Should You Go Back to School? 7 Things to Consider

Student with kid finding ways to go back to school

Should I go back to school?

Financial benefits: A higher education level is correlated with higher incomes. In the first quarter of 2022, those with a bachelor’s degree or higher earned 800,525 in median weekly full-time wages and salary, compared with $827 per week for high school graduates [1]. Graduate degrees can stretch that number even further. Here’s a breakdown of median weekly earnings by education level:

Achieving your personal goals: If you’ve always wanted to get a higher degree, or finish one you started in the past, going back to school can be a source of personal satisfaction. Furthering your education can also help you discover new passions, grow more independence, and meet new types of people. Whatever the reason, be sure to think through your decision to ensure you’ll be making the best choice for yourself.

What are the downsides?

Attaining a degree can be costly. That said, there are several signs that point to long-term financial benefits if you complete a degree. Make sure you minimize your costs where you can, and pick programs that align with your personal and career goals. If you’re looking for a quick career change, other options—like professional certificates or bootcamps—can be worth considering.

Going Back to School: 7 Things to Consider

Choosing to return to school to finish a bachelor’s degree or pursue a graduate degree can feel like a big decision. As you consider whether going back to school is the right move for you, ask yourself these seven questions:

1. Will this help me in my career or help me switch careers?

Going back to get your master’s degree or bachelor’s degree can connect to higher earnings over your lifetime, or be the first step in switching careers. If you’re going back to school for career impact, you’ll want to make sure your field of study is relevant to the work you want to do.

2. How will this impact my finances?

While the financial benefits of getting a degree have been well-recorded, school can still be expensive. Having a plan to pay for your education can save you headaches down the road.

The price of higher education can vary depending on several factors. Is the school private or public, in-state or out-of-state, online or in-person? How much financial aid can you expect to receive? There’s evidence that public, in-state, and online schools are cheaper than their counterparts.

Don’t put off applying for financial aid. There are several scholarships specifically for returning adults. Plus, you can apply for federal aid for both undergraduate and graduate programs—get started by completing your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) [3].

3. Do other options make more sense to me?

Some careers don’t have specific degree requirements. Other options like professional certificates and online courses can equip you with the skills needed to switch careers or satisfy your curiosity.

Professional certificates: Professional certificates are credentials that can open doors to careers that don’t call for specific degrees, and often don’t require any previous related experience. Some will prepare you for in-demand jobs by teaching you new skills, like data analysis or IT support.

Online courses: Online courses can introduce you to new subjects or offer targeted instruction in a skill area you want to improve. Trying to become a web developer? Try a course on HTML, CSS, and Javascript, or Python. Or try a free course in psychology or statistics. Online courses are plentiful, and chances are high that you can find one on a subject you’re interested in. They can also be a good way to make sure you like a subject before you commit to a full degree.

Bootcamps: Bootcamps are short, intensive programs designed to quickly get you specific skills, typically in a few weeks or months. Though perhaps associated with coding classes, bootcamps exist for a variety of other fields, like UI/UX design, data science, and graphic design. If you already have a degree but are trying to switch to a new field or want to enter a field that doesn’t require a degree, they can be quicker and often cheaper than getting a degree.

4. What should I go back to school for?

What you choose to study can depend on the reasons you’re going back to school. If you’re going back for a career change, it can be a good idea to find what job areas are growing in your desired career area. This may help you land in a field where jobs are more readily available and your skills are in demand. If you’re going back to school to fulfill your personal goals or learn something new, this aspect may not be as high a priority.

Not ready to commit to one field yet?

Though it’s a good idea to have a sense of what you want to study, colleges should have opportunities for you to take elective or general education classes that can expose you to different fields. In grad school, the opportunities for electives may narrow—it’ll be hard to take an English class in an international relations program, for example—but you may get the chance to explore different specializations.

5. Do I want to go online or in person?

Online and in-person schooling both have their merits. Online degrees can afford more flexibility, and allow you to access schools and professors that are geographically far, often at a lower cost than in-person equivalents. You likely won’t have to worry about relocating, and have more flexibility to stay in your job or take care of family.

6. Full-time or part-time?

7. How should I pick a school?

An online school should be accredited by a regional or national organization to guarantee a baseline of quality. Some online programs have entirely pre-recorded lectures (called “asynchronous” classes), while others feature live sessions; some courses are taught by university faculty while others are taught by teachers hired by the school specifically for online courses. Programs may offer hands-on projects or robust alumni networks. Think about what you want out of your online degree and see if the programs you’re interested in stack up.

Cost of a bachelor’s degree program

The cost of a bachelor’s degree depends on several factors, like whether the program is part of a public or private institution, in-state or out-of-state, online or in-person, and whether or not you get financial aid. Keep in mind tuition is separate from other living expenses, like housing and transportation.

Private vs. public: The College Board found that one year of college, on average, costs $10,740 at public four-year institutions for in-state students and $27,560 for out-of-state students. Private nonprofit institutions cost $38,070 [4]. However, private colleges may have more institutional resources to give out as financial aid.

In-state vs. out-of-state tuition: Public schools may have lower tuition if you’re an in-state resident. In the US, average annual in-state tuition amounted to $9,037, and out-of-state tuition was $25,657 in the 2017-18 school year, says the NCES [5].

Online vs. in-person: The average public online bachelor’s program tuition costs $38,496 for in-state students and $60,593 at private ones, according to US News—that’s total, not per year [6]. Online degrees eliminate relocation and transportation costs and offer enough flexibility for people who want to work full- or part-time.

How Much Do Teachers Make

Taking Your Education Career a Degree Further

After earning your bachelor’s degree and state teacher certifications, you may decide to go on to earn a master’s degree in education. If you’ve been teaching for a few years, a master’s degree in education administration could prepare you for the role of Principal or Vice Principal, or a master’s degree in special education can prepare you to offer specialized support to students if you’re looking for another way to make a difference in your school community, you might decide to pursue a master’s degree in school counseling.

Master’s degrees are generally at least 30 credits and can be taken online or in a traditional classroom setting. The number of classes you take at one time can determine the amount of time it takes you to complete your master’s degree.

No matter what degree you seek, as a teacher, you’re destined to be a lifelong learner. With every new subject or lesson you teach, your perspective will change and grow. Throughout your teaching career, there are going to be new strategies to try, new regulations to implement, and new research on how to better reach students. Communicating with fellow teachers, collaborating on lessons, and checking in with students will help you become the teacher you aspire to be.

Source:

https://www.coursera.org/articles/going-back-to-school-7-things-to-consider
https://www.coursera.org/articles/what-is-a-bachelors-degree
https://www.gmercyu.edu/academics/learn/how-to-become-a-teacher

120 Famous Quotes of All Time: a Boost of Motivation

Larry Page - Business Quotes

Inspirational Quotes To Keep You Motivated For Life Success

Inspirational quotes can help motivate us and helps to create a positive outlook on life and work when we need it most. They do so by harnessing the power of positive thinking . Reframing our brains to think positively is a key step in leading a happy and successful life.

You make a choice when you decide how you will react to any given situation. If you’re choosing (sometimes subconsciously) to complain and think negatively, your natural reaction will be to dwell on the negatives of every situation.

When you actively choose to think positively, however, you turn the situation into a development plan for growth, helping you become a better problem-solver and leader. Over time and after reframing your mind to think positively about problems, you’ll feel motivated, inspired, and empowered to take on any challenge that comes your way!

While reading through this list, I recommend writing down some of the inspirational quotes to keep you motivated that resonate with you and your current situation. After writing them down, read them out loud, and really try to understand their meaning.

Table of Contents

The American philosopher and psychologist William James was the first educator to offer a psychology course in the United States. He knew it was the beginning of a difficult task that ultimately led to a successful outcome.

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Short Quotes

American entrepreneur, author, and motivational speaker Jim Rohn decided to follow a different path in life after attending a lecture given by entrepreneur John Earl Shoaff. Within just six years, Rohn earned his first fortune.

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Quotes About Life

how to stay motivated during tough times guide book

37. “You are the sum total of everything you’ve ever seen, heard, eaten, smelled, been told, forgot ― it’s all there. Everything influences each of us, and because of that I try to make sure that my experiences are positive.” ― Maya Angelou

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Quotes for Work

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Motivational Quotes

Motivational quotes are meant to inspire action. These quotes have the potential to encourage you to become the best version of yourself. Read them when you need a push to work towards your goals. These quotes are here to help motivate you to reach your peak performance.

Whether you’re looking for the motivation and inspiration to write your first book , become a better speaker , or simply start a new project, these motivational quotes can provide the support you need to get started. And just getting started is the key, remember the 80/20 rule and go after the things that will produce the most results first. And always remember, your motivation, determination, and hard work will lead to your success in work and in life.

Change

Change can be tricky, even if it was a change you thought you wanted at the time. Whether you’re changing careers, moving house, dealing with kids, struggling with grief, or starting a new relationship, these motivational quotes for life will help you deal with all of life’s twists and changes.

As Benjamin Franklin once said, “failing to prepare is preparing to fail.” Without clearly defined goals to work towards, we’re all just drifting in the ocean. If you need some more incentives to set and achieve everything you’ve ever dreamed of, here are some of the best inspirational quotes to help kick start your goal-achievements and best life ever.

46. “First, have a definite, clear, practical ideal; a goal, an objective. Second, have the necessary means to achieve your ends; wisdom, money, materials, and methods. Third, adjust all your means to that end” – Aristotle

Motivation

Whether you’re dealing with failure or seemingly endless challenges are getting a bit much, we all need some extra motivation from time to time. These famous motivational quotes will help keep you on track and inspired, even when things feel impossible.

It can be tricky to find your “purpose.” Your reason for being. But even if you’ve not found it yet, don’t be disheartened! Many incredibly successful and famous people didn’t find their calling until later in life.

Remember, Stan Lee didn’t publish his first comic book until he was 38, Alan Rickman ‘made it’ when he was 42, Bob Ross was 41 before he became ‘everyone’s favorite painting teacher, Morgan Freeman was 50 years old before he landed his first big break, and JK Rowling was 32 when she put pen to paper and wrote the best-selling book series in history. The moral of these stories? “It’s never too late to be what you might have been.”

Quotes About Overcoming Failure

There will be days when things don’t go as planned. You may feel defeated and let down. But that’s a part of life. It’s about how you deal with the failures in life that makes you who you are. Here’s a list of our favorite quotes about overcoming failure, that will motivate you to stay strong in the face of failure.

146. “It doesn’t matter how many times you fail. It doesn’t matter how many times you almost get it right. No one is going to know or care about your failures, and neither should you. All you have to do is learn from them and those around you because all that matters in business is that you get it right once. Then everyone can tell you how lucky you are.” — Mark Cuban, entrepreneur, owner of Landmark Theaters and Chairman of AXS TV

156. “Failure is so important. We speak about success all the time. It is the ability to resist failure or use failure that often leads to greater success. I’ve met people who don’t want to try for fear of failing.” – J.K. Rowling, British novelist

157. “I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. Twenty—six times I’ve been trusted to take the game—winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” – Michael Jordan, former professional basketball player

Funny Quotes to Cheer You Up

Movies have a certain memorable aspect about them. They have a unique way of teaching us lessons that stay in our memory. Whether it’s by making us smile, or by moving us to tears, movies have a magic about them. Here are some of the best inspirational quotes from movies.

169. ”Nobody is gonna hit as hard as life, but it ain’t how hard you can hit. It’s how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. It’s how much you can take, and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done.” – Rocky, Rocky Balboa

170. “Don’t ever let somebody tell you you can’t do something, not even me. Alright? You dream, you gotta protect it. People can’t do something themselves, they wanna tell you you can’t do it. If you want something, go get it. Period.” – Chris Gardner, The Pursuit of Happyness

184. “There should be no boundaries to human endeavor. We are all different. However bad life may seem, there is always something you can do, and succeed at. While there’s life, there is hope.” – Stephen Hawking, The Theory of Everything

186. “In this lifetime, you don’t have to prove nothing to nobody, except yourself. And after what you’ve gone through, if you haven’t done that by now, it ain’t gonna never happen.” – Fortune, Rudy

Source:

https://www.briantracy.com/blog/personal-success/inspirational-quotes/
https://sixads.net/blog/famous-quotes/
https://www.oberlo.com/blog/best-inspirational-business-quotes

5 Strategies to be More Assertive (With Examples)

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What Is Assertiveness?

Assertiveness is a key skill that can help you to better manage yourself, people and situations. It can help you to influence others in order to gain acceptance, agreement or behavior change.

Assertiveness vs. Aggression

It’s not always easy to identify truly assertive behavior. This is because there’s a fine line between assertiveness and aggression, and people can often confuse the two. For this reason, it’s useful to define the two behaviors so that we can clearly separate them:

So, a boss who places a pile of work on your desk the afternoon before you go on vacation, and demands that it gets done straight away, is being aggressive. The work needs to be done but, by dumping it on you at an inappropriate time, they disregard your needs and feelings.

When you, on the other hand, inform your boss that the work will be done but only after you return from vacation, you hit the sweet spot between passivity (not being assertive enough) and aggression (being hostile, angry or rude). You assert your own rights while recognizing your boss’s need to get the job done.

The Benefits of Being Assertive

Being assertive allows you to communicate your wants and needs more authoritatively, while remaining fair and empathetic. It can also help you to become more self-confident, and even improve your mental health. [1]

  • Make great managers. They get things done by treating people with fairness and respect, and are treated by others the same way in return. This means that they are often well-liked and seen as leaders that people want to work with. [2]
  • Negotiate successful “win-win” solutions. They are able to recognize the value of their opponent’s position and can quickly find common ground with them.
  • Are better doers and problem solvers. They feel empowered to do whatever it takes to find the best solution to the problems that they encounter.
  • Are less anxious and stressed. They are self-assured and don’t feel threatened or victimized when things don’t go as planned or as expected. [3]
  • Have greater job satisfaction. They feel confident to say “yes” to the person and “no” to the task , and maintain boundaries.

How to be more assertive

1. Use the 3-part model of assertive communication

Every now and then, I am asked to teach a middle school social skills class. There, I usually use the 3-part model of assertive communication, because it’s the simplest, and I find that it works just as well with high schoolers and adults. The model looks like this:

For example, the assertive message to a noisy neighbor might look something like this: “Your music is very loud and it’s not letting me sleep. I have to be up early for work and this makes me frustrated.”

This may sound a little clunky and unnatural, but having a structure helps to make sure your message is clear and non-judgmental, especially if you’re just beginning to assert yourself.

2. Make the decision to be assertive

Assertiveness doesn’t just happen, especially if you’ve been aggressive or passive in your communication thus far. Assertiveness is an active and conscious choice that you have to make.

3. Practice active listening

The most important tool for this is active listening, which means paying conscious attention to what others are saying, asking questions and clarifications, and showing your interest with verbal and non-verbal signs (like nodding or eye contact)

4. Say “no”

Generally, however, the people who have the most trouble with being assertive are the same ones who have trouble saying “no”. It’s often easier to respond to others than it is to initiate communication. If you find yourself stuck in people-pleasing ways, the easiest way to become more assertive is to practice declining offers.

5. Pick your battles

For example, your carefully constructed assertive message will probably not work if the other person is very emotional. Or maybe the other person is under influence and not thinking clearly.

When your safety is at risk

There might be certain situations where your health and safety is at risk. This is especially applicable to people working in high-risk jobs, such as construction or transportation. If you identify a situation where your health and well-being might be at risk, you need to take a step back and evaluate the situation more carefully. Workplace accidents happen when people are reckless or in a hurry to get things done.

For example, if you’re a delivery truck driver and are asked to deliver goods during a severe snow-storm, you need to consider the request carefully before making a decision. If you’re being asked to deliver emergency supplies, you might be willing to risk an accident. But you should only accept a task like that if the danger is acceptable to you.

However, if it isn’t an emergency situation and you don’t want to take a chance, regardless of the pay, say no and stick to it. In such cases, you can politely and firmly state that you won’t jeopardise your well-being.

Resource:

https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/Assertiveness.htm
https://www.trackinghappiness.com/how-to-be-more-assertive/
https://www.zandax.com/blog/5-work-situations-where-its-necessary-to-be-assertive

100 Creative Writing Prompts for Writers

3. Misheard Lyrics. Think of some of the song lyrics you have misheard throughout the years. Pick your favorite, and use these misheard lyrics as the title of a new creative writing piece. Write a story, scene, or poem based on this title.

Вдохновляющие Истории, Рассказы

Because I am an improviser, I get my best writing done when I have some sort of suggestion to get me going. Just like using a suggestion from the audience can give improvisers the setup to begin a scene, a small kernel of an idea is all I need to nudge me in the direction of a productive first draft of a short piece of writing.

These ideas mostly come from a small notebook I carry around to jot down ideas whenever they come to me and would probably make no sense to anyone else if they read my notes—such as “that time I put a rubber chicken in my purse and brought it to school” or “letter to that annoying kid Byron in the line at Dollar Tree.” Or sometimes it’s an idea that I’ve been obsessing over recently.

One of my favorite things to do each week is to write the Tuesday writing prompts for WD, because I get to play the role of suggestion-giver for anyone who reads them. My hope is that my random ideas that make enough sense to share on the internet inspire WD readers the next time they are looking for something to get their creative juices flowing—whether that inspiration is for a new short story, the next plot thread in their novel, a comedy sketch, etc.

Thanks to all the WD readers who have voiced their love for these writing prompts in the comments and on Twitter, I’m encouraged to keep sharing new ideas here every week. Here are 100 suggestions to get you started on your next writing session.

40 Plot Twist Prompts for Writers: Writing Ideas for Bending Your Stories in New Directions, by Robert Lee Brewer

Have you hit a wall on your work-in-progress? Maybe you know where you want your characters to end up, but don’t know how to get them there. Or, the story feels a little stale but you still believe in it. Adding a plot twist might be just the solution.

Writing Prompts

“Are you going to arrange a meeting with her or what?” “Oh, I am. Somewhere with a TON of witnesses so you don”t kill each other.” | The Fake Redhead’s Writing Prompt Number 597 from TheFakeRedhead.com #Prompt #Writing #Dialogue #Inspiration #Read #Fiction #Starter #Conversation #Novel #Story #WritersCorner

“When you”re at the meeting, just don”t look directly at anyone. Or anything.” | The Fake Redhead’s Writing Prompt Number 596 from TheFakeRedhead.com #Prompt #Writing #Dialogue #Inspiration #Read #Fiction #Starter #Conversation #Novel #Story #WritersCorner

“Everyone thinks I”m really well put together, but I”ve only brushed my hair once this week.” | The Fake Redhead’s Writing Prompt Number 594 from TheFakeRedhead.com #Prompt #Writing #Dialogue #Inspiration #Read #Fiction #Starter #Conversation #Novel #Story #WritersCorner

“Running with the devil is just so much more fun.” | The Fake Redhead’s Writing Prompt Number 593 from TheFakeRedhead.com #Prompt #Writing #Dialogue #Inspiration #Read #Fiction #Starter #Conversation #Novel #Story #WritersCorner

Character bank Письменный Угол

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Любовь

You live in a city full of people with powers where everyone is ranked according to how powerful they are. Новые Книги

“It”s really inconvenient to see your face every time I turn a corner.” | The Fake Redhead’s Writing Prompt Number 592 from TheFakeRedhead.com #Prompt #Writing #Dialogue #Inspiration #Read #Fiction #Starter #Conversation #Novel #Story #WritersCorner

“What do you have against opera houses?” | The Fake Redhead’s Writing Prompt Number 591 from TheFakeRedhead.com #Prompt #Writing #Dialogue #Inspiration #Read #Fiction #Starter #Conversation #Novel #Story #WritersCorner

54 Other Writing Prompt Ideas

body_writinginnature

#24: Keep an eye out in your environment for examples of greengrocer”s apostrophes and rogue quotation marks. Pick an example and write about what the misplaced punctuation implies (e.g., we have the "best" meat or we have the best "meat").

#32: Sometimes, family is who we are related to; sometimes, family is a group of people we gather around ourselves. Write a story about (some of) a character’s found family and relatives meeting for the first time.

body_secretlivesofghosts

This particular ghost seems to be going on an epic quest to. photograph some ancient artifacts and not steal them? Look, fiction can be whatever you want it to be.

#38: Heists don’t just have to be black-clad thieves stealing into vaults to steal rare art or money. Write about a group of people (adults or children) who commit a heist for something of seemingly little monetary value.

#39: "Life is like a chooseable-path adventure, except you don’t get to see what would have happened if you chose differently." Think of a choice you’ve made and write about a world where you made a different choice.

How to Use Creative Writing Prompts

#1: DON’T Limit Yourself to Prose

Unless you’re writing for a particular assignment, there’s no reason everything you write in response to a writing prompt has to be prose fiction. Instead of writing your response to a prompt as a story, try writing a poem, nonfiction essay, play, screenplay, or some other format entirely.

You never know what combination of prompt and medium will spark your next great poem/story/play/nonfiction essay! Plus, taking a break from writing in the same format all the time might make you think about story structure or language in a different way.

#2: DON’T Edit as You Write

It’s OK to fix things that will make it difficult to read what you’ve written (e.g., a weird autocorrect that changes the meaning of a sentence), but don’t worry too much about typos or perfect grammar when you’re writing; those are easy enough to fix in edits. You also can always insert asterisks or a short note as you’re writing to remind yourself to go back to fix something (for instance, if as you’re writing it seems like you want to move around the order of your paragraphs or insert something earlier).

#3: DO Interpret the Prompt Broadly

The point of using a writing prompt is not to write something that best exemplifies the prompt, but something that sparks your own creativity. Again, unless you’re writing in response to an assignment with specific directions, feel free to interpret writing prompts as broadly or as narrowly as you want.

For instance, if your prompt is to write a story that begins with "The stage was set," you could write about anything from someone preparing to put a plan into motion to a literal theatre stage constructed out of pieces of old sets (or something else entirely).

#4: DO Try Switching Up Your Writing Methods

If it’s a possibility for you, see if you write differently in different media. Do you write the same kind of stories by hand as you would typing at a computer? What about if you dictate a story and then transcribe it? Or text it to a friend? Varying the method you use to write can affect the stories you’re able to tell.

For example, you may find that it’s easier for you to tell stories about your life to a voice recorder than to try to write out a personal essay. Or maybe you have trouble writing poetry, but can easily text yourself or a friend a poem. You might even find you like a writing method you’ve not tried before better than what you’ve been doing!

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#5: DO Mix and Match Prompt Ideas

You can also try switching genres from what might be suggested in the prompt. For instance, try writing a prompt that seems funny in a serious and sad way, or finding the humor in something that otherwise seems humorless. The categories we’ve organized the prompts into are by no means limiters on what you’re allowed to write about.

#6: DO Try to Write Regularly

For some people, this means writing daily; for others, it means setting aside time to write each weekend or each month. Set yourself an achievable goal (write 2x a week, write 1000 words a month) and stick to it. You can always start small and then ramp your wordcount or frequency up.

If you do better when you have something outside yourself prompting to write, you may also want to try something like morning pages, which encourages you to write at least 750 words every day, in any format (story, diary entry, social media postings, etc).

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Sources:

https://www.writersdigest.com/be-inspired/creative-writing-prompts-for-writers
https://www.pinterest.com/fakeredhead47/writing-prompts/
https://blog.prepscholar.com/creative-writing-prompts
Writing prompts

In “Can Motherhood Be a Mode of Rebellion?” an essay published in the New Yorker, Jia Tolentino writes about Essential Labor: Mothering as Social Change (Harper Wave, 2022) by Angela Garbes, a book analyzing the state of caregiving in America, and reflects on the experience of hiring a nanny for “a job so crucial and difficult that it seems objectively holy.” This week think of a job that is often unappreciated or unacknowledged and write a story from the perspective of a character who works this job. How can you render their perspective through detailed observations of the world around them?

Young child sits at a desk with a notebook and pencil, writing in the notebook.

Forty-Four Short Story Ideas

Here are lots of short story ideas that you can use as writing prompts. Use these story starters on their own or to get ideas for the CWN online writing courses. You’ll also find links to more creative writing prompts at the bottom of the page.

  1. A babysitter is snooping around her employer’s house and finds a disturbing photograph.
  2. At a Chinese restaurant, your character opens his fortune cookie and reads the following message: "Your life is in danger. Say nothing to anyone. You must leave the city immediately and never return. Repeat: say nothing.".
  3. Your character’s boss invites her and her husband to dinner. Your character wants to make a good impression, but her husband has a tendency to drink too much and say exactly what’s on his mind.
  4. It’s your character’s first day at a new school. He or she wants to get a fresh start, develop a new identity. But in his or her homeroom, your character encounters a kid he or she knows from summer camp.
  5. Your character has to tell his parents that he’s getting a divorce. He knows his parents will take his wife’s side, and he is right.
  6. At the airport, a stranger offers your character money to carry a mysterious package onto the plane. The stranger assures your character that it’s nothing illegal and points out that it has already been through the security check. Your character has serious doubts, but needs the money, and therefore agrees.
  7. Your character suspects her husband is having an affair and decides to spy on him. What she discovers is not what she was expecting.
  8. A man elbows your character in a crowd. After he is gone, she discovers her cell phone is too. She calls her own number, and the man answers. She explains that the cell phone has personal information on it and asks the man to send it back to her. He hangs up. Instead of going to the police, your character decides to take matters into her own hands.
  9. After your character loses his job, he is home during the day. That’s how he discovers that his teenage son has a small marijuana plantation behind the garage. Your character confronts his son, who, instead of acting repentant, explains to your character exactly how much money he is making from the marijuana and tries to persuade your character to join in the business.
  10. At a garage sale, your character buys an antique urn which she thinks will look nice decorating her bookcase. But when she gets home, she realizes there are someone’s ashes in it.

Self-Awareness

“We talk a lot about bodies: from their right to safety and respect to how they take up space, from their sizes and shapes and shades to what each is able to do, it’s a conversation that’s both constant and ever-evolving,” write editors Nicole Chung and Matt Ortile in the introduction to Body Language: Writers on Identity, Physicality, and Making Space for Ourselves, forthcoming in July from Catapult. In this wide-ranging collection of personal narratives, writers take on the subject of the body through various lenses; for instance, Natalie Lima documents the ways men fetishize her size and Melissa Hung reflects on how swimming eases her chronic headaches. Write a story in which your protagonist is made aware of their body. How does this new awareness affect the way they carry themselves in the world? Does their relationship to their own body change, and if so, does the language you use to describe your character change too?

A still life, according to Merriam-Webster, is “a picture consisting predominantly of inanimate objects,” but in Jay Hopler’s Still Life, published in June by McSweeney’s, the term takes on new meaning. Hopler, who was diagnosed with terminal prostate cancer in 2017, charges his poems with sharp observations of the body and lyrical ruminations that wander well beyond the traditional associations of a still life. In “still life w/ hands” he writes: “poor dumb lugs what loves you not the butterfly knife not the corkscrew. ” In “still life w/ wet gems” he writes from a more fractured perspective: “lightnings bang their jaggeds on the cloud-glower / the cloud-glower is a broken necklace spilling its wet gems / its wet gems w/ facets cut are uncountable / uncountable the reflections of the world in those gems.” Inspired by Hopler’s Still Life, write a still-life poem of your own. Will your poem consider inanimate objects or living things, actions, emotions? Use this exercise as an opportunity to challenge a familiar perspective and consider a new viewpoint.

High school writing prompts

Creative Writing Prompts for High Schoolers

  1. If you had a time machine, where would you visit first — the past or the future? Why?
  2. Write a story about someone your age who lives on the other side of the world.
  3. Pick up the nearest book and turn to page 7. Close your eyes and point to a random word on the page, then write a story about that word.
  4. Write a story in ten words or less.
  5. You fell asleep for 100 years. What does the world look like when you wake up?
  6. Finish the story: “This isn’t what I hoped would happen,” she said….
  7. You’re walking down the street when you see someone who looks exactly like you.
  8. Write a story where the main character learns something new about themselves.
  9. Write a story that takes place in the desert.
  10. Write a story about a day where everything seems to go wrong.
  11. Write a poem about the color blue.
  12. Write the funniest story you can think of.
  13. How would your life be different if you didn’t have access to a computer, video games or your phone?

Fun writing prompts for high schoolers

  1. You win a million dollars, but there’s a catch — you have to spend it all in 24 hours, or you lose all the money. What do you do?
  2. Write about something you or your family does from the perspective of someone from another country.
  3. If you could make up a new holiday, when would it be and what would it celebrate?
  4. Go out on a nature walk and find a tree. Write the story of that tree, from the time it was a seed until now.
  5. What’s the most boring superpower you can think of? How would it be useful?
  6. If you could pass any law, what would it be?
  7. You meet yourself in the future, as a grown-up at age 35 — what do you talk about?
  8. If you had to show aliens the most important/best things in the world, what would you show them?
  9. Who is your hero and why?
  10. Write about the best surprise you ever got.
  11. What are three good things you can do for the environment? How can you encourage the people around you to do good things for the environment?
  12. If you could write a book about anything, what would you write about?
  13. What is your earliest memory? Write down as many details as you can remember.
  14. If you could take two people – real or fictional – on a cross-country road trip, who would you take? Where would you go?
  15. If you could have any job in the world tomorrow, what would you do?
  16. What is the best thing about living in your city or neighbourhood?
  17. Write a letter to your 30-year-old self. What do you think you’ll accomplish by then?
  18. Teach me how to make your favorite recipe.
  19. Describe the sound of your favorite song using descriptive words.

Persuasive writing prompts for high school

Social emotional learning journal prompts

Two students sit outside against a brick wall, working in notebooks.

School is about more than just books and quizzes — it’s about preparing students for the rest of their lives. Social emotional learning teaches them how to build good relationships with peers, understand and control their emotions and make healthy life decisions.

  1. Tell me about a tradition you have with your family or friends.
  2. What’s the best gift you’ve ever received?
  3. Have you ever found something that you lost? How did you feel when you found it?
  4. What is something you haven’t learned this school year that you’re still wondering about?
  5. What do you do when you’re angry? Write about three ways you calm yourself down.
  6. Where do you feel the safest? Why do you feel safe there?
  7. Write a poem to make a friend happy.
  8. When was the last time you were kind to someone? How can you be kind to someone today?
  9. How are you feeling today? Are you happy, sad, excited or anxious?
  10. If you could give your best friend a present, what would it be?
  11. What are the qualities you look for in a friend? Why is it important to be a good friend?
  12. What does responsibility mean to you?
  13. Who do you talk to when you’re worried about something? How do they make you feel better?
  14. If you could make a card for anyone in your life, who would it be for and what would it say?
  15. What’s your favorite thing about yourself?
  16. Write about a time you had to make a hard decision. How did you make your decision?
  17. What do you do to make yourself happy when you’re sad?
  18. Write about a time you were disappointed.
  19. What are three things that make your best friend awesome?
  20. What do you think empathy means? Why is it important?
  21. How can you cheer up a friend who is sad?
  22. What makes you a good friend? How can you be a better friend?
  23. What’s the best piece of advice a friend, parent or teacher has ever given you?
  24. Write three goals for the rest of the school year. How are you going to accomplish them?
  25. What does responsibility mean to you? What are you responsible for at school and at home?
  26. What person in your life makes you feel confident?
  27. What scares you? How can you overcome your fears?
  28. Tell me about a time when you tried something new. How did it feel? Did you do it again?

Sources:

https://www.creative-writing-now.com/short-story-ideas.html
https://www.pw.org/writing-prompts-exercises
https://www.prodigygame.com/main-en/blog/writing-prompts-for-kids/
Writing prompts

Once you have determined your niche, research others who provide the same type of content. What posts are most popular? This is your passion; think about what information you would search for, and come up with a list of topics to write about. From there, see what content gaps exist in your niche, and then fill them with the best possible content.

Forty-Four Short Story Ideas

Here are lots of short story ideas that you can use as writing prompts. Use these story starters on their own or to get ideas for the CWN online writing courses. You’ll also find links to more creative writing prompts at the bottom of the page.

  1. A babysitter is snooping around her employer’s house and finds a disturbing photograph.
  2. At a Chinese restaurant, your character opens his fortune cookie and reads the following message: "Your life is in danger. Say nothing to anyone. You must leave the city immediately and never return. Repeat: say nothing.".
  3. Your character’s boss invites her and her husband to dinner. Your character wants to make a good impression, but her husband has a tendency to drink too much and say exactly what’s on his mind.
  4. It’s your character’s first day at a new school. He or she wants to get a fresh start, develop a new identity. But in his or her homeroom, your character encounters a kid he or she knows from summer camp.
  5. Your character has to tell his parents that he’s getting a divorce. He knows his parents will take his wife’s side, and he is right.
  6. At the airport, a stranger offers your character money to carry a mysterious package onto the plane. The stranger assures your character that it’s nothing illegal and points out that it has already been through the security check. Your character has serious doubts, but needs the money, and therefore agrees.
  7. Your character suspects her husband is having an affair and decides to spy on him. What she discovers is not what she was expecting.
  8. A man elbows your character in a crowd. After he is gone, she discovers her cell phone is too. She calls her own number, and the man answers. She explains that the cell phone has personal information on it and asks the man to send it back to her. He hangs up. Instead of going to the police, your character decides to take matters into her own hands.
  9. After your character loses his job, he is home during the day. That’s how he discovers that his teenage son has a small marijuana plantation behind the garage. Your character confronts his son, who, instead of acting repentant, explains to your character exactly how much money he is making from the marijuana and tries to persuade your character to join in the business.
  10. At a garage sale, your character buys an antique urn which she thinks will look nice decorating her bookcase. But when she gets home, she realizes there are someone’s ashes in it.

Even more short story ideas

  1. Your character starts receiving flowers and anonymous gifts. She doesn’t know who is sending them. Her husband is suspicious, and the gifts begin to get stranger.
  2. A missionary visits your character’s house and attempts to convert her to his religion. Your character is trying to get rid of him just as storm warning sirens go off. Your character feels she can’t send the missionary out into the storm, so she lets him come down into her basement with her. This is going to be a long storm.
  3. Your character is caught shoplifting. The shop owner says that she won’t call the police in exchange for a personal favor.
  4. Your character is visiting his parents over a holiday. He is returning some books to the library for his mother and is startled to notice that the librarian looks exactly like him, only about thirty years older. He immediately begins to suspect that his mother had an affair at one time and the librarian is his real father.
  5. Your character picks up a hitch-hiker on her way home from work. The hitch-hiker tries to persuade your character to leave everything and drive her across the country.
  6. Your character has to sell the house where she grew up. A potential buyer comes to look at it and begins to talk about all of the changes she would make to the place. This upsets your character, who decides she wants to find a buyer who will leave everything the way it has always been.
  7. A bat gets in the house. Your character’s husband becomes hysterical, frightened that it might be rabid. In his panic, he ends up shutting the bat in a room with your character while he calls an exterminator from a safe place in the house. His behavior makes your character see her husband in a new way.
  8. Your character changes jobs in order to have more time with his family. But his family doesn’t seem interested in having him around.
  9. Your character develops the idea that she can hear the voices of the dead on a certain radio channel. She decides to take advantage of this channel to find answers to some questions that are bothering her about her dead parents.
  10. Your character’s dream is to be a professional dancer. At a party, she mentions this dream to a stranger, who says that he has contacts in the dance world and gets her an audition for a prestigious dance troupe. One problem: your character doesn’t know how to dance. Your character decides to accept the audition anyway and look for a solution.
  1. Your character thinks her boss is looking for an excuse to fire her. She decides to fight back.
  2. Your character goes out for dinner on a date and becomes attracted to the waiter or waitress.
  3. Your character notices that a stranger is following her. She pretends not to notice. The stranger follows her home and watches her go inside. Then when he leaves, your character turns the tables and starts to follow him.
  4. A child moves into a new house and finds out that the other kids in town think it’s haunted. She begins to invent ghost stories to tell at school in order to get attention. But the more stories she tells, the more frightened she becomes of the house.
  5. Your elderly character escapes from the retirement home where his or her children have placed him or her.
  6. Your character gets cosmetic surgery in an attempt to make her boyfriend love her more. But then she worries he only loves her for her looks.
  7. Your character is a writer. But his new neighbors are so noisy that he can neither work nor sleep. He decides to take action.
  8. Your character’s mother-in-law comes to visit for a week, and your character suspects she is trying to poison him. He shares his suspicion with his wife, who says he’s always hated her mother but this accusation is going too far. Meanwhile, your character has stomach cramps, and his mother-in-law is downstairs making breakfast again.
  9. It’s a freezing cold night. Your character finds a homeless family on his doorstep and invites them into his home to sleep. But in the morning, the family doesn’t leave.
  10. Your character has recently married a man with two teenage children. The children resent her, and she tries to avoid them altogether. Then her new husband (their father) disappears suddenly, leaving only a short good-bye note.

Bestseller

Margo Hoff’s 1945 painting, Murder Mystery, portrays a reader propped up in bed late at night with their head buried in the pages of a book. Hoff’s stylized forms, intricate patterns, and dark palette make the scene mysterious, reminding us of how the tone of a good story can affect our experience of the world.

Imagine you are writing a fictional novel that will one day be a bestseller. You think your story is interesting and exciting, but now you need a title. What title would you give your book? What genre does it fall into—mystery, fantasy, science fiction, or something else? What is the conflict that drives your story? How might it be resolved or worked through? Write a summary of your story for the back cover—but don’t give away the ending!

Scoop.it

This content curation site is useful not just for distributing your own content, but for finding other great marketing resources and useful content to share with your followers. Scoop.it users add their own content to the site, along with a description, allowing other people to view that content according to topic. It’s basically just one big platform for sharing things, and—as we all know—sharing is caring. Especially in the world of marketing.

If you think infographics are super cool, but you haven’t the foggiest idea how to create one of your own, have no fear—Piktochart is here. This site allows you to make professional infographics quickly and easily. Infographics can be great forms of visually interesting content; if you don’t have any for your site yet, I recommend that you check out this cool marketing resource. Did I mention that it’s free?

Google Drive

While not strictly a marketing resource, Google Drive can be a content marketing team’s best friend. If you’re working with a team of people, this large online storage space can help you share files and collaborate without having to deal with the hassle of over-sized email attachments. Google Drive also allows you to work on the same content from different computers, tablets, and even smartphones. If you want to have access to your work wherever you go, or if you’d like other people to have access to it, Google Drive might be the site for you.

The age of content marketing is here, and with it, an abundance of resources for marketers like you and me. If you make use of some of the resources above, you’ll surely have an easier time navigating the competitive and complex world of content marketing. You might even have a bit of fun along the way.

Sources:

https://www.creative-writing-now.com/short-story-ideas.html
https://www.artic.edu/visit-us-virtually/get-creative-at-home/creative-writing-prompts
http://writingprompts.com/

The 8 Habits of Highly Effective Bloggers

You did a great job of identifying and explaining some of the attributes and habits of effective bloggers. I think another great attribute of an effective blogger is having access to – and therefore writing about – exceptionally unusual news or information. I gravitate towards people who can show me/tell me/teach me something no one else has before. There is a real opportunity for bloggers to become newsmakers- it is precisely this idea that I think separates the good from the great.

Use Q&A Platforms to Learn More About Your Audience

The 8 Habits of Highly Effective Bloggers

The 8 Habits of Highly Effective Bloggers

There’s too much advice to follow

So I would read one special report with a great idea and put that into place on my blog. But the next day I’d find a podcast from another top blogger with contradictory advice, so I’d change my blog again. Then I’d come across a third idea from an equally successful blogger, which sent me down a totally new path.

The good news is that even if you don’t have all these personality traits already, most of them can be developed over time. Best of all, if you can cultivate these traits, you’ll become more effective in the rest of your life as well.

1. Effective bloggers are prolific

There’s no way around it; it takes work to be prolific. Effective bloggers work hard. Putting a successful blog together requires a lot of time in front of your computer, and not surfing LOLCats or Twittering about what you had for lunch. Great bloggers put serious time into researching, writing, editing, and planning posts for their blogs.

2. Effective bloggers are concise

Most effective bloggers tend toward short posts. They also divide their copy into short paragraphs, and use bullet points or numbered lists to keep the reader scanning. They use compelling subheads so readers can scan for the information they need.

Brevity comes in handy in other areas of life, too. Keep your phone calls short. Pare your email messages down to the essentials. You’ll have more time for creative work, and people will be much more interested in what you have to say.

3. Effective bloggers are analytical

4. Effective bloggers are lifelong learners

Sadly, I think this is a myth. I’ve been using and designing for the Internet for about 15 years, and it keeps changing. Just when you’ve got one element sorted out, something new gets released. Or becomes obsolete. Or mutates in 20 different directions.

5. Effective bloggers are focused and consistent

6. Effective bloggers plan ahead

To paraphrase Seth Godin’s recent book Linchpin, “Effective bloggers ship.” Top bloggers don’t waffle for months about the typeface on their upcoming ebook. They may tailor the angle, price, or format to better suit their market. But they don’t let themselves get derailed. They follow the plan.

7. Effective bloggers are persistent

8. Effective bloggers are self-starters

What trait do you think is most valuable?

Annabel Candy

Annabel Candy is a marketer and chief copywriter at Mucho. Born in England, she’s traveled in over 40 countries, lived in eight of them and has both British and Kiwi passports. But don’t hold that against her. Annabel now bashes her keyboard in Australia, sharing stories and tips on her travel blog Get In the Hot Spot.

Use short, punchy paragraphs

The call to action might be anything—it could be to apply what you’re writing about in your own life, to go away and do a little homework, to react to the post in comments, to share the post with someone else… but the key is to actually invite your reader to do these things, rather than just assume that they will.

Giving Underperforming Posts a Second Chance with Updates

Seasonal Traffic and How to Capture It for Your Blog

Five Steps to Have Your Blog Run Without You Over The Holidays

Because we’re reading on a computer or similar monitor type of set-up, the eyes are already strained enough. We really do need web formatting to be both appealing to the eye, as well as easy to read. Seeing those uber-long paragraphs is the web equivalent to getting served a giant heaping mountain of pasta – you lose your appetite right away.

If posting a ‘how-to-do-something’ post, I like when the images follow a story line with a comment or two under each image explaining something about what it is the reader if viewing. Each image should encourage (or lead) the reader to keep reading so they can eventually view the final result at the end of the post. This helps to keep the momentum going.

If you’re like me, try to avoid the usual stock photos. I search Flickr for CC-licensed photos and have always found something eye-catching. Another good source for similar-licensed photos is Wikimedia Commons.

One thing I’d like to raise about formatting is to remember some of us are reading your posts via RSS or email subscription. So the lovely formatting you apply on your *site* isn’t necessarily what we see when we’re reading your *content*…

Thanks for these. I do almost all of these. My titles can be a little long at times and I just started using bold and italics to highlight points. It’s hard to get feedback on your content so hopefully these work better for readers but I like using these ideas as well.

I’m also a huge fan of using bold and italics to highlight points. I try very hard to avoid long paragraphs and use short punchy ones instead. But my natural writing style is long and flowy and sometimes I just can’t bring myself to break up those longer paragraphs. In those cases, I underline or bold my main point so impatient readers can get the gist quickly

Really enjoyed this information!
I have been writing a Blog for a year or so. I find it difficult sometimes to come up with things to talk about other than destinations, so I get Guest bloggers in to write about their holiday experience. Seems to help getting people to see the blog. I also have found that lots of pictures help as people can then see what the destination is like and they know the picture was taken by us!

Thanks for the great advice Darren. I’m quite new to the blogging world and am enjoying reading the myriad of articles to both improve my skills and learn how to market effectively. It’s refreshing to read posts that are not so technical, “holier-than-thou” or so wordy I get overwhelmed — your information is straight, to the point, and easy to implement — thank you!

We talk to our clients about these sorts of things all the time. I think most people are intimidated by blogging, until we show them the power good content holds. I also suggest to them to vary the content they publish. It’s OK to write short posts or do a video instead of always posting longer posts.

And, the face thing is interesting. I wonder if faces are more effective when they are looking at you, rather than a profile, for instance? It seems like there would be some sort of pseudo eye-contact principle in play there.

I think it’s worth mentioning the importance of being concise, while still telling your story. We often find ourselves with two killer sentences but perhaps they are redundant, and one will have to go. It’s tough on the writer, but easier on our reader!

I’ve always had a bit of difficult with titles. Some people say to make them strictly relevant to your post so that search engines can easily find them. Others say to be creative to draw in readers. I usually do both by including some creative follow by a hyphen, then something more strict. For example, for a game review of Fun Game the title might be Fun Like You’ve Never Had – A Fun Game Review. Titles like this may get a bit lengthy, but they include the best of both worlds.
Thanks for the helpful post, Mr. Rowse!

A screenwriting class I took here in Oregon broke down scripts the way you broke down blog posts. Formatting is a key to comfort, and once you get a reader in their comfort zone they understand what you’re saying so much better.

How to Find and Update Old Blog Posts for SEO Using Databox

When Should You Update Blog Posts for SEO

Step 1: Downloading Databox’s Pre-Build Reporting Template

Step 2: Create a Traffic Comparison Datablock

Once you’ve made all of these changes, click “Run query” so Databox can validate that the data you’re requesting exists and can be pulled. When it’s satisfied, you’ll see a “Save” button. Click it to save your metric and populate your datablock with the requested data.

Finally, scroll down until you see “Limit rows.” In the field next to it, enter the number of pages you think you have on your website (up to 999). If you’re not sure, either make your best guess or just start with 100 and increase the count later if needed.

Step 3: Create a Rankings Comparison Datablock

For “Date ranges” you will want to select the same date rages that you picked for your other datablock: “Last 30 Days,” “Last 90 Days,” and “Last 12 Months.” Select those three options, deselect “Month to date,” then click anywhere else on the screen to apply the changes.

Scroll down until you see “Limit rows.” In the field next to it, enter the number of pages you think you have on your website (up to 999). If you’re not sure, either make your best guess or just start with 100 and increase the count later if needed.

Step 4: Use Your New Dashboard to Find Posts That Need SEO Updates

Now, scroll through the list in your first datablock and look for posts that get a decent amount of traffic but are showing steep, double- or triple-digit declines. These are likely the posts that are losing search rankings.

Tip: you can use Google Chrome’s find feature (Control + F on Windows or Command + F on Mac) to search for and highlight the post you’re looking for to make it easier to find that post in a long list of URLs.

Go through this list, and make a note of any posts with big traffic drops and average position drops. You’ll also want to check the posts to make sure there aren’t any seasonal or other logical reasons for the decline. Otherwise, these are going to be the most important—and most impactful—posts for you to update.

It takes a few minutes to get your dashboard set up in Databox the first time, but once you’ve set it up, you can access this data anytime. As long as you’re an active Databox user, it will continue to populate your dashboard with up-to-date data.

So if you want to do this same exercise again in three months, just open your dashboard and grab what you need. Going forward, you can compile a list of posts that need to be updated every time you need one using your Databox dashboard.

ga_seo_dashboard_template_databox

Authorship:

https://copyblogger.com/effective-blog-habits/
https://problogger.com/how-to-format-blog-posts-effectively/
https://databox.com/blog-seo

How To Write an Interview Article in 8 Simple Steps

Was a particular, specific slant mentioned anywhere, such as concentration on the subject’s recent accomplishments or promotion of a certain service? Compare your broad subjects to any research on the person that you might have done even before the interview took place. Compare them to your editor’s directives or to your own goals. Pull out and refine these broad subject areas and place them temporarily in your transcript as your subheads. You can rename them to catchy subhead titles now, or you can wait until you have a finished product so you can be sure the subheads really grab the gist of the subject area.

magazine interview banner

How To Write an Interview Article in 8 Simple Steps

Writing an interview article is a great way to communicate a certain concept to readers, and when done well, it ends up being a piece readers can thoroughly enjoy. The success of an interview article depends on how you plan it out, no matter the subject. The ultimate goal is to engage readers by letting the subject’s personality shine, so it’s important to learn how to accomplish this objective. In this article, we discuss what an interview article is, explain how to write an interview article, and provide tips you can implement to make your article captivating.

An interview article presents various points of view on a topic or a group of issues based on information gathered from one or more interviews. In the news sector, interview articles enable readers to get high-quality information on critical topics from subject-matter experts. For example, an interview essay in which you interview a historian who specializes in World War II can provide in-depth insight into this particular point in history.

A well-written interview paper addresses the reader directly and makes them feel like they are the ones doing the interviewing. As a result, it’s critical to structure the interview in an intriguing manner. You should conduct an interview with a knowledgeable individual who can supply new and insightful information on the topic.

The Nuts and Bolts of a Profile Article

The person or subject of this type of article typically fits into a special niche of the magazine or has a new program or product to promote. Generally, her achievements, background, and personality are the focus of the article. So how do you get her personality and voice to come through in your writing? As with all types of writing, it can be a bit tricky, but you can follow some prescribed steps and refine them to your own style.

You’ll wrap up your interview either with a set of notes or a sound recording, but preferably both. It’s usually a bad idea to rely entirely on written notes, particularly in this day and age when you don’t have to. You’re likely to miss telling voice tones and possibly inferences if you’re so busy scribbling everything down that you’re not really listening.

Not only that, but you’re not engaging your target either. You’re busy jotting down the information you think you need—today, right now, before you’ve really begun fleshing out your profile. If you’re really listening to your subject as he speaks, you might be surprised at the questions that pop into your mind as you go along. If you’re curious about his answers, the odds are strong that your readers will be as well. Stay on your toes.

If you do take written notes, be sure to tidy up them up and double check any special spellings or names while the interview and the interviewee are still fresh in your mind. Otherwise, commit the entire interview to a recording. Then you can sit down later and listen and transcribe what was said. And you’ll always have the recording to refer back to if you later have questions.

Things to keep in mind when writing an interview article

1. Choose your questions wisely

questions for interview article

This is probably one of the most important steps in the process of writing an interview article as it all starts with asking the right questions to the interviewee.
First, you will need to do a lot of research work and collect as much information as you can on the person you are going to interview. You can either read their biography, previous interviews or read about their current projects, interests and the list can go on. This will not only give you a solid background of the interviewee but will also make you aware of what has already been written, so that you can put a spotlight on some interesting and fresh information. No one wants to read the same facts about someone over and over again, this is why it’s best to find new topics to tackle. And speaking about topics, try to choose a focus topic for the interview. That being said, it’s not a rule you need to take literally, but it’s recommended you stick with a main topic so that you’re not all over the place with your questions. Choose an aspect of the interviewees life that is both remarkable and fits the interests of the reader. Or seek a certain topic worth discussing and develop some questions around it. You can always add a few extra questions still related to the main topic, but with a twist, maybe something unexpected that requires a more spontaneous answer to spice things up for the reader.

Tip: Select questions for interview that best fit your approach. Avoid typical interview questions and ask questions that are intriguing. For example, instead of asking, “How did you achieve your success in tennis?” ask, “They call you the ‘next Federer’ … what three qualities do you think you share with the Swiss tennis player?”

2. Structure of the article

structure interview article

Once you have narrowed down the questions you wish to address and have conducted the interview (here you can find a comprehensive guide on how to interview someone for an article), the next step is to actually write the article. Here is where you have endless options and can get your creative juices to flow in terms of how you wish to structure the article. If there isn’t a specific code you need to follow, I would say that these days there isn’t one winning rule. Most writers feel the need to post the picture, questions and answers in a logical sequence. Which is not bad, but then again chances are this makes for a rather boring interview article.

Also, make sure you have a strong start and ending as these are the pillars of your structure. Choose the most provocative questions and answers to be featured at the beginning and at the end so that this way you keep the interest of the reader from start to finish. Moreover, you can insert some of the main answers as quotes to break the article and make it less boring.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the actual interview might be full of half sentences, unspoken words or sudden changes of topic. To make the interview readable, you’ll have to rephrase most sentences. And when it comes to rephrasing, there’s a simple rule of thumb:

Nonetheless, try and make it attractive. Starting from the title and ending with the last answer, always keep in mind this: “How can I put things so that it’s appealing for the reader?” Look for the most interesting stuff and reorder the questions of the interview if needed so that you give readers the feeling that they have just read the story of a conversation and not a cold sharp interview. Add suggestive photos, insert quotes and let your emotions guide you. Remember, you’re in complete control at this point!

3. Magazine article interview examples to get inspired from

interview article examples

Finding it hard to be creative? Don’t worry, we’ve all been there. Luckily, if you’re stuck in a rut, there are plenty of magazine interview article examples on the Internet to draw inspiration from. I’ve selected a few of the ones that I have enjoyed reading, and remember, even if you’re probably never going to interview Adele or Brad Pitt, articles like this can plant an idea in your mind or awaken your creative buds. It can be anything from the title, the layout of the interview article, to the questions, the perspective from which it is written and so on.
Serena Williams’ interview for Vogue, as well as Adele’s one for Vanity Fair are some impressive articles that somehow manage to bring these big stars closer to the public by sharing some candid moments and information with the readers. Brad Pitt’s interview for GQ magazine is rather an interesting one since it’s a roller coaster of perspectives, questions, emotions and quite artistic pictures that altogether reveal a different side of the actor.

Sources:

https://ca.indeed.com/career-advice/interviewing/how-to-write-an-interview-article
https://www.thebalancesmb.com/how-to-write-a-profile-or-interview-based-article-1360733
https://blog.flipsnack.com/how-write-interview-article-for-magazine/

How to Move up within a Company – Career Progression Secrets

This means operating like someone in a position higher than you already are, without losing sight or attention to current responsibilities, but conveying the confidence and intent to be someone who has potential for promotion and leadership, Lewis says.

How to Move up within a Company – Career Progression Secrets

10 Strategies on How to Move up in an Organization

Our careers tend to have different stopping points and various twists that get us to where we currently are. If you take a peek at some of the various Linked-In profiles you’ll see a fascinating record of where people have been and what level in the organization they are in. Some might stay at a company for years and move up within that organization, while others bounce from company to company looking for the next opportunity. When I was promoted into management I found that one of the most important topics my staff wanted to discuss was career growth and how to move up in the organization. As someone with a passion for career development and that had experience moving up, I was more than happy to share my strategies and insights. Ideally you want to be in your current company and role for some time, have developed a solid reputation within your organization, and are contemplating your career path. Listed below are 10 strategies I recommend both as someone that has moved up in an organization multiple times and also from being a manager and understanding how these opportunities come about.

1. Be Dependable/Reliable– This is #1 and it is probably the most basic concept and it’s also the most important. Whether you believe it or not, your word and actions are being kept track of by all of your superiors and just to let you know that all of those sick calls, excuses on why you were out, and late tallies are not forgotten and do even get brought up at meetings. Sorry but the promotion you wanted will go to someone else because if you can’t be dependable, then no one will trust you or believe in anything that you’re capable of, even if you think you deserve it and are in line for the job. This also means following through with your commitments and performing at the expectation required when trusted with a responsibility. Being dependable is the first step in an assessment of an employee and I’ve actually seen this work in reverse as well where an employee was being considered for termination but because they were dependable and reliable, another manager spoke up in their defense and was kept because of the value they brought. Even if you are the most wonderful person or likable soul, if you can’t be dependable no one can believe in your capabilities.

2. Your opportunity will come from someone believing in you and championing your development- This is extremely important and one I find the biggest hurdle. Moving up in an organization is not only about your degree, experience, expertise, and skills. A huge part is having trust with the right person for when a position is vacated; they leverage for you to have it. It’s extremely difficult to get that opportunity without someone believing in you and even then there are politics that might prevent that from happening. The best thing you can do is position yourself by building up that trust, so that when the opportunity comes, the politics are in your favor. This kind of aligns with the “who you know” concept but the key is that they trust you and will vouch on your behalf.

3. Step up, when others run- There are two types of people. Ones that step up when it hits the fan and ones that run away and expect someone else to deal with it. How you handle yourself in those stressful urgent situations will provide others a view of your leadership capabilities. Remember this- People will not forget when you leave them hanging or drop the ball for them to clean up the mess and as a result trust will erode. Managers and upper management will not forget and even bring up that time someone didn’t step up and helped out when called upon, and if a promotion came down to you and another candidate and you have a reputation for dropping the ball, it’s probably not going to be you getting the job.

6. Take time to better yourself– This means attending that training, going back to school, or just continuing to develop yourself. Knowledge truly is power so never stop learning and think you’ve got it all figured out, because you don’t! Also by acquiring more skills and knowledge means having something very important called “diversity”, and having that one extra skill might set you apart and provide an opportunity to get to the next level. I know for a fact having a special skill no one else had did wonders for me in my career growth so this is something I cannot preach enough of, is to make your-self valuable to the organization by having the skills and being capable.

7. Emulate what others are doing– If you ever wonder how someone got to where they are in their career, just go ask them. Then map out the steps and understand the process that got them there. It might not be the exact or best road for you to follow, but you can learn from their experience and adapt a strategy that will work for you. Everybody has had to start somewhere and most leaders are totally willing to divulge their growth strategy, so go ask and in the process you might build that connection or mentor that will help you get there. In fact, mentors and teachers are extremely wonderful resources full of knowledge and experience and have been exactly where you’re at, so utilize their wisdom whenever you have the opportunity.

Strategy: Invest in Your Abilities as an Employee

Taking the time to develop the qualities valued by employers will help you advance more quickly in your role. Work on improving your “soft skills,” such as communication and writing, critical thinking, and problem-solving abilities, as well as more general qualities that make an employee easy to trust, work with, and rely on.

One way to improve these skills is by earning a bachelor’s degree. According to a 2018 study , “nearly half (47 percent) of seniors said their college experience contributed ‘very much’ to their critical and analytical thinking abilities,” for example.

Be Observant

If you’re looking to develop your soft skills, your best classroom may actually be your existing workspace. Look to leaders on your team and observe how they handle conflict, organization, and prioritization of tasks.

Also, consider observing your colleagues’ daily practices and learning from how they deal with conflicts, problems, or success in the office. If you’re looking to become better at inter-office communication, for instance, pay extra attention to the format and style of the emails you receive from coworkers daily. Or, if you’re hoping to become a better problem solver, pay close attention to issues that your colleagues—or, even more beneficially, those who currently work in the role you wish to advance to—face daily, and the methods they use to overcome them. One of the best ways to learn is through real-life, relevant scenarios like these.

Ask Questions

If you still find yourself struggling to understand someone’s thought process or tactical approach to resolving a problem, ask them about it. As long as you do so from a place of kindness, respect, and a genuine desire to understand and improve in your work, they will likely appreciate that you noticed and acknowledged their successful resolution of the problem, and may willingly share their approach.

When asking questions to leaders, always be sure that the inquiry is appropriately within the scope of your role. As long as you do that, your leader will likely both answer your question and positively note your observation and interest in understanding something new. Asking questions demonstrates your desire to learn and improve—qualities you’ll want them to remember when considering candidates for future advancement opportunities.

Strategy: Develop Your Leadership Skills

Employers promote or grant new career opportunities to workers who have shown they can handle being a leader because the higher you move up in an organization, the more people you will likely have to oversee. For this reason, one of the best approaches you can take to set yourself up for career advancement is to embrace and hone the tactics successful leaders utilize.

Some adult learners acquire these coveted skills by earning a relevant bachelor’s degree . This is a popular option for professionals who already have some work experience, as these programs can provide leadership insights specific to the industry in which they work. Making such a major investment to improve your leadership skills will prepare you for a more advanced role while also demonstrating the effort you’re willing to put in to qualify yourself for such a position.

For those that are not interested in completing a full leadership degree, however, there are ways to embrace leadership from within your organization to show your employers that you have what it takes to thrive. Many leaders are collaborative, inspiring, and inclusive—all qualities you can work on within yourself as a team member even before getting the opportunity to apply them as a leader.

Successful leaders also are known for making their own opportunities. Join a new team or committee within your organization, or take it upon yourself to identify a part of your company that doesn’t have proper leadership, and volunteer to assemble a group to oversee it. Even simply spearheading the organization of the company holiday party or volunteering to help organize a company outing can go a long way in showing your employer how well you handle leadership responsibilities.

References:

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/10-strategies-how-move-up-organization-andre-devito
https://www.lifehack.org/articles/work/how-move-within-company-career-progression-secrets.html
https://www.northeastern.edu/bachelors-completion/news/how-to-move-up-at-work/
https://www.forbes.com/sites/jacquelynsmith/2013/03/07/how-to-fast-track-your-way-up-the-corporate-ladder-2/?sh=11ba2084510a

Art of the Ancient East

The Ancient Near East was characterized by unique and distinctive features. The region was defined by contrasting attributes such as fertile river valleys and arid deserts, great violence and notable developments, wandering nomads and settled civilizations. The region covered an area of three million square miles spanning from the north of the modern Turkey, through the Mediterranean coast through to the east of Mesopotamia and Iran, up to the Indus River valley. It spanned from 3000s BCE TO 600S CE. The complexity and diversity of the region are also reflected in its art. The art of the region varies depending on the period and area of origin (Meyer 301-302).The paper focuses on examining and analyzing the art of the Ancient Near East.

There are some major distinctive characteristics that define the art of the Ancient Near East. The art focuses on expressing the relationship that exists between humanity and divinity. Most of the artistic artefacts are religious in nature and were in honoring gods during religious practices.  The Ancient Near East art is political and was used by rulers to proclaim power and prestige. In most case, the artists focused on showing their expertise instead of their imagination. Animals were frequently displayed in the art, and are used to represent kingship, divinity, fertility and strength. The human images present in the art are idealistic and less naturalistic. Images are used to depict the power, wisdom and strength of rulers.  The art is defined by relief carvings. The carvings are some kind of 3D design that stand out from the flat surface (Meyer 301-302).

The Great Lyre sound box is a unique and outstanding art of the Ancient Near East (figure 1). It was created between 2600-2500 BCE.  It is an example of the Sumerian art.  The Great Lyre sound box has a front panel comprising of four different registers. The registers have four scenes made of figures that are mostly animals doing various activities. The front panel of the Great Lyre sound box focuses on portraying the effect of dynamism and energy despite the fact that compartmentalization of the four scenes in the sound box is rigid. The energy effect is created by the curvy compositional lines and the color of the figures. The sound box is made of two distinct colors that include light tan and a dark black. The colors come about due to the medium of the panel. The dark black is created using bitumen. And is used in making the lines and the panel of the background. The inlaid shell is applied to create light tan color. The inlaid shell is used on the objects and the figures of the body. A sense of dynamism to the figures is added by the start contrast created by the light tan against a dark background. The figures seem to have some sense of glow and life in them. The viewer perceives a sense of presence and energy since the lightly colored figures appear closer to the viewer while the black background is pushed faraway (Steadman and Jennifer 6-10).

The figures on the sound box and established in a way that the idea of energy is depicted. The entire space of the registers and scenes are filled with figures with the aim of portraying a strong and energetic presence. Some straining and twisting occur in the bodies of the figures so that they can fill and fit the space within the register. For instance, the upper-most register shows the dynamic twisting of two bulls. The human figure is portrayed as the “Master of the Animals” by symmetrically placing the bulls beside it. The bodies of the bulls twist inwardly towards the human figure while their heads and necks twist outwardly and slightly downwards.  The beards and hairs of the three figures are used to accentuate the theme of energy and curves in the piece of art and this detail and some others were described in this art introduction essay.

The curvaceous lines in other figures of the art are used to symbolize energy. The second register located at the top of the box has tails and backs of the lion and hyena (Figure 2). Swooping lines are used to portray the distinctive features of the two animals. The bushy mane of the lion is depicted using swooping short lines on its back. A sense of energy and movement occurs by using opposing compositional lines on the panel. The bottom of the second register shows the back of a bear curving downward and upward in a dynamic swoop. The bear’s body is placed in a dynamic angle as it leans towards the lyre on left side of the scene. Opposing movement and dynamism is added to the overall composition of the art by the manner in which certain strings of the lyre curve are placed in relation to the position and of the bear’s body (Hall 22).

Some of the most dynamic lines and curves are contained on the lowest register of the front panel (Figure 3). The tail of the scorpion man situated on the left side of the art is the most obvious curve. It curls with an upward swoop, and end with a downward loop. Energy is strongly depicted using the detailed lines and shape of the scorpion. The tail is made of a number of oval shapes with characteristics decreasing size. The multiple lines appearing within each of the oval shape indicate that the tail is full of energy (Steadman and Jennifer 23).

Myths and Misperceptions

I’ve read in an essay about that I could save money by just putting a copy of my work in an envelope, mail it to myself and then keep the unopened envelope.  She called this the “poor man’s copyright” and said that it substitutes for registration.

This is one of the leading copyright myths.  The poor man’s copyright does not exist. The unopened envelope does not meet the law’s requirements for effective registration.

I am a photographer, so if I own copyright in my photograph, can I do anything with my photograph?

Not necessarily. You do own your copyright but you may not own all the rights to the image.  This misunderstanding causes a lot of problems for photographers. Since photographs usually depict reality they may contain what are called “underlying” rights that may belong to someone else.  Underlying rights can include trademarks, another copyright or a right to privacy or publicity for anyone visible in the photograph.  Underlying rights are problematic if you want to license your work for commercial purposes. For example, if you photograph someone carrying a Gucci® bag, you don’t own the right to reproduce the trademarked logo on the bag.  If someone in the photo has a visible tattoo, you might be violating the reproduction rights of the tatoo artist.   If there is a clearly visible photograph, painting or sculpture in your photograph, you may be infringing that copyright.  If you have people in your photographs you may be violating their rights to privacy or publicity unless you have a signed model’s release.

This is really a problem if you have unknowingly signed a contract in which you have guaranteed, “warranted” (just a fancy way of saying promise) or agreed that you “own all the rights” to the photograph and/or that you have cleared all the rights to the photograph and you accept all liability for any infringements. Again, read what you sign and if you see this language in a contract, be careful.

Five Best STEM Grant Opportunities

Increasingly, institutions, government agencies, and donors are focusing more on subjects that touch on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. This is because the future of the universe depends on advances in these fields, and therefore demands investments regarding research and exploration. What’s more, as the population of the world increases, new and economical ways of doing things need to come into force so that there can be effective consumption of resources.

 

Global institutions and companies have been at the forefront of championing for more investment in STEM education, and that is why they remain some of the major bodies that offer grants and donations towards these courses.

 

STEM are fields that are not pursued by the significant majority, and therefore, those pursuing STEM-related courses have high chances of landing and winning grants, although this needs hard work and determination as well. There is o shortcut or easy way out.

 

Vernier/NSTA Technology Awards

The Vernier/NSTA Technology awards aim at promoting the innovative and creative use of data collection technologies using a computer, graphics calculator, or any other handheld device in a science classroom setup. This award will comprise of seven $5,500 awards, and these awards will span from elementary level to the college level. The awards will be distributed evenly across those levels.

 

Lockheed Martin Corporation Grants

Lockheed Martin provides grants to students in the K-16 band to pursue courses, studies, and research in Science, Engineering, Technology, and Math, to support and advance the business goals of the corporation. The corporation provides grants to various programs, events, and campaigns which aim to foster the academic achievements of students, the development of teachers and to promote ethnic diversity.

 

Applicants for this grant must ensure that their interests are in line with Lockheed Martin’s strategic focus area of delivering standards-based science, technology, engineering, and mathematics academics. Further, applicants must also ensure that they reside or operate in a community or region in which Lockheed Martin Corporation has employees or other business interests.

 

National Science Foundation Advancing Informal STEM Learning Grants

The Advancing Informal STEM Learning Grants, which is under the aegis of the National Science Foundation, aims to advance new ways of understanding the design and the development of STEM Learning in informal environments using evidence.

 

The Advanced Informal STEM Learning program supports five different types of projects which include Pathways, research in Service to Practice, Innovations in Development, Broad Implementation, and Conferences, Symposia, and Workshops.

The deadline for applications for this grant is in November, and the programs will mainly center on informal STEM learning.

 

Lowe’s Toolbox for Education

The Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation (LCEF), over time, has been actively contributing to grassroots community projects since its inception in 1957. The LCEF provides finances to tax-exempt, not for profit organizations and public institutions in communities where Lowe operates stores and distribution centers.

 

The projects that are eligible for this projects should fall under tools for STEM programs, safety improvements, facility renovations, and STEM programs. Requests for grants can range from $2,000 to $100,000, but it is worthy to note that a significant majority of grants will be given in the range of $2,000 to $5,000. Other crucial projects that will require a sum which exceeds $25,000 will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

 

Toshiba America Foundation Grants

The Toshiba America Foundation (TAF) offers grants in science and math for the 6th to the 12th-grade band. Toshiba America Foundation, which is supported by the Toshiba Corporation and the Toshiba America Group of Companies, is committed to helping classroom teachers make science and mathematics learning successful and enjoyable as possible. Towards this end, The Toshiba America Foundation funds project ideas and materials that teachers need to innovate teaching in their science and math classrooms.

 

TAF has a keen interest in projects that are designed by teachers, or small groups of teachers for use in their respective schools. Public and not for profit private schools throughout the United States are eligible for grants, and applications for grade 6 -12 for an amount of $5,000 or less are accepted on a rolling basis throughout the calendar year. Requests for grants for amounts that exceed $5,000 are reviewed two times a year.

 

To sum this up, there are leading companies and corporations in the fields of technology, science, and engineering that offer some of the best opportunities when it comes to STEM grants. Given the relevance of STEM education in the years to come, public institutions and other concerned agencies have also increased their input into STEM education, and this is evident by the increase in grants and other related financing arrangements for projects that are STEM-related.