As I sat staring at the screen trying to figure out what to write for my next post, it hit me: there are no areas left unexplored. There are no stones unturned. I scour more sites than I can keep track of in the hope something will spark. I rack my brain, attempting to come up with something truly unique. There are simply no ideas left for any of us to write about.
When was the last time you read something completely original? I’m not saying that any of us are stealing content or taking credit for others’ work. We read an article somewhere and then build our own content based off of the author’s thoughts. We gain ideas for posts fom things we’ve seen happen, via points people have made and even through events in our life. The problem is, though, that none of these are truly original.
Regurgitating a news story is still the original story, even when we put our own spin on it. Add what we think to the latest Apple or Microsoft news and it’s still Apple or Microsoft news. Ask our readers what they feel is right when a new lawsuit is filed somewhere, and we’re still talking about the lawsuit – just like a million other blogs and news sites out there.
Austin Kleon recently admitted that he steals like an artist. I came across his musings while doing a bit of research for what I’m attempting to bang out here. Boy is he ever spot-on! He stated that:
“Every new idea is just a mashup or a remix of previous ideas.”
Hallelujah! Someone agrees with me! It’s not only me who has come to the conclusion that our minds are truly an empty space when it comes to figuring out something new. We’ve been there and done that at least ten times already. When this hit me like a ton of bricks, I started to panic. Hello! I write for a living.
I admit it: when I realized there’s nothing new to say I wondered for a moment why it is we all bother – and yes, I got a little scared. That theorization flashed right through my head and out my left ear faster than Wicket wolfs down his treats. The answer is simple: we continue to do this because everyone thinks differently. My spin on a story could match what a hundred people are thinking about the issue at hand. However, that many more may completely disagree with me. Perhaps this group believes that TechCrunch or Mashable hit the nail on the head in their writeup. Heck, there are even those who are convinced that Scoble’s thought process is right on the money.
The difference of opinion is the beauty behind publishing in any medium – online blogs and news sites, print magazines and newspapers or the writing on a bathroom wall. Looking at a story from a different angle than others do is what allows us to stretch our minds and think of things in ways we may otherwise not have. It gives us the opportunity to grow and evolve as a person.
Even when based off of the same basic concept, no two stories are going to be identical. We push ourselves to give the facts while adding our own unique flair to the blurb. We take pride in ourselves when we push out something that is just different enough from what others have written – and that’s what we should be doing! Agree or disagree with how we see things all you want – but take the time to truly listen to what a writer is trying to say when they are discussing the “same old same old” instead of rolling your eyes and going off to search for something “new.”
You may just find yourself learning something new.