The Mayans’ Lost Guide To Freelance Writing Topics

Categories Freelance Writing

In Need Of Ideas for Freelance Writing Topics?

So, first thing’s first,  you’re probably wondering about the title here. Well, all will be revealed with time! As you probably did guess though, we’re here to talk about freelance writing topics, and most importantly, what you can do when the idea well appears to have run dry.


When you’re struggling to think of topic ideas it can be pretty frustrating, but there’s a big plus side to this. At least it means you’re getting work and the demand is there for your excellent writing! In the grand scheme of things, struggling to think of something to write about is not a bad problem to have. 


Even if we’re not writers, we’ve all been in that position where you’re banging your head against a brick wall trying to work out what to write about (we all went to school). Unfortunately, from time to time as freelance writers we might feel like we’ve been transported back to Mr. Robertson’s 9th grade English class as we’re forced to figure out what to write about!

 

There’s no need for PTSD to start kicking in though because there are plenty of ways to get around this and come up with tons of interesting freelance writing topics to write about.  No matter how much you’ve written about a topic there’s always a new angle you can find, you just need a little push in the right direction. 


To help you out in your quest, we’ve put together our 7 key steps to coming up with new freelance writing topics. Ensuring you can keep the great content rolling.

1. Use Your Day To Day Life

Hopefully, you’ve taken the first step in your freelance writing career and selected a few niche topics to focus on. I’m even more hopeful that these are niches you’re passionate about and enjoy working on, because if so, this process is going to be much easier. 


The thing is, when you’re writing about topics that you enjoy and have a personal interest in, it’s easy to incorporate them into your everyday life. You can relate the things you see back to your niche subject, and consequently, the things you do and see in your day-to-day life become topics you can use in your writing. 

If you’ve always got your eyes open, your ears peeled, and your niche on your mind, then your life can provide many of the content ideas you need. For instance, in my niche of tennis, I found I was always making mistakes on the most important points, so I decided to research the best ways to approach big points and write about it. 


It doesn’t even have to be tennis specific. Say I see something on the news about people having less spending money than ten years ago. Boom, I’ve got an article, “How The Squeeze on Take Home Pay Might Affect Tennis”.


No matter what you do, you’re exposed to so many stories in your day-to-day life that some of them have to relate to your niche in some way. Learn to focus on how the things you see and hear on a day to day basis might affect your niche, and you’ll find there’s a wealth of content to tap into.

2. Borrow From Other People

If you’re not finding content ideas in your own life then it’s time to start looking at what other people are seeing in theirs. No matter what niche you’re in, there are bound to be plenty of people out there who are writing about it, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with borrowing some of their ideas. 


You may be thinking this is like stealing but that’s not the case. As long as you’re taking the ideas that are out there, rewriting them, and putting your own spin on them, then that’s absolutely fine. Just because Bob has written an article on why John Deere tractors are better than Massey Ferguson tractors doesn’t mean you can’t too! 


In fact, borrowing ideas from your competitors is an excellent way to understand what content works well and what content doesn’t work well before you’ve even written it. Here’s how you do it!


So I typed my query, “why John Deere tractors are better than Massey Ferguson” into Google and selected the first result that came up. It’s not actually an article but a forum (chance for a nice article in there). Anyway, next I go to neilpatel.com and put the domain of the first result that came up, tractorbynet.com into the search. 


If you scroll down to Top SEO Pages, you can see which pages bring in the most amount of traffic for that website. Click the view all button on one of the pages and you will see which keywords that page ranks for, and how many visitors those keywords bring in. 

Freelance writing topics
Click View All to find the keywords a page ranks for .
Keywords
You can get tons of content ideas from your competitors.


When I do this, I can see that TractorByNet is getting around 3,768 visitors a month from the keyword field leveling and that term only has a difficulty rating of 22, which means it’s pretty easy to rank for! I might even write an article about field leveling at that rate!


This technique works for any niche and is a brilliant way of discovering freelance writing topics. Not only does it give you ideas for what to write, but it also shows you what is popular. 

3. Take Your Research a Step Further

Have you ever been researching something and you’ve gone down a certain root of investigation and found a treasure trove of content ideas? Well, that can often be the case when you do some good digging!


Why not take a previous article you have written, take your research to the next level for that article and see what you dig up. You’ll often find that you not only have the potential to vastly improve the original article, but you also discover some great writing topics. 


I once did this with an article that touched on betting in tennis. The original article included betting as a bit of a side-note, but when I went back through the article and did a little bit more research on the betting aspect of it, I realized there were a whole series of articles to be written on betting in tennis. 


Even if you put in a crazy amount of research for an article you will find that new information comes to light with time. When you revisit an old article you might find that there’s lots of new research out there, and lots of potential for new freelance writing topics. 

4. Use a Title Generator

So, I told you I would tell you the story behind the quirky title I picked for this article and I didn’t lie! Clearly, “The Mayan’s Lost Guide To Freelance Writing Topics” is a bit of a fanciful title for this article, and I must admit for the purposes of this piece I got it from a title generator. 


I simply went to Tweak Your Biz and put my keywords – freelance writing topics – into the generator and before I knew it I had hundreds of topic ideas. Now, not all of these function as adequate titles (this one being point in case) but they will stimulate your mind and give you some new ideas. 

Results from title generator
Results from title generator


Sometimes it’s just a tiny thing that can get your creative juices going and a title generator can be that tiny thing. It’s not fancy or complicated, but it’s a fun way to get some ideas for things to write about. 


If you’re really struggling for ideas don’t beat yourself up about it. Relax, take a step back and try and find a fun way to stimulate your ideas like this one. 

5. Get Personal

Humans love stories! Even more so, they love personal stories. Why do you think we have so many reality TV shows? Well, you don’t have to go to reality TV star levels, but you can make some good content out of your personal experiences. 


Let’s go back to our John Deere vs Massey Ferguson tractor debate. Now, I know absolutely nothing about tractors, but I do have a personal story that I can use to create a story and weigh in on this debate. 


I went to university in the same town where John Deere has its headquarters, so I know about the great work that Deere does within the community. I can’t use that to say John Deere tractors are better, but I could use that to write something like “Why I’ll Always Fly The John Deere Flag”. 


Again, it’s not complicated, but it’s a different angle that can give you some new ideas. We always underestimate the value of our own stories, when in reality there are tons of people who would be interested in them. Use your stories to satisfy the human love for storytelling. 

6. Keep Up With the News

I’ve already alluded to this one earlier on in the article, but the news can be a great source of inspiration. The news (should) show us the things that are important in people’s lives, so surely it’s something we can borrow from. 

If you’ve completely hit a wall then why not go out and buy a newspaper? If you can flick through the entire paper and not come up with one freelance writing topic then I’d be amazed! 


The other thing about the news is that it’s wonderfully diverse. It covers everything from the most serious events to someone making a hole in his roof so he can fit a massive Christmas tree in his house. No matter what your niche is you’ll be able to find something relevant you can write about. 


I don’t want to sound like that boring person that goes around telling little children they should watch the news, but as writers, we can take a lot of inspiration from what’s going on in the world. 


When you’re in a funk and can’t think of anything to write about, check out the news, and you never know what you might find!

7. Expand Your Niche

Sometimes you get to the point where you’ve covered all you can cover about a topic. Especially if you have quite a specific niche, there are going to be times where you simply can’t find anything else to write about. When this happens you need to look for ways to expand your niche. 


Take this website for example. There are only so many things that can be said about freelance writing. Eventually, I’m going to have to find a way to expand the niche a little bit. That’s not a bad thing, it’s just normal! 


Of course, if you’re writing in a very broad niche, then this point might not be so helpful to you, but it can still have some benefit. Whatever your niche is, it’s sure to have some niches that intersect, so why not look into them? The chances are, if you have specialist knowledge in kayaks, you’ll be able to learn everything there is to know about canoes pretty quickly! 


We recommend that freelance writers choose a niche so that they can specialize, but don’t let your specialization hold you back. Don’t be afraid to look for niches that intersect with your niche and venture into it. If it doesn’t work out then you’ll soon know. 


Looking for inspiration in other niches is an easy way to change up what you’re doing and refresh the mind. Once you start doing a bit of research into a new topic you might find you get some good ideas for your main niche. 

Conclusion

Sometimes you’re going to struggle to think of freelance writing topics but there are plenty of ways to get fresh inspiration. Most of the time we find that taking a step back from the computer is the best way to replenish the tank and there are plenty of fun ways to do that!


If you’ve hit a wall with your freelance writing topics then why not try some of these steps:

  1. Use your daily life.
  2. Borrow from other people.
  3. Take your research a step further.
  4. Use a title generator.
  5. Get personal.
  6. Keep up with the news.
  7. Expand your niche.

You’re bound to find some fresh content ideas from some of these methods, and you might just have a bit of fun doing them!

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