Beginning Writer: What Should You Write?

New writers often know that they want to become a freelance writer, but aren’t sure how to start their journey.

The journey starts when you decide what to write.

If you’re lucky, the decision is made for you. It comes as a flash of intuition. You not only know that you want to write, you also know what you’ll write.

In my writing from home guide, I said:

You suddenly realize: I can do this! You read a book, or an article, or a piece of web content, and you can see yourself writing it… You know you can do it.

If your intuition is silent, start by choosing whether you want to write fiction, or nonfiction.

If you want to write fiction, just start writing.

For example, many years ago, when I wrote novels, I started a novel by deciding to start a novel. I sat down at my IBM Selectric II (a great typewriter, of which I have many fond memories), and typed ten titles. Then I chose a title, and wrote a first paragraph, and another, and another. Somewhere around page five, I had a couple of characters, a situation, and the glimmer of a plot.

On the other hand, if you want to write nonfiction, start by considering your experience and interests. Make a list of what you do every day, and your loves and hates.

Your everyday experiences will always give you plenty to write about. Anything which bugs you will give you the seed of an article.

Let’s say that currently you’re working in an office, and you’re buying a house.

OK, what bugs you about work? Make a list. Make another list of everything you find frustrating about your search for a home. Each and every item on your list is the seed of an idea. Each seed can sprout into an article, or many articles — a seed may even sprout into a book.

The old dictum “write what you know” is a great help when you don’t know what to write. All writers mine their experiences. Normal people complain about their misfortunes, writers know that they can write about them. No matter what disaster strikes you, a tiny portion of your mind will be wondering how you can use this in your writing.

Everything in your life is grist for your writing mill, so start writing. 🙂

In the comments, share how you choose what to write.

Introducing — Angela Booth’s Lazy Rich Blogger method

After several years of trial and error, these days I create blogs which I know will make money: I’ve cracked the code. Not only do my blogs make money almost immediately, they’ll also keep on making money for years to come.

If you wish, you can join me on the blogging journey. I hope you do. As the Internet grows ever larger, there are endless opportunities which can turn you into a lazy, rich blogger.

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Angela Booth is a copywriter, author published by major publishers, and writing teacher. She offers many guides, courses and classes to help writers to enhance their skills at her online store. She also provides inspiration and motivation for writers on her writing blogs. Angela has been writing successfully since the late 1970s, and was online in the 1980s, long before the birth of the Web. Her novels and business books have been widely published.
  1. Angela,

    I have written many different things on the net. I’ve done this off and on since MS put me in a wheel chair. I really love putting words on paper and I’ve found that maniy people want to read what I have to say. You are helping me find how to make money with words and I love you for it. Please keep writing and I’ll keep reading and writing myself.

    Thank you,

  2. Thanks Angela for the encouraging words. I’m a blogger for a year now. I am not yet earning money since I am not yet totally focused with making money. It is the experience of being a writer that I love. And writing daily hones my skill. I believe it would be of help should I decide one day to become a writer full-time.

  3. Dear Angela,
    thanks for your inspiring and really useful articles! Every word of yours reaches my heart and makes me keep forward.
    I discovered your site not that long ago, not earning money in web yet as I think I am not ready as English is not my native language. So for now I am just trying to struggle with words and grammar:) But I believe it comes with experience.
    Thank you!