Inquiring Minds Want To Know #26 – How Do You Come Up With Content?

If you have a question be sure to ask it here. Previous questions that have been answered can be found here.

Question: How do you come up with content to post to your blog? I’m always stumped and have no creativity. From Rebel

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To be honest, I’m not a very creative person. While there are some writers and content creators that can go with the flow and just wait until inspiration strikes them and get going, that approach doesn’t work for me at all. I’m very much about having a plan and a clear focus as to what I am going to do. When inspiration does strike, I’m not above reworking the plan to fit in an impromptu post, but for the most part everything is worked out well in advance.

With the majority of my weekly posts being episode reviews, the only weeks where there isn’t a clear guide are the first two or three weeks of the season where I’m still trying shows and working out a schedule. However, once week three comes around, I’ll have a note book page with the list of shows I’m following and when their review should be scheduled. This works around the already established posts such as my weekly round up posts, series reviews, and other posts that I do each week.

About the only two posts I actually need to get creative with are the Top 5 posts and the Feature of the week. And I will admit, I sometimes really struggle with these but I’m usually a few weeks ahead in terms of scheduling (though not at the moment because right now I’ve used up my supply of scheduled posts to get me through the last few months when I haven’t been feeling so well). I do have quite a list of potential feature ideas and top 5 ideas that I add to whenever something catches my eye or grabs my attention and when I’m really stumped I go back to these lists, cross out ideas I’ve used, modify something if it doesn’t seem right, and eventually pick something from the list to write, but that’s more a last resort when I’m done staring at the white screen of death without an idea.

I think for me having a schedule and a regular cycle of posts is kind of essential. If I just opened the blog today and tried to think of a post idea, I’d probably not end up producing anything. But because I know that on Sunday I have to have a weekly round up post and at least two episode reviews, and by week three of the season I’ll know what those reviews are going to be on, it makes writing much easier because I have something clear to produce.

I get that this system won’t work for everyone and some people hate schedules as they go to write what they’ve planned and then realise they don’t want to, but for me it is what enables me to post regularly and always having something to write about.

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What about the readers? How do you come up with content ideas?


Thanks for reading.

Karandi James

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21 thoughts on “Inquiring Minds Want To Know #26 – How Do You Come Up With Content?

  1. I’ll sit at the table with anyone whose inspiration comes from other bloggers, and, as someone who has been reading blogs longer than I’ve been trying to make blogging happen, I’ll make the claim that “piggybacking” is fine. I like seeing unique versions of the same thing, because I can find my feels echoed across cyberspace (if lots of bloggers share my love for something), or I can think about things in a multitude of ways (like the Build Your Own Harem game). And if I were the creator of something that caught on…my ego could not be contained.

    As for scheduling, what is scheduling? I guess I blog like I live, which means chasing after every squirrel I see, regardless of what I’m supposed to be doing…er following through on something the instant I realize it needs doing, otherwise it ain’t gettin’ done. I blog about something (I’ve stolen from someone else) as soon as I think “this could be blog-able.”

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  2. For me, I’m pretty much random with what I do XD. My full time job sometime leaves me more exhausted than I expect it too. During those days, it’s a good idea for me to skip writing altogether since I’ll feel like I’ll be out of it if I do write. When I actually plan ahead, I simply finish up something I’m almost done with, and post that instead. It would take me long, and I won’t feel like I phone it in.

    I usually give myself a general guideline like when to watch something, and when I’m going to complete writing about it. I usually allow myself to be flexible enough where if something doesn’t pan out like expected like what I written not being to my liking, or it’s just not being as good as I feel I could make it be. Then I consider writing about something I’ve seen a week before just in case something that like happened. It’s a sloppy method, but currently what works best for me. I try not to treat blogging as a job so no matter when I sit down, and write I’ll know I’ll be having fun in some way.

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  3. I think quite a few of my posts are just piggybacking off other people’s posts/opinions.

    Even though I’m only my best writing self at 100% inspiration mode, I don’t post every day by mandate (the number of posts required per month is probably 6 or 7 at most on my schedule, plus 2 of them don’t require much creativity), so I do have more ideas than my schedule allows (to allow for writing slumps, busy periods etc.).

    As for how to come up with content, I’ve been jotting down notes for almost every simulcast episode I’ve set eyes on and then a few other things as well, so I’m used to enjoying something while writing down what could be my next post idea (and can just dig into my archives if I need to). Just keep enjoying your media as you consume it and make sure to read others’ thoughts on the same media – that’s my word of advice.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I think writing down notes as they come to you always helps. You may never use that particular note, or it might be exactly what you need to start writing something at a later point in time.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. “I think quite a few of my posts are just piggybacking off other people’s posts/opinions.”

      Me too! I am not at all afraid to “borrow” a good idea or inspiration. I know I’ve borrowed a number from Karandi. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I must admit, I try to schedule as much as possible. My aim is usually to have msot of my posts planned in the final week of a month, then written within the first week of the next. So, for September posts, I want a plan done within the next week, and written by the end of the first week of August. It’s difficult to keep to at times though, and I do end up with some last minute stuff thrown in too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. At the moment my feature posts are becoming a little more last minute than I would like and I think it is showing. I need a weekend where not much is happening to get a few drafts going so I can start having these more planned again.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. It’s something that I have tried myself as well: having a publishing schedule, but for me it honestly doesn’t work. I have very irregulare working hours, and I know that there are times where I plan to do something, but work interferes making it necessary to scrap those plans. So it would add unnecessary pressure to me.
    But one of the things I really admire from you is the amount of high quality you manage to create every week and on such a regular basis, as well as being all over on pretty much every blog that I encounter. You work hard, very hard, and it truly shows too 😊Really to get these kind of behind the scenes looks on the way your blog (and ofcourse you yourself) works 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m probably lucky in that regardless of how long my work day is going to be, I always have a good hour or two in the morning from when I wake up to when I need to get ready to work that I can spend on the blog. It allows me to make sure I have the things I need done for the blog done. If I get that done, any spare time can be spent either reading blogs or watching anime. If my work day doesn’t end up crazy long then I get some time in the evening as well. Though I’ve definitely learned that if I’ve been at work for 11 hours or more, don’t try to draft a blog post. It usually ends up just being a mess of words that I have to delete the next morning when I look at it with fresh eyes.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. For me it’s the exact opposite. Most of the time I have is almost always after work (except on fridays where I always have to start late and work in the evening). Depending on the day, I usually have 5-6 hours left. If it’s not been a crazy day I can spent time writing a new post after catching up to other blogs (which is the only thing that I always do every day). As for writing things after 11 hours or more: I have learned that same lesson lol.
        Still though: I think it’s amazing what you achieve every day: total respect 😊

        Liked by 1 person

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