces. STEP 3: Write it Out 
 
Next is the fun part: transferring a valuable story, anecdote, moment, experience, smell, sound orconversation into a useful piece of content. At the end of the day (or week), re-read your notes. Ifyou're like me and your penmanship looks like a monkey who was trying to write the Hebrewalphabet, this process may take a few minutes. Still, looking back at what you've written will bringthe experience back to life. And then it's time to write it down. Start a new document on computer, or if you prefer "the old way," grab a blank sheet of paper.Write out that particular piece of content. Look for themes, lessons, bigger pictures, connectionsand symbols in your experience so it will be a good fit for a book, article or speech. For example, the story you just read about the discarded toy box was written in one of my seven journals about a year ago. In fact, the exact phrase I just read on the page was: "4/4/04 - Toy truck...impatience...lunch at Galleria with Drew." To give you an idea of how this process comes full circle: 1)Just now, I browsed through my journal... 2)Saw that story about the trash... 3)And decided to include it in this article. Wah-lah! STEP 4: Develop Your Own System The cool thing about compulsively collecting content is when you start searching for it, and whenyou start recording it, it will show up EVERYWHERE. Unusual, unexpected, interesting anddifferent writing ideas will magnetize to you! I started taking this whole "content thing" seriously in 2004. I was working on a new book and Iwanted to use a plethora of great stories, illustrations and examples to back up my ideas. So Ideveloped a system. And that's the last step in this process. Here's what I do. It might not work for everyone, but perhaps the structure of such a system willstimulate some ideas for your own. It has several components: CAPTURING TOOLS Notepad: I never go anywhere without it. I always keep the pen full and the paper stocked. And Iwrite stuff down in it every day. Many of my friends think I'm a detective.Laughter Log: LouHeckler, world famous humorist, speaker and writer, taught me a great deal about collectingcontent. He suggested a Laughter Log. Here's how it works: every day you ask yourself, "Whatwas funny that happened to me today?" Then, you write those things down. Easy, huh? You'dbe amazed how much funny stuff happens on a daily basis. And that log sure does accumulateover a year!Camera: I never thought I'd be the guy with the camera phone, but MAN is it handy!I've taken some great pictures of things that remind me of fantastic content about which I later

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