I don't know what to write about? Remember those days in school when we were told to prepare a speech or write an essay without being given a topic? Most of us usually replied with the same cry - "but, I don't know what to say." This occasionally happens to writers of all ilks and sometimes I really envy daily columnists for their ability to find topics five times a week and always stay fresh. If you are serious about wanting to write but have not quite gotten into the flow yet, here's another excerpt from my upcoming book that may offer a few ideas:
"WHAT SHOULD I WRITE ABOUT?
Writing a book is different than writing an article or a blog - it is more permanent somehow and seems to be a more solid reflection of who we are as a person. This must mean that we need to take the entire process more seriously and whatever we write should be something we have expertise and knowledge about. Without doubt, our readers and the world in general, treat a book with much more importance and respect than the somewhat ethereal world of digital writing on blogs and websites. The printed page holds a mysterious power and respect for its permanence and that is exactly why we are writing a book in the first place, is it not?
A non-fiction book should be based on a level of expertise, training and technical ability that the author can demonstrate in both their biography and their writing prowess but just exactly how do we go about discovering what we are "expert" at? We can look to our formal education credentials for starters. Holding a degree in any discipline will automatically confer expert, or at least knowledgeable, status. There are many more areas in which we can search for writing ideas that will offer real value to our readers and that is the most important criteria. Are we providing value for our readers and another way to look at it is this; how will our writing change a reader’s life for the better?"
from the upcoming book by Robert J. Bannon
may not be reprinted without written permission and credit
The book goes on to outline a few methods for creating a level of expertise, but with non-fiction ( and even fiction for that matter) the last sentence is the key. It is our responsibility and opportunity to make the readers life better in some way.