10 Ways to Make a Dull Topic Sizzle

Dull Topic

©iStock.com/Dimitrii Kotin

As a freelance writer, you can write about whatever you want to–right?

Well, not if you want to earn a living as a writer. The idea that freelance writers only need to write about interesting topics is mostly a myth.

If you’re a professional writer, you’ll have to write about topics your clients choose. Unless your interests are the exactly the same as what your clients need, you’ll get some dull assignments.

I should know. I’ve covered dull topics myself. Normally, I wouldn’t wade through pages of statistics, read about income taxes, or contracts. But I’ve done it for clients. And I’ve made those dull topics (and others) seem interesting.

There are ways to make a dull topic sizzle. Relax. It’s not as hard as it seems. In this post I share ten techniques to make your posts more interesting.

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Oversharing: Your Blog Is Not Your Diary

secret diary


Like many teens, I had a secret diary for a while. In it, I wrote my feelings about daily occurrences. I especially wrote how I felt about those around me.

My diary was secret for a good reason. I would have been humiliated had anyone ever found and read it.

Most of what I wrote in there was just a reaction anyway. I wrote it and forgot it.

Sadly, some writers treat their blogs and social media accounts like personal diaries. In this post, I explain why I think this is a bad idea. I’ll look at some instances where it’s okay to get personal, and some where it’s not.

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App Review: Hemingway Editor

Hemingway review

©Laura Spencer

What do you think? Can a software tool improve your writing?

The debate’s been raging for years. Some say that only a human editor can understand the nuances of text draft.

That hasn’t stopped software developers from trying to create that perfect software editing tool. The latest entry into the software editing arena is the Hemingway Editor app.

Named after the author famous for his short, concise sentences–the app’s goal is to help you improve your writing. More on how the app goes about that later…

In this post, I share my thoughts on the latest version of the Hemingway Editor app. I discuss how the new version differs from the old version. I explain what I like about each version. And I explore where I’d like to see this app go in the future.

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Your Number One Asset…and How to Protect It



As a freelance writer or small business owner, do you know what your most important asset is?

If you think it’s your website, a piece of equipment, or a product that you sell–you’re wrong.

For all small business owners, your most important asset is your health. Here’s why. If don’t feel well enough to work, your business suffers. If you get sick too often, your business could even go under.

In this post, which wraps up the series I began with How to Get More Done and Earn More $$, I’ll talk about some simple steps you can take to protect your health.

Note: I am not a doctor or a medical professional. If you don’t feel well, check with a medical professional for advice on your specific situation.

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How to Quickly Stop These 5 Common Distractions Before They Stop You



One of the biggest productivity drains that most freelance writers and other small business owners complain about is distractions.

All day, every day, we are surrounded by circumstances that distract us from the work we are trying get done.

Luckily, there are ways to keep distractions to a minimum.

Handling distractions is a key part of becoming more productive. In this post, I explain how you can quickly and effectively handle five of the most common distractions freelance writers and other work-at-home professionals face.

This post is part of my series on How to Get More Done and Earn More $$.

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To Earn More, Learn More



Should freelance writers take classes? You bet they should.

For the past few weeks we’ve been learning about how to get more done and earn more money.

Keeping your skills current is a big part of that process.

I understand why many freelancers hesitate to invest in training classes. After all, classes usually cost money and take time. Plus, you can learn what you need to know “on the job,” right?

In this post, I list three reasons why learning new things is important for freelancers.

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Special Offer: Free Udemy Writing Course for 50 Readers

Udemy Writing Class
Today, I have something special for you.

Whether you are just starting your freelance writing career or trying to brush up on your writing skills, taking a writing course might just provide the career boost you need.

I’ll write more about the importance of training in a few weeks. But for now…

Our friends at Udemy have offered a free business writing course, Writing With Flair: How To Become An Exceptional Writer to the first 50 readers who redeem this offer. (This course is normally valued at $299.00.)

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You’re Not Alone: Getting the Work Help You Need


©Laura Spencer

Freelance writers and other small business owners tend to work alone.

It’s a stereotype, but I know plenty of writers who would rather work by themselves. You probably do too.

For many writing projects, working alone is no problem.

For smaller projects or projects with a comfortable deadline, it’s actually more efficient to work alone.

Some projects are better handled by teams, though. That’s where getting help to get more done comes in.

In this post I describe three different ways that freelance writers can get help. This is the fourth installment in my productivity series.
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Want to Be More Productive? Clean Your Mess!

Productivity Organization


No matter who you are, you only have twenty-four hours in a day.

Since we all sleep and eat, to say nothing of needing downtime, the hours we can spend on work are far fewer.

Whether you plan on an eight workday, or something more or less, every hour counts if you want to maximize your productivity. Losing a few minutes here and there can add up.

What’s one of the biggest setbacks to productivity for many of us?

Surprisingly, it’s organization.

Each time you stop to look for something you can’t find, you’re not being productive. And if you’re in right in the middle of a project you may momentarily forget what you were doing, putting you even further behind.

In this post I identify two types of organizational problems that plague writers and other small business owners. I also explain how to overcome each type of disorganization.

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4 Crucial Tips to Help You Plan to Be Productive



What will you do tomorrow? If you have no idea, you’re probably not a planner by nature.

Unfortunately, good planning is an important part of being productive. Fortunately, you can change your habits and use planning techniques even if you don’t normally plan.

In this post I share four critical tips that will help you to get more done.

You can use these tips for writing tasks, general tasks related to running your business, or just about anything you need to do. At the end of the post I also include some calendar tools that can help you plan your writing.

This is the second post in my series on productivity. The first post in the series is How to Get More Done and Earn More $$.

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