Russian Roulette Sunday: How To Write A 7 Reasons Post
Since the inception of 7 Reasons, we have – as often as possible – given our Saturdays over to one of you. It helps mix it up and I am sure it’s always good to have a different tone of voice to enjoy your breakfast with. However, the feedback we always get from our guest writers is, ‘it was really hard to think of 7 reasons’. The answer we usually get from people we approach to write for us is, ‘no, I won’t be able to think of 7 reasons for anything’. Well by way of an education, this is my attempt at showing you how it can be done.
1. Everything is a possible subject. Wherever you are, look around you. (Though come back to the screen in 10 seconds because I still require your attention). Whatever you can see could be a subject. A vase. A chair. A window. A packet of chocolate digestives. Just pick one.
2. Question Time. Ask yourself questions about your chosen subject. Let’s say it’s a vase. (I haven’t thought about this before. I am writing it as I go. If it goes horribly wrong I’ll rewrite using biscuits, but that won’t happen because I have faith in my ability to write about vases). a) What would I do to that vase to make it better? b) Why is it made out of glass? c) What else could it be used for?
3. Answer your questions. a) Make it bigger. Make it stronger. Paint it a different colour. b) Because cardboard would get damp. Because that’s what glassmakers make things out of. c) Holding pencils. Carrying water. Carrying petrol. Knocking a robber over the head.
4. Analysis. Which answers do you like better? Which do you feel you could write most confidentally about? Which answers did you enjoy writing more. For me, it was probably the answer to ‘c)’.
5. Conclusion. Work out what you’ve written. In this instance I have written down four uses for a vase. Well I can’t do, 7 Uses For a Vase, the poxy website is called 7 Reasons. How am I going to get reasons in there? Play around with it. Make different words the subject of your title. 7 Reasons To Use A Vase. 7 Reasons A Vase Is Useful. 7 Reasons To Own A Vase. And there it is. 7 Reasons To Own A Vase.
6. Expand. You already have four reasons for this. Okay so carrying water and carrying petrol are very similar so maybe that’s one reason. You need four more. What’s the obvious reason? To put flowers in. At this point you’re probably thinking that’s not funny. That’s because it’s not. So twist it. What would happen if you didn’t have a vase and someone bought you flowers? Where would you put them? In the plug hole? Probably not. That’ll be a nuisance when doing the dishes. In a glass? A cocktail umbrella is probably better. That’s four reasons. What else could you use it as? Again look around. It’s sunny. You could use it to magnify the suns rays and make a small fire. That chair, the leg is a bit wobbly. Put the shorter leg in the vase. Look at the vase. The shape of it. It makes your face look a funny shape. A bit like those funny mirrors at fairgrounds. What a great way to keep the children entertained. And for free! I don’t have children? So what? We don’t mind lies. This isn’t the Chilcott enquiry.
7. Shape It. Suddenly you have your 7 reasons. Write them out. Keep them short(ish). Decide an order. The more obvious reasons first, the wild ones later. Above all though, be you and be your writing style. Then send it to us. Done.
And that is all there is to it. You want a go now don’t you? Good. We’ll look forward to reading it. (Oh, and if you want to use us to plug your business/blog/twitter account, well Jon is quite happy to take payment, write your reasons and put your name on it. Just don’t tell Marc).