How to produce/create original content? As an armature blogger, like millions others, I must know the answer to this burning question.
In my recent conversation with someone very close and frank to me, I got an honest feedback that my last few articles weren’t so charismatic as she had expected. I can’t blame her. I was so indulged in urge to write something – absolutely anything to start with. I partially (or fully?) failed to justify the topic. But what else could I have possibly written?
I have picked information from forwarded emails, anonymous quotes, newspapers and books to write inspired articles, in the past. Many of them were gladly received, read and commented on. But did I really deserve that? At least I wasn’t satisfied. And when I managed to break out of the shell, it had a direct and tougher competition with my own writing of the past.
In fact, it didn’t exactly start there. A few more days earlier, on our way back from work we happened to discuss how tough it must be for the music composers to come up with new-harmonic-catchy tunes every time. And so for the lyricists, to write something new, acceptable and still commercial. Advertisers, to come up with conditionally creativity that can sell.
Thinking in the same line, there are a billion blogs out there in the wild today. (Considering 200 Million, that someone counted in 2005.) Not that they’re in competition with one another, but it’s an obvious wish/attempt to write something better than others. Newer material. Something that has never been written before. Something Original.
Talking of myself, it’s never easy for me to part from this attitude of picking ‘trending’ topics and writing-patterns that ‘work’. I refer ten websites to confirm what I’m writing is correct/valid, and most usually, my freedom of omni-directional thoughts is killed brutally. Unfortunately, it’s usually goes unnoticed. If I were allowed to generalize, we as Indians are basically more used to references – proven, successful models. Our work-culture, television, music and reality shows, usually are influenced. (I just can’t overlook the fact how my favourite Sarabhai vs. Sarabhai is inspired from Everybody Loves Raymond.) We’re fine and welcoming to Indian counterparts of American shows (American Idol, Millionaire, etc). It’s not a crime, agreed. But is it really so tough to come up with something original? On the same time, is it really wrong/bad not being original?
Coming to blogging, writing original/fresh/new content or an original topic has always been challenging. One reason being, we (I?) often link originality to exclusivity which in turn leads to copyrights, and other repulsive words like that. And just then I realized the ‘secret’!
The ‘trick’ lies in the ‘individuality’. Originality is Individuality.
While they can be influenced/inspired by other content, the individuality remains. It’s the individual view/opinion/thought that’s unseen, unheard before. If I decide to write about Blackberry (the gadget), the key is my opinion - that combined with Blackberry makes an original-unique combination.
Originality is all about the beauty of uniqueness, that it’s constant in itself. The blogs, topics and readers may be finite. But when it comes to combining them with individuality opinions, things go beyond counting and computing. Probably that’s the business model ‘Information’ or ‘Content’ industry runs on. I wonder if Mashable.com ever discusses/writes about any of their inventions. And still over two million ‘followers’ look forward to their twits – for something ‘new’. Original?
Evidently, I didn’t mean to convey any message or prove a point with this article. I recently completed five years of blogging through rahuldesai.com and little over that, of blogging in general. I'm just attempting to grow. I meant to address a thought through this article and still remain original (if not amusing).
It remains an open forum and I’m looking forward to discuss/receive comments/inputs.
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