Grissom's Grammar and Composition

This blog is for any student writing papers for college, for current and former students in my Communications Cluster at Lindenwood University, and my students at St. Charles Community College.

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I write for myself, for the web, and for everyone who gets me. I've been on a fasting liquid diet, traveled to Europe, and raised 2 kids. And I'm directionally challenged - I get lost a lot.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Four Questions That Help You Find a Topic

Sometimes students are so anxious to start a writing assignment, they don’t take the time to choose a subject that works best for them. It may take a few more minutes to come up with a topic you like, but that time will be more than made up in how much easier it is to write about something you like. It is much harder to write on subjects you aren’t interested in.

What are You an Expert On?
If you wait tables at a restaurant, you are an expert in those skills. Maybe you can classify the customers you wait on according to their personalities, or explain the steps the restaurant uses to fill orders quickly. What subjects do you have up close and personal knowledge of that you can share in various papers.

What Are You Passionate About?
Make a list of all the subjects you love to think, read, and talk about. Music, comic books, reality television, animals – whatever you love to do. Topics you care about are easier to write about and sharing what makes it entertaining to you makes the writing interesting to us.

What are Your Pet Peeves?
The things that annoy you in your world can be opportunities to explore the issues and come up with real solutions to make your world better. Is your local animal shelter running out of money? Persuade us why we should donate to them.

Who are You?
Among other things, I am a wife, mother, sister, granddaughter, employee, teacher, Star Trek fan, writer, reader, American, driver, sleeper, dieter, and volunteer. Focusing on what I know about any of these areas gives me several potential topics to write about. As a Star Trek fan I could do a comparison contrast of the old generation’s Captain Kirk to the new generation’s Captain Picard. Figure out all the labels that apply to you and investigate issues connected you can write about.