One of the biggest problems I faced while writing was a lack of ideas. I just didn’t know what to write about. At that time, for me, “writing” meant fiction- novels or short stories. I hadn’t started reading any blogs then, so that was the only form of writing I was familiar with. I wanted to be like JK Rowling and Enid Blyton, and create worlds for readers like my favourite authors then had created for me. So while I knew that I wanted to write, I didn’t know what.
Then a friend gave me the link to his blog, and I became a regular reader. The links he’d posted on his blog led me to new blogs, and those blogs led me to more, and suddenly, a whole new world of writing opened up to me- a world where people wrote about their thoughts and ideas, their observations and everyday lives, as well as fiction. That’s when I realised that a lot of what I write can, and maybe should be about what I know, even if it is fiction. I cannot write a story about a girl living in Nigeria, or a poor child living in a slum, because I don’t know much about life in Nigeria or a slum. Anything that I might write about it will be improbable and maybe even implausible.
Not that this epiphany helped me suddenly overflow with ideas. Even after I deicded to write about myself and my thoughts and observations, even after I started my first blog, I had no idea what to write about. My blog lay untouched for days on end: I just didn’t know what to post about! Why would people want to read about my life and my thoughts? Then I decided to stop thinking about what people want to read, and just write. But I still didn’t have too many ideas.
In the past few weeks, however, this seems to have changed. Ideas are coming running at me, many times just before I sleep, so I keep a pad next to my bed and groggily jot down some words to help me remember the idea the next day. I’m seeing things to write about everywhere, from a trip to the mall to a conversation with a friend. And I really, really hope this lasts.