If you're reading this article, you'll know I write for Odyssey at Lipscomb. I write a new article weekly, and I edit the articles of my teammates. One of the hardest parts of the job is coming up with what to write about. There have been weeks when I've thought about quitting because "I was too busy" or "I'm not cut out for this," but I was able to cut away the excuses and narrow down the truth to "I just don't know what to write about this week." This struggle isn't unique to writers. Artists get artists block. Songwriters reach times when they can't think of their next lyric or chord. It's not permanent, but it can be a struggle to churn out creative content constantly. If you want to get a job in the creative industry, it's important to learn how to creatively create consistently. Here are some tips I have found from writing at Odyssey.
First, I think of what's going on in my immediate world. For instance, my 12 Days of Finals video was published right around finals time. If something's going on that a large group of people can relate to, like the end of the year or a holiday, I will probably consider writing about it. I don't write a lot of political articles, and there are many reasons behind that. But I can still write about political issues if something is pressing on my mind.
Another trick I have found is Google Keep, a note application on my phone. Whenever I get a random idea, I jot it down there. I've been doing this even before the Odyssey. I used to run a vine account, and I did the same thing whenever I would hear a song I thought I could make into good edit. Last I checked I had 181 followers, which is not bad for a high school teenager who was editing other people's footage and music together with a really outdated video editing software. I've since stopped posting, but I'm still really impressed with my younger self for keeping it up so long. So when you think of a random idea, write it down! You probably won't remember it otherwise. People seems to like hearing or seeing random things, that idea could be really valuable!
A more challenging topic can be to write about something you're struggling with. Something you might not have all the answers to, but something you can surely write all the questions to. I have written about really emotional topics before, at least for me. I even started crying when I wrote all these articles. I tried to give some sort of resolution to them for the sake of any readers, but these were all topics I was really wrestling with at the time, and still do. Since coming to college, I have become more insecure and less certain of the world around me. I could probably write a paper about it, let alone a few articles. If you don't know what to write or talk about, try something that hits a little too close to home for you.
And finally, I write a lot of things in reaction to other things. This article was in reaction to my suitemate telling me about social clubs. I wrote this one after I found at that my Belmont friends really had no beef with Lipscomb. One even applied for a job here recently. My article on millennials was a response to a video I saw on YouTube that was just hating on millennials. It really irked me, so I wrote about it.
Even though always coming up with new content seems impossibly difficult, it can be done. If all else fails, just write about something you know way too much about. At the time I wrote my article about Ace Attorney, I was the only one in all of Odyssey that had written about it (according to the Odyssey search engine). Since then a few more articles have popped up on the topic, but there was no huge demand for an article about some random Japanese video game when I wrote it. I just wrote it because it was something important to me. Don't ever feel discouraged because you're in a bit of a rut. Keep pushing through it! You can do this.