How to Come up with Writing Topics - Brainstorming Ideas for Articles

How do writers (or hubbers) come up with ideas?

So you've joined HubPages or other writing site and are ready to write. Now what? How do you come up with ideas for topics? Thinking up interesting and useful topics is such a challenge at first, but, trust me, coming up with those topics gets easier with time. At least, I think so.

The topic for my very first hub was the most difficult to come up with, maybe because I was so nervous and afraid to put something out there. To avoid putting myself out there with any particular subject, I wrote a hub about getting over the fear of writing that first hub! Once I published that first hub, ideas were slow in coming, but they came. With time, they do come more quickly. After some point, it becomes a matter of having a lot of ideas while lacking the time to get them all written down!

Wherever you write, you can utilize many methods to help you come up with writing ideas.


Write down ideas for articles.
Write down ideas for articles. | Source

Get a Writing Journal to Keep Track of Your Writing Ideas

Keep a notebook with you

I get ideas all the time now just from things I'm thinking about. I'll cook something new and think, Oh, I should write a hub about this. Something will happen with a friend, and I'll think the same thing. I find a new way to save money and have to write about it. Ideas come sometimes, too, from unexpected sources.

Being ready to jot down these ideas provides me with a source of writing topics to refer to later. So be ready! Have a notebook or journal ready. I even carry around a very small one in my purse.

Right now I have over 100 ideas in a notebook. I don't know if I'll ever write about all of them, but keeping a notebook with me constantly helps me to always be thinking about article ideas--and writing them down.

Make a note of everything you think of--a new recipe your create, something that happened at work, a truth you learned about parenting, or funny pet antics. The more you come up with ideas, the more your brain seems to recognize things in your life that could lead to an article.


Taking pictures is important.
Taking pictures is important. | Source

Take pictures

In the beginning, I depended on photos from websites to add to my hubs. Sure, they were fine, but they weren't original, and perhaps didn't tell the real story, especially when publishing a recipe that I had created myself. The more I began to use my own photos, the more I began to see the value in taking lots of pictures. See something cute your cat is doing? Take a picture. Same with your kids. Take a picture. A bird in the birdbath? Click. Click. The first snow of winter. Click. Spring flowers. Click. A historical building in the town you grew up in. Click. Click again. You get the picture--haha. Pun intended.

Start having a camera handy, and take pictures of things--lots of things--that interest you. A photo itself could lead to a hub or article.


Check out the forum's Weekly Inspiration Topic

You can also check out the forum for HubPages staff's Weekly Inspiration Topic. I was at HubPages for many months before I realized that this option existed. Under "explore," click on "forum," and then look to the right-hand side for the "Weekly Inspiration Topic." Simone Smith gives you the week's idea, along with a number of search-friendly key words that she has researched for us. I check the forum every week to see if the week's topic is something I can write about. A typical week's topic looks something like this:

Contest-Friendly Weekly Topic Inspiration: Parenting Advice posted by Simone Smith in The Hubber's Hangout


Questions and Answers
Questions and Answers | Source

Read HubPages questions

Hubbers ask numerous questions that appear in the feed on your HubPages home page. You might see a question floating through the feed, or take the effort to search for yourself. Look at the top of the HubPages' home page. Click on "explore" and then on "answers." The questions that are "hot," "best," and "latest" will appear. Take your pick. Or look to the right of your page and pick the category in which you're interested. Under the category you choose, there will be more specific sub-categories.

If you're interested in answering any of these questions, you will even be able to start your hub from the question itself, as you will see an option when you pull up the question to "make a hub about it." At the very least, all these questions will give you an abundance of ideas.


so many questions . . . .
so many questions . . . . | Source

Ask your own questions

Ask questions that you think of on the feed option. You might gather information that would make a useful hub. In addition, any time you have a question about something in your day-to-day life, think if you can make a hub about it.

Every time you "google'" or use another search engine to look something up, ask yourself if you can write your own answers to the question, particularly if you are dissatisfied with the answers you find on your web search.


Get ideas from other writers

As you read and comment on other hubs, ideas may come to you. You may have a different idea about the hubber's topic that you wish to explore. Comments on the hub may also inspire you. Keep you mind open as you read other hubs. You never know where inspiration will hit.


Follow up on your own articles

Have you written a hub or article that was well-received from readers? Look at that topic and see how you could follow up with another hub. Also, perhaps you could write about something similar that would be grouped with your topic. Any particular topic could become a niche for you, an area in which you excel, hubs that spawn ideas about other related hubs. Look at what you write well, what subjects you know well, and write more on those issues.


Keep thinking!

If you use all the above methods to come up with ideas, you're certain to come up with a variety of things that you could discuss in a hub. See if it does get easier over time!

#15/30
#15/30

More by this Author


Comments 55 comments

MartieCoetser profile image

MartieCoetser 4 years ago from South Africa

Victoria, you've got great tips in here and I emphasize each one of them.

Thank you so much for sharing. I believe when we share our knowledge, we all grow and rise to higher peaks in the world of writers.

Voted up, informative, useful and awesome.


debbie roberts profile image

debbie roberts 4 years ago from Greece

Coming up with ideas for new hubs does get easier with time, I too keep a note book handy and scribble ideas down as I get them. I've also become snap happy too, I've gone from being a person who didn't know how to turn on a camera to a snap happy one, much to the amusement of my family.

All of your tips are good, it is a matter of constantly collecting hub material. Then the problem becomes, which one should I start next?....

An informative hub that I will pass on.


seo4site profile image

seo4site 4 years ago

Yep! Very intresting


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Thanks, Martie. I agree with what you said about sharing. It makes us all better writers. Thanks for reading and for the votes, too.


kthix10 profile image

kthix10 4 years ago from IL

The title tuner has actually helped me come up with a few new ideas when is suggests words


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

I hear ya, debbie! I actually have a bunch of unpublished hubs going at once. I go back and forth between them to work on them. When I feel one is ready, I publish it. Sometimes I have hubs there without a title! Thanks for passing on the hub!


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Thanks, seo4site! You are taking in all the helpful hubbing hubs, aren't you? Good for you! Hope things are going well for you so far!


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

kthix10--The title tuner! What a great idea for finding new topics!


prasetio30 profile image

prasetio30 4 years ago from malang-indonesia

Very inspiring hub. I thought we all should learn from you. I love your advice and they all useful for us as hubbers. Learning by others is the best way to improve and develop our skill in writing. We must practice soon.Thank you very much. I always give my vote to you. Take care and enjoy your day!

Prasetio


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

prasetio, you are always so kind. I also think learning from others is a great way to improve our skills. You have a good day as well.


homesteadbound profile image

homesteadbound 4 years ago from Texas

Lots of great ideas you have listed here. Another reason I like to have a list to go from - sometimes I may not feel like writing about a particular subject. Since I have my list, I can look down it and decide on something I do want to write about. This technique prevents writer's block!


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

You're right, homestead, in that it does help to have a list. I can skip around, look for something that interests me, that I might be able to write about that day. It really helps!


Cloverleaf profile image

Cloverleaf 4 years ago from Calgary, AB, Canada

Hi Victoria, I like your ideas of coming up with topics. Having a notebook nearby definitely helps. A lot of ideas seem to come to me in the middle of the night - I've had many a revelation at 3 in the morning and then forgotten it by the time I get up! Must keep that notebook by the side of the bed.

Voted up & sharing.


Anamika S profile image

Anamika S 4 years ago from Mumbai - Maharashtra, India

That are some awesome ideas! I follow many of these but still am not able to put it into writing because of my busy schedules. Voted up!


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Cloverleaf--I need to keep a small notebook by the bed! Good idea. Mine is usually by my computer, and I have a small one in my purse. Thanks!


dungeonraider profile image

dungeonraider 4 years ago from United States

Asking questions and starting forum topics have given me ideas I never would have concocted on my own. Taking pictures is an awesome way to start a hub, especially for fiction writers and poets.

This hub is useful for both novice and experienced online writers. Nicely done.


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Thanks, Anamika. I only recently have more time than usual to write, so all the ideas I've written down are coming in handy!


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Thanks, dungeonraider. Yeah, forum topics are another source of ideas. Good one!


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom

A wonderful, inspiring hub with lots of valuable ideas, I have started keeping a notebook with me all the time now and it's proving to be really useful, many thanks, voting up and sharing.


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

It really is helpful, Movie Master! Thanks for voting and sharing!


randomcreative profile image

randomcreative 4 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Great tips! Keeping a notebook and following up on my own hubs have been two of the most successful parts of HubPages writing for me. I don't know that I'll ever write all of the ideas that I brainstorm either, but it helps keep things flowing. And for the following up, my successful hub topics have definitely lead to more successful hubs.


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Yes, randomcreative, jotting down ideas does keep the ideas flowing, whether we use them or not. And following up on successful hubs--I'm learning that, too! Thanks for your comments!


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 4 years ago from Texas

Great ideas for those in brainlock...which we all suffer at times when writing. I wait for inspiration and it seems to come at those moments when I least expect it...like love. When it hits, I can barely think about doing anything else until that phrase or thought is down on paper...it usually flows like water once it starts for me. Thanks much for sharing. WB


Swetankraj profile image

Swetankraj 4 years ago from India

Just Great piece of article....jotting down all your ideas in a notebook is a great way for an hub. We can manage it with categories and favorites depending on moods by all the day along and when one of the moods strikes simply a new hub is created. I love very much clicking photos for my hub (sometimes count goes more than it requires), it is a very good habit that one should start posting picture which are taken by them. Whereas Question and Answer section is really awesome because whenever i need help regarding any topic related to hubpages, simple one could get answers with good explanation!!

Thanks for you idea and yes making it appear through your notebook! Voted up..


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Wayne--Exactly! When inspiration hits, I can write a hub in no time. Then I have to clean it up, but at least all the basic thoughts are there. Thanks for sharing your insight!


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Swetankraj--You're right about the ideas being there in a notebook when the mood strikes to right about something in particular. I'm still trying to get in the habit of clicking more photos. Original photos are great! Thanks for the comments!


DarylnCochrane profile image

DarylnCochrane 4 years ago from New York, NY

Hi. You make some excellent points here, as I sit and try to come up with an idea for another hub. Thanks for writing this. I will definitely start keeping that notebook! Voted up!


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Thanks, DaryInCochrane! The notebook is so valuable. I now have more ideas than I can keep up with!


homesteadbound profile image

homesteadbound 4 years ago from Texas

Vicki - I hate to be the bearer of bad news again, but this one has been copied: http://education.bigezine.com/how-to-come-up-with-...

-Cindy


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Oh, well, hopefully they'll take care of this. I'm sure there are more....


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Yeah, I have 8 or 9. Maybe they'll just take the site down. I'm tired of fighting for the day! Thanks for the heads up!


DarylnCochrane profile image

DarylnCochrane 4 years ago from New York, NY

My goodness. Did someone actually steal your hub and put it on another site?


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Yes, Daryln--it's happening with a lot of hubs. We're making complaints and trying to get it stopped.


kjrzeek1 profile image

kjrzeek1 4 years ago from New Jersey, USA

Thank you so much, as a new hubber this information really helps!


DarylnCochrane profile image

DarylnCochrane 4 years ago from New York, NY

Good news! The site has been shut down. Hopefully for good. Check out:

http://hubpages.com/community/Our-Hubs-Got-Stolen-...


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

krzeek1--You're so welcome. Welcome to HubPages!


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

DaryIn--I know! That's great news!!! We stood strong!


DarylnCochrane profile image

DarylnCochrane 4 years ago from New York, NY

Yes, we did!!


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Sure enough, DaryIn!


collegedad profile image

collegedad 4 years ago from The Upper Peninsula

When I first started writing hubs I had the worst time coming up with hub ideas. Now I have a pad full of them. Great insights Victoria. Thumbs up and shared!


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

collegedad--Coming up with hub ideas DOES get easier, doesn't it? I have so many ideas now--just not the time to get them all written! Thanks for your comments and sharing!


Milli Thornton 4 years ago

Excellent tips! I especially loved it when you said, "The more you come up with ideas, the more your brain seems to recognize things in your life that could lead to an article."

That's been happening to me like crazy. The first day I signed up my brain generated 28 ideas for Hubs. And it keeps snowballing each day. My biggest problem has been a recording system for all my ideas . . . which I plan to write a Hub about.

I mainly came here because, having seen the high quality of your Hubs already, I was curious to see the value of your tips. Even though right now there's no way I need tips on how to come up with more ideas, your tips are SO good, I'm bookmarking this Hub so I can use it later. Great value, Victoria Lynn.


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Milli Thornton--So glad you appreciated this hub. It IS amazing, isn't it, how so many ideas come pouring in! A while back, I started going ahead with the "start a hub" button to at least put in the title and save the hub unpublished. That way, I have a lot of unpublished hubs in my hub account that I can pull up and work on at any time. I guess that's one way to do it--works for me.

Thanks for bookmarking my hub. That means a lot! Welcome to HubPages! I look forward to seeing you around!


Milli Thornton 4 years ago

Great idea! I've been doing that in some of my WordPress blogs--starting the post with a title and a few jotted lines--so I'll have something in the queue to work on. I'll probably try that here now that you've mentioned it.

Hearing about your notebook of 100 ideas makes me want to read more of your Hubs. Isn't it great to have so many ideas to write about? I love being on HubPages because I can write about things here that aren't a fit for my existing blogs. So far, HubPages has been so much fun, I'm addicted already!


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Milli--Yes, there are so many things to write about that sometimes I don't know where to start! Plus I'm trying to start up some other things. Is WordPress pretty user friendly? I've been researching blogging, and WP seems popular. I looked at your blogs briefly but need to look more closely to see how you put them together!

Glad you came by this hub!


Milli Thornton 4 years ago

WordPress is user friendly . . . however, it takes a learning curve. I'm glad I've had my husband, with all his computer experience, to help me for those technical moments when I don't know what to do. For the most part, though, it's something you can figure out by trial and error and by reading tutorials online.

If you decide to take on a WordPress blog, and if you ever need any help or advice, you can shoot me a private message and I'd love to help. Not that I can answer absolutely everything . . . but it helps to have a fellow blogger you can turn to.

P.S. My tip for while you're still looking would be to research the difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org before you decide which one to go with.


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Milli, I've been comparing. WordPress.org (self-hosted, right?) sounds better for business, but it may be above my technical level. Thanks for the offer. I may take you up on shooting you a private message at some point if I have questions. IF? Yes, I'll have questions. Thanks. See you around the Hub!


kellyteam profile image

kellyteam 4 years ago from Michigan

Love the hub. It is good to see I'm not the only one that had this problem. It took me so long to write my first hub and when I finally did it was about writing. I do the same thing you do too. I write a title and save it unpublished. You give some great ideas here. I'm putting them to use right away. Thumbs up! Keep on hubbing!


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Awesome, kellyteam! glad you got some ideas! Once you get going, ideas will come much easier, I'll bet!


kellyteam profile image

kellyteam 4 years ago from Michigan

You are so right. Just completed one (not published yet) But, ready to start the next. They kidda tie in together so I will publish together. Thanks again. You are so encouraging.


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

kellyteam--Good luck on your first hub! I'm glad I can be encouraging. I've had a lot of hubbers that have provided so much encouragement and support for me, also!


Jenny 4 years ago

Your article is indeed an interesting read. It is common for writers to encounter writers block, atleast i experience it often but i am sure with these tips i can overcome it. Thanks for sharing.


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Jenny, I'm glad you think it's a good read. Writer's block IS common. We've just gotta find ways to get around it!


Ceres Schwarz profile image

Ceres Schwarz 3 years ago

Thanks for the great tips. I agree that keeping note of things should make it easier to remember any ideas you might have that could be written into a hub. I hope to be able to come up with a lot of hub topics and be able to write a lot of hubs soon.


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 3 years ago from Arkansas, USA Author

Ceres, jotting down your ideas will help a lot. Before you know it, you'll have more ideas than time to write about them!

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working