How to Brainstorm

By Elina Mohan

The hero is faced with a huge—potentially insurmountable—challenge. A random event or object sparks their creativity, and suddenly they devise a brilliant solution to save the day.

Wouldn’t it be amazing if ideas struck us like this too? However, this is highly unrealistic.In order to write a creative piece, it is important to take some time off your schedule, maybe grab a cup of coffee, snuggle up, and put your brain to work.

However, just doing this does not guarantee that you’re going to come up with an idea. It can also quickly be a waste of time discussing random ideas. If you want to generate great ideas, the key is to brainstorm effectively.
Hence, in order to help aid you in the process, I’m going to be sharing some tips and tricks that have helped me get my thinking cap on and brainstorm.

Some rules to follow while brainstorming include:

  • No negative feedback
  • Focus on quantity over quality
  • Use others’ ideas as launchpads
  • Encourage big thinking

1. Find Word Associations

Try choosing a random noun and combine it with your brainstorming focus.

Association is a powerful way to get past typical thinking and to get out of a rut. We generally come up with ideas that are obvious at first, and associative brainstorming is a good way to artificially force yourself past that point instead of hours of work.

2. Use a prompt

A prompt can help you get your creative juices flowing and help you come up with your next brilliant idea

3. Word Banks
This kind of brainstorming technique works well for copywriters who want to find a variety of words that suit a specific project without repeating themselves. You can also use it to build a bank of words to keep on hand when writing your headlines.

4. Mind maps
Get you to make associations and connections you would never have dreamed up otherwise

5. Ask “What if”

By simply asking, “What if?”, you can turn everything on its head.

Many fiction writers advocate asking yourself “what if” not only when you’re stuck, but even when the writing is going well. Wondering what might happen if something changed, and using your brainstorming prowess to run with it, is a good way to get a different view on the project or problem.

About the Author

Elina Mohan is from New Delhi, India. She is currently in the 10th grade at the British School. She is very inquisitive and loves questioning ideas and learning new concepts. History, biology as well as economics, are some subjects she enjoys studying. She has previously helped teach children basic math and English and has worked with a blind school to instill soft skills in their students. Furthermore, she is a senior editor with Bright Side publications and runs her own online newsletter. In her free time, she loves playing basketball and has a flair for theatre.

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