1. Write That Baby Down. Hey, that was a pretty good point you just made! People laughed and Laura said “Woah, that is so true.” Laura reads a lot, so go you! But now what to do with this budding success you have as America’s truth teller? Sure, you could say it again to a different group of people at the same party. Or you could be a star. You pull out your phone to send a text but what are you really doing, you 21st century Vonnegut? You are writing down that knowledge nugget for a killer internet list piece.
2. Okay, Let’s Go Get Inspired. It’s two weeks later and you just found this treatise-tweet in your email drafts. Man, what were you even thinking when you said that? Who knows, but the muses have smiled on you and it’s time to get cranking. Did you know that Kerouac wrote On The Road in one sitting? Of course you do because you majored in English. Cup of coffee? Check. Laptop open? Check. Headphones On? Check. Look at you go!
3. First Things First. Item number one of your list is easy. Slap down that thing you said in bold letters. Then below fill it out with other stuff. What led up to you saying that? Does it connect to anything from 1990s cultural nostalgia? Yadda, yadda, yadda and you’re done with your first list item!
4. Stick With It: More Items. So that was smooth sailing but what are you gonna say next? Maybe Laura said something pretty good right before your thing. What was it again? Oh come on, she won’t mind if you use that.
5. Okay Pal, Lists Have To Have More Items Than That. Sorry to be the bad guy but you are the one that wanted to be a writer. Any other ideas? Google it, maybe someone has written about this before. Or how about a tangential anecdote? You’ve got loads of those. Wait, now that you think about it, your first point was so good maybe it’s worthy of being split into two points. Cha-ching!
6. Hang In There: Even More Items. Oh man, only 5 items so far? Try thinking back. Maybe Laura said something else even earlier in the evening? Really, I don’t think she’ll care, it’s not like she copyrighted it.
7. Just One Last One. You’ve Got This. Dig deep. It can be a saucy one-liner or a piece of advice that sounds a little prosaic but is, like, still really good advice. Remember, good things come to those who wait.
8. Now for the Fun Part: Pictures! Take us on a multimedia roller coaster ride by filling out your article with pictures. Nothing makes your readers forget that #6 was sort of just a rehashed #4 if you dazzle them with the right .jpeg. Avoid using animated .gifs because it can really cheapen your writing.
See, look at how much space this thing takes up
9. Your Name In Helvetica. Time to get famous. Just send that first draft out to all editors that have listed emails and let the adoration come to you. It never hurts to subtly work your twitter handle into the article to make it that much easier. My friends are always saying “@TylerGHall, will you still talk to us when you are a big time writer?” I know my answer is “What do you mean ‘when’?” but now you’ll have to think of your own witty little response. And that, my friend, is the hard part.
Oh shit, I mean:
10. The End.