How do you generate fresh ideas?

Discussion in 'Nonfiction Writing' started by Jardin, Aug 20, 2018.

  1. Jardin

    Jardin New Member

    Every writer experience "dry spell" in their writing career. It is the time when you have writers' block. You have explored every possible source of stories. Read articles, read books from other authors, and just continuously brainstorming and still end up with nothing. What steps do you take to generate fresh ideas? As for me, when this happens I just stop. Stop any research I'm doing. Stop any writing I'm undergoing. Just stop and do nothing. I unwind and relax my brain. What do you do?
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  2. Lady_Seah

    Lady_Seah New Member

    Writer's block is the ultimate enemy of a writer. Well, any career that requires broad ideas and imagination and you found yourself lacking at the moment can be really frustrating. In my experience, what I do is I look at my pocket notebook. It's a notebook that I carry anywhere I go and where I write down my ideas everytime it pops into my head.

    A change in environment can be helpful, listening to music, talking to someone, watching movies or even reading books can give you an idea. Maybe your just tired and you need to some sleep or maybe you just need some exercise to increase the blood flow in your brain, something like that. It may also be a lack of inspiration, so go out there and paint the town red. I mean, there are a lot of ideas that can come out around you, you just have to be open-minded.
  3. ewapc101

    ewapc101 Active Member

    Books are wonderful for creating new thoughts and stimulating great ideas. For a long time, I didn't read much. When I added business books to my routine, it helped me learn more and expand my way of thinking. But several years ago, I started again reading fiction and histories. These stories really got me out of my daily headspace and activated my idea generator. Even if you can't make the time for a novel, go hunt down a bookstore and spend an hour browsing. You'll find plenty of thought stimulation.
  4. ewapc101

    ewapc101 Active Member

    Hanging around with the same friends and colleagues can get you in a thinking rut. Take advantage of all those LinkedIn connections and start some exciting conversations. New people don't know all your thought patterns and old stories, so you'll have to revisit your existing inner monologues. The refreshing perspectives will help to surface new thinking and possibly a lightning bolt or two.
  5. ewapc101

    ewapc101 Active Member

    Google is great when you know what you are looking for, but the best way to generate new ideas is with unexpected learning. Take an hour each week and go on a web journey. Start with the I'm Feeling Lucky button and just take it from there. Try to pick the stranger and more obscure references as you surf and stretch your brain a bit.
  6. loriann776

    loriann776 New Member

    So far many of my ideas for writing come from my own personal life. That is what got me started writing years ago and still writing today over 30 years later. I am not published because the only downfall of writing about life, and your own in particular, is sometimes you don't want the world seeing those stories. I often do get those dry spells too because even though I know there are hundreds or even thousands more stories I can tell, I get stuck on the "Should I?" and the "Shouldn't I?"
  7. I strongly disagree in your opinion we must not stop it's just a matter of having a rest. Try to go out with your friend/girlfriend/boyfriend/family and have some fun and go to diffrrent places because it may serve as a gateway in finding your new "Inspiration" of ideas. Basking into the sun as the winds refreshes you out while doing that try to synthesize your ideas because it may came out in a middle of nowhere. Sometimes we need to interact with our environment/nature instead of stopping take a break and as you do some leisure or even recreational activities try to "make the separate threads to come apart" and when that happens undoubtably you'll find some ideas that will satisfy your ideals.
  8. Standard idea-generation techniques concentrate on combining or adapting existing ideas. This can certainly generate results. But here, our focus is on equipping you with tools that help you leap onto a totally different plane. These approaches push your mind to forge new connections, think differently and consider new perspectives.

    A word of caution – while these techniques are extremely effective, they will only succeed if they are backed by rich knowledge of the area you're working on. This means that if you are not prepared with adequate information about the issue, you are unlikely to come up with a great idea even by using the techniques listed here.

    Incidentally, these techniques can be applied to spark creativity in group settings and brainstorming sessions as well.

    All of us can tend to get stuck in certain thinking patterns. Breaking these thought patterns can help you get your mind unstuck and generate new ideas. There are several techniques you can use to break established thought patterns:

    • Challenge assumptions: For every situation, you have a set of key assumptions. Challenging these assumptions gives you a whole new spin on possibilities.

      You want to buy a house but can't since you assume you don't have the money to make a down payment on the loan. Challenge the assumption. Sure, you don't have cash in the bank but couldn't you sell some of your other assets to raise the money? Could you dip into your retirement fund? Could you work overtime and build up the kitty in six months? Suddenly the picture starts looking brighter.

    • Reword the problem: Stating the problem differently often leads to different ideas. To reword the problem look at the issue from different angles. "Why do we need to solve the problem?", "What's the roadblock here?", "What will happen if we don't solve the problem?" These questions will give you new insights. You might come up with new ideas to solve your new problem.

      In the mid 1950s, shipping companies were losing money on freighters. They decided they needed to focus on building faster and more efficient ships. However, the problem persisted. Then one consultant defined the problem differently. He said the problem the industry should consider was "how can we reduce cost?" The new problem statement generated new ideas. All aspects of shipping, including storage of cargo and loading time, were considered. The outcome of this shift in focus resulted in the container ship and the roll-on/roll-off freighter.

    • Think in reverse: If you feel you cannot think of anything new, try turning things upside-down. Instead of focusing on how you could solve a problem/improve operations/enhance a product, consider how could you create the problem/worsen operations/downgrade the product. The reverse ideas will come flowing in. Consider these ideas –once you've reversed them again – as possible solutions for the original challenge.
    • Express yourself through different media: We have multiple intelligences but somehow, when faced with workplace challenges we just tend to use our verbal reasoning ability. How about expressing the challenge through different media? Clay, music, word association games, paint, there are several ways you can express the challenge. Don't bother about solving the challenge at this point. Just express it. Different expression might spark off different thought patterns. And these new thought patterns may yield new ideas.
  9. AvadaObscura

    AvadaObscura New Member

    I find inspiration in writing in a somewhat unconventional way: an intellectual conversation with friends. I often spend time with friends, and we talk about a wide range of topics. Every time a new topic of conversation comes up that is even remotely interesting, something clicks in my head to see if it's been written about before. Even if it has been written about before, you can take what's been written from another perspective. For example, instead of writing about a certain topic from your point of you, maybe research how others could perceive it.
  10. DanM08

    DanM08 New Member

    I'm doing research too for my writings, and if I wanted a fresh idea? Man, to be honest, that would be very difficult 'cause most ideas came from existing ideas and are being innovated. But, take a look at the ancient history, philosophers from ancient times were able to generate fresh ideas and opinions, but how did they do it? They based it on "experience," not necessarily their experience but probably from someone's experience or from the country itself where they live in, and that's what I'm doing if I wanted to generate fresh ideas, I look behind and check my experience. Remember, the experience is still the best teacher that you got.

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