The life of a columnist

by Ariana Sadoughi. 0 Comments

I write my column monthly and at the end of each month, when I sit down to write my I think, and think, and think of what I should write about. (I probably spend more time coming up with a topic for my article then I spend writing it!)

You would think that for a writer, thinking up an idea is a piece of cake. Well, not really, if youre a writer who wants their readers to be entertained and be interested in their reading. I could easily think of a topic on the spot to write about ... like Silkworms throughout History. (I just came up with that one!) But who says thats interesting? Maybe some people would read this article, but many would skip right over it.

So I spend a lot of time coming up with things I would like to read an article about, then when I get a good idea I sit down at my laptop and think. I think of how to make this article fun to read, so its not one of those skip-right-over columns.

Sometimes I do a little bit of research on my topic, to see if I can get some creativity from another source. Another reason I may do some research would be that I dont want to embarrass myself by writing something that is incorrect. You should always be 100% positive that youre right about what youre saying.

Once I gather up my ideas and information, I open up Microsoft Word, and if I have done a good job with pre-writing, then the words flow out. I write my article in one sitting, and I want to keep writing, but then remember people arent looking to read a novel.

Other times, I write a few sentences and then get stuck. This is probably the worst part of writing writers block. (Check out my past article on writers block!) When I come across writers block, my personal solution is to step away from the computer and go do something else for a while. When I come back I will have a fresh mind and will be able to spit out new ideas.

Once my article is all written, about an hour and 500 words later, I again step away from my computer. I leave my article untouched for about a day, and then come back for editing. I find that editing is easiest when you havent seen your paper for a while ... then you see those silly mistakes.

Editing is not a fun part of writing in the least. When I edit, I tear my article apart, and it ends up being so different (but better) from the original copy. I look up so many synonyms, abuse the Spell Check button, and think sentences over and over.

Before sending off my article to the editor, I try to have one person look it usually my mom. The great thing about having someone else read your writing is that they can most importantly tell you if your writing makes sense. For instance, I could write a beautiful sentence (or so I thought) but my mom asks me what I meant when I wrote it. Its no good to write something that no one can comprehend!

Lastly, I send my article to the editor and wait to see it online. All my effort really pays off when someone tells me that they read my article and really enjoyed it.

And that is my favorite part of writing.

Ariana Sadoughi writes a monthly column for fredericknewspost.com.

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