How to Find The Best Satire Topics to Write About
The editor of a top political humor, spoof news and satire website discusses how to find the best topics to write about.
In my own not particularly humble personal opinion, satire can be one of the most rewarding forms of writing to get involved in. Not only do you get to make people smile and perhaps even laugh, which is itself a very valuable social service and a rewarding thing to do, but you also get to have your say on the big issues of the day with a much more receptive audience than would be the case if you were writing straight political blog articles or something of the ilk, which can often be a little boring to most people. The best satire appeals to both the serious political and current affiars audience, and also those interested in humor, celebrities and entertainment.
But there is one little problem with this type of writing – and that is the constant search for new topics to write about. Although there is definitely a substantial audience out there for satire and it is very possible for you as a writer to build up a substantial readership for yourself, it is also true that satirical articles rarely produce perennial content (content which stays relevant and keeps getting read for a long time) as they often relate to the news stories of the day or what is currently happening in the lives of celebrities and political figures. That means that you need to keep producing new content on a regular basis, and that means finding new topics.
Of course the best way to find new satire topics is to keep up to date with the news and politics of the day, including reading serious columnists and opinion pieces as well as the main news headlines and the work of other satirists. But sometimes just watching or reading the news is not enough and you need to find inspiration from elsewhere. But where?
One tip is too look at various online trends. You can go to google trends to see what people are searchin for right now, or you can go to the twitter website and look at the current topics trending on that website. These things can be a great inspiration for new ideas, and will also point you towards topics that people are actually interested in reading about.
Some other places that I have found good for inspiration include: Advertising, both on tv, and other places such as magazines or the internet. Celebrity gossip websites, or even the websites, twitter accounts and so on of celebrities themselves. Magazines articles or serious website articles, especially on social issues or in-depth current affairs.
And if you are still short of ideas, here are some of the most popular topics from the website I work for:
- (David) Cameron