Don't quit! You've got great stuff inside you, and we want to hear and read about it.
There are many ways to find a topic. Today I’m going to tell you 4 SUPER ways.
Of course you've heard of brainstorming. Well, today’s tip is a specific form of brainstorming.
I believe in the power of questions. Questions help me focus my creative efforts. If I have a good question to guide me, usually that does the trick of helping me find a good topic for myself. Not always, but often enough. If they work for me, they will certainly help you.
Here are four questions to help you find a topic.
Got your pens and pencils ready?
- What unusual experiences have you had?
- What special knowledge or expertise do you have?
- What strong opinions and beliefs do you have?
- What would you like to know more about?
Answering each of these questions one at a time by writing the first things that come to mind can help you find what you are looking for. Don't edit what you write. Just write. It's what I've done below as an example.
What unusual experiences have I had? (Don’t compare yourself with others). What’s unusual for me? Well, the other night I was in my friends house. In the sink was a strange looking creepy crawly insect that scared me. That might be a topic. Could it make an interesting speech or essay? Absolutely!
What special knowledge or expertise do I have? (Again, don’t compare. “I don’t have any” is not true. It’s only true if you compare it to others. Just think what’s true for you).
I’m a pretty good speaker. I can write a decent speech. Perhaps I can tell someone how to write a speech.
What strong opinions do I have? I hate child abuse! I could write a speech about that. (Of course, some topics you want to pay attention to how they might affect the audience. But… for the most part, don’t worry. Just speak!)
What would I like to know more about? I’d like to know more about finance. So, I can study this and make a speech about some aspect of finance.
So there you are. I’ve given you four questions that can help guide you on a path to finding your topic. Remember not to compare yourself. I find comparisons block me from the right topic for me to speak about.
Of course, once you find your topic, you then have to do the hard work of narrowing it down into a manageable speech topic. On hints about how to do that, check out here.
This post was inspired by Jo Sprague & Douglas Stuart's book.