How Writers Can Find Their Next Story

magnifyingphoto.jpgIn Mediabistro’s latest AvantGuild feature, writers and editors detail their methods for generating new and interesting content long after the creativity well runs dry. For example:

Check out the competition

“Looking at the competition can help spark ideas that could fill gaps or news they’re not covering,” said Nick Barber, a tech reporter for IDG. If you read a piece another outlet wrote about a subject, ask yourself what’s missing or try to look at the piece from the opposite point of view. “Sometimes a fresh perspective can help generate something new,” Barber added.

Pressed for time? Set up Google Alerts for any topics you’re interested in and watch the ideas flow into your inbox. And the competition doesn’t always have to be in your exact field. If you’re a food writer, a quick check of might unearth a profile of someone whose innovative freezing technology could be weaved into that piece on homemade ice cream you’ve been brainstorming. Or, maybe it’s a blurb on The Wrap about Lindsay Lohan‘s latest #fail that is the catalyst for your next parenting piece on preteen discipline. The idea is to keep your eyes peeled and your reporter’s cap on at all times.

For seven more sources of inspiration, read 8 Places to Find Your Next Story [subscription required]