On the treadmill at the gym one morning, I listened to an episode from a new podcast I’ve discovered called Armchair Expert, hosted by Dax Shepard (who’s married to actress Kristen Bell).
This podcast featured Wendy Mogel, an author and child psychologist I’d never heard of before.
I found Wendy’s insights fascinating, especially because I have young kids and I know that one day they will be on their own (scary!)
The point that really stuck with me was this:
So if you don’t let children deal with pain, rejection, loss while they are growing up, they won’t develop mechanisms to deal with these feelings when they eventually go on their own to experience life. And when they do leave the nest and realize that they are not the center of the universe, they are more likely to turn to opiates and other drugs, depending on how they want to feel at that moment (!), namely ‘up’ or ‘down.’
LET YOUR KIDS EXPERIENCE HEARTACHE, LONGING, AND DISAPPOINTMENT.
This whole idea makes me want to systematically break one of my kids’ favorite toys each week to train them. Thanks Wendy. (Just kidding. Well, I may start throwing away Lego pieces. One a day. OK fine, just the ones I step on; the ones that really really hurt).
Another point Wendy made was that we need to develop the courage to be in uncomfortable situations – Something that inevitable happens when we travel and put ourselves in social situations.
Life is dread, dread, dread, joy. Repeat.
I liked it. A dose of the truth about life. Stuff that we all experience to some degree, which means that we are not alone.
Here is a link to Wendy's website: http://wendymogel.com/ and here are links to some of Wendy’s books.
Have a listen and let me know what you think :)
1) Sit down and think back to some of your fondest memories from your childhood. You could probably write a lot about each one.
First things first: Before you start writing about something, you need to consider these questions:
a) Who will care about this topic?
b) Why will they care about it?
You must remember that the things you know about could provide value to others who might not be familiar with the topic.
2) Another nonfiction article topic you can write about are your hobbies
Are you obsessed with football? Mountain biking? Calisthenics? Hollywood actors? Makeup?
Your deep knowledge on these or any other subject, if written in an interesting way, is sure to interest others.
3) Make Use of Your Education and/or Work Experience
Your unique experiences at work school can be a great source for your writing. Readers relate to this sharing of experience.
For example, if your hobby all through school and beyond is learning about and building websites, then you have plenty of interesting things to write about.
Sample article titles:
9 Top Tips on Building Your Own Website [for free]
How to Choose the Best Platform for Your New Website
A Beginner’s Guide to Website Building
4) Use the Experience of Others
You don’t always need to draw on your own experience to create original content.
If your family business is a coffee shop, then details about this business, put into a nonfiction article, are what many people would likely want to learn about.
Sample article titles:
The Price of Coffee in the Last 10 Years
7 Best New Ways to Enjoy Coffee
Where to Find the Freshest Coffee Beans in the City
5) Decide: Part time or full time?
Pros of being a freelancer
You have flexibility with your schedule.
You have to learn to:
- juggle deadlines
- hussle to get paid
- spend time nurturing relationships
Pros of belonging to an organization
- you are up to date on what’s new
- you get a regular paycheck
- you receive benefits
Decide: Specialize or write about anything?
Pros of specialising:
- easier to think of ideas to write about
- know where to go to get research info
- know what main issues of topic are
- know what to watch out / listen for in newsfeeds
- it may take a while for you to become known as a specialist.
Pros of NOT specialising
- you continue to learn about new things
- you can pick a topic that pays more than others
- you can write about trends (that interest you) as they appear
- you may be writing about topics and issues you have no interest in
In the end, whatever you choose to write about in your nonfiction article, make sure to put the time into crafting an article that is both interesting and well written.
Good luck! :)
Source: Writing Articles About the World Around You, Marcia Yudkin
I love reading - ALL kinds of books, especially narrative nonfiction, health and fitness and a good thriller here and there. I live in Athens, Greece and have clients for whom I edit texts all around the world. Which makes me a digital nomad. Love it.