Has this ever happened to you?
You’ve slotted time in your calendar to write an inspiring – or informative – piece you know your readers are eagerly anticipating…only to sit and stare at the blank screen in front of you. No insights come your way no matter how long you rack your brain. Time’s running out before your next appointment and you’re scrambling to find a hint of an idea that you haven’t already written about. Frustration sets in. What do you do?
It can happen to anyone. And usually, all you need is one or two words – a direction – to get you started and on your way.
You can spend way too much time searching online for article ideas when these moments hit. It soon gets overwhelming and cumbersome. Instead, have those ideas flow into your in-box so you’re ready when you need them.
Create a Swipe File
You can have a steady stream of ideas at your fingertips just by subscribing to your industry e-newsletters and your competitors’ ezines. I am not suggesting that you copy or use their articles. Instead, use their articles as a source of inspiration when you need an idea fast.
Find out who’s writing content in your field and subscribe. Create a folder in your in-box for “Samples” and create a rule for these emails to go directly into the folder without clogging up your in-box.
Often, all it takes is to open the folder and scan the subject lines for a quick injection of creativity. Or open the emails and read the content. Don’t copy. Don’t steal content. Be inspired to share your own take on the subject.
As a bonus, you’ll know what your competitors and colleagues are talking about – and what they’re up to.