Selecting a topic and writing a post...
How do you choose the topic for your post, and how do you develop it?
I read a lot. I skip the rants and I go first to the bloggers that usually employ a bit of humor. Alan May comes to mind. His relaxed style with a little humor thrown in gets me thinking. Sometimes it only generates a comment for Alan, but often it leaves me wanting to say more, and often on a slightly different topic. The sentence that floats through my head is “But what about……” That’s the start of my blog. It’s always better to write your own than make a twisted comment, slightly off topic. Others that help me get started are blogs by home inspectors. Their style is different. They usually identify a problem, illustrate it with photos and explain the consequences of what they found. Most are excellent explanations, clear and to the point. They keep me thinking about how I can be clear and to the point. Jay Markanich is a great example to read. On occasion, I check the “Inspiration” tab, to see if I’d like to take on something new.
or you could just consider any one of the world's problems, and offer your plan for making it better....
Once the topic is selected, I do a very brief outline of it. When selecting the topic, I don’t try to control the size of the resulting blog. The quick outline helps me decide if I have more than 50 words to say about something, or if my effort will look more like Tolstoy’s War and Peace. It also helps me determine how many sources and how much research I need to do, and what photos I need to take. I tend to take most of my own photos because I struggle to find what I want as free images. This isn’t always possible, for example there are not many beach shots this time of year in Wisconsin, unless you are a member of the Polar Bear Club.
I don’t let posts sit in my “draft” category for very long. I either get it outlined and photographed and finished while it’s still fresh, or I kill it off as not interesting enough to keep me working on it….
And that’s all there is to it.