Finding a writing topic can be difficult. Every writer knows he or she must write about topics people want to read. How do you know what readers are looking for? The simple answer is to read what other writers are writing about!
Most web writers use most searched topics, like Yahoo Buzz or Google Trends, to find out what Internet readers are searching to discover a writing topic. However, you can also pick up your local newspaper, or a magazine, to discover a variety of topic ideas. Read various articles and see what sparks your interest. You may find an article within an article, or even an ad.
Discovering a hot writing topic on the Internet is easy. Most search engines have a most searched page. According to Nielsen NetRatings, Google, Yahoo, and bing are the most widely used search engines. You can check out the top two search engine items atGoogle Hot Trends and Yahoo Buzz.
Bing, formerly known as MSN Search or Windows Live Search, does not yet have a top searched page. However, there is a list of top bing searches in 2009. Perhaps, they will do the same for future years? I imagine, as the site grows, they will offer a top searched area like Google and Yahoo. If all else fails, you can view the MSN home page for the top articles of the day.
While you read various articles, in print or on the Internet, think about this: journalists focus their articles on answering a few simple expository questions: Who? What? Where? When? Why? and How? These are the "five Ws". A good article will answer these questions without leaving the reader confused. However, an excellent article will pique a reader's attention, feed their knowledge, and possibly force them to search out more information.
Let's face it; no article can cover all the information available on a topic. Dissecting an article, utilizing the expository questions, may help you with topic discovery. While you read, ask yourself the questions, look at your answers, and build a topic from them. If you find a key point you can elaborate on, you should research the topic until you feel confident writing about it.
In the end, your own quest for knowledge will increase topic discovery for you. Key searches will expose a variety of top topics while focused reading may help you discover topics you might not have found otherwise.