Not usually a problem for me, but I get this from my writing students on a regular basis, and friends aspiring to be writers or to write more . . .
What do I write about? I have no idea!
You know that great, “write what you know” crutch, fallback, senseless patter, right?
First, you gotta decide ‘what you know.”
Little brainstorming session.
5 minutes should do it . . .
Paper, pencil, (I like to do this on paper, gives it a physical feel but you can use your computer as long as the solitaire game is at least minimized and you don’t have the sound up for new messages arriving 🙂
Start at the top:
Just start listing all of the topics you’ve ever studied in school.
Magazines you read regularly
Kinds of articles, topics
Sports you like to play or watch
Software you use
Forums you visit
Don’t stop writing for 5 minutes, write “I can’t think” or “I have no idea” when you er, ‘have no idea’ but keep the pencil or the typing fingers moving for 5 minutes.
Now, look at your list.
Anything jump out at you?
Want to try again for 5 more minutes?
Thought not 🙂
Look over the list. Grab the first 7 that seem to stick out.
Narrow that down to the top 3 and list them in order of your knowledge, interest, and desire to write about them.
Now you know what to write about.
Not painful at all, eh?