Suppose I want to improve my blog. To kick off my thinking -- and before I get creative -- it's a good idea to list as much information as I can about blogs and blogging. My aim is to make a list of 100 facts about blogs and blogging. Here's a way to quickly list such information.
I'll start out with a title: blogs.
I need to start listing information and I can do this by using the letters within the title word - blogs - to create words. Using the "b" and the "l" I list a couple of one-syllable words that start with those letters. Say, be and like. So the first item on my list reads:
1) Be like...
All I do now is complete a sentence about blogs that starts with those words:
1) Be like...a kind of journal you write online.
Now I've started out it gets easier; I can pick one of the words from that sentence and use it as the start of my next item on the list. I choose "Online":
and I can then use that word as a trigger for more information:
2) Online...blogs are very popular.
Then I continue the process, selecting a word from each sentence and using it to help me list more information. (I've highlighted the chosen word in blue.)
3) Very...many blogs are listed on Technorati.
4) Technorati... tells you the latest about what's being talked about in the blogging world.
5) Blogging...can be addictive.
6) Can blogs replace books?
7) Books have been written based on blogs.
8) On a blog, you can talk about any subject you want.
9) You can blog twenty-four hours a day.
10) Hours can fly past when you're blogging.
11) Hours can be spent reading blogs.
12) Reading blogs is easier if the layout is nice and the font easy to read.
13) Fonts can be difficult to choose.
14) To start blogging requires a site like Blogger.com
15) Like a blog and you'll visit again.
As you can see, this is quite a nifty way to list information. It's important to write down the information (not just do it in your head) and set a quota of 100 items -- to take you beyond the obvious. To sum up, there are two ways to use information to trigger further items:
1: Use the letters from a previous word to list words, then use those words to trigger the listing of information.
2: Select a word from a previous item and use that as the first word in a sentence that triggers the listing of more information.
These are the first two techniques that I'm adding to my brainstorming template that will be specifically used for the listing of information.
Example: 100 List, "Information about blogging"